Being a parent is hard. There are days when you want to lock yourself in your room and forget about all of your responsibilities for awhile. Yet, for most of us, that’s not an option, so we do the best that we have with whatever resources we have at the time.
For some discipline decisions, many parents aren’t using the resources that we have. For example, despite the 50 years of research that have been done on the detrimental effects of spanking, somewhere around 65% of parents still support it!
Now, we could continue to give you more research, such as this study, published in the “Journal of Pediatrics,” which reported that “the use of corporal punishment during childhood is associated with physical dating violence among young adults,” but with so many other studies out there, we’re not sure that more research will make a difference.
One of the reasons that many parents continue to believe in spanking, is because they were spanked themselves, and they believe that they “turned out fine.” Okay, maybe you did. Parents also used to consider seatbelts and carseats optional, and parents used to have children working by age 6. As we’ve learned more, we’ve changed some of the parenting rules.
According to the non-profit organization, Parenting Beyond Punishment, spanking is a human rights issue. They point to the fact that children are the only segment of society that adults are allowed to hit without consequences. For example, if you saw a man hitting his spouse in the grocery store, you could call the police, but you could not do the same for a man spanking his child.
Parenting Beyond Punishment, along with other organizers, is participating in the 5th Annual No Spank Challenge, this year from April 16th-April 27th, and as part of that event, they are offering free webinars for parents and caregivers to learn more about alternative ways to deal with behavioral issues in children.
It’s worth it to find non-violent ways to help your kids behave. Doing so will help prevent some of the consequences of spanking, like increased behavioral problems, depression, anxiety, and anger issues. Plus, finding better ways to teach children means that your kids won’t associate love with violence. Alternative methods also work better in the long run.
Remember, kids respond to attention, and even though it’s negative attention, spanking is attention nonetheless. Try catching your child when she is behaving well, and showering her with all kinds of love and affection. This will make her want to behave well more often! Then, when she misbehaves, try setting appropriate limits, while treating your child, yourself, and the whole situation with a huge helping of compassion.
We hope that we’ve convinced you to try methods other than spanking. We really do know how hard and frustrating parenting can be, and we are here for you. If you have any questions, or would like to talk more about positive ways to teach your children, please contact us. We would love to help!