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Does everyone "really" spank?

post #1 of 135
Thread Starter 
An AP friend of mine said that everyone, even the most gentle mamas, has spanked in anger. It made me feel like I was being set up for failure (as I have an 8 month old and haven't experienced even the slightest desire or urge to spank). Is this really true (that all GD'ers have failed at one time or another and resorted to swats or spanking), or is this perhaps a situation of unresolved issues being projected onto everyone else?
post #2 of 135
My son is 5 and I have never raised my hand to him, swatted, spanked, hit, whatever you want to call it, him.

I have been very angry at times and have removed him and put him in his room or have removed my self from the situation but nothing has been so much that I needed to harm him physically.
post #3 of 135
Unresolved issues projected. Maybe your friend said that to make herself feel better. I've never spanked dd and I've been angry many times.
post #4 of 135
Well, I have swatted my kids-- I'm not proud of it, but I've done it. I'd never describe myself as "the most gentle mama", but I'm doing the best I can.

I guess I think parenting is a task where you get up everyday and do your best, and as much as I'd love to be perfect, we're all raised by mere mortals, and most of us are ok.

I do wonder why it is that grown-ups feel comfortable hitting children. Aside from the handful of times I've lost it and swatted my kids on the tush, I have not struck another person since I was a kid. I can't imagine hitting an adult. I recently heard a radio show that says apparently some of our most ingrained moral feelings are hard-wired into our brains and something we share with other apes. I have also heard that for some people the strong urge to hit and throw when angry is genetic. I don't have a strong urge to throw and hit when angry, though one of my kids does (got it from dh-- he resists the urge as an adult), and it's interesting to see how she reacts differently from her sister. I really wonder if I have something in me that resists hitting peers and babies, but not children.

These are things I think about to help myself remember I need keep control of my temper.

post #5 of 135
I think that if you have a good idea how to discipline without spanking, then you probably will not resort to spanking. For me, as with many, spanking was something I did because I knew no other way. It never felt right, just seemed to be the only option. You have a head start- you already know how to discipline without punishment. Now make a vow to yourself that you wil never spank, and make sure you have good ways of dealing with all possible situations, and you are setting yourself up for success.
post #6 of 135
My ds is 4. I have never raised a hand to him. I have never been tempted to, even in the throes of serious anger and frustration. I suppose anything is possible, and that it COULD happen, but I can't imagine it. The thought of hitting my child literally makes me sick to my stomach. It just isn't an option for me and never has been.

I think your friend was trying to make herself feel better.

No judgment on mamas trying to work their way through this..
but no, not everyone has spanked in anger.
post #7 of 135
I have never been angry enough to not be able to control myself. I find it easier to be patient with my wild child than anyone else does. I actually wouldn't leave him with many people because he really would try the patience of a saint. Not that he isn't a great kid, but he still has trouble managing himself if he is tired, hungry, or unable to interact with someone.

I think your friend is just coming to the table with her own experiences and you should try not to let it bother you. No need to disagree with her, just say something about everyone striving to be the best parent that they can.
post #8 of 135
I have a 13 yo ds - never, not once have I ever raised my hand to him - I have a 5yo dd - twice I've wacked her on the tush - something I AM NOT proud of. I was pg both times I did it and at my wits end. She didn't even cry - but I sure did.....
post #9 of 135
Just remember these words:

The problem is that many people, even some GDers regard spanking as a more effective, but cruel alternative. That attitude is a sure route to failure. If you always have in your mind that there is this "tool" that will work then sooner or later you will use it. You might even end up resenting your child and/or parenting style because you are busting your butt trying not to use the "easy , more effective, but cruel" method of discipline meanwhile your child is never going to have "perfect" behavior.

Growing up my sister got fairly regular spankings because she was the "worst" behaved one (she was the strong-willed child). None of the rest us raised any static so none of us got any punnishment besides guilt trips and screaming. Every once in a while something would happen and mom or dad would blow up and seriously physically discipline someone besides my sister. It always took us by suprise, always scared us, and always made us extremly resentful, it NEVER had anything to do with discipline.
post #10 of 135
i will not hit my children. i will not hit my husband. i will not hit my annoying neighbor.

i hate that there is a different word for hitting your child. can you imagine if someone said they spanked their wife for disobeying then rolled their eyes if you acted like they hit her? :
post #11 of 135
I will admit to having spanked my children in frustration. It was never hard but it is something I am ashamed of. I am learning how to handle my emotions better and am getting better everyday. I grew up in a violent household. That doesn't excuse it but it explains why I don't always understand the best way to handle things and I'm very unsure of myself. You live what you know and when what you know isn't right, it's hard to learn what is. At least for me. I'm doing pretty great at this point IMO.
post #12 of 135
I have four children, my oldest is almost 14. I've never spanked or hit my kids and I never would. I don't claim to be a perfect parent though. We all make mistakes.

It made me feel like I was being set up for failure (as I have an 8 month old and haven't experienced even the slightest desire or urge to spank).
Don't worry about it. People say this kind of stuff to make themselves feel better.
post #13 of 135
No. There have been times when I've wanted to because I was going crazy, but I'm glad I didn't. I have yelled, though, which I'm not proud of.
post #14 of 135
I think hitting is a lot like yelling, some people (for whatever reasons) just have the impulse to do it. And if you are a yeller, it might be hard to understand that other people are just not inclined. Same if you are sometimes overwhelmed and spank, it may be hard to understand that there are other people who just don't even GET that impulse.
post #15 of 135
Here's some actual data:


In case you don't want to read the whole thing, in national surveys, between 40-55% admitted to having spanked their kids depending on the survey; 68% said it was appropriate to spank kids as a regular form of punishment; 37% of college-educated parents said it was never appropriate to spank a child; 25% of parents with a high school education said the same thing.

So, not everyone spanks, but the majority do.
post #16 of 135
I have never hit, grabbed, yanked an arm, nothing. We are not physical in our home
post #17 of 135
Nope, not true. I have never spanked or otherwise hit either of my kids. And I have been steaming angry. I have grabbed ds1 a little too hard a few times, however, which I'm sure some could argue is no different than hitting - it was a physical act done out of anger that hurt him. I think he was 4yo at the time.

I have been so angry that I can totally understand how someone resorts to spanking. I don't agree with it and I've never done it, but I can understand it, and hold no judgement against parents who have faltered. But I don't understand spanking as a regular form of discipline.
post #18 of 135
I have been that angry, but- hit a wall, send kid to room, hit the table - these are all a better alternative. I'd much rather cause myself pain from hitting something hard than hurt my kids.
post #19 of 135
I have never hit my dd. I have yelled : but never hit.

post #20 of 135
I have never hit dd either. I have yelled though and sometimes I go out of the room and tell my husband that I want to throw her out of the window but I've never spanked her and I don't believe I ever will.
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