Spanking ... Why the Dirty Looks

United States
July 19, 2007 7:46pm CST
I don't cause bruises and in most cases not even a red splotch. I do it more for shock and notice than anything else. But when my child gets an attitude, rolls her eyes, and says something disrespectful, she's at least going to get a swat on the arm. I did just that at a store the other day ... and it was very light, people. Two ladies were in an aisle next to me and turned the corner just as I did so. They could have pierced through my skull with the dirty looks they gave me. What is up with that? Should I make empty threats, employ the 'time out' BS, take away a privilege (and remind her of the reason why it's being taken away later), or give her an instantaneous negative consequence for the behavior?
6 people like this
19 responses
@mrsbrian (1951)
• United States
20 Jul 07
For starters you said you hit your child on the arm,that in itself is cause for people to give you the look.I dont believe in hitting children there are to many other ways to correct them.If my child had an attatude we would be leaving the store.
3 people like this
• United States
20 Jul 07
So, I am to alter my day, my plans, my shopping trip because she has been disrespectful? What does that teach her? It teaches her that she can behave that way and I'll simply sulk away and in some way bend to her will (she was acting this way because she didn't want to be there ... we'd already completed shopping for the items she needed).
5 people like this
@tdl617 (34)
• United States
20 Jul 07
I completly agree. If you let your kids start pushing you around when they are younger, it will only drive them further to see how far they can puch you as they grow.
@MsTickle (24962)
• Australia
20 Jul 07
Oh c'mon! there is a spank, and there is abuse. There's a huge gap between the two. One is done as a correction in a calm way the other is done in anger as retribution. I was a battered child and I know the difference.
@GuateMom (1411)
• Canada
20 Jul 07
I think many people are not brave enough to stand up to their children and that´s why they feel that spanking is abuse. Personally, I try to limit spankings to when they are really needed. My toddler knows I mean business when I tell him that he has to stop something or he will get a spanking, so I rarely have to use it. However, I do use time outs and for us they work most of the time. We also have instant consequences that relate to the behavior, i.e. if he throws food on the floor, he has to pick it up and he will not get any more. In some cases, spanking doesn´t feel right. I tell him not to hit his brother and then smack him for it? But there are times when I think it is quite necessary. I´m very happy to see how many people are in agreement with it.
3 people like this
• Philippines
20 Jul 07
my view about spanking is 50/50 on both sides. Sometimes you really need to spank your child to let them know that they are being punished or it is the consequence of what they did. I am a psychology graduate, and in school I learn when and when not to spank. I hit my brother very often during my high school days. As he grew up he began hating me everytime I get angry. By the time I stopped hitting him, he is either afraid to tell me something or rebels some more. I believe i the absence of the father is what cause is rebel attitude or at least they need a good cop-bad cop treatment. There are some altenative punishment that can be done especially with the childs age. I maybe not a mother but I was hoping I could share some experiences and observations that I have when it comes to punishing children. I still have a lot to tell. just ask...
2 people like this
@Calais (10900)
• Australia
20 Jul 07
When my daughter is naughty (rolling the eyes with an attitude) I smack, but only the butt. She dosnt get it very often but it frightens her enough to not do it for a few months again...I think that sometimes they need o be put in their place...You see all the crap that goes on, your kids can sue you etc...thats bull$hit, no wonder the world is in a mess. I grew up with spanking and I turned out fine..
3 people like this
• Philippines
21 Jul 07
The spanking i remember that i got from my father was a very, very painful whack on my butt and legs. He used the wooden stick of a feather duster. Whenever my younger sister and I have gotten to a kicking, screaming and pulling of hair fight, our father comes in armed with the feather duster. He made us lie on our stomach and alternately whacked us on the butt and legs. He only did it once or twice. But i remembered his face after that spanking. He was clearly upset by what he did but he had to do it.
@Jennifer21 (2476)
• United States
20 Jul 07
I don't disagree with a light spanking now and then, but I never do it. I was abused physically as a child, and cannot bring myself to spank my children. I have my husband for that. I have to admit, it has kept my son in line, and under control. He is quite a well behaved boy.
3 people like this
@mrsbrian (1951)
• United States
20 Jul 07
What respect will your child have for you if you leave all the punishment up to your husband? and I think it makes him look like the bad guy all the time,not a fair profile for the husband.
3 people like this
@tdl617 (34)
• United States
20 Jul 07
ive gotten those piercing looks myself. i believe there is a difference in punishing a child and abusing a child. i punish my children by spanking them. ive tried time out, go to your room, no this no that. it doesnt work. i know some people dont belive in spanking kids, but its the parents choice on how to correct there child. if you want to have talk after talk go ahead. but if spanking is the only way to get your kids to listen, do what you have to do.
