OK so I need a few opinions either way to help me out with another English essay I'm working on.
So what is it to be....smack your kids or not? I'm not talking about beating them black and blue to make that clear, just the 'normal' smack on the hand or similar.
Whatever your feelings on the issue please explain why you feel that way.
Depends on the level of the hazard you are trying to get them to avoid. Sometimes, short, sharp lessons are necessary.
My rule was don't hurt each other and don't hurt yourselves. Punishment must fit the crime. I think each of them got one spanking for hurting the other and that was it. I tried to teach my kids not hurt them, and I think that worked.
I was very strict and overprotective they thought, but I think now as parents they know why. The rule was not to do anything to hurt. That covers drugs and all too, which I suppose when everyone grows they try things you tell them not to. They make me pround each time they let me know they found out I was right,and pass this on.
If they are in danger you must stop them of course, but some people take it too far. many times words work better.
Only hit a child if it cannot be avoided. Once I was babysitting three boys... one of the boys was 5 and he decided that he was going to touch the stove. I was cooking at the time and it was an older stove. I wasn't close enough to pull him away, plus I was on the opposite side, so I hit his hand away so he wouldn't burn himself. It scared him, but it wasn't hard enough to hurt.
On the other hand, I don't think they should get spanked or smacked because they dropped something or anything like that. The only time I can see hitting a child is in an emergency like the stove. I don't think hitting your child is a good idea because it affects them mentally and emotionally.
Pappa, you are so bad!! Good to see you around. I don;t see anything wrong with a spanking when needed. If you just let a child go it will be too late when you try to instill respect. I have a stepson 6, a regular little bad ass. threatens to call the police or CPS ... baby go for it...I will dial the number for you.
The problem is making a clear distinction between 'beating them black and blue' and a 'normal smack' - both are forms of physical violence, by definition, hence the demarcation is either none or all.
Kids learn what you teach them, if you teach them that hitting others to discipline them is okay, they will do the same thing. The cycle of physical violence is perpetuated in this way.
There are many other alternatives to hitting kids, some work, some don't, it depends on the circumstances. Regardless, there is never a good reason to hit children.
Please read my article entitled " Why we can not discipline our children anymore" there is a clear distinction in a spanking and a beating.
" Spare the rod, spoil the child"'
Sure, we can smack our kids and maybe they'll do what we want from them, and later grow up to smack their kids. Or maybe they'll grow up considering it bad parenting, and decide not to smack their kids. You can keep the cycle running - using physical discipline to put kids in their places - and the world won't fall apart. Children are extremely resilient and can grow up seemingly unscathed, and function in this world perfectly well - even with a baggage-load of childhood traumas.
But is this what we want for our children?
Isn't it the role of a parent to inspire their children to be the best person they can be? Isn't the ultimate goal, the development towards a society of non-violence and mutual respect?
We smack our children because we are unable to deal with them in any other way... and that is our failure as parents. Correct and successful discipline is only a part of raising children, and it is no straightforward task, but if we choose "smacking" as an easy option, then we're really not doing our job.
If we truly love our children, we won't want to hurt them in - any - way. And no person with emotional problems will ever blame it on the fact that he was not physically disciplined as a child.
no, i think it's disrespectful. there are all kinds of ways to drive a point home or get their attention.
Smack is one of those words that has such a broad definition, I think, that it's difficult to offer a simple yes or a no. I'm glad you made the general statement first hand that you are not referring to beatings. Perhaps 'pat' or 'tap' is a better word. A smack, by my own recollection of being smacked, seemed more intrusive in nature. More forceful. A smack in the face is a terrible experience for any one, including a child. A smack on the behind is not as terrible, though a smack to me would suggest a more forceful thing than a tap or a pat.
If the underlying question is, "do I believe that corporal punishment is okay," the answer to that would be a simple yes. I draw a clear line between corporal punishment and child abuse. They are not even close to being the same thing.
I was smacked hit by both schools and parents I become more street life then. This just makes kids children rebel angry its not the answer I have lived fifty years six children in out of my life never hit one
Mixed feelings. Under normal circumstances I would say that punishment in this form is fine according to the feelings of the parents. I know this to have been a suitable and effective form of punishment for our granparents on back in time. However, the times have changed. As I go through the years in counseling with families it has become increasingly evident that adults and children these days have little mastery over anger. This is the turning point of society. Because of this lack of self restraint parents are more apt to punish their children into oblivian or at least until they have gotten all their jollies out of it. There is little structure to punish with the intent to teach and correct for future reference of the child.
Obviously, first and foremost, anger management should be instituted into the families of today before they should ever feel comfortable with striking a child as a form of punishment.
The problem with smacking is that the people who are against the use of any kind of violence are probably the people who are able to administer in a useful and caring manner. Those who advocate smacking, in my experience, are those who are not able to control themselves.
Their own lack of control is probably why they lose control of their kids to the point where violence is necessary.
You want your child to understand that there are dangerous situations and decisions they can make; the will cause them pain.
A smack on the hand for playing with fire. If they violate a family rule that is detrimental to the whole house hold, then a couple of smacks on the bottom should send the necessary message.
No we don't advocate brutality but we do and you must get important message through to your child, and if a little pain mixed with love get it done, then you must bare the pain of giving your child the smack they need.
My wife and I have two young boys, and we made a choice before even having children that we were not going to use spanking to discipline them. I do not regret this decision.
Our boys are well-behaved (for the most part) and polite. We discipline them with loss of privileges, time-outs, and other non-physical means.
