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Mystic Crusader

Parenting method that hurts kids for years

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http://shine.yahoo.com/parenting/spanking-linked-mental-illness-says-study-175900352.html

Researchers examined data from more than 34,000 adults and found that being spanked significantly increased the risk of developing mental health issues as adults. According to their results, corporal punishment is associated with mood disorders, including depression and anxiety, as well as personality disorders and alcohol and drug abuse. They estimate that as much as 7 percent of adult mental illness may be attributable to childhood physical punishment, including slapping, shoving, grabbing, and hitting. The study reports that spanking ups the risk of major depression by 41 percent, alcohol and drug abuse by 59 percent, and mania by 93 percent, among other findings.

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I never hit my kids...something inside me just told me that this type of thing would do more damage than good.

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Posted (edited)

I would gather spanking may accompany a whole host of problem parenting.

The article also stated:

"at leasthalf of parents admit to physically punishing their children. Some research suggests that as many as 70-90 percent of mothers have resorted to spanking at one time or another" ( I doubt that 70-90% only did it once)

" They estimate that as much as 7 percent of adult mental illness may be attributable to childhood physical punishment, including slapping, shoving, grabbing, and hitting. The study reports that spanking ups the risk of major depression by 41 percent, alcohol and drug abuse by 59 percent, and mania by 93 percent, among other findings. "Where do our healthy spanked adults come from?

What I really don't agree with is hostile parenting- full of yelling and aggression in all forms. Letting my kids take me to my breaking point after repeated yelling, cussing, showing them how insane they make me, setting the example of going out of control when you are frustrated. Drinking to ease the struggles...Even if I stopped at spanking, all these screw up kids. imo

Forget the spanking as a good or bad thing, How do we help the frustrated and in some cases lazy parents who haven't a clue how to raise their kids without hostility in one form or another.

Edited by QuiteContrary

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Ugh, it always makes me sad to read these things. I have two older half sisters, and we happen to share the paternal link. I didn't even know this for years, but our dad was physically aggressive with both of them as children, and while they both turned out very well, they're two very different people from the same background to some degree. One has children of her own, and I can honestly say my nieces and nephew are easy to Love kids with a great mom, and that sister is generally happy and upbeat and friendly even through her tougher times, while the other is very quiet and reserved and just doesn't smile. It breaks my heart because she's not a mean person, and I don't think she's sour, but I think she's just retreated so far into her shell that it's hard to see much more than that cold exterior. If I ever did have kids of my own, I just know that spanking would be off the table for me. I know I'm not a parent exactly, but I don't care what my kids pull; if I can't think of a better way to teach them than smacking them (whether it be on the butt or the face, you're still whacking the kid), I think that's saying more about my own resourcefulness, intelligence, and sense of responsibility than it is about the child. I hate it when kids throw a tantrum in a restaurant just as much as the next person, but I mean, come on. Walk your kid outside for a few minutes, take away desert for a week, give an earlier bed time, but don't be spanking your kid. I'd rather see a toddler throwing a fit in any establishment, rather than a grown parent having their own little conniption and smacking their child because they can't be bothered to do anything else. I wish some public places had paper bibs by the door in the "big kid" sizes.

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I never hit my kids...something inside me just told me that this type of thing would do more damage than good.

Miss Lilly, I read a study of similar subject matter once saying that kids who were spanked at an earlier age had a higher rate of having more behavioral issues later, as well as things mentioned in this thread so far as well. Lower IQ, greater tendency to be violent, to abuse addictive and/or illegal substances, to develop emotional issues, etc.

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I would gather spanking may accompany a whole host of problem parenting.

The article also stated:

"at leasthalf of parents admit to physically punishing their children. Some research suggests that as many as 70-90 percent of mothers have resorted to spanking at one time or another" ( I doubt that 70-90% only did it once)

" They estimate that as much as 7 percent of adult mental illness may be attributable to childhood physical punishment, including slapping, shoving, grabbing, and hitting. The study reports that spanking ups the risk of major depression by 41 percent, alcohol and drug abuse by 59 percent, and mania by 93 percent, among other findings. "Where do our healthy spanked adults come from?

What I really don't agree with is hostile parenting- full of yelling and aggression in all forms. Letting my kids take me to my breaking point after repeated yelling, cussing, showing them how insane they make me, setting the example of going out of control when you are frustrated. Drinking to ease the struggles...Even if I stopped at spanking, all these screw up kids. imo

Forget the spanking as a good or bad thing, How do we help the frustrated and in some cases lazy parents who haven't a clue how to raise their kids without hostility in one form or another.

