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How to Safely Spank a Child Over Your Knee. Putting aside all anger.

Updated on June 19, 2013

Restraint is key in two ways. Restrain yourself and restrain your child.

The technique used for an out of control child is just to grab and hold firmly, no pain.
The technique used for an out of control child is just to grab and hold firmly, no pain. | Source

Spanking and corporal punishment. Child abuse is possible

By today’s standards I was abused as a child. But I can honestly say I only got two whooping that I did not deserve. Most the time I appreciated a good spanking because that meant we were even. I did not have to carry the guilt of having done wrong. It excused my behavior. Think about that, somehow it taught me that two wrongs make a right.

Here is the article my wife sent me: (In brief it is about different states taking different actions in schools and homes. It seems a little odd that we legislate how to treat our children. It seems very odd that a teenage girl can be legally spanked by a grown man)

http://shine.yahoo.com/parenting/spanking-ban-delaware-first-state-pass-law-expanding-181200724.html;_ylt=A2KJ3CSLGOtQPFcAzdIhmolQ

Abuse. The word is rightly used but poorly understood.

Abuse is the misuse of something. That is all. We make mistakes and misuse our car every time we drive. If we are obese we probably abuse food. If we take a drug instead of exercising for the same ailment we abuse drugs. My youngest constantly is abusing his toys. That does not mean I abuse him in exchange. A very tiny portion of abuse is criminal.

So understand that spanking a child is not abuse by itself. But we can abuse the technique of spanking.

Love and Anger are the right and wrong reasons to spank

Safety and security is what a child needs. Life is hard, don't make it harder.

If a child's life is filled with love, where is the room for anything less.
If a child's life is filled with love, where is the room for anything less. | Source

Over both knees please.

A spanking of a child by an adult who is angry is abuse. It does not matter how hard the spanking is. For spanking to be effective it need not contain pain. What is effective about spanking is the exercising of control and dominance by an adult over a child. It is the art of, in a physical sense, demonstrating complete mastery over the child. Physical restraint must be applied, putting the child in a completely dependent state. It may sound strange that one would hold/hug tightly while punishing. The concept of putting a child over your knee to spank is wonderful. Use both knees. Use only your hand. Never on bare skin. You see in this way you also are restraining yourself, not possible for a mighty swing. So let me explain.

For infants and toddlers spanking is never appropriate. Any spanking of a child before they form abstract abilities to communicate is abuse. Corporal punishment can only be justified when there is clear understanding as to why it is occurring. A child’s greatest friend in early formative years is security. They need to know that a parent has their back and will always be there in complete control (little do they know ;-). That is why full control of the child at the time of administration of the punishment is so important. Corporal punishment is only positively effective when it is done as an establishment of power and hierarchy. If the punishment is done to inflict pain as the goal, somebody needs to see a shrink and it is not the child.

Try simple long held restraint first. Actually try hugging first.

We do not whip or torture criminals. Most of us can even control a dog without violence and the infliction of pain. But we do restrain them and exercise control over them in an effort to bring their behavior into societal acceptable norms.

When and how to spank.

Never before 3 years of age. Never after puberty. Never in anger. Never for the purpose of inflicting pain. Never with out a clear warning. Never as an example. Never with an instrument.

It is this writers experience that two times in the life of a child is enough. Simply putting them over your knees will suffice after that.

As an end note about my own abuse it was horrendous. In one year in grade school I got over fifty swats at the hand of a principal. I was the crowned Swat King. I learned hate, defiance, violence and pride in violating rules and taking the punishment. By fifth grade I was officially a bad boy, and believe me that is a hard rap to break out of. Physical violent punishment of a child is bad stuff. We cannot process rightfully. We do not yet have the tools to put violence in proper perspective. So we might end up doing it wrong, like I did. We should be able to see clearly that while we do not blame society for the mental illness of a person we must take responsibility when it is a result of child “abuse”.

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    • christopheranton profile image

      Christopher Antony Meade 4 years ago from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom

      I always got spanked as a child at home. It didn't do me any harm. I don't think the routine canings from the teachers at school were very beneficial though.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thanks Christopher. As I wrote it I realized that my home spankings were cool and done right. But I tend to thinks schools and prisons should leave hitting people alone.

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Ohhh, this is a tough one. I understand what you're saying, but I am really uncomfortable with the idea of advising people to put a child over one's knees and spanking them. I worry about parents who might not have appropriate self control.

