Chronicles Of A Stay At Home Mom: do you spank your child? is spanking bad? spanking children
by Mommy Hobbies
In my napsack stash
**Another personal and highly opinionated post. You’ve been warned**
I feel nervous writing this. I was raised to fear the government and its sticky hands, never to tell anyone that we were spanked and never to talk about our home life.
Yes, I was spanked as a child, too much, in my opinion.
A blogger buddy of mine asked if I would be interested in joining the Spank Debate. She ‘changed sides’ and is now anti-spank.
Now, we all know it is perfectly legal to smack your child, open palmed on the bottom. I’ve seen moms in the stores swatting their children, moms on t.v giving their child’s bottom a smack, spanking is all around us. Some parents take it too far though..
Growing up, spanking was all the rage. hah. Spank this, spank that, spank hard, spank long, spank, spank, spank. I remember one time, when spanking was still allowed in private schools, I was sent to the principle’s office for kicking a kid. Before I went, all the kids whispered to me horrible stories about the big paddle in the principle’s office that had holes, 6 inches thick and nearly a foot long. I about to peed my pants before I got there. Thankfully, I was spared the horror of having to be whipped with the creature and rest assured, I never stepped out of line again. Just the thought of getting a spanking deterred me.
Not every child needs a smack to the buns. It’s true. I also don’t think spanking is a cure all. It’s not going to correct every little poor habit from your child. There are other ways to correct your child, you just have to learn your child’s discipline language. I firmly believe you can actually raise your child to hate you if you overuse spanking. Honestly. But then, there are times when it is necessary.
I remember reading one time about how to help calm a person who is panicking. A smack to the face. Just one. It snaps them out and they realize they need to calm down, think and extricate themselves from the situation. It doesn’t always work, but it’s the one proven way to get their attention, even if for a moment. Now, I am NOT saying smack your kid in the face, what I am saying is that if your child throws themselves on the ground a swat to the buns might help. Dr. Laura (I was a huge fan, didn’t always agree, but listened faithfully) would encourage parents to spank their children every now and then in desperate situations. I remember listening, fearful for those parents, thinking, “oh my goodness, CPS is going to show up at their door and wait for them to spank their child because Dr. Laura said to, and then take their kids from them!”
She wasn’t advocating abuse, I know this, she was just encouraging parents to use that one little swat to snap the child from their fit just enough to be able to talk or engage the child in conversation. I’m a conversation parent. My son and I talk to each other a lot. He’s very comfortable telling me that he’s “frustrated” with me or “mad” or that he’s “not going to like me if I don’t” ….whatever the case may be. I encourage him to tell me these things. I think children should have a voice, it’s important; they are humans with opinions, feelings, thoughts, emotions and shouldn’t be ignored or made to feel insignificant simply because they are a child. Of course, he must not be disrespectful with his opinion, but he has permission to express himself. I’ve learned so much about life through the innocence of my 5 year old and I owe him a debt of gratitude for that. But, I would have never learned if I didn’t take the time to listen.
My children aren’t perfect, Cylas can be rude at times, it bothers me, but he’s learning it from somewhere *big red flashing arrow above my head* and that person better learn to change because his character is being molded now. (yes, I can be rude and irritable. hah. surprise!)
Here is the perfect instance where every other spank happy parent would have smacked their child, but, we chose to use this situation as a learning point:
Cylas got off the bus yesterday crying. I don’t like seeing my child in tears, and my biggest fear is that one day those tears will be the result of someone beating him up or verbal bullying. My heart sped up a little and I asked him what was wrong.
“John (I won’t use the child’s real name) hit me! He keeps hitting me and pushing me and he won’t leave me alone!”
Ohmygosh, I was so upset, I kept my face calm and told him, “Well, tell the bus driver!”
“I did but he just says, ‘ok’. “ AHG!!! My kid is being smacked around in the BACK of the bus and the driver isn’t doing a thing about it. I left it at that, didn’t go into it any further with Cy, I knew all I needed to know.
Later that evening, I confided in D what Cy had told me and angrily proclaimed that I was going to, “call the school and tell them to move my child away from that bully.” This kid happens to be a full head taller and some 5-10lbs heavier than my little guy. D listened quietly, later that evening he and Cy were sitting on the couch talking about the incident. It took my husband almost 30 minutes, but he slowly pulled the truth out.
Cylas was NOT hit, the kid raised his fist to hit him. Cylas was BUGGING the other child, provoking him. WhAT? My spunky little rascal? HAH. Oh, yes, the wool was pulled folks, right over my eyes, but papa knew better than to take the story at face value.
He sternly advised Cylas to never make up stories, or we would have trouble believing him if something WERE to happen. Cylas was humbled. His worst fear is that we will not believe him.
So, bottom line? My son lied. Stinkin’ little stinker. He LIED! And my husband saw fit to have a heart to heart with him which moved Cylas more deeply than a spanking ever could. By the end, Cylas knew his papa still loved him but was disappointed that Cylas had chosen to lie.
So, yeah, I don’t know what you would call our style of parenting, but it’s not the same as the way I was raised.