This is not to say that I've never been tempted to spank them. There are plenty of incidents where I think to myself, "Dang, if I'd pulled a stunt like that, I wouldn't be able to sit down for a week!"
But my relationship with my dad was never what you'd call uncomplicated. He'd tell me not to smoke, but he smoked a pack a day. It eventually killed him. He'd bark at me, I'd say, "okay, you don't have to yell," and he'd reply "I'M NOT YELLING!" And of course, there was the classic: "Don't hit your sister!" *SWAT!*
I learned from this that if you were big enough and powerful enough, you could get away with pretty much whatever you wanted to do. (Corollary: I was neither big nor powerful, therefore, I could get away with nothing.)
Thankfully, I eventually unlearned this. I don't think my dad was trying to teach this lesson; he was doing the best he could. I used to resent him, but I'm over it. But I haven't forgotten being a kid, having just been spanked really hard for something that (I thought) wasn't even my fault, sitting in my room, holding my behind, and wishing I could get revenge on my dad.
Is spanking always bad? No, but if you're going to spank, bear the following in mind:
The kid needs to understand that you're spanking him only because he broke a rule, and that you're not just trying to spank him into submission. If you ensure that the kid understands why he's being spanked, you'll be sending a clear(er) message.
You must not spank out of anger; when you're mad, you might hit harder (and/or more times) than you really mean to. This will very probably breed resentment rather than repentance.
And finally, if you're going to spank at home, you need to be willing to spank in public. The kid, if he's young, will not understand that he's going to 'get it' later. He only knows he's 'getting away with it' now. He'll know that he can get away with misbehavior in public, but won't know why. And he won't understand why he's getting spanked when you get home--it's been too long since he misbehaved--so he'll resent the spanking rather than repent his (now forgotten) misbehavior.
If your kid is older, he'll figure out that you will only spank him in private, and will come to the conclusion that that spanking is somehow unacceptable to others--and that you know it! He'll see that you're willing to spank him, but that you would prefer that others not know that you do so.
He'll learn that, on some level, it's wrong for you to be spanking him, but there won't be anything he can do about it. He will learn to be a victim.
So, if you choose to spank, 1)your kid must know that he has earned a spanking, and how he earned it, 2)You must not spank out of anger, and 3)you must be willing to spank in church, at the mall, &c.
Actually, this is true of whatever means you use to discipline your children, whether it's a spanking, or a time out, or being sent to his room, or whatever.
I agree with you Jeff.
I feel that parents who condone smacking are often merely releasing their own anger or embarrassment when smacking. They use the excuse it is for the good of the child, but how can it be? Have they any proof? If it worked, then one smack would be enough for all children everywhere, to never misbehave again in their lives...and we all know that is not the case.
I think they smack their kids because they can't control their own feelings and emotions in the situation given.
When a child misbehaves, a parents has to put themselves in the place of the child, both physicall and emotionally, at their same level. (Not easy) A child when smacked will at first not have a REAL idea why. Even if you explain to them, do they REALLY understand? Of course not. How can they understand you smack them because you love them?? How can anyone understand that?
You should never, ever, ever, under any circumstances hit a child - but when you do it should fly off your hand and stick on the wall !
only joking ok !
With young children, I think smacking hands teach them what is dangerous, but only should be used when they can cause serious harm to themselves, like when they reach for a light switch or reach for a burning stove. I actually smacked the little girls hand I nanny for when she was two when she reached for the stove. I never thought I'd ever do something like that. I told the parents, because I felt really bad, and they said thank you.
Well, according to the law..you can only slap them on their bottom with your hand...It's illegal to leave red marks on a child'ss bottom.
You can't use a belt, switch or paddle.
I believe that you just need to see what effect it has on a child when they are hit. Trust is straight out the window!The tiny heart is broken. No I do not hit my kids, although I was hit as a child. Calling abuse of a child "smacking" does not lighten the abuse in the eyes of the child. Something is lost forever.
I was spanked it didn't break my tiny heart and I didn't lose any trust in my parents! But, I did readjust my behavior, which was the desired effect!
You've obviously never worked with kids. I've worked with both kids who have been beaten black and blue and those who have never had any limits set on their behavior at all and both are detrimental to a kid.
Corporal punishment should only be used in certain select instances. Threats of violence to others and destruction of property are about the only two instance of which I would approve of. Simple things like disrespect and tantrums sans violence can be handled in a different manner.
What is important is that you act in a constant manner. The quickest way to confuse a kid and to encourage them to act up is to deal with them in an erratic manner. By dealing in a consistent way with kids, you give them a pretty good idea of how their actions will cause you to act towards them. This is essential in building trust. As a kid starts to trust you more and more, their acting out behaviors decrease.
This is related to, but separate from, the other job as a parent; that of teaching kids how to behave in public. By setting limits and rules with kids, you also give them an idea of how they are supposed to act and interact with society at large. Consistency here, too, plays a role. By remaining consistent you show by actions and words how a child is expected to ask. You challenge them to emulate their behavior and this is what makes people contributing members to society as a whole.
If you take time to explain to your child why you are using a smack to correct them, and that it is out of love, they will be sad because they have disappointed you.
But as for trust they have to understand that they earn trust, and you have a responsibility to their future to do what a parent must do. if that means a spanking then so be it.
When you see all these undisciplined kids running around loose and their parents standing in open court defending them when they've killed some one elses kid, then you see where this I don't hit my kids philosophy winds up, some times they even kill their parents.
The smacks that are lacking now will later be the punches in the face they get from fellow criminals and law enforcement officers.
I do not often disagree with you darkside, but vehemently disagree with this.