I'm very tempted to suggest support/discussion group-like set ups. Parents who can understand where everyone around them is coming from, and help understand that their kids aren't the only ones who act out, but can also brainstorm on the most effective and non-harmful ways to correct their children, and perhaps in venting to each other their frustrations over parenting, it might help them deal with their children less aggressively.

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Take the discussions away from the polarizing issue of spanking and thus stopping progress in its tracks and instead focus on how they could avoid the parenting path that leads up to them spanking.

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Hitting your kids just teaches them to fear you. That and that it's okay to hit. (My sister in law just smacks her 2year old back for hitting her all the time, it has to be confusing and clearly isn't working).

I won't hit my kids. I don't see the point. They're only small still and they're not perfect but they're a couple of the sweetest, compassionate, most patient kids I know. They trust me and aren't afraid to talk to me about anything. (so far) So, I think they're turning out just fine too.

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Take the discussions away from the polarizing issue of spanking and thus stopping progress in its tracks and instead focus on how they could avoid the parenting path that leads up to them spanking.

QC I have my opinions just as anyone else, but I do agree that it's important rather than purely moving away from something, to move towards something as well. I'm not sure rehabilitation would be the right word for it, but I think as a society we should encourage parents to connect with other parents and explore different, more positive methods of raising our kids, and also go to our communities for resources and support when we need it. The media is violent of course, but I think if it were more common for there to be a parent/child dynamic where kids could sit down with someone and have it explained to them, or be reassured occasionally that Die Hard, GTA, and Saw aren't real life, we'd see at least the effects of a greater distinction between the cool special effects we see on a screen, and the violence that isn't so awesome when it's outside of Hollywood. Anyway, I've digressed on that a bit...

Hitting your kids just teaches them to fear you. That and that it's okay to hit. (My sister in law just smacks her 2year old back for hitting her all the time, it has to be confusing and clearly isn't working).

I won't hit my kids. I don't see the point. They're only small still and they're not perfect but they're a couple of the sweetest, compassionate, most patient kids I know. They trust me and aren't afraid to talk to me about anything. (so far) So, I think they're turning out just fine too.

Sarah, I know that my mother wasn't the best to me, and that even if I feel lucky to have found guidance and friends elsewhere, things my parents and even a step parent did still have their negative impacts on me. I have had a pretty substantial part in raising my younger sister, but I won't pretend I know the trials of bringing up another human being from infancy, and I really admire any woman who can raise their children the way you've described yourself as doing. Small children aren't perfect, nor are the older ones, or full grown adults, but I think that even for the aggravation it may cause us, kids making mistakes makes them into better kids in many cases, if they have the right influences in their lives and good heads on their shoulders. The big word that caught me in what you wrote is compassion. I'm almost certain I'll never have kids, but if I did, one of the qualities I'd try to emphasize for them is compassion, and also just the awareness that there are people around them who need it, and I'd want to raise my kids with the capacity to accept people and the inquisitiveness to want to understand their differences rather than sit in ignorance.

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Reading this article, reminds me of a song by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. Sing or hear it from the perspective of the young ones or from a parent's perspective. My mom and I used to sing it together, and when I had kids of my own I sang it to and with them; and I quote:

You, who are on the road must have a code that you can live by.

And so become yourself because the past is just a good bye.

Teach your children well, their father's hell did slowly go by,

And feed them on your dreams, the one they picked, the one you're known by.

Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you you would cry,

So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

And you, of the tender years can't know the fears that your elders grew by,

And so please help them with your years, they seek the truth before they can die.

Teach your parents well, their children's hell will slowly go by,

And feed them on your dreams, the one they picked, the one you're known by.

Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,

So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

It's a message of genuine love and compassion that's been shared by generation to generation. As a mother, myself, discipling children can sometimes be stressful but it can't be always like that. Doing it in anger and torture never helps, it only makes matter worse and like the article say, could lead to mental or social problems. We want our children to live healthily and with good values. As a parent, it's my responsibility to teach my children right from wrong and to make sure they understand. In the middle of it, children will make mistakes. But no one is perfect. Hell, even parents make mistakes. Life is trial and error and so as parenting. And it takes two to tango; so together, a parent and child can work things out without going into spanking or any kind of torture.

