Many parents grew up during a time when they were either spanked or physically reprimanded at school and/or at home. Their parents were quick with a hand or a belt if they acted out as a young child. It became a way to teach a child how to act properly when out in public and in the presence of others. It also was believed to instill a respect of the parent in the child.
Now there is a new school of thought that says that physically reprimanding a child is considered child abuse. Many parents are coming forward now and saying that spanking a child is abusive and detrimental to their physical and mental health. So now the dilemma arises. What do you do when your child is acting out, speaking back or throwing a tantrum? Do you let them continue in their ways or do you spank them in hopes of getting them to stop?
There have been stories in the media of school teachers hitting children when they act up in class. And when the parents find out, they are furious. So does this lead someone to believe that the parent does not hit the child at home? Or do the parents feel that it is solely their right to spank the child and not the school teacher’s prerogative?
Some people believe that physically reprimanding a child leads to vigilante behavior. That spanked children are considered abused children and are more likely drawn to drugs, violence, and crime.
It is thought that the crime rate in relationship to children who were spanked was a lot lower then than it is now. This statement makes it hard to equate spanking to a future of crime. There are organizations that were formed to prevent children from being spanked who view the action as unethical, corporal punishment. These groups believe that by spanking a child the teacher or parent is creating fear and possibly even hate in that child towards the abuser.
They feel that by physically spanking a child, the person doing the spanking is inflicting future psychological problems. That spanking a child does not rectify the situation but causes additional problems. These organizations are advocates of disciplining through speaking to the child or subjecting them to a time out situation.
So, the next time your child is acting out, do you go the old route and spank them and risk having someone say something to you or do you try to reason with the child?