For a Little Perspective on Spanking

I saw this today and was reminded of the heated spanking debates I've seen on ISYN, including the most recent one last week. This certainly sheds a different light on the matter! Photobucket


jennythenanny said...

Eeeesh! Number 4 looks like my dad, lol. But I don't think I ever caught him spanking my mom!

workingmom said...

As far as I'm concerned, the only "different light" this sheds is to point out how society used to view women as little more than children themselves.


PARENTS spanking children should be a very last resort, but it should still be part of parenting. Every kid is different, and some are not going to care how many times they were in "time-out" or that you took all of their toys away. Just the threat of a spanking can be useful in advising children against bad behavior.

And at very small ages, it is easier to keep the child out of the street, etc. by havng them afraid of an angry, spanking parent (which they CAN comprehend) than afraid of being run over by a vehicle (which they can't necessarily comprehend).

Lyn said...

This just reminded me of Fifty Shades of Grey hahaha!

Just My Two Cents Just Now said...

I was spanked a LOT as a child and now as an adult, I do not hold it against my parents. My parents screwed me over in other ways however and certain things they said about me, etc...hurt me more than being spanked did. As a child, I learned early on that if I did not do as I was told, the penalty would be very harsh. And oh boy, it sure was. My parents even made me retrieve the device they would use to spank me with!!
However after being spanked, I learned my lesson and started listening to my folks a lot more.

I spanked my own children and do not have any regrets in doing so. They have come out to be respectful adults and do not have any self-entitlement issues I see in other people their age.

I am not saying spanking is the best invention since hot fudge sundaes....however I do believe that it is a very effective way to punish a child.

Village said...

A child should never be spanked. It's child abuse when a more than one hundred pound person hits a 20-30-40 pound child, even a teenaged child. It's just abusive. We don't hit our dogs and cats do we?

If a parent can't outsmart a child with knowledge of that child's currency, and save the screaming for when the house is burning down, then maybe parenting classes are in order.

Apologies to those I insulted. You know who you are.

Katie said...

I had the calmest parents to ever grace the earth. They seriously never raised their voices to any of us.

They gave time outs before they were in vogue.

They had differnt techniques of discipline for each child.

I was the child they spanked, even though they never thought they would spank a child.

I simply did not give a shit when other methods were tried, and many other methods were tried.

They was no shouting or endless whacking. Always a warning, and a calm explanation, and if I decided not to listen I was spanked 1-2 whacks on my bum with the palm of their hand.

I'm not saying all kids should be spanked, but I don't think it's entirely evil either.

MissMannah said...

I love this and thank you so much for posting it!! I think it gives a great perspective on spanking. I have always held the belief that if you wouldn't do it to another adult, why would you do it to a child?

Daria said...

I am chocked and sad that by the fact that spanking children is legal in usa. In Sweden (located in the north of Europe) were I live, all child abuse, including spanking, is illegal. Sweden was the first county in the world that made spanking illegal and that is one thing we can be proud of.
The US has not even signed the UN convention on the rights of a child. Shame on you!

saynotoviolence said...

This is great!! It certainly sheds light on how absurd spanking is. Its a violent act & it teaches one thing. For the child to behave a certain way while the immediate threat of physical pain is present. Making it almost completely ineffective.

Spanking is abuse, always. Regardless of how the parent "feels" while doing it!!

SLNanny said...

Exactly what Village said. WorkingMom, I respect your right to parent how you see fit, but spanking is not, nor will it be, a part of my parenting.

saynotoviolence said...

Why only as a last resort? That implies you believe there is something wrong with spanking. Is it the violence that bothers you? Good. It should. I would NEVER hit,spank,punch,kick,etc my children. Its abusive to be violent to your children. They deserve so much better.

Dr. Juris said...

How anyone can equate spanking with kicking or punching a child, I don't know.

Also, I find the "wouldn't do that to another adult" argument invalid. I wouldn't put another adult in time-out. How is that relevant?

There is a world of a difference between spanking a kid and committing child abuse.

OP said...

OP here. My point about the perspective this article gives is that views on spanking and other types of punishment are constantly changing. This might be part of the reason the opinions here have been so varied. 60 years ago spanking women was apparently popular... In 20, 30, and 40 years, who knows what the consensus will be?
Also, I find it interesting that all four men seem to view spanking as a way to assert power and authority over someone, child or adult. I know that some no longer view spanking this way, but I suspect that others still do.

I am a nanny, and would never spank my charges, but am unsure if I will spank my own children some day. I see merit in both sides of this debate and appreciate everyone for participating, it has been quite thought-provoking to say the least!

Dr. Juris said...

I think this article is more reflective of society's changing view on women, not spanking.

Cubic said...

