Today is the Great Spank Out Day. It’s a day when parents talk about their experiences and encourage other to take part in peaceful discipline, rather than aggressive discipline. Spanking is something that I’m strongly against, and while many may not agree, I see it as hampering the relationship between a child and their parents and creating a distrust that can grow and deteriorate the relationship in the same way that verbal abuse can. For me, I wanted to tell my side of the story today, about how I felt and why I hate spanking.
A lot of people will tell you that they don’t remember their early childhood, but I remember all the way back. I remember some really wonderful experiences with my parents, when they would read me stories and have the patience to listen to me when I needed comfort. But, unfortunately, I also have those stinging memories of my parents letting there frustrations out at me. I clearly remember being spanked and hit as a child and that’s why I’ll never use it against my daughter. Spanking is about dominance and control…two factors that never work in parenting.
I remember feeling hurt and wondering if my parents loved me or not, I remember wondering what was wrong with me…why did I always misbehave? Why did always do things that mom and dad didn’t like? I remember thinking that I hated them, and that nothing I ever did was right. I remember feeling upset because they didn’t give us enough praise for the good, but would often show promptness in lining us up for spankings. The result was growing up not knowing if I was loved, not trusting my parents, and not feeling comfortable to come to them if ever I made a choice that they would be upset or disappointed with.
I think that spanking has become such a norm in our society that it is often difficult to take an outside look at the practice and weigh in rationally. But, just to put things into perspective…we often hear individuals voicing there distaste and shock at the hitting of a dog when they make a mistake on the floor, but for our own children, we parents have difficulty seeing spanking in the same way. We often find that spanking is the easiest way to “correct a mistake”. But, I have to argue that it shouldn’t be something that we strive for as parents. I mean, would we want our president to declare war first and ask questions later? Or we would expect him to take a more diplomatic stance and solve things in a way that’s fair for everyone involved?
My point is, that while we all make mistakes (including parents!), it’s more than beneficial to seek peace first. It’s never too late to make a change and find new ways to be a positive influence in your child’s life. My downfall is not always insisting on the healthiest foods for my daughter. She does get plenty of sweets and often won’t eat her veggies. As a mom, it’s my job to correct those issues…not with force, but with peaceful intervention. I want her to learn to make the right choices, not follow my orders out of fear, because I won’t be there to give orders when she’s grown. Our job is to give them guidance to make decisions on their own as adults.
Find out more about The Great Spank Out Day!