Were YOU spanked as a child? - Page 5 - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: Were YOU spanked as a child?
Yes, I was abused 145 20.57%
Yes, I was spanked on a regular basis, but I wouldn't consider myself "abused." 131 18.58%
Yes, I was spanked several times a year 181 25.67%
Yes, I was spanked 1-4 times in my entire childhood 172 24.40%
Nope, I was never spanked. 60 8.51%
Other 16 2.27%