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Posted (edited)

QC I have my opinions just as anyone else, but I do agree that it's important rather than purely moving away from something, to move towards something as well. I'm not sure rehabilitation would be the right word for it, but I think as a society we should encourage parents to connect with other parents and explore different, more positive methods of raising our kids, and also go to our communities for resources and support when we need it. The media is violent of course, but I think if it were more common for there to be a parent/child dynamic where kids could sit down with someone and have it explained to them, or be reassured occasionally that Die Hard, GTA, and Saw aren't real life, we'd see at least the effects of a greater distinction between the cool special effects we see on a screen, and the violence that isn't so awesome when it's outside of Hollywood. Anyway, I've digressed on that a bit...

I agree with parents connecting with other parents for help. My opinion is to connect on a positive non-polarizing ground. Because as I said I don't believe spanking happens in a vacuum. It is part of a hostile parenting approach to child rearing (which doesn't even have to include spanking). Keeping support positive teaches and sets an example as well.

Hearing parents' frustrations/feelings as well as their childrens' has a place as well. But should be met with affirmations and positive guidance. They already know hostility and shame.

Edited by QuiteContrary

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So who here got hit by their parents? And how did it effect you? Detrimentally or otherwise?

I was smacked as a child. It seemed appropriate at the time and I have never at all felt negatively effected by it.

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asian people spank their kids a lot. especially the chinese, taiwanese, japanese ppl. they say tat it teaches obedience and helps them relieve stress.

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I'm not sure about the helping them relieve stress part but yea, I agree that depending on the culture, it's okay to spank their children to teach them a lesson. Not to torture but only to discipline. Also I believe they spank them on their butt and not on the head. Of course, there are always parents who can't control themselves.

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Yet another validating study, and another day of being triggered by reading a validating study

I'm living proof spanking doesn't work. For 17 years my mother made me bend over and touch my toes and stay there while she beat the hell out of my ass with a wooden spoon. The spoon was introduced when I was 7 because "my butt" kept breaking the paddles. I was always told by my parents, oh, it wasn't that bad - because we all know being forced to submit to torture is a walk in the park, and that uf you can't see the bruises under your clothes, they're not there. So many parts of me went into hiding over physical and emotional abuse, they all came bursting out this past new years eve. I was 40 and went into severe delayed onset PTSD. All of these buried, dissociated parts of myself kept coming out of hiding (no, not everyone with DID has autonomous parts like Sybil). I couldn't work, drive, go to the grocery store without having a panic attack. I had physical flashbacks where my body would spasm and ache, the latter sometimes for days. I went to the doctor and got X-ray evidence of soft tissue calcification and arthritis in my hips, a raised up hip and a bone spur - all of these things had caused considerable pain and made me walk funny because the abuse jacked up my musculoskeletal structure.

When I was a kid in the early 70s the only parenting self-help books were by Dr Spock, not that my stay at home mother or cop father thought it was necessary. Nowadays there are tons of studies and resources. Check out Love and Logic (even if you're not a Christian, there's great info in there), or the amazing book Why Spanking Doesn't Work, which validated me and changed my life (http://books.google.com/books?id=gTGGCWAgsUMC&printsec=frontcover&dq=why+spanking+doesnt+work&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Nn7yT_fVLYq6rQH85Lz4Bg&ved=0CDMQ6AEwAA). The most interesting part of the book was about cognitive dissonance, how you have to believe your child is bad in order to believe you are good even as you do atrocious things to their bodies, minds and souls..

Via spanking, my mother tried to destroy my life and only now am I regaining control and finding peace. Childhood depression, adult bipolar, DID, messed up relationship after messed up relationship, problems getting along and being accepted at school, running away and dropping out of school, drug abuse, inability to follow through on important things...I was screwed. But I have an awesome therapist at last. I am integrating, I am beginning to realize my full potential, and I have cut off all contact with my family while I heal...and maybe forever. Coming from an only child, adopted at that, I'd say that's a pretty big deal.

Please don't physically abuse your children. Teach them by example how to manage their emotions, discipline in a way that fits the offense rather than punishing them. Have conversations, teach them negotiation skills. If you feel you need to control them and they're not cooperating, get a damn book or see a therapist before you get physically, verbally or emotionally abusive.

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I honestly just don't understand how any adult is okay with hitting anyone let alone their child. I was hit quite a bit growing up and I have 2 children of my own now and I have only ever once got so fustrated that I resorted in spanking and that was when my son was in 1st grade, he's now in 8th grade. I felt so horrible. As soon as I did it I started crying and I apologized and couldn't stop telling him I loved him. The funny thing is, is that he wasn't even crying, I didn't even hit him hard enough for him to feel it and even though it seemed at the time that I was more traumatized by my actions he has not forgot about it to this day. That one time I lost my patience and let my fustration get the better of me has stuck with him and that hurts my heart. I don't want to see my kids hurting or in pain because I love them and as their mom I'm supposed to try and protect them from getting hurt and its sad that so many other people out there don't look at things the same. There are so many other and better ways to teach your kids how to be responsible and loving adults some day.