I have 3 grown children that have never been smacked, none of them have ever had more than a parking fine, and only few of those. I have 6 grandchildren who have never been hit either. The eldest is now 17 and a model student.
So you've had three good kids. It doesn't mean that the world is full of good kids.
Some kids learn their behavioral problems from their environment (such as parents), and for others it just comes naturally.
It should be up to the parent/s, if they're capable, to raise them properly and decently without being dictated to.
As a former juvenile corrections officer I fully agree with you.
"Short, sharp" - that's in a Pink Floyd song. Just a quick shot.
I don't have a problem with an occasional smack. I DO have a problem with the parents that I see out and about who deal with an unruly child by pleading with them to behave, or bribing them with candy or toys.
Or even worse, when they glare at ME if I have a problem with the ruckus and chaos while I'm eating in a restaurant. Arrogant and ignorant parenting.
Giving your child 'time out' is a far more effective way of discouraging misbehavior than smacking them! Tried and tested....
I'm talking about situations on the edge. For example, when they try to run out into traffic. A quick slap will teach them a lesson they will remember and stop them from getting killed. In that situation, there is not always the time for an extended discussion.
Incidentally, I did use the discussion route for other matters.
Thanks to all for giving their comments, much appreciated and needed for my essay. Keep it up!
The only thing that works worse than spanking as a disciplinary method is no discipline at all. When spanking is the only form of discipline, it just makes kids sneaky and defiant.
But when spanking is just one tool among many, it's very effective. My parents spanked, but I can count on my hands the number of times they did it and that was exactly what made it work so well. It was the shock value that did the trick, not the pain itself.
Same here. My mother physically abused me...my father, on the other hand, used spanking (more noise than hurt) on the rare occasions that it was necessary, and I did not then, nor do I now fear him or lack trust with him--I understand the difference between the two things and their effects. Obviously, one should not use spanking as a sole means of discipline, but for laying down the law at an early age it is indispensable. A two year hold who just slipped away and is running toward the stove or the road is going to understand a little pop on the hand MUCH more than he'll understand whatever lecture or time out you're going to give. Just as obvious is the fact that discipline styles/techniques need to change as children grow up. What works when they're two isn't what works when they're six...and those things don't work when they're fifteen.
Besides I've seen what happens when people let their little rug monsters do their thing and only "talk" to them--it ain't pretty.
And another thing that really works is that 'look'...you know when you stare right into their eyes followed by a firm 'no'.... and they know mummy means business...!
It takes practice, but eventually you master it!
have to agree with you, myownW. Time outs, the stare and a firm "no" is the best way to go. In my opinion, even a light slap on the hand teaches them to hit others.
I understand where you're coming from, but I'd have to say that's a generalization. Of course, my life experience is also only one small drop in the bucket...but I was both spanked (in what I consider a non-abusive way) as well as physically abused (my mom beat the CRUD out of me from time to time, to the point that occasionally I thought she would kill me). Now, that was all long ago, water under the bridge, but the point is this: I've never hit anyone with the exception of a stranger who followed me home on the bus and attacked me. I feel this was a legitimate time to defend myself and so I did...other than such a circumstance I have never and would never raise a finger to harm another person. In other words, I think there are multiple variables that lead to causing a person to "become violent" or to think it's okay to hit--spanking may only be one of them.
That little pain-in-the-butt! If I could catch him I'd drop kick him off the planet for mess'in with me!
i don't think it's necessary to smack your children. When i was a kid, i was a little hell raiser, and on the odd occasion my dad smacked me. But it was far more effective when he looked into my eyes, (i could feel his anger), and said 'Go to your room, i'm very dissapointed in you.' Iv'e always had the utmost respect for him.
On the other hand, my mum would scream at me, and hit me. I had little respect for her. If my mum screamed at me, i would scream at her back. Monkey see, monkey do.
When mine were little they were smacked for things like trying to shove things into plug sockets. By the time they were a bit bigger they didn't often need to be disciplined. A quick smack when they were fighting eachother was usually enough to stop all that. Other than danger to themselves or to eachother there wasn't much need for smacking.
Here in NZ smacking has been banned by law. I don't agree with that as there are definitely some kids that need a smack. I see the effects in the classroom with kids who are full of their rights, especially the right not to be hit, but very slow on their responsibilities.
It's also interesting that when I have this discussion with teenagers most of them say that smacking is needed because all the other forms of discipline are a joke. They are quite open about their opinion that if they say sorry to the right peole they can get away with anything. For them the smack is the often the only discipline they respect.
As Phil McGraw says everyone has currency. You find out which is the most effective to your child and use that. When mine where small my son could not stand being grounded to the house it made him crazy so for him this was an effective discipline. My daughter on the other hand was and is extremely bull-headed and responded to every form of discipline with indifference until the first time she got smacked. She was not hurt and it was one swift swat to the butt. It did get her mind around the point I was making and it only took one time for her to understand that she needed to listen.
In defence of not smacking, I would like to add that one of ours is a major problem. He is in to everything, very smart and very difficult. I have been there before, so still no hitting. It takes a massive amount of patience to deal with him, but deal with him we do. No smacks.
Okay, I had a completely different situation (due to my not knowing my ex's family too well before getting married - and Yes, it's part of the reason I divorced)
My ex taught my daughter Reverse Psychology from the time she could talk. It didn't matter what I said or did, she would defy me or plain and simply do the opposite of anything I said. So yes, she was smacked - quite often for a while to get my point across to her (when she was a toddler). Then I had to give it up. Nothing worked - even after her grabbing the handle of the cast iron skillet I had just taken out of the oven and told her not to touch. (she was 10 yrs old at the time)
Sometimes to smack your child for any offense or even for any small fault make them sense of doing that work again and again. I am not saying that it happens always but every human has its own nature. Your smacking may be stop child or maybe he gets inspired to do that again. Smacking your child is not a solution of problem. You have to find out the reason behind that fault for which you get ready to smack. In some cases it is helpful to fill fear in child’s mind. But this should be the last option.
