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  • When one parent thinks spanking is ok...

    I need some suggestions. We have a question box in our group and this week one question was: "What do I do when dad thinks smacking is ok?" We had a couple more questions in that vein. Any suggestions that will preserve the marital relationship and the child?

  • #2
    This site has some good stuff....
    http://www.stophitting.com/religion/
    Spanking: Facts and Fiction
    Research: Effects of Corporal punishment
    Sometimes the pro-spanking parent responds to research more then an emotional plea from a spouse, its not an easy situation in any way I know.

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    • #3
      This is a really tough situation. It makes sense to me that the best approach is empathy - with both the father and the child. Understanding that dad probably legitimately believes that it is good for the child will allow the other parent to come up with good strategies for educating and informing him, and also supporting him and the child through this. It's a different situation, of course, if the hitting is done out of anger (that's clearly abuse and someone should intervene). I do believe that spanking is an abusive behavior, but don't believe that many of the parents who do it are doing it from an abusive point-of-view. Most of them are doing what they truly think is best. Often in a very misguided way, no doubt, but usually with good intentions underlying. Empathy and understanding will probably make it easier to introduce the spanking parent to alternatives.

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      • #4
        i agree w/entering the dialogue w/empathy. some questions that could be asked:
        1. what do you hope to achieve through spanking?
        2. what kind of effects do you believe spanking will have on your relationship? (w/child and spouse)
        3. if you could achieve the same goals w/out spanking, would you consider the alternatives?

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        • #5
          I've always been on the fence about this. Instinct tells me to be gentle and not to spank but both DH and I were spanked as children and both grew up just fine with great relationships with our parents. It's been tough for me because I go back and forth and not knowing what is the correct way of doing things. The conclusion I have come up with is that it's more work to parent gently than it is to spank and get it over and done with, KWIM? Gentle parenting takes more time to sit with the child, talk with him/her, etc so it takes more commitments. Does this make sense?

          DH believes in spanking and yelling. He's a good dad, little patience and it's frustrating to me because I'd rather handle things in a more calm and, IMO, a more respectful way. He just doesn't see how being calm is disciplining a child. I have tried speaking to him several times and most of the times he listens but his patience gives out each time. He seems incapable of gentle parenting. I don't know how to help him except to take over the disciplining part of parenting altogether.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Brenda View Post
            I've always been on the fence about this. Instinct tells me to be gentle and not to spank but both DH and I were spanked as children and both grew up just fine with great relationships with our parents. It's been tough for me because I go back and forth and not knowing what is the correct way of doing things. The conclusion I have come up with is that it's more work to parent gently than it is to spank and get it over and done with, KWIM? Gentle parenting takes more time to sit with the child, talk with him/her, etc so it takes more commitments. Does this make sense?

            DH believes in spanking and yelling. He's a good dad, little patience and it's frustrating to me because I'd rather handle things in a more calm and, IMO, a more respectful way. He just doesn't see how being calm is disciplining a child. I have tried speaking to him several times and most of the times he listens but his patience gives out each time. He seems incapable of gentle parenting. I don't know how to help him except to take over the disciplining part of parenting altogether.
            i am glad that you were able to grow in this style of parenting. some people do. but many, many do not. research continues to build more evidence that spanking can have long term effects on children, and, what's more, is revealed in how they go on to parent their own children.

            if your dh is "incapable of gentle parenting", then perhaps he is dealing with frustrations due to the ways in which he was parented. having been spanked as a child, i can tell you that my inner instincts of frustration and lack of patience are due to how i was parented. it is difficult to re-train your brain when the old tapes keep playing. i often think of how much better my children's lives would be if i didn't have to struggle so much w/how i was raised.

            spanking may seem like the quick fix, but it often leads to more serious long-term consequences. so, you may find that it's "easier" to hit a toddler now, but when they're teenagers, you may end up with a whole world of problems. you're right, gentle parenting does take a lot of effort, but the long-term rewards pay you back in exponential dividends.

            API's Positive Discipline Principle is a fantastic place to learn more.

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            • #7
              I will definitely read up. I also found a book called, "what's a parent to do?" It's parenting in a Christ-like way so I am eager to read up on that as we are Christians. He is not a reader, hates it in fact so I am the one that does all of the research around here and have to sit down and give him the low-down on all I read. I've talked to him many, many times about his impatience and how he's so quick to anger and I really feel that he's thinking he's being attacked so I really am nervous about bringing it up again for fear of hurting his feelings.

              Now the BIGGEST problem we have is with our ODD who is VERY strong willed and with ADHD so she does many, many things without thinking first and he and she butt heads every...........single...........day! I keep talking to both of them about these issues but to no avail. I feel like I am talking to two brick walls! Honestly, DH also has ADHD so I am in the middle of a battle between two people who's ADHD instinct is to have the LAST word but since DH is the parent, he has more weight in the arguement/fight. I hate it!

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              • #8
                if you are christians, then you may find "Biblical Parenting" or "Grace-Based Discipline" helpful reads. i'm not familiar w/the one you mention.

                raising children w/special needs is an additional challenge. you may want to visit our Special Needs sub-forum for specific help.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by PaxMamma View Post
                  if you are christians, then you may find "Biblical Parenting" or "Grace-Based Discipline" helpful reads. i'm not familiar w/the one you mention.

                  raising children w/special needs is an additional challenge. you may want to visit our Special Needs sub-forum for specific help.
                  Thank you! I really appreciate all of the great advice!

                  I've applied to become a leader of the Holistic Mom's Network for our county and I could really use some ideas, advice and book recommendations for attachment parenting and you have given some nice ideas! I suppose I should post seperately asking for this type of help elsewhere huh?

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                  • #10
                    here's a nice thread on books:
                    http://www.attachmentparenting.org/f...favorite+books

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                    • #11
                      Hopping in here with some resources that are in audio or DVD formats, I know that my husband is more apt to listen to an audio (on his way to work) or even sit down and watch a DVD than to read a book that I recommend.

                      Connection Parenting, Leo, Audiobook
                      Unconditional Parenting, Kohn, DVD
                      ScreamFree Parenting, Runkel - audio (this you can download free of charge through some regional library systems - adobe digital editions)
                      Stephen Bavolek's parenting videos and/or local parenting workshops, Family Nurturing Centers
                      Listening to API recorded teleseminars
                      Last edited by melissa_h; 11-12-2008, 03:47 PM.

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