3 people like this
• Philippines
20 Jul 07
I think spanking is practiced in cultures where it is considered a must in disciplining a child. Here in the Philippines spanking can be used properly or abused. Some parents here use spanking to tell their young kids that what they did is bad. You do it because no matter how you explain it to young kids they dont understand. it is a clear message that if you do it again you are going to be punished. At the same time explain it to them that what they did is wrong and should not be repeated. Be patience in giving punishment. Warn them first, if they do it again give them a lite punishment, if it occurs again remind them of the warnings and if you told them before that they are going to get spanked for doing the same thing, spank them in there bottom. Make sure to do the things you told them. whether its a spank in the rear, not going to get dessert or dinner, no tv for a day, make sure that you will commit yourself in doing it. by telling them and doing it on the right time this build trust. Of course a reward should also be given is something good has been done.
2 people like this
• Philippines
20 Jul 07
by the way the dirty looks on those peoples faces may be a warning not to hit your child in public. Warning will do or a word that he/she will be punished at home will be done.
2 people like this
• Melbourne, Australia
21 Jul 07
all comes down to one fact. Spanking is hitting...even lightly it is hitting another person. It is calssed as assult. If I was to come up to you & slap you even lightly on the arm for giving cheek then you could have me charged with assult. So why does a child not have the right NOT to be assulted as well. You intentions might be in your own upbringing as good, but it is still assult. Should you take the time out BS? YES Should you take away privelage & then have to remind her later why? YES is that really a hard thing to do? NO is that calssed as assult against another person? NO If that child was to one day think ...alright you said something I classed as bad I have the right to hit you...would that be a good thing? NO...yet you would have taught them that yep cause my mum/dad/whoever hit me when I said or did something bad...then it's ok. Do you think that the LAW would see it as ok? NO Sorry but I am 100% against spanking/hitting/abuse as punishment...and YES I do have kids.
1 person likes this
@megs85 (3145)
• Australia
21 Jul 07
Look I dont want to fight with anyone, so once again, let me reiterate my point that I am not trying to be a smart@$$... I agree with some of the points you made, and I can see the logic behind most of it. However one thing I would like to address is the idea of assault. If I gave you 'cheek' on the street and you slapped me, yes thats assault- you're right. BUT if I had come up to you on the street and hit you, and you had of hit me back (which lets be honest, most people if hit will hit back) then I would be charged with assault. I do not believe in smacking to hurt (please see my response above for more details) or smacking for any old thing (again I wont repeat myself its in my above post) but a light tap to show a child that this is what you did to me, now do you see why it isnt acceptable? kind of discipline, makes sense to me... I think discipline should be age appropriate. Anyway, just my opinion, and just something that came to mind when I read your post.
• Melbourne, Australia
21 Jul 07
But you have just agreed with me then that it is asult. You said that if you gave me 'cheek' in the street & I slapped you iot would be assult...right? Yet in that same breath you say that it is ok to do the same to a CHILD that gives 'cheek' to teach them that it is not ok. Now I am not here to fight. But you cant say that it would be assult if I did slap you, but only dicilpline if it was a child who got the slap..... you cant have it both ways. As an ADULT you should know better than to hit ( even a small smack ) those who are weaker/smaller/younger than you...& should have enough brains to know that any knid of PHYSICAL ABUSE ( that INCLUDES spanking ) is ABUSE.
1 person likes this
@megs85 (3145)
• Australia
21 Jul 07
I have to admit I'm alittle lost. Perhaps I didnt phrase my point clearly enough. If I give you cheek (as in talk back to you) and you hit me yes thats assault. If I hit you, and you hit me back- I have assaulted you even though you retaliated with ahit. My only point was that I personally wouldnt smack a child, for talking back etc or giving attitude, but I do think if a child young enough hits then it is ok to gently tap them on the bottom (nappy as padding there) or even lighty smack their fingers/hand. I don't agree with you in the sense of any physical contact is assault. If my friedn gives me birthday bashes (punche son the arm) I'm not exactly going to be doing them for assault. In the same context I would also tolerate if a friend play smacked me on the arm, or shook me round if i was being an idiot (which happened when i was younger and drunk). I think it depends on individuals involved, the situation and the context and intention behind the physical context. Now I'm getting on to a more general point of view here. By the way, its actually nice to have someone debate with me rather than getting all huffy and puffy and not agreeing to disagree as often happens here so thanks ;)
@megs85 (3145)
• Australia
20 Jul 07
I think that people in contemporary society are fed so much psycho babble bs, that they findit difficult to distinguish between what is child abuse and what is discipline. I would personally 'smack' my fourteen month old son on the bottom (over his nappy mind you) if he were to misbehave. Or when he hits me, I give his fingers a light tap. I would never cause a mark on him, it is only just to reinforce what I am saying because at his age 'time out' and explaing what he has done wrong- means NOTHING to him. I can speak from the point of view from a physically abused child, before everyone jumps on me for 'abusing my child'... I was hit with metal poles, given blood noses by being punched in the face, smacked with leather belts and wooden spoons so hard I had welts that bled on my bottom and legs and back... So please noone preach to me about what child abuse is. I do NOT believe in using ANY object to hit a child, no wooden spoon threats, or belts or whatever. I do NOT believe that a child should be hit anywhere near theire head under any circumstances. But i do not see how a light tap on th knuckles, or quick bop on th bum could psychologically scar a child. It is because of all the laws that society feels this way. Years ago it was socially acceptable for children to get wacked across the knuckles in a classroom with a wooden ruler- by a teacher nonetheless... all in the name of discipline. Just my opinion, but I think there is a huge negative emphasis on discipling a child, which I believe if done correctly/ responsibly/ fairly is an effective method of discipline...