A slap on the wrist or a pat on the behind (that's what grandma called it - yes, she spanked us grandkids, but it hurt our pride not our bums) ... these establish order at an early age; However, beatings bestow anger and hostility, which will manifest themselves as major behavioral issues in later years.
The parent who can parent their children with the least amount of physical force will always fair better ... and the parent who doesn't parent at all just sets themselves up for a spoiled child who will never listen.
I think, as soon as my parents decided to physically punish me, I lost a lot of trust in them. These trust issues affected our relationship later on in life as well. Being spanked or smacked didn't teach me to behave well, it taught me to fear my parents and hide what I was doing.
My brother, however, is the exact opposite. My parents never physically punished him. They never really punished him at all. Today, he does drugs and drinks, and is failing school.
Physical punishment, in my opinion is wrong. No punishment at all is wrong too. As a parent, it is your responsibility to lead by example and to figure out how to discipline your child in a way that, both teaches them right from wrong and inspires them to trust you at the same time.
So how do you explain your brother? I assume you don't do drugs or drink, nor did you fail school. Are you better off or worse off than your brother. Perhaps this "loss of trust" is not quite what you think it is.
If you were anything like I was as a kid, you spend a lot of time rationalizing why you didn't deserve to be spanked and in an effort to avoid it, you became sneaky. I would hope that the years have taught you that was a mistake. The very fact that you had to hide that behavior was probably a good indication that you probably shouldn't have been doing that in the first place. Are you sure you aren't trying to justify your behavior by blaming your parents for using corporal punishment?
ledefensetech, I don't spend much time rationalizing my parents' behavior anymore, mostly because I do not think that going to your parents when you had a bad dream means you should be slapped across the face. I don't think that forgetting to let the dog outside means a child should be burned with a cigarette. I don't think that trying a cigarette means a teenager should be forced to eat a pack of cigarettes like cereal. I don't believe that my being raped and going to the police should be a reason for my parents to lock me in the basement for 3 days without food, water, or a bathroom to use.
Let me make this very clear. I was punished for being a child. I was punished, at times, for absolutely no reason at all. My parents made it very clear that they did not want a daughter, while they gave their son everything he could possibly want. Even now, my father will buy my brother marijuana, cigarettes, and alcohol.
I'm not perfect. I was a drug addict for quite some time. I spent time in a mental institution.
My original reply did not go into these details simply because I was trying to give examples that were on topic: spanking, not child abuse. However, don't you DARE ever say I deserved to be treated this way by my parents. I was an innocent. They took that away and then they locked me up and told the authorities I was the one who was crazy.
Sorry to go into these small details. I just wanted to make it clear that I am not trying to rationalize, justify, or place blame on anyone.
What you're talking about is abuse not discipline. You weren't punished, you were abused. As for apologizing for the details, don't. My assumptions were wrong, thanks for pointing that out.
So to answer my question, no you are not rationalizing your parent's behavior, they were at different times, abusive and neglectful. I'm sorry about that. I am glad to hear that you're getting things straightened out. The hardest thing about working with my kids is how hard they had it. Some made it, some didn't. I'm glad that you're one of the ones making it.
That has been a main part of my point. There is a difference between punishment and abuse.
When my kids were small and I was a young twenty-something, I did a "thump on the rump" at times. It never was anything more than that. As I grew up I got to learn and experience the more out-of-control side of physical discipline. It's horrific, and leaves permanent scars.
The jury is out for me on this. There were a few times that my kids were in danger of their lives--like playing the street once. I thumped him on his rump hard enough he would remember, because I could see clearly he was still too young to get that a car would kill him if he played in the street, so at least he would remember I didn't want him in the street.
I don't have a clear answer on this one. The older I get, the more I'm generally against it. However, what I've taught my kids, who are just getting into parenting, is to address each scenario individually, and not make physical discipline the default. Whatever the discipline is, it should be consistent with the incident. If a child hits someone, hitting back will solve nothing. But teaching the child to do a good deed in some for the person they hit, way may also reinstill kinder feelings. And so it goes...
That I disagree with. Kids will tend to push limits until they find one. That can lead to dangerous behaviors. By not setting a hard line with physical violence, all you do is guarantee that such behavior will continue, indeed it will most likely escalate.
Just because you agree with disciplining your kids, Daniel, that doesn't mean you condone utter barbarity against kids. Discipline is discipline, not an avenue to work out your frustrations. If you need to do that, you punch a pillow, not a kid.
I think you misread what I wrote.
What I meant to say is that if your kid hits someone, hitting them back isn't going to help in any way. So I agree with what you're saying.
Additionally, disciplining my kids wasn't about my frustration, it was about theirs since they were the ones acting out in some way.
I didn't mean to suggest that your reasons for disciplining your kids is due to frustration. It is, however, a reason many people discipline their kids and by doing that you make it much more likely to cross the line into abuse. I'm glad to hear you chose not to discipline your kids to relieve frustrations, I'm sure you kids are rather well adjusted people now.
