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Is spanking your kids ok?

Discussion in 'General Debates' started by Rex, Sep 14, 2004.

  1. Rex

    Rex Founder

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    Do you think it is ok to spank your kids for discipline?
     
  2. painted wolf

    painted wolf Grey Muzzle

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    I personaly don't... Traditionally Native children were diciplined with nonviolent means.. kind of like 'time out' only more psycological. I feel that children shouldn't fear their parents will hurt them physically eaven if its just a little.

    wa:do
     
  3. Druidus

    Druidus Keeper of the Grove

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    I agree wholeheartedly with painted wolf.
     
  4. Colin_Admin

    Colin_Admin Member

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    na, i dont agree. i think their are times when you should use physical dicipline but i also belive in the use of psycolocial. different scenarios deserve different treatments.
     
  5. Lightkeeper

    Lightkeeper Well-Known Member

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    I don't think spanking gets the job done in the way it needs to get done.
     
  6. Ceridwen018

    Ceridwen018 Well-Known Member

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    I am strongly against physical discipline. It doesn't teach the child anything but fear and hatred towards their parents. Likewise, it seems it is not a tool for disciplining the child at all, but for relieving some of the parent's frustration.

    As far as parental frustration goes, the line between a disciplinary spanking and a frustrated smack in the face is painfully blurred. A parent who is used to spanking their kids, or using other forms of physical punishment, is much more likely to pass from the realm of physical discipline to physical abuse.

    When training a puppy, do you hit it when it does something bad? Of course not--that only teaches the puppy to be fearful, and makes them become even more confused as to what it is they did wrong in the first place.

    The psychological affects of physical discipline can be crippling, even if they aren't detected right away. Physical discipline takes away (or refuses to teach in the first place) the right of self. I believe that everyone, no matter how young, needs to be taught that their bodies are their own personal space, and that violation of that space doesn't have to be tolerated. A child who is used to being pushed around by their parents can just as easily get used to being pushed around by bullies, etc.

    Basically, the way I see it, we are not Puritans anymore. Our society has evolved, and so must our child-rearing.
     
  7. Green Gaia

    Green Gaia Veteran Member

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    I don't believe in spanking, and don't 'spank' my kids, at least not how my parents spanked me. But I do reserve the right to the selective use of a quick swat on the butt if the circumstance warrants it. I don't have to use it often, and it gets the point across quickly and effectively when I do.
     
  8. johnnys4life

    johnnys4life Pro-life Mommy

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    I don't think spanking is right, but sometimes it's the only way to raise a good kid. Some kids just do not listen to reason, and they want to do whatever seems fun to them, regardless of who it hurts. I have babysat a lot of kids, and the only times I ever spanked them (with their parent's permission) was when they were doing something stupid that was going to hurt them a lot more than a spanking would, and they wouldn't stop any other way. For example, one kid kept trying to pull a vcr down off a shelf onto his head, and after repeated warnings and removing him from the room, he still snuck up and tried to do it. In my mind, a smack on the butt was the right thing in that situation, because it taught him that behavior would cause pain without actually letting him get seriously injured.
     
  9. dolly

    dolly Member

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    I'm against it. Spanking increases the risk of many, many problems including the child becoming abused, abusing their spouse/children in the future, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, a lower IQ (in comparison to non-spanked peers), and mental issues (depression, etc). It also makes the child more and more difficult to manage. There is no benefit to corporal punishment, but it does have negative side effects.
     
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  10. Hope

    Hope Princesinha

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    I think what's important to distinguish here is 'discipline' and 'flagrant abuse'. I was spanked as a child, and I do not resent it. If I ever have children ( though I haven't decided on that yet ), I plan on spanking them if their behavior warrants it. Maybe it's considered too old-fashioned now, or politically incorrect, but I firmly believe in the maxim, 'Spare the rod, and spoil the child.' Spanking a child does not necessarily lead to that child becoming abusive toward others. I was spanked, and I have not become the sort of person that doesn't mind inflicting pain on others. I am, by contrast, a very non-violent person!

    The key is in the attitude of the parent. If the parent is spanking the child in an abusive, excessive manner, and is doing it in attitude of frustration or rage--then, yes, it is absolutely wrong and abhorrant. If, however, the parent is simply doing it to discipline the child--to show the child that doing wrong has painful consequences--and makes sure the child knows that he/she is loved no matter what, and that the spanking is actually done in love, then I believe it will produce a positive effect on the child, and not a negative one. And as someone else said in effect, the discipline should fit the wrongdoing. Not everything wrong that a child does deserves a spanking. This is where the wisdom and discernment of the parents come in. Proper physical discipline, I believe, produces respect and self-discipline in a child. My parents screwed up in a lot of ways in raising me; however, one thing I look back on and am grateful for is their spanking me. May sound crazy, but it's true.
     