@Stiletto (4584)
20 Jul 07
I don't think that a light tap on the knuckles or a quick bop on the bum will necessarily psychologically scar a child but I do think it gives the wrong message to children and to be honest I also think it's lazy parenting. Time-out and explanations etc require a bit more effort than physical punishment. My grandaughter is the same age as your son and is also at the "hitting out" stage but the idea that the best punishment for doing that is to then hit her (even if it is just a light tap) just doesn't make sense to me. Of course she wouldn't understand explanations but she already knows what the word "no" means. I do actually think that children need discipline. I'm not anti-discipline at all and in fact, although I never hit my daughter, I was a pretty strict parent as she frequently tells me now she's an adult! I just don't think hitting children is an appropriate or effective way to administer it.
@megs85 (3145)
• Australia
21 Jul 07
Personally I think a combination of various different methods is the best discipline of all. I don't think it's necessarily lazy to 'smack' your child but I don't think it should be done on its own- i don't think that would achieve anything... My son understands the word NO, but thinks he can do it again and again, because he doesnt understand the consequences of his actions- he thinks oh, cool, this gets a reaction- doesnt matter if its a negative or positive reaction, and the other alternative to that is to do nothing, which I do not agree with- others may, but I feel ignoring a behaviour is reinforcing it. I think there are different opinions, different styles on this subject. And I dont think there is any one right or wrong answer. I think different approaches work for different children, but the only thing that annoys me is when people who do not agree with smacking (the kind I am referring to) call it child abuse or physical abuse. I don't agree with that at all. I think as my son gets older and begins to understand more I will be less likely to use any form of smacking and more inclined to use time out and explanations, but I think discipline needs to be age appropriate. Also, just to clarify- I do not believe in smacking for any old thing... When he throws a tantrum (fun age lol) I let him scream it out while I watch him and ignore him, standing over him. I can make sure he's safe, but he gets no reaction from me. Once he stops crying, I pick him up. If he touches something he is not allowed, for example, a power point, I move him away from the danger and tell him no, and distract him with something else. BUT if he hits me or someone else, then he gets that rap/ bop I am talking about. At the end of the day, I think it is an individuals choice as to how they choose to discipline their child (within reason) and I think we all need to listen to others perspectives and be tolerant of them. Different cultures, different upbringings, different family/ sociological environments mean to me, that there will be differences in the way we approach things. I just dont think discipline should be confused with abuse. (Sorry for rambling :D )
@mestr12 (227)
• Philippines
20 Jul 07
I believe that disciplining a child through spanking is not bad per se. A smack at the butt or arm is okay. It tells the child to behave and be respectful of their parents and elders. There are times that children have to be spanked in order for the message to get through them. Children nowadays are very intelligent and tactics such as employing empty threats or giving them a time out or taking away a privilege doesn't work for them.
1 person likes this
• United States
20 Jul 07
Ugghh..i would get those too..and one day i saw this woman spanking her child..he literally threw every jar of baby food on the floor smashing them and he was like 7 yrs old!! anyways someone called the police and took her away and the child waited in managers room till another family member showed up..wth?? she gets in trouble for publically disaplinning her child? thats just crap!! SO i dont do it in public as much..that scared the hell outta me..but i wil take him in the bathroom..wait til everyone leaves and then i bust his a$$!!! lol lol..
1 person likes this
@lingli_78 (12845)
• Australia
20 Jul 07
i agree that people use to have a negative impression of parents who spank their children... but for me, i think it is necessary especially if we have a hard-headed child... even the Bible says that God disciplines the people that He loves... and if we discipline our child, that means we love our child and want them to be better... as long as it is not over, i don't see anything wrong with spanking...