I still disagree with your statement about your kid hitting someone and hitting them back not helping in any way. My youngest niece is mean. She started pinching my mom a few days ago and my mom told her to stop, she didn't like being pinched. Stubborn like the rest of us, my niece continued to pinch. After the second one, my mom told her she was going to get pinched if she did it one more time. Sure enough my niece pinched and had the same done back to her. That taught my niece two things. First it hurts when you pinch someone, so you better not do it. Second, when my mom says something you'd better pay attention, she's going to do what she says. That's the sort of thing I'm talking about.
I don't think you should smack your kids. You're much better off taking something away that means a lot.
There's no mistaking it, we now live in a period between 2 types of parents; those who overdue it (outright beating and/or torturing them), or those who never lay a hand on them. Both errant methods usually produce a similiar result, a highly undisciplined and volatile kid. Whatever form of discipline you use, spanking-including smacking on their hands-should never be excluded. Two factors led to the decline of American civilization; 1-Dr. Spock's suggestion that spanking was somehow primative and unsophisticated for the nuclear-age parents. 2-The elimination of Religious Instruction and School Prayer. Sadly these things coincided with the feminist movement and the horribe result was the escalation or creation of the Bloods, Crips, Skinheads and Latin Kings & Disciples. Stop listening to Spock and become Captain Kirk and rock your brats' world.
listen the problem with kids today is not a enough discipline.
i have seen kids curse their parents in shopping centers with the parent not doing anything. when i was a kid just cursing i would get a smack. now cursing at your parents thats when you draw the line smack the crap out of them. im not saying abuse the kid but hey sometimes they need a good smack now and then.
Unless I read too quickly and missed someone else's similar comment, I think it's important to emphasize the element of fear: If your choice to use "smacking" makes your child fear YOU, then it is wrong. If the child fears the reason for the smack (ie, the hot stove; the car getting ready to hit him) instead of YOU, then it is worthwhile.
In no way to I advocate any type of physical violence, on any level. It's "easy" to beat our kids into submission. It's much harder to make the effort to teach them.
I have, in my home, a "son" who was physically abused by his biological mother. Severely. When I ask something of him, his response is -- 100% of the time -- "Yes, Ma'am." Outwardly, he appears to be "wonderfully respectful." Inside, the child doesn't trust -- and he grew up being beaten if he didn't reply, "Yes, Ma'am."
Yesterday, having asked him to clean the kitchen table, rather than saying "Yes, Ma'am," he said, "I already did it!" I was SOOOO proud to hear him FINALLY speak his mind. But then I said, "But there are still crumbs on it." And he said, "Yes, Ma'am."
It's hard to undo the damage caused by physical discipline. A "thork" on the hand (which is way faster than a sit-down teaching session) will NOT damage a child. The hot stove or oncoming car, will.
Some kids require---no, MANY require discipline, not abuse. Sometimes that may constitute a spanking on occasion and within reason.
Utilize spanking. Please.
Spanking/smacking whatever you choose to call it, its wrong. Its psychologically damaging and lets the kid know its okay to hit other kids/people/their kids. Yes, you may see it as putting discipline upon the child, but the child will not learn it in that way by being hit.
If you do hit your children, you probably belong in jail. There are countless ways you can discipline a child without being physically abusive. (Yes its physical abuse)
1. grounding/time out
3. ask for written apologies
4. essays on what they did was wrong and how they'll fix it for next time
5. take away toys
6. give extra academic assignments as punishment
Calmly explain why what they did was wrong and harmful to them/others. etc. They'll get a clearer idea of what you're trying to teach them.
Any form of abuse is wrong.
Thanks for the input.
I remember my mum used some of these methods on me when I was growing up but she also smacked me a few times over the years too. However, it was the apparently less harmful approaches that I now remember as being the most bullying and are the ones that have stuck badly in my memory more than any of the smacks she ever gave me.
I dont believe in smacking, I would accept a gentle tap and I mean gentle - on the hand or bottom. Any punishment metered out when angry is not good for children and they do remember.
Time out and other methods of behavioral change are good. If you can communicate early enough, you could teach your child how to redirect or change their own thinking. As alot of children learn by copying especially in early age ranges, parents do really, if they make the effort have the ability to help their children tune their behavoir.
Other aspects of life can distort behavior too, so any understanding you can develop about family history or other aspects of intangible or the invisible are always helpful.
Making time to talk things out. Alot of bad behavior is due to not thinking things out or not having other coping mechanisms.. so if children learn its ok to make mistakes and good to learn how to correct them, you create a form of lateral thinking.
I add here I am not a professional. This is from personal experience of being hit too hard and other aspects of coping with some very complex behavioral patterns.
I personally have mixed feelings about smacking kids but then I don't have any children of my own yet and so I don't know how having kids might shape my feelings towards it.
I don't agree with damaging a child physically or mentally but what type of punishment wont hurt in some way or another even if only lightly? and what about children that are not old enough to understand what you are trying to explain to them if you leave them to bahave badly from the start then surely you are building a rod for your own back?
I read that a study showed that smacking your kids before school age but then using another form of discipline once they started school was the best combination and had the best effect.
I read an analogy that likened smacking your child to sending them for an operation, sure they might be shocked for a while and it may seem like a form of harm (where in an operation the child would be cut open) but it's better in the long run.
Anyway....I might change my mind about it in 5 minutes or so
Thanks to everyone for contributing to my essay!
spare the rod and spoil the child; there is a reason why we say this.
We were talking about this in my Psychology class yesterday. My teacher tells us that the only affective form of discipline is punishment. Therefore, time out and not getting off the phone for the child, which will show them that they can get you off the phone whenever they act up.
I know I'll sound obnoxious here, but whenever someone believes "the only form of discipline...." etc. etc. I have to say something.