  11. dolly

    dolly Member

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    It does not guarantee it, but it does increase the risk of it.

    It is true that the behavior of the parent can lessen or increase the damage, but it can not erase it completely.

    More often than not the parents are in a mental state where it is more to vent their own emotions than to punish the child. Stress, fear (instinctive "panic reaction"), anger, frustration, tiredness, worry, etc all affect the parents. You can not actually believe that a parent will be perfectly calm if their child did something very dangerous (like run into the street, etc), or if the child has been told so many times not to do something and continues to do it so much that the parent feels forced to result to spanking.

    The parent is not in perfect control of their own emotions. The average parent who uses corporal punishment has an ambivalent attitude towards it - they don't want to do it, but feel it is necessary in some situations. Why only in those situations? Because they give up trying the safer methods. Instead of spending yet more time and effort, they use the method which guarantees immediate submission - corporal punishment.

    Not all children suffer all the side effects, or not to the extent where they become dangerous - but the fact that corporal punishment increases the risk can not be denied. There is only one study that says it doesn't, and that study is hogwash.

    The consequences are negative nonetheless.

     
  12. Ceridwen018

    Ceridwen018 Well-Known Member

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    johnnys4life, you have a good point there. All kids are different and require different plans for discipline. I completely agree that some kids are just harder to get to than others, but I never think physcial abuse is the answer--and yes, I dop consider spanking to be physical abuse, even if that's not how it's intended. I mean, we live in such civilized society these days--don't tell me there's not a better way!

    Hope, you and I are prime examples of different kids having different needs. I was spanked as a child too, and I completely resent it. I'm not saying that nothing good ever came from spanking--obviously you and I seem to have turned out ok--but it just seems to me that there is a more positive alternative!

    Ah, listen to me. I'll probably turn out to be the biggest hypocrite on this issue. Someday when I have kids, I just know one of them is going to be a little punk and make me say "Oh, hell no! Get over here ya little twirp!"
     
  13. Mister Emu

    Mister Emu Emu Extraordinaire
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    Electro-shock therapy :)
     
  14. Hope

    Hope Princesinha

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    Ha-ha. ;)

    Every parent is free to raise their children how they want. If one is totally against spanking, then they should not go against their conscience in the matter.

    Dolly, you made some good points. Yes, parents are not perfect--they are only human and make mistakes. However, it is the weighty responsibility of the parents to make sure they only discipline in love. If I were a parent, and was very angry at my child for something he/she had done wrong, the right thing for me to do, once I decided that it was something deserving of a spanking, is to not spank the child until I am in control of my own emotions. If I don't, then, yes, I am spanking for the wrong reason.

    I won't argue with any of the 'studies' you cited. Though I'd be curious to see them!

    I think one of the downsides of our very politically correct day and age is the thinking that pain is always a bad thing. However, there are what I would call 'good' kinds of pain. For example, how does an athlete get into top form? Certainly not by sitting on his bum doing nothing. He must train himself extremely hard, and this inevitably involves pain. He knows this! And yet, does it deter him? No, for he knows his goal, his goal is good, and it is worth going through pain for. 'No pain, no gain.' Another example is the training those who are in the military go through. The stuff they go through in boot camp isn't exactly a walk in the park. The physical and psychological pain they go through is for a very good purpose--to shape their character in such a way that they will be fit for combat. I wouldn't want a bunch of undisciplined and weak soldiers fighting for my country!

    In a similar way, when one disciplines their child, one is preparing them for this thing called 'life,' and attempting to help shape their character in such a way that they will be able to make positive contributions to society. Physical punishment--in the right dose, and the right kind--will produce, I believe, better results in a child's character in the long run. It is a 'good' kind of pain that is for a good goal. There is a danger, I think, in both physical and non-physical discipline, and that is taking either one too far in the wrong direction. One way, and you have abuse; the other, you have too much leniency. The key is balance. Balance, balance, balance..... :)
     
  15. Mr Spinkles

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    It's not that obvious. :D
     
  16. dolly

    dolly Member

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    They should. However if the child is doing something dangerous, the parent won't be disciplining them out of while they are calm, etc. They will be panicking. If they are panicking, they do not have complete control over their actions. Parents discipline in some manner because they love the child, yes, but when they are actually disciplining, they don't discipline "in love."

    That would be a better way of doing it, yes, but there are problems with that as well. If you wait until you have calmed down, it will be too long after the incident. It's like if a dog pees on the rug, and the owner waits until they calm down before smacking it, the dog will be confused and won't make the connection (or won't make it as well). Also, what are you doing while you are waiting to calm down?