      I have always found it effective just to occasionally say to my children, "Do I have to smack your bottom?" when they are very young, and clap my hands together. I think the noise of the clap is what startles them into action. Their imagination provides added stimulus.

      We were given spankings as children, and the cane at school, but I don't recall ever considering it appropriate. Not even now with the benefit of hindsight.

      Do you really think that the majority of adults can be trusted to spank their children? Just wondering ... :)

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Long

      TimeMother, Wonderful comments. Yes this hub is more about raising awareness than proclaiming truth.

      All parents are defective. That is just life. Rage and violence are unacceptable 99.9 % of the time.

      All parents need to strive to say "I never ever used corporal punishment in anger".

      Yes I do think the majority are responsible in such matters. But the not talking about it only aggravates the failure of the minority. A white elephant sitting in the corner. I think ignorance is a worse evil that discussion.

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      I accept your point, but sadly I was recently reading statistics about parents who drink too much alcohol, take too many drugs etc to be responsible parents 24/7 and children end up in the hospital due to their parent's bad decisions and behaviour.

      Some over-indulge daily, some weekly, some even less often but nonetheless lack appropriate judgement and/or behaviour. I wouldn't trust that profile of parent to smack their child.

      Maybe they'd be fine when sober, but what about that one occasion when they 'accidentally' flew into a rage? Sadly, it seems, rage is not as rare as you or I would like to think.

      I'm not quite sure which 0.1 % of the time you are suggesting rage and violence are acceptable. Care to elaborate?

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Defense of someone weaker is the .1% of the time.

      Your point on sobriety is well said and taken. And many think sobriety is "not imbibing" yet it is more. Stress, tired, angry at something else, worry and fear all impede sobriety.

      Just perhaps if one of those you speak of, read this hub, now made so much better by your comments, when they are sober it may help remind them when they are not. A spark, a second thought a count to 10. And then you have made a huge difference in at least two peoples lives.

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 4 years ago from Australia

      Thanks Ericdierker. You are right about stress, anger etc. There are many circumstances where spanking a child could get out of hand, particularly if the child seems defiant during or after the spanking. It is far less damaging if a person loses their temper or snaps when yelling at a child to go to their room, than when they have a child bent over their knee.

      Thank you for accepting my input in the spirit in which it was offered. :)

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      LongTimeMother have you every put a 40 lb child over your knee to spank? It is extremely difficult. If they are throwing a tantrum it is even harder. Then you have to raise one hand and spank. It is almost impossible to pack any harm into the spank. It puts both the parent and the child into a controlled situation with the available part for spanking only the butt.

      In the education and rearing of emotionally challenged children to technique is just to get hold of and restrain until the episode passes. That notion is why this centers in on the over the knee. My mom would just hold my hand and swing a belt, if I moved I could have and did get hit anywhere. Not good and only escalates a bad situation.

      Here is the lasting take away point. People who physically commit corporal punishment more than, say twice, in a their child's life time have far more issues than I can address here. But if they can simply follow these rules then it will never go horribly wrong.

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 3 years ago from London, UK

      Very useful and I like the point you made about it having no pain. Some parents think it's the pain that will "speak" to the child, so they don't repeat the offence.

      Interesting Hub.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 3 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I think the first spank (of only two) that I gave my oldest may have hurt her a little -- like a rubber band sting. I will never regret anything more than that.

      Control is both exertion and example. Thanks Lady for dropping by and leaving such a truthful comment.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 3 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      This hub gets a lot of views. Hmm. Please do not spank your child. It really does hurt you more than them.

      I talked with my youngest girl and she laughed when I talked about spanking her. She said: "daddy you cried more than me" She just got back from time helping folks in China and she has fancy pantsy degrees from a place called Berekely. Funny I remember sitting in parent teacher conferences when her speech and reading impediments seemed like the world was coming to end.

      If you spank your child and do not suffer you are doing it wrong.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 3 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      There is one thing I have found every where in this world. Funny but from Africa to Asia and to South America to Latvia, only one thing is every where.

      Love.

    • profile image

      Jan 3 years ago

      I spank over the knee and bare bottom its a good way to dicipline my son of 8 years old he is misbehaving very badly sometimes.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 3 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Jan, bare bottom adds a level of humility that works with some but builds resentments in others. I assume your son needs it ;-)

      My mom was a spanker. He did it barebottom usually. But that was because we would put on four under wears when we knew we were in trouble!