Your teacher is wrong. I was raised in a family where nobody hit and nobody did time out. There was talking, telling us what was expected of us and what was acceptable (etc.) and consequences if we did anything (although none of us ever did anything all that bad).
So, I raised my own three kids the same way - talking to them from the time they were newborns, building a strong bond, meeting their needs, making them feel safe, respecting them, and expecting respect back from them.
I never needed to smack (and I think time-out is dumb - at least it would have been for my own kids). Talking, telling right from wrong, and reasonably consequences (sometimes natural ones) work.
I had reasonable rules for them, but the rules were not negotiable at all. They just kind of knew better than break those basic rules. In fact, they weren't even kids who did much of anything wrong; because they respected me and their father, weren't aggressive, and all was generally fine. I dealt with the minor stuff when it happened. I'd tell them why I expected them not to do something (and since the rules were reasonable they always saw the reason in them and seemed to be fine with them).
There just weren't any big behavior issues at all. Discipline is teaching right from wrong. Teaching can happen if you talk to them enough and early enough so they develop good language skills. It's almost effortless if you just kind act like you're the "team leader" because someone has to be, but otherwise you're on their side. Saying I didn't "punish" (or my parents didn't) doesn't mean there wasn't talking (to death) or consequences; but whether it was my siblings and me or my own three grown kids, we all tend to be a respectful, well behaved, lot who stay out of jail, give to charity, and get along with each other.
As far as hitting/smacking goes, how on Earth can parents expect to have children who don't hit when they "show" them that's how to deal with things? Two of our rules were "There's no hitting in this house," and "There's enough disrespect in the outside world, we aren't having it with the people who love you the most."
Just to take issue with this - the 'consequences' you speak of are the 'punishment' that the teacher was talking about - it does not automatically mean violence, beatings and broken bones - punishment can just be the parent showing disapproval. Discipline IS impossible without punishment - the only choice is the form of punishment.
Importance of interaction with the child helps big time. A parent can easily pull interest of the child from hurting themselves (my son always tried poking electric sockets too ) to some other activity therefore no need to smack them. Besides, 'no child can't commit a major crime worthy of painful punishments' unless taught. IMO.
You're right. Half the time, if children were adequately supervised, they wouldn't have the opportunity to do some of the things some who get smacked do. I mean, they'r either too little to know better (in which case you have to supervise them better), or else they're old enough to know better, in which case telling them right from wrong and the reasons for it works (if you know what you're doing anyway).
om, who would smack their kids? I can't even comment more than this. unbelievable.
My father started using the belt on me when I was about three and that lasted until Jr.high when he moved to his fists and a 2x4. I remember when I was a young Medic and I saw child abuse cases in the ER, I thought thats not abuse! I got beat way worse than that! I had was terrified of my father and stayed well out of his way but sometimes he was just in that mood and I couldn't do anything right.
Twice I felt it was necessary to disapline my son so I took a wood ruler and gave him three swats. He cried and it broke my heart because I remembered the terror I had. I cried worse than he did and never did it again, I just didn't have the stomach for it.
My past was just horrible too,lots of violence at home, I just would not be able to bring myself to hurting or striking another. I want it to stop with me.
Dear Blonde that was my exact feelings! It stops with this generation and I was determined to break the chain. It caused me a lot of problems and my sisters have never gotten over it. They both have very troubled lives and my Mom didn't fair well with him either. It seems stupid but I still love him and he can still be mean to me even today. It is so confusing to love someone and fear them at the same time.
Please if anyone has proplems with physical or emotional abuse get help before you do so much damage that it can't be repaired. If you're in an abusive relationship get out and protect your children, no paycheck is worth their precious lives.
blondepoet, (hugs) to you too. The courage to break the chain, the wisdom to know when to stop. Good for you!
bravo to you BP. so sad to hear about abusive childhoods..
it takes courage and compassion to take a stand.
My eldest son got off to a bad start in early infancy with a fractured skull and a birth mother who obviously had "issues". Since he was placed with me as a young infant, I spent years secretly trying to come to terms with the fact that someone had hurt my baby so soon after he came into this world. The start the two babies I had myself got in this world was so different.
This precious, precious, little guy with gold curls and the kindest disposition wasn't awfully damaged, but he went on to struggle with learning problems in school to the point where it was (still is) heartbreaking.
I know "smacking" isn't the same as abuse, but - really - it's possible to keep little folks away from things like the stove and electrical outlets without "smacking" them. And really - how "bad" is anything any young child ever does? When I recall how absolutely "in love" I was with my parents, and when I know how my own three little kids just wanted to be with me (nothing more)... I just think parents ought to keep in mind that being loved and admired so freely, and without expectation, is an honor. There's something to be said for being worthy of that honor by not being "a little too free with the hands".
I don't believe in this whole "if you hit children, they'll become violent." I and many people I know were smacked as kids, but would never hit anyone. I've never, ever gotten into a physical altercation in my life!
I agree with a lot of comments here about knowing the right place/time to smack. If my child was about to touch a hot stove or stick something into a socket, a quick smack on the hand would be in order.
Don't get me wrong though. I don't believe in giving a child a real beating. If you want to do that, go pick on someone your own size! There is definitely a difference between a smack and a beating.
You're absolutely right! My wife gave our son a wake-up call every now and then. She delivered a quick swat on the butt with her hand and clearly explained to our son why he had been punished. I'm ok with that because she is naturally a very fair and level headed person. I just can't do it but, I did grab him by the collar and bring him nose to nose if I didn't think he was getting it. Our son didn't get in very much trouble except in high school all he ever said was "I know!" and being disrespectful to his Mom would get me going. That was so rare for him to be rude, we've been blessed!
Inspiration and sneakorocksolid, Here's a question (and it's honestly not meant to sound fresh). In fact, I think whatever answer you have will be important to this discussion:
When you were a kid were you the kind of kid who would never hit another kid, no matter how young or old you were? Were you (and maybe your siblings) the kind of kid who had a reputation for being remarkably well behaved, say, in school or at other people's houses?
I'm not altogether certain that "my way" (to have nice, well behaved, kids) is the only way, which is why I'm asking. I do know that my siblings and I were the kind of kids people made a big deal about how well behaved we were, and so were my own three. So, while, depending on what the answers to this question are by anyone who was hit, maybe there's more than one way to have non-aggressive, very well behaved, respectful kids. At the same time, though, what I do know is that my kids and I have all seen, from our parents, that it's possible to have really nice kids without ever hitting them - which, to me, seems to point out that getting nice, well behaved, kids without hitting is still the better way.
Violence is violence, no matter how you want to sugar coat it. As they say,
violence begets violence.
Teaching a child through hitting only teaches the child that he/she can get his/her way by hitting someone who is weaker than he/she is.
It is better to teach the child to understand and use reasoning skills to make wise choices. As parents, it is our duty to teach children as much as we can by educating them. Afterall, they are children and they do not have the life experiences we have. How can you expect a child to understand that touching a hot pot will cause a burn when it has never happened to them? You can't expect that of a child. So teach them. Explain. Again. And again. And again. Life is a school. Learning never ends.
Your absolutely right, teaching is the first option, but not always as effective as you'd hope. Violence is violence is the most ridiculous statement I've read this evening. All violence is certainly not equal, think about it.
My husband and I have 8 kids and if it weren't for many spankings they all would have been in the hospital a few times. Spankings are needed to prevent them from hazardous behavior. God gave us plump arses for a reason.( But for those of you that don't I bet you didn't get in as much trouble)
Spanking does not automatically make a child violent. How you discipline a child depends very much on the child.
I read a book recently by a couple of people who investigated scientific findings of all sorts - things we take for granted, like the D.A.R.E. program's effectiveness and is spanking bad. They uncovered some cover-ups which amazed me! The results of studies on spanking were not published for quite a while because the results were politically incorrect and the researchers were afraid to. (The book did give all the references). It turned out that black kids did NOT respond poorly but white children did. This was a few years ago so with the current atmosphere being that it's a terrible thing, the results may now be different. The explanation turned out to be that in black communities, spanking was expected for misbehaving; you and all your friends knew what would happen if your parents found out. For white kids, it was different because so many parents taught that it was horrible violence that no child deserves.
I also watched a news item on TV once that showed a group of black people discussing corporal punishment. I'm not sure what the whole thing was, I didn't see it all. What left me with my jaw dropped was a teenage girl who vehemently declared, "Black people ain't like white people. White people don't understand; we black children NEED beating. We're not like white folks." I assume her group believed spanking was normal and she agreed but what a shock!
Seems to me that it's a matter of how spanking or a smack on the backside is treated in your family - apparently the community plays a major part as well. In my childhood, spanking was perfectly normal and nobody thought anything of it including the kids but I did run into kids at school that were abused, not disciplined by parents who loved them. Big difference and we all knew it.
The law, at least in Los Angeles and California, allows parents/guardians the ability to use the open-handed slap if necessary as punishment.
I do believe that there is a time and place for corporal punishment of some type, but verbal communication is always in integral piece of the equation....one should not be hit unless they are capable of understanding an explanation of why it is that they were struck...
That is at least my opinion.
personally I don't think any kind of smacking is ever a good way to discipline . . . it usually just shows that the parent is out of control and the kids lose respect for the parent each time they do it - whether they cause physical harm or not.
and, if a parent takes the time to explain why, BEFORE they use physical force of any kind, they will have defused themselves and therefore found there is no need for smacking -- you can be quite forceful enough using your tone of voice and perhaps moving the child into the "time out" space. so, no, don't smack!
here's the latest research published in Pediatrics. it's worth a read and has a link to the actual article.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2010/04 … &cc=fp
Wrong Mike, you wouldn't hit a dog, just go ask a dog trainer! So, why would you hit a child? Oh... and would you please send me a link to that law you say is in Ca.? Even so, many laws have been removed over time after being seen as a mistake. No dis-respect to you, I just do not agree with you Mike.
I hope this debate continues for years (not only on these forums! ) Seems this can ensure children's discipline is paid close attention to since so many kids are out of control delinquents. At the same time people are trying to prove how well their children will "turn out" without spanking, others will prove how corporal punishment administered from love and concern works best. This way we may avoid ever going back to the days where children were considered property that can and should be abused at will!
Treatment of children in past eras was so horrific it's a wonder there was another generation born and raised!
If you are doing serious research, you shouldn't be asking the general population. When you strike children, you teach them that they solve problems with violence. Striking children is a sign that you are out of control. They may be hard to control, but you need to approach the situation by winning their trust and respect. That comes from fairness, a willingness to listen to them while reserving the right to disagree with them, by showing them how to behave through your own behavior (including using violence only as self defense). Good self defense training is also a start toward creating a young adult who is confident in his/her ability to deal with threats. Modeling courtesy and self confidence also helps. There are no quick fixes for parenthood. It is challenging. But introducing violence increases the chances that your children will distrust you and all authority figures, and when the violence gets really rough, it produces bullies and psychopaths.
I've noticed in this thread that the believers who claim to follow Christ appear to have no problem dishing out spankings to their children.
Does Jesus teach you to beat your kids?
Beelzedad, I think you're being a bit dramatic. The question concerns giving your child a solitary slap for misbehaving, not an hour long spanking. That's how I understood it anyway. And Jesus would teach his children to honor their mother and father wouldn't he?
It's very easy to lose the respect of children if they are not at all afraid of you. Of course if a parent can have 100% influence in their child's development then there won't really be conflict. But it's impossible to stop kids learning bad habits. They will pick them up in school and from friends. Thus they will at some stage misbehave and I think they will continue to misbehave if they don't fear a punishment or don't respect their parents.
It's not that long ago at all that slapping kids was a popular form of parenting. 20 years later we think we are so evolved and above our own parents that we completely reject the way most of us were in fact raised?
I doubt Jesus would teach anyone to hit their children, as he obviously understood that violence can be a solitary slap for misbehaving.
You equate fear and respect? You've got a lot of learning to do, my friend.
you should try teaching a four year the difference between fear and respect, then maybe you'll understand.
Are you saying you are four years old?
Why don't you know the difference?
I know the difference but me knowing it is irrelevant when trying to raise a young child. I could try to explain the difference between fear and respect to a child until I'm blue in the face and they still might not understand, hell they might not even be listening.
What I am trying to say is that you have to look at it from their level, the level of a four year old. There's no point waiting round hoping that by accident a four year will suddenly have a profound sense of respect for you. It's not going to happen. There must be discipline. It's great if you have a tolerant child who will listen to you when you tell them not to do something, but that's one in a hundred. Hopefully when they get older you can then reason with them a little more.
I don't agree with smacking but can also understand the frustration that can sometimes lead to smacking.
In circumstances where there is a danger to the child a short, sharp smack is a way to signal danger but that is it for me. I didn't smack my kids, maybe once or twice on the well padded bottom and my parents didn't smack either.
I guess everyone is different but I would not like my children to be fearful of me. I can remember my next door neighbor and best friend being belted with a long leather belt as she lay on the floor. That image has stayed with me for a lifetime.
In order to end up with a four-year-old who respects you and is emotionally mature enough to listen and generally do what's he's told, you have to know how to talk to him and treat him from the day he's born. A whole lot of brain-developing is going on in those first two years, but if you're a skilled parent and understand child development, you'll have a two-year -old who is pretty reasonable and a four-year-old who is about as close to perfectly well behaved as he'll ever be once he gets older.
It isn't the fault of people who may not have experience (or the right role model) getting a baby from zero to three so he's a well behaved child; but the reality is if someone knows what they're doing with their baby from zero to three they'll end up with a child who isn't hard to teach right from wrong.
I'm sorry - if someone's four-year-old won't behave or do what he's told unless he's smacked, that person missed the boat when it came to the first three years. (So then, the four-old gets smacked because his parents didn't quite know what they were doing (and, again, maybe it's not their fault) when he was younger - where's the reason or logic in that?) Instead, they'll say the child "won't behave" and assume he's the problem.
no offence but this sounds a lot like that new generation 'scientific' way to raise your children. if a child is perfectly behaved at four years old, then you've raised a robot. i want children to be curious, mischievous and push boundaries because i think it's just human nature. it is a parent's job to direct kids, not create their whole personality.
It's relevant if you're going to hit or not hit your kids, obviously.
So, because you lack the patience to explain things, you hit them instead. Wonderful logic.
No, you look at it from the level of hitting them as opposed to not hitting them.
So, line em' up for a beating, which is your version of discipline and realities version of violence.
Hopefully, when you get older, someone will be able to reason with you.
Didn't the saying, Spare the rod, spoil the child come from the bible?
My parents didn't hit. My siblings and I are over 50. I didn't hit my own kids, and the oldest one is 30. The other two are in their 20's. Not hitting your kids isn't a new phenomenon.
It was a very hot summer day. I was minding my two grandsons. We were outside trying to blow up a pool they had. Now they lived at the end of the street on a sharp curve. While I was trying to blow this pool up the younger one who was still in diapers kept running out in to the road! I would run out after him and scolled him all the way back to the yard. He would just take off again for the road. I would go after him again and he would tehe all the way back to the yard. I sat him in a chair told him he was to stay there until I was done because he would not stay out of the street. Well about the third or fourth time going after him, I slapped him on his rear end sat him back in the chair and there he stayed until I was done with the pool. When I was finished blowing the pool up I told him he was being a good boy so he could hold the hose while the pool filled. If I had not smacked his rear end he may not have been there to hold the hose.
by Wendy Iturrizaga 8 years ago
Spanking as a form of disciplineThe are many parents who believe that corporal punishment is necessary for successful child rearing. Is that true? Or is spanking another form of child abuse?
by Amber Killinger 7 years ago
What is the best form of non-violent discipline that works on your children?I don't agree with spanking, even though I grew up in an era where as children, we were spanked. So I would like to know what methods of discipline have worked for other people out there; methods which do NOT include...
by greeneyesH1982 9 years ago
I bring this up because some people think that the united states is trying to ban this altogether and think that it will result in more crime from children being allowed to get away with more.... what are your thoughts on this
by Audrey Hunt 6 years ago
Do you believe in spanking children?
by roshall 7 years ago
Do you spank or give time outs?
by Delilah 7 years ago
When is it okay to smack your kid across the face?I know most of you are gonna totally dislike this question but when is enough, enough? My teen is just driving me crazy with her attitude and back talk!!!!! I have tried almost everything except smacking her across her face!
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