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Posted (edited)

I was not spanked or hit in the traditional sense, but my mom spanked with her words, hard.

My husband was spanked regularly. He said it made him rebel even harder. And after we had kids he in disbelief and anger concluded "How could my parents have beat me?" And for silly stuff.

I think concluding spanking did not negatively affect you is fine. I just feel we need to help parents not get to that point because I think it often comes from frustration and lack of parenting skills and becomes a default mode. It may not be supplemented by a relationship with their children that boosts self- esteem.

I think the key to parenting is developing a great relationship with your kids from day one. Our kids were our life, they were our best friends, yet we were the parents too. We both spent all our free time with them and included them in the work and play. This alone nipped behavioral issues in our bio kids in the butt, and we had what people refered to as "good kids". Not perfect and we made our share of mistakes, but we never even felt a "need" or frustration level that begged a spanking.

Screaming and threatening and belittling, giving in to your kids, etc., isn't good for kids either. Pain isn't all in the hand.

Edited by QuiteContrary

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Posted (edited)

My parents would hit me every time I did something even slightly wrong, they would also lock me in my room if I cried of yell at me. . Now I'm severely depressed with anxiety. I wonder if I should mention the connection.

Edited by ZaraKitty

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Lets call a spade, a spade; spanking is violence. And I think all spanking is carried out due to frustration on the parents behalf - and then called dicipline later. Whenever I've seen a person spank or hit a child, they have never been in a calm and relaxed frame of mind - they are always angry. It's loss of control in my view, frustration, and okay, parenting can obviously be frustratingat times, but I simply can't see a positive outcome through inflicting violence on a child. It's abuse!

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Now I know why I'm nuts having received at least one beating daily from mother :whistle: :whistle: :whistle:

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Posted (edited)

I think it's not so much the actual punishment as the bad parenting skills. The misguided forms of punishment are only one facet of the problem. It seems obvious to me that this would be the underlying issue in the majority of these cases.

Your personal stories are touching guys.

And I think all spanking is carried out due to frustration on the parents behalf - and then called dicipline later. Whenever I've seen a person spank or hit a child, they have never been in a calm and relaxed frame of mind - they are always angry. It's loss of control in my view, frustration...

I think there's definitely a difference between getting overly frustrated and using that to influence the punishment, than a controlled form in which the parent doesn't allow the child to push their buttons.

I see that as another point in favour of the overall bad parenting argument.

Edited by Timonthy

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Lets call a spade, a spade; spanking is violence. And I think all spanking is carried out due to frustration on the parents behalf - and then called dicipline later. Whenever I've seen a person spank or hit a child, they have never been in a calm and relaxed frame of mind - they are always angry. It's loss of control in my view, frustration, and okay, parenting can obviously be frustratingat times, but I simply can't see a positive outcome through inflicting violence on a child. It's abuse!

Exactly, I've heard spanking proponents claim there is a right way to spank. Not that I believe there is one, but how many spank without anger and yelling and at the end of a bad parenting situation that never should have gone that far? I'm not saying parenting can't be confusing and difficult but get help when you find yourself hitting your kids and probably getting nowhere with it anyway.

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Exactly, I've heard spanking proponents claim there is a right way to spank. Not that I believe there is one, but how many spank without anger and yelling and at the end of a bad parenting situation that never should have gone that far? I'm not saying parenting can't be confusing and difficult but get help when you find yourself hitting your kids and probably getting nowhere with it anyway.

Spanking is just one of many tools which can be used irresponsibly.

The parent allowing their anger/frustration/emotion etc. to overcome them and then cause them to act illogically is the issue.

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At the very least, there are times when being physical with children is necessary, not necessarily involving hitting though. If the children of parents who use corporal punishment have more mental problems, I think it highly probable that the genetic factor of having a violent parent(s) is as important as whatever happened to them personally. It is a double whammy, they have psychologically unstable parents who manifest it in uncontrolled behaviour passing on the same genes, as well as whatever damage the violence inflicted on them has done.

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Spanking is just one of many tools which can be used irresponsibly.

The parent allowing their anger/frustration/emotion etc. to overcome them and then cause them to act illogically is the issue.

Then you have parents who are sociopaths..L and if they can't hit physically, they will bring you down in front of others so there isn't a hole small enough where you wouldn't crawl in:

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