Spanking Pros And Cons In Children (Corporal Punishment)
Spanking Pros And Cons – As a child, I don’t remember being spanked. I’m sure it was once or twice (because my parents didn’t mind playing), but I can’t think of anything. But I still clearly remember when my brother was beaten.
In our family, spanking is a punishment that is applied exactly as intended: calmly, rationally, and with an emphasis on helping the child understand the reason for the punishment.
Having grown up in a home where spanking was an accepted form of punishment (and neither my brother nor I seem to have been harmed by it), one would think that nowadays I would be in favor of spanking myself.
But personally, I’m not a fan of that. My daughter is now 3 years old and I have never felt comfortable in her. I have friends who hit me and I don’t blame them for it.
Here are the Spanking Pros And Cons in detail.
Should spanking be used as punishment?
The latest study from the University of Texas brings together data from more than five decades of research. Experts have come to a rather unexpected conclusion: Spanking causes the same emotional and developmental damage to children as abuse.
According to research, the more children be spanked, the more likely they are to rebel against their parents and experience:
- Antisocial behavior
- Mental health problems
- Cognitive difficulties
Of course, this is not the only study of its kind. There are many other studies that highlight the negative effects of spanking. However, 81% of Americans consider spanking to be an acceptable form of punishment. Why the difference between research and parent opinion?
Clearly, parents must see some positives missing from the study for them to continue to use spanking as a form of punishment. So what do people consider the virtue of spanking?
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1. Lesser known facts
It will be difficult to find large-scale studies showing that spanking are effective in changing behavior and have no negative effects.
But there is some research to suggest that spanking, administered by “loving, well-meaning parents” in a “non-violent and disciplined” environment, can be an effective form of punishment.
The key factor is that spanking should take place in a calm and loving environment. Remember, the focus is on helping the child learn the right behavior, not just satisfying parents’ frustrations on the spur of the moment.
2. All children Are Different
Perhaps the biggest argument in favor of spanking is the reminder that all children are different. Children react differently to forms of punishment, even children who grew up in the same home.
My brother and I are a perfect example of this. For some children, parents may sincerely believe that spanking is the only way to send a lasting message.
3. Shock Factor
In general, I’m not one to yell. But I will never forget the day my daughter let go of my hand and ran out into the street in front of me. I screamed like she had never screamed before.
She stopped in her tracks, surprise on her face. She talked about it a few days later. And so far, she has never repeated the behavior that caused the outrage. The shock factor works.
I can see how hitting can elicit the same response in an equally dangerous situation (although, again, research shows that spanking doesn’t change behavior in the short or long term).
Sometimes you want a message to be loud and clear. She wants the surprise to stay with her child for days, months, even years after it’s done.
After all, protecting our children often means keeping them from doing dangerous things.
1. Experts Disagree
All major health organizations spoke out against the spanking. And some international organizations also call for corporal punishment of offenders.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is strongly opposed to beating children for any reason. According to the AAP, spanking are never recommended.
All experts agree on this: studies show that spanking do more harm than good.
2. Spanking Teaches Aggression
When my daughter was 2, she went through a rather nasty spanking phase. So bad, in fact, that we visited a behavioral therapist to help me practice techniques to stop spanking.
Several people in our lives have commented that if I just try to spank him, he will stop.
I have to admit it never made sense to me. Should I hit him to teach him not to hit? Luckily, I managed to stop him from hitting a few weeks after that first visit to the behavioral therapist.
I have never regretted that I went down this path.
3. Opportunity to do wrong
One thing is clear: experts in this field are convinced that spanking can only be used in very specific circumstances. That is, for preschoolers who have committed really deliberate defiance, and not minor acts of defiance.
It should not be used for infants and rarely for older children with better communication skills.
It is meant for sending a strong message, not for everyday use. And it should not be motivated by anger or directed towards illegitimate feelings of shame or guilt.
But if spanking is a common form of punishment in your home, how likely are you to step back in a moment of anger and use it when you shouldn’t, or be more aggressive than you should be?
It seems that there are very limited and controlled circumstances where spanking can be very effective and appropriate.
The Bottom Line
Ultimately, spanking is a parental decision that must be made on an individual basis.
Do your research and talk to the people and experts in your life that you trust. If you decide to spank, try to ensure that you only use this form of punishment in a calm and measured manner, as shown by positive studies, to be effective.
Also, keep loving your children and give them a warm and loving home. All children need this.