Spare the rod?

22 04 2013

Lately I’ve seen several stories online about the need or appropriateness of spanking a child (especially in public). I thought I’d give you my two cents.

Now first I must say that while we did on occasion have to use corporal punishment (that would be spanking) with my daughter it was seldom. Perhaps we were blessed, or perhaps we lucky. Maybe we had it right with the way we raised her. Any which way you want to look at it we (mucho credit to her mother) raised a beautiful, talented, loving daughter that almost never gave us cause for concern. She wasn’t perfect, however. Close… and she’ll make an excellent mother herself some day

If there is some constant need to spank a child there is something else wrong beside the need to discipline going on. However, on the rare to occasional need to spank (at home or in public, need is need and time and place don’t come into that) it can be an effective agent in the proper upbringing of a child.

To an extent “Spare the rod, spoil the child” is true. Most of the time a child acts up in order to create attention and/or to bring change to the situation they find themselves in. A “time out” can be effective, but just as often it can be the change the child is seeking which will only lead to the child’s further acting out in order to get their way. Swift, but not too harsh, corporal punishment can grab a child’s attention like nothing else and make them understand that they can’t drive all situations, especially in public.

Rarely done it’s a teaching tool, and a valuable show of cause and effect. Done too much and it will cause resentment and loss of respect. Many children have been brought up thinking there is little consequence to bad actions and bring childish behavior into adulthood. In life consequences can be harsh to extreme, and one is well served in being taught that life lesson from childhood. Life doesn’t give many 2nd chances, and “time outs” are almost non-existent… unless you’re talking about jail.

-Al

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