    • profile image

      Jan 2 years ago

      Yes my son needs it he needs it a few times a month

    • poweranni profile image

      Anne Gillingham 2 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Thing about spanking is this: you are done with it. If you eliminate the threat of a spanking from your "home discipline" kit, then you are stuck with other things that are less swift, less threatening, and place more onus on you, the parent.

      For example, if you have an 8 year old daughter and she forges your signature on a note home ... what the heck are you going to do?

      Are you really going to take away computer privileges for a week? that makes YOU the jailer. That is more of a punishment for the parent, than it is for the child. Sorry but I don't roll like that. She is the one who transgressed, not me. Besides, as far as I am concerned, lying and deceiving is a massive transgression, and removing a minor privilege is not enough of a deterrent to make her fear committing the act again.

      Are you going to say "you can't go spend the night at your friend's house because you lied and deceived me?" --- Sure, but you are then stuck with a resentful kid all weekend, when you might have taken the time to recharge your batteries with your spouse. To hell with that crap!

      What else is meaningful for a school-ager? No ice-cream for desert? HA! I scoff at your ice-cream!

      So basically in a "spankable" scenario like that, most punishments that I can think of actually end up punishing the parents more than the kid AND build more long-term resentment and I say "no way man."

      I pity parents who have kids who lie to them or defy their boundaries or wishes. To make them feel guilty about "applying the rod of correction" in my opinion is wrong.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Excellent points poweranni. I thank you much for adding such a well thought out comment to this hub. Keeping the concept as a tool is very important.

    • Joy56 profile image

      Joy56 2 years ago

      Most people nowadays would say never!!!!!! I know my dad would have been spanked regularly at home and at school. I think other ways should be found for training a child..... Not sure hitting really works. Enjoyed reading your hub..... Lots of controversy there

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Joy, I think it requires some soul searching for the parent. If it is taken lightly then it is out of place. I do not think my sensitive youngest will ever get spanked, there is just not likely a need to as he is empathetic and can really feel his parents angst when he misbehaves. Thank you for coming by and leaving a note of a good point.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 2 years ago from sunny Florida

      To spank or not to spank is always the question isn't it?

      Spanking is one thing, as you know. Beating is another and some cross the line.

      My Momma used a switch, a green one that I had to pick, and it was used so infrequently I apparently was not emotionally scarred.

      My daughter is grown and I did not spank her. We had lots of 'talks' and she hated them (it was like a spanking, she said). I do not spank my grandchildren either (the one is too big anyway :D ) ...but I do correct and redirect.

      thanks for sharing this with us. I am sure it will serve to guide those who read.

      Angels are on the way to you this morning ps

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I have four children and have spanked exactly 6 times, very mildly. Oh the injustice of it all. Seems to me that 3 times had to do with safety and the street. I think you could raise a child just fine without it. But I have seen children that really needed it ;-)

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

      I do believe in the old fashion form of discipline.. a good old fashion spanking.. this actually will help new younger parents.. as we oldies are set in our ways.. and now the laws are different.. a very good hub my friend :)

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I sure have seen children that need a good old fashion spanking and I mean that they need it to learn discipline. Some kids just need to learn that way. Modern day folks should have it in their child rearing toolbox. Thank you for the read and comment.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 2 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Excellent advice. There is a process involved with spanking with the most important ones being that spankings should not be done in anger and there should not be pain involved. My parents use to talk to us before spankings, so we knew exactly what the punishment was for. Then, they would take us over their knees and tap (one, two, three, four, five). As a child, it "felt" like pain. But, to be honest, the pain was simply the mental pain of being a child who had done wrong in my parents' eyes.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you Marlene, your comments remind me of my very gentle but stern father.

    • RonElFran profile image

      Ronald E. Franklin 2 years ago from Mechanicsburg, PA

      Good discussion of a topic that, IMO, definitely needs to be put in perspective. That parents should never discipline their children in anger is a great point. Discipline should be for the benefit of the child, not to work off the parent's feelings. It's when anger is the motivating factor that abuse is most likely.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you for your comment Ron. It is always a pleasure to have you drop by. I am afraid too many parents learn your lesson too late.

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 2 years ago from Georgia

      I only got a few spankings, but I can't say I ever got one that wasn't deserved. You make a very good point about anger. Voted up!

