Is spanking or slapping tough parenting, or a mild form of abuse? One woman’s story.

Via on Dec 2, 2012

We Become what we are Shown.

I was watching Dead Poets Society, recently, and was reminded that not-so-long ago, physical punishment was commonplace in American schools and homes.

Whatever we do as parents, we teach our children to do when they feel similarly.

Here’s one woman’s story—which is by no means definitive, we’re all raised differently, and mature differently.

I was slapped as a child when I did something wrong. Growing up, I honestly bought the old line that ‘it never did me any harm’, and that it teaches you respect. I am sure for some people this may be true, but for me, like a lot of people, as a child you were never actually hit for doing something wrong but because your parents were so frustrated they had no other options but to resort to it.

I have now realised that as a grown up, when things get difficult, I resort to violence to express myself. Not in an overly violent way, but I will hit my boyfriend on the arm or chest. It is just my go to reaction. I know it needs to stop and I am working towards stopping it. Something else that has backed up my theory with this as well is that my boyfriend was never hit once, neither was my best friend and they are

the gentlest, most patient people ever and no matter how frustrated they get, would never do something like that. So, in short, I don’t know if I will ever have kids, but if I do, I will make damn sure never to hit them as I was. It leads to a lot of repression and inability to express yourself in any other way, or for me at least.

For many more such stories from similar and different points of view…read the comments on Reddit.

First Image: Sodahead

An interesting, and un-PC perspective:

It’s actually illegal in schools in most states, now:

Barbados, via UNICEF:

Here’s the scene after Nuwanda’s punishment (couldn’t find the scene itself):

Same goes for training our dog friends: exercise, reasonable discipline (never to hurt), then affection.

About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | facebook.com/elephantjournal | twitter.com/elephantjournal | facebook.com/waylonhlewis | twitter.com/waylonlewis | Google+ For more: publisherelephantjournalcom

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4 Responses to “Is spanking or slapping tough parenting, or a mild form of abuse? One woman’s story.”

  1. Suzy says:

    "…you were never actually hit for doing something wrong but because your parents were so frustrated they had no other options but to resort to it."
    That is so true. It's our own frustration, stress, trigger – you name it – that causes us to lash out at our children.

  2. [...] “Don’t know much about being a man yet,” Sean said softly, as he carved a cross in the sand with an old lighter, “But I know I’ll never hurt my kids, least not in that way.” [...]

  3. Just Somebody says:

    Spanking done as a result of the inability of the adult to handle the situation is abusive. Spanking used as an exclamation point to ensure something is remembered, is a different thing. My father rarely spanked my sister and I, but when he did it made a lifelong impression. Like when he spanked the both of us for lying to him. He was not reacting out of his own frustration, he planned the spanking as a means to ensure we always remembered that lying was simply not acceptable.

  4. [...] of a coal mining town. About the snakes and mud of my youth, about rice sprinkled with sugar, spankings until I blistered and the lord, we praised the lord for all of [...]

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