• Philippines
21 Jul 07
You are right about what the Bible says about disciplining our children. The Bible does encourage it BUT IN A RIGHT WAY. I don't see anything wrong with a good spanking too. But unfortunately, my husband doesnt agree with me on that part. Whenever our son does his "pushing" thing with his cousin , my husband lets me do my good spanking, which is a firm slap on the hand. But my husband makes it very plain to me through his facial expression that what i'm doing is not helpful. I believe in good spanking but as long as i can discipline my child verbally, i dont do it. Good spanking is my last resort when verbal discipline doesnt work anymore.
@miamilady (4924)
• United States
29 Oct 07
And the saddest part is, the same two ladies would have probably given you dirty looks if they had heard your daughter being disrespectful and you had done nothing. Unfortunately, I have found that no matter what you do in regard to disciplining your children, you will come across someone who will criticize you for it. I don't agree that time-outs are completely "BS", but their effectiveness can only go so far and as kids get older they become less and less effective. I don't encourage hitting children, but I do think sometimes people overreact or just tend to be too critical of eachother when it comes to parenting.
• United States
29 Oct 07
I think thAT its ok to spank if we were to wait til later to give them thier punishment then they would've already forgotten it by then verses a smack when ever they do it and they realize uh oh i shouldn't have done that, then they don't do it again- at least not for a while. Like for instance my son always likes to grab stuff out of the trash can he's almost 11 months old he knows the word no and he knows that serious look mommy gives when I mean business when he does it I tell him "NO" and he looks at me sometimes he'll move his hand and other times he'll give me his cute smile and try to get away with it but when he does I smack his little hand and tell him I said No and send him off somewhere else he'll cry for 2 seconds and then go find something else to do. There is nothing wrong with spanking your kids as long as its not out of hand.
• United States
28 Oct 07
It is so hard to be a real parent in today's HRS world!! I have a 3 year old, and spanking deinfately gets his attention and makes him obey and rspect me!! I don't spank hard either I only do it to get his attention because I don't have that father voice that makes a child straighten up, but I remeber being a young child and getting spanked with a belt (and no one had a problem with it way back when) But mention a belt now a days and you'll be put in prison!! But I thank God everyday that my elders spanked me!! I would have been a helion!! (and people wonder why today's children are so "missbehaved") They need to be diciplined and sometimes that means a little spank!!
@jcj_111776 (3221)
• Philippines
21 Jul 07
Whenever we do a spanking, we parents should always maintain our cool. There is a thin line between good spanking and bad spanking. I know a relative who spanks her kids so hard, that you can see the red welts on their arms and legs. Her reason, she can't control her anger and in the heat of the moment, she just can't control her hands from hitting her kids again and again. When i do have to give my son a good spanking, i take a deep breath first. Because it's so easy to lose yourself in anger and transfer it to your child.
@jcj_111776 (3221)
• Philippines
21 Jul 07
I sometimes give my son a firm slap on the hand whenever he gets jealous with his younger cousin and pushes him. It doesnt hurt him but I make him understand that what he does is not ok. I believe there is a good spanking and a bad spanking. Good spanking for me are firm but not hurtful slaps on the hand. Accompanied with a very good explanation why the child had been given a firm slap. And as for bad spanking, this is where child abuse comes in. People have different opinions whether the parents have a right to spank or not to spank their kids. Sometimes, verbal discipline doesnt work so that's why a good spanking is sometimes needed.
@coolcatzz (1588)
• Canada
21 Jul 07
I'm kind of on the fence with this topic. As a child I got spanked and we turned out alright. Now I have two children. My son is 18 and he was spanked and my daughter is 10 and she has never been spanked and they are both great kids. There are times I'm out and see children really misbehaving and I think the parent should smack them on the bum but then again I never had to with my daughter. When you watch all the shows like Supernanny, Nanny 911 and even Dr Phil they are all against it. I think if I were to have another child I would definitely try the no spanking route until all else failed.
@Stiletto (4584)
20 Jul 07
I don't agree with hitting children - I didn't do it with my own daughter and she turned out just fine. I on the other hand was spanked as a child and I was an absolute nightmare when I was growing up. I just feel with spanking it doesn't work - if it was such an effective punishment people would only ever need to do it once. It certainly didn't work with me - I just got smarter at not getting caught. I don't like seeing people hitting children, I guess when I see someone hitting a child I make a judgement about the type of person they are so I sort of understand why they gave you dirty looks.
• United States
20 Jul 07
I dont think spanking is bad as long as its not out of anger