I have always held the belief that if you wouldn't do it to another adult, why would you do it to a child?

Ridiculous logic.

Would you force another adult to sit in a chair? Would you force another adult to give up his gadgets?

I included a well-placed swat or two in my arsenal of parenting tools and my kids grew into awesome adults who have a fantastic relationship with me to this day.

It's not "abuse". Anyone who thinks a swat is abuse needs to spend a day with a CPS worker and see what "abuse" actually is.

Truth Seeker said...


The reason we do not spank our pets is because it would be unfair to them since they do not communicate and thus do not understand authority when authority says, NO!

However, if a child is spanked after receiving repeated warnings, then the parent is not only trying to teach a lesson on behavior, but they also are trying to keep their child out of harm's way as well.

Say you repeatedly tell your child not to climb on a certain chair, but he or she still doesn't listen and climbs on it over and over.

Well as a last resort, spanking the child may just open his or her eyes to how SERIOUS it is to do so.

There is such a fine line between spanking and abuse.

As adults, you should all know this by now.

SLNanny said...

Wether or not it is abuse, spankings still involve using your power and authority to inflict pain, as little as it may be, as a form of punishment. I think spanking works in short term because children are afraid of being spanked. I wonder though, how much they retain about the bad behavior. Do they remember that climbing on the chair is unsafe, or do they remember that clmibing on the chair equals a spanking? I just don't feel that spanking gives them the tools to learn from their actions.

Side note- I worked for CPS for 2 years. It solidified my views on spanking.

Phoenix said...

LOL. This is funny. I would vote that some women should be spanked as well.

teach em' whos boss!

I should like to carry a paddle and spank those who get out of line. Imagine their face!

ericsmom said...

Dr. Juris

I agree. How can someone put kicking and punching in the same catergory as spanking?

Totally different. Kicking or punching any living thing is abuse.

Dr. Juris said...

I also don't understand how anyone can consider punishment as not involving discomfort. Having your toys taken away may not physically hurt a child, but it can cause emotional turmoil. Essentially, whatever punishment is doled out will serve to hurt a person, be it putting them in a corner (which is isolation), scolding them harshly (which plays on their guilt and psyche), taking away their things (which can cause physical discomfort or foster the fear that their actions will lead to having something taken away, rather than "learning" the lesson one seeks to impart upon them), and the list goes on. ANY punishment AT ALL uses power and authority to inflict pain. What's pivotal in any circumstance is that you make the child understand the connection between the punishment and their conduct.

Also, Eric's mom: I think it's just people who want to use extremes to the exclusion of thought or reason. I cannot understand people who equate a semi-controversial issue with one that is so far off the spectrum, and when people start doing this, they lack ANY credibility in my eyes.

Also, Phoenix. I think both men and women sometimes deserve a good ass-whooping, but not a spanking.

MissMannah said...

To those who said my statement of "if you don't do it to an adult, you shouldn't do it to a child" is ridiculous, I have this rebuttal: no, I do not force a child to sit in time-out just like I would not force an adult to do so. I already said on another post that I don't believe in punishment, if at all possible. I believe children are just as worthy of respect as adults are.

Dr. Juris said...

"If you wouldn't do it to an adult, why would you do it to a child?" is what you said, Ms. Manna. Now, it's your call as to whether or not you want to punish a child (and that's a completely different train of thought), but ultimately, you don't do stuff to adults because of the virtue that they are adults. You are not responsible for reforming an adult's behavior. People must take responsibility for reforming their child's behavior, or the behavior of a child under their watch. And part of that responsibility is reforming their behavior to that of societal expectations through discipline, punishment, and tutelage.

(I also stand by what I said regarding this being a ridiculous statement. I wouldn't sing lullabies to an adult, or rock them to sleep, or put them in a highchair. See what I mean?)

Nashville Nanny said...

I would let my husband spank me. (grin) Just sayin'.

Lyn said...

Nashville Nanny, I'd be in to that too, hahaha. :)

MissMannah said...

Dr Juris, I think you are being willfully ignorant about what I said. Do I need to spell it out? OK! If you feel your actions would be disrespectful to an adult, they are disrespectful to a child. Is that better?

Mrs. Billy Lamar said...

When my mother was trying to stop smoking the in the late 80's, she would get "shocked" each time she took a hit of a cigarette. I saw this as a very effective took in getting her to quit.

For a child, one can spank him or her...w/out kicking and punching.

I think the reason our youth today is so spoiled and self-entitled is because the popular belief that spanking is abuse has led many parents to back off and use other forms of punishment.

So...your teen cannot use her computer for a week? Or you take away her cell phone for a few days?

Well guess what? I grew up w/out a computer and a cell phone. I was fine w/out it.

Ann said...

