Spanking Didn’t Kill Me. Is Spanking a Positive Parenting Strategy?

I came across an article recently about alternatives to spanking at the positive parenting website and as soon as I read the title I was flooded with memories of spankings received

When I was growing up my parents believed in whoopin’s.  I never even knew it was called spanking until I was in my teens.  I remember back when I was about 10 or so getting my butt whooped while on vacation back east.

My mother had the knack for tearing up my backside, as she called it.  She could find the skinniest, flimsiest tree branch and strip the bark and leaves in mere seconds.  I learned from her that there is technique in corporal punishment; it’s all in the wrist.  You gotta have a quick, sharp crack of the wrist.

Jeez that woman could make me dance.  It literally felt like she set fire to my legs.   She’d have hold of me by the hand and I would run around her in a circle, screaming my head off.  Crack!  Pop! Sting!  Impact!  Round and round we’d go.

As an adult I look back at those times and laugh, yes laugh. It wasn’t funny as a kid but I can see the humor in it now.  For a few different reasons.

1. She always asked me, “do you wanna whoopin’?”  Yes of course that’s it!  My day just isn’t right without sometime leaving welts on my thighs.  I’m such a masochist.

2.  Mid whoopin’ she’d yell, “if you’ll hold still it will be better.”  For who?  I certainly didn’t see the benefits of standing still while a switch stung my butt.

3.  My mother was felled by the most famous spanking related phrase ever uttered, “this hurts me more than it does you.”  Really?  How about we switch places then and I’ll take your hurt and you can have mine.

I received more spankings in my childhood than I can remember which surprisingly affected my decision whether or not to spank my own children.  On one hand I can honestly say those spankings did not affect who I am. But on the other hand as a parent I feel it is a technique futile at best and demented at worst.

There have been reserved moments, far and few between, that one of my  four children have actually needed a spanking.  So I would say that there are times when it is both effective and necessary.  Such as when my son egged my neighbor’s house at 7 in the morning, in broad daylight….

What are your thoughts?  Are you a spanker or a time out delegator?

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Haphazard administration and unpredictably crazy blogging topics are the staple of Kelly's (SWL's slightly weird founder) writing career. One thing you can always be sure of is that you never know what Kelly is going to post at Suburban Wife Life next.

2 thoughts on “Spanking Didn’t Kill Me. Is Spanking a Positive Parenting Strategy?

  1. Thank you for your input. You raise some excellent points. In fact the way you word “buttock battery” actually reminded of being slapped in the face. It certainly brings up some new thoughts about spanking.

  2. Child buttock-battering vs. DISCIPLINE:

    Child buttock-battering for the purpose of gaining compliance is nothing more than an inherited bad habit.

    Its a good idea for people to take a look at what they are doing, and learn how to DISCIPLINE instead of hit.

    I think the reason why television shows like “Supernanny” and “Dr. Phil” are so popular is because that is precisely what many (not all) people are trying to do.

    There are several reasons why child bottom-slapping isn’t a good idea. Here are some good, quick reads recommended by professionals:

    Plain Talk About Spanking
    by Jordan Riak,

    The Sexual Dangers of Spanking Children
    by Tom Johnson,

    by Lesli Taylor M.D. and Adah Maurer Ph.D.

    Most compelling of all reasons to abandon this worst of all bad habits is the fact that buttock-battering can be unintentional sexual abuse for some children. There is an abundance of educational resources, testimony, documentation, etc available on the subject that can easily be found by doing a little research on “spanking”.

    Just a handful of those who are helping to raise awareness of why child bottom-slapping isn’t a good idea:

    American Academy of Pediatrics,
    American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry,
    Center For Effective Discipline,
    PsycHealth Ltd Behavioral Health Professionals,
    Churches’ Network For Non-Violence,
    Nobel Peace Prize recipient Archbishop Desmond Tutu,
    Parenting In Jesus’ Footsteps,
    Global Initiative To End All Corporal Punishment of Children,
    United Nations on the Rights of the Child.

    In 26 countries, child buttock-battering is prohibited by law (with more in process). In fact, the US was the only UN member that did not ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

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