Go on any parenting board and you'll find that discussions about spanking go from cool to heated faster than your average race car.
Some advocates will quote the bible to back up their choice and people against it will also quote the Good Book. People quote studies, statistics and personal experiences. Then the finger-pointing and name-calling often begins. It's a heated debate, indeed. Many topics regarding children and parenting are.
Speaking of studies, new studies seem to suggest that spanking may lead to violent behavior and sexual dysfunction in teens and adults. But many others who spank say that they were also spanked and turned out fine. Their opponents then claim that since they hit their children, maybe they didn't turn out so fine after all.
The debate is endless, and often fruitless. Parenting is very personal. Parents worry that they aren't doing a good job, they second guess themselves, and therefore become defensive when criticized.
Many parents who spank prefer it to yelling at their kids and deem spanking less harmful, although many people who spank also raise their voices at their kids.
Those who choose not to spank are sometimes considered pushovers who are raising future troublemakers who refuse to abide by societal rules. They may choose to use hurtful words and we all know how damaging words can be.
We have to wonder where the happy medium is - or if there even is one. Maybe time-outs do nothing to improve a child's behavior - maybe spanking really does cause harm...
Some countries have made spanking illegal, including Sweden and Germany.
Although most psychologists tend to veer towards the anti-spanking side, some think it is no more harmful than a verbal reprimand or a time-out and dismiss making physical discipline illegal as the government and 'big brother' sticking their noses where they doesn't belong.
Here are several articles on the topic of spanking, and studies are referenced:
What do you think about the debate on spanking? Were you spanked, or do you spank? What do you think is the better form of discipline?
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