Miss Mannah lay off the Dr. please.

You annoy me.

Live and learn said...

I hope one day we all can "use your words" instead. For all of us who've been spanked and know it's not all that helpful in chaining our stupid or annoying behaviors, um well we try better our skills. It's tough in American society there is a lot of confusion when guiding children, as we read everyone has a different point of view.

Logical Skeptic said...

Ok guys, let's try to remember that "The New York Daily Mirror" (as it was called by the end of its run) was a *tabloid*, given to publishing sensationalist stuff to sell better, and they probably cherry-picked these responses for maximum consumer outrage. I mean, come on, these photos look like mugshots!

Everyone I knew from my grandparents' generation (and I knew many, as I spent a lot of time with my grandparents and their friends) definitely had enough taste and decency that they were NOT spanking the women in their lives.

My personal philosophy (can't wait for the flaming to come!) comes from my mother, who believes that a low, underhand, open-handed swat on a diapered bottom that startles *but does not hurt* is effective as a deterrent/attention-getter for a small child who is engaged in something so dangerous s/he must be stopped immediately and made to understand that s/he must NEVER DO IT AGAIN: running into the street, playing with the stove, leaning out second-story windows, etc. It should never be a pre-meditated punishment, never be on bare skin, and shouldn't be used once the child is old enough to be verbal and communicative.

Notagoodtoolinanysituation said...

And that's the problem, in the absence of an "angry spanking parent" the child has no reason to not run into the street. Spanking teaches a child to behave a certain way while the immediate threat of a violent act is upon them.

You need to teach your child why its dangerous and create an internal compass in that child that makes them not want to run out in traffic. Have you taught them to look both ways? Do they know that cars are bigger than them & can make them bleed? Or u just whack them!!!

spankingIsaViolentAct said...

Its is abusive. Its violent. Why not kick them? Wouldn't that be okay if you're calm while you kick them? That would hurt, too. So, why not? Spanking is violent and it teaches nothing aside from fear of being hurt while mom is mad or if the child did something wrong. If you spanked an adult it would be assault. Its wrong. The laws in the US just haven't caught up yet.

spankingISviolence said...

I wouldn't force a child to sit in a chair or give up gadgets. But if u did, it wouldn't be illegal. However spanking an adult would be considered an assault. Its a violent act. Physically harming another person is physical abuse. Yes, starving a child or burning them is worse. But if that's what you have to compare spanking against "real abuse that a cps worker deals with" then you know its wrong. If there were nothing wrong with spanking, why not do it every single day for every infraction? And what difference does it make how the spanker "feels" while doing it? Calm? Upset? Its still a violent act & abusive.

hands-are-for-loving said...

Keep pulling the child back down for the love of them, there is no justification for violently attacking them with your hands and hitting them. When you're not there, they will just climb again. Why not act super happy when they sit and very unhappy when they climb? If that doesn't work, just keep preventing the climbing. Just because parenting isn't easy that isn't an excuse to hit your child! If you can't get the message across to your child that something is SERIOUS without HITTING them, its YOU with the problem.

barbaric said...

Amen, screaming & spanking are sure signs you need a parenting class. Its a sure sign that the parent has lost control. Violence is never a viable answer, neither is screaming. Its barbaric.

hit-them-into-submission!Show them who is boss! said...

Why is that abuse and spanking is not? The purpose of spanking is to inflict pain. Does it matter if you use yyour hands or feet? If the kicking is less painful, how do you feel about it?

not a good excuse said...

What a silly excuse to inflict pain on a child. If you don't have the words to communicate the seriousness of an issue to your child or if you're incapable of keeping them safe, that would be a good indication that you could use a parenting class or that you should read some parenting books.

Violence is a sign that the parent has lost control.

haha said...

Yes, the problem with "todays society" is that these entitled little brats were not hit by their parents.

Whew, glad you've solved that one.

Beatemintosubmission said...

Additionally, if you hit an adult, it would be considered an illegal assault. Adults have the right not to be hit. The laws in the US are so behind the times. Before long, hitting someone, regardless of their age, will also be illegal. Violence is never the answer.

? said...

Why is kicking & punching abuse, but hitting is not? They're all painful. Kicking would be less painful than spanking.

yikes said...

We don't do punishment in this home. We teach self control & encourage our children to make good decisions. We don't need to inflict pain of any kind on our children. We don't need to intimidate them into submission. Its sad to me, if you feel hitting a child is ever okay.

And why not kick or punch? Why hit in stead? Why not all three? The more pain the more effective, no? Why spank? You can't use your words? Don't you tell your kids to use their words to express themselves, or do you encourage them to follow in your footsteps and hit others when they want to be taken SERiOuSLY?

Please think about it.