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Hi Habee, I was fortunate in that spankings never really meant that much to me. At least not as much as the bad feelings from doing something really wrong.

    • grand old lady profile image

      Mona Sabalones Gonzalez 2 years ago from Philippines

      I think our generation grew up being spanked. But our parents told us they were treated worse by their parents. I never spanked my daughter because my husband didn't allow it. So when she'd go too far I'd tickle her. She tells me now that she doesn't like it when people tickle her. I didn't know what else to do, she could be irrepressible at times.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Mona that is an excellent story. I think that is a great alternative. I will give that some thought and application with my youngest.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 23 months ago from The Beautiful South

      I agree so completely with you Eric in the manner to spank and never should it be done in anger. I think anyone who smacks a child in the face should go straight to jail, that has always seemed so awful and hurtful to me and I was a spanker, though very rarely.

      Any child at school that needs spanking should be sent right home and if that happened often enough I bet those parents would make things right really quick. It is a parents job not a teachers.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 23 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Jackie, thank you for commenting here. You are so right. Reviewing this made me realize that my youngest at 5 and a half has yet to need a spanking. I would like to think that on round four here, I am the one that does not need to spank.

      My mother used to strike me in the face. It was horrible. In later life I came to realize that she was having a very tough time at the time. There was plenty of love so we got through it.

    • Sparklea profile image

      Sparklea 23 months ago from Upstate New York

      Eric, excellent hub. I was raised by my grandparents who were born in 1898. I was spanked, slapped across the face, had my ear pulled on. My grandmother would make me pull down my pants, lay on a bed and swat my bare behind with a fly swatter. My grandfather gave me some doozy spankings (clothes on standing up). When my son and daughter were born, Dr. Spock was my "god." Everything by the book. I don't remember spanking my son, but my daughter got the spanking of her life from my ex husband when she set her playpen on fire and lied about it. She STILL remembers it. My ex would have been in jail if it had been done today. I never see my son...he lives 9 minutes away and has 4 children who I never see...He shuts down when I try to communicate with him, but he did say during our last conversation a year and a half ago that when I put him in Christian school I signed a permission form for him to be spanked. Apparently he has issues with that. I told him, 'it was all I knew at the time, it was acceptable in those days, I did not know any better, I did what Dr. Spock told me to do."

      So, spanking did NOT damage me, but apparently it damaged my son, and I live in torment and guilt to this day.

      I DO think society has gone too far the other way. Kids rule the world, it is all about them, time out sucks, it does NOT work. My kids NEVER had a temper tantrum, the first time they tried it, I nipped it in the bud. Tantrums can be eliminated the first time they try...the disrespect I see today in the stores, at Barnes & Noble, EVERYWHERE, the way toddlers talk to their parents and it is ALLOWED!!!??? I could go on and on. So I have seen that spanking can go either way. Your hub made a lot of sense, and you made excellent points. But if spanking is eliminated, kids still need to be controlled and loved at the same time. I recommend the book, "Have a New Kid by Friday." Look it up on Amazon. THANK YOU Eric, you are such a great writer. Blessings, voted up and useful.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 23 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Sparklea what an important message for all of us. Physical violations of our space have amazingly complex and long ranging implications. We have nurtured our young son's empathy and sympathy to a point where his appreciation for how others feel overwhelms his inclination for bad conduct or selfishness.

      I fully was prepared to spank him if the situation arose but to date a harsh word and letting him know that how he is acting is hurting me is enough. Of course all this could change with a bad week at school. There are options on method but no options on showing love.

      Thank you for taking the time to add so much to this hub.

    • sujaya venkatesh profile image

      sujaya venkatesh 21 months ago

      it is ofcourse a parenting course

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 21 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you for your visit and comment.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 21 months ago from Home Sweet Home

      i always give my son 3 warnings before I hit him with my hands, spanking on buttocks , never.

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 21 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Peachy it sounds like if you are giving him 3 warnings he most certainly is getting the right message. What do you mean "hit him with my hands", if not on the buttocks where?

    • profile image

      Jan 20 months ago

      I now spank my son 9 years old with a wooden hairbrush on the bare bottom and over the knee he is misbehaving very badly so i spank him hard

    • Ericdierker profile image
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      Eric Dierker 20 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Sorry to hear that Jan. Sounds like it may be time for some outside help.

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