    Mea Culpa.

    just lists studies done.
    long, but very good. Scottish study.
    WebMD
    American Psychological Association
    Study by University of Maine
    Study by University of New Hampshire.
    Study by Montana State University
    News Aticle
    News Article again

    The rest is just common sense. *wink* : )

    There is only one study which says it isn't (or the only one I've found so far), and it's clearly flawed and untrustworthy. I think one of those sites discusses it.


    Bad analogy.

    First of all, they do it to themselves. They choose to be in a position where they will suffer such pain. They are also adults (or at least teens), and thus they are better able to handle and respond to pain than a child. Thirdly, the person delivering the pain isn't a loved one like a parent. Another reason is that they are in the more important development stages - so they react differently. etc.

    But this can be accomplished, better even, without harming your child. Why would someone choose a method which causes someone you love unnecessary pain?

    Why? Why would hitting a child's bottom create a better result than sitting down and talking to the child?

    Just because a parent doesn't hit a child doesn't mean they are lenient. When I babysit my little cousins, I never raise my hand to them, and I am far from lenient.
     
  17. linwood

    linwood Well-Known Member

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    I did spank my daughter at first but I realised I was doing it as Ceridwen said out of my own frustration rather than to teach her anything so now I don`t spank her per say anymore.

    She adores me, strives to make me happy, and beams with pride at any praise I give her.
    Because of this any admonishment I give her absolutely crushes her so I have for the most part found it unecessary to seriously spank her since just letting her know she`s made me unhappy with her behaviour is more than enough to get the point across.

    You have to keep at this consistently because kids will be constantly testing the boundries with the same bad behaviour over and over again.

    I will occassionally give her a swat on the butt to get her attention so I can tell her what she`s doing is wrong but this is only when she`s losing her little 4 year old mind and is oblivious to anyone talking to her.
     
  18. Mister Emu

    Mister Emu Emu Extraordinaire
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    Because sometimes talking is not enough, sometimes a kid will do the wrong thing even though they know it is so.
     
  19. dolly

    dolly Member

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    Then that is because they weren't disciplined right as a child.

    If one is dealing with an older child that has these problems, there are still other ways which are better than hitting them. Rationalization, grounding (which if the right things are removed does work), etc.

    When raising a child, you can't say, "Oh I tried explaining it to him several times, and he still does it. Now I have to try a different method." That's just being lazy. Repetition, understanding, firmness, and love are needed for that bond to build again so the child will want to please the adult. I don't know about you, but being hit doesn't inspire me to trust and love the person harming me. Talking will. It does take effort, energy, and time, and alot of other things we generally don't like wasting repeating ourselves, but it is necessary, and it can work. The parent let the child become like this, now they deal with the consequences. And corporal punishment will just make them even more prone to disobeying in the future anyway.

    The parent should find out why the child still does it, even if they know why it is dangerous/wrong. Then deal with that. It shows the child that you care about how they feel and how they think, while getting to the source of the problem and fixing it. Corporal punishment can't do that.

    The more you sit down and talk to the child, the closer the bond is. As Linwood already mentioned, the deepness of the child's love for the parent makes discipline easier. When I discipline my little cousins, all I have to say is, "Sofia, what you just did makes me sad. I don't like it when you do that, okay?" And then she either looks crushed, apologizes, and I hug her, or she asks why, and I explain in a basic manner unless she asks for more information. She doesn't do that dangerous/bad action again. She's four years old. Because we always sit down and talk to her, she has a better vocabulary, better problem solving skills, more self discipline, better manners, and is generally more clever than her peers. Rationalization does boost the child's intellect, especially if you do it when they are young. Corporal punishment does the opposite.


    If the child has some condition with which it is difficult to rationalize, corporal punishment should still be avoided. I believe one of the links I previously mentioned discusses that.
     
  20. Mister Emu

    Mister Emu Emu Extraordinaire
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    I was talking about younger children, you are right, once the person comes to a certain age spanking should stop. Though I was more resentful of grounding than anything else.

    When I am watching my nephews I talk to them multiple times, but if they refuse to listen to me when they could get hurt much worse, a swift smack on the rear stops it from happening.

    Meaningless pain does not inspire trust, but when I got spanked for running out into the street, after I got over the pain I realized that they were right, and later I realized they might have saved my life. That inspires trust.

    Actually corporal punishment(in my experience) is alot more likely to deter further disobeyment than going soft on them.

    In closing let me say this, physical punishment is not for every situation, but there are times where a spanking could save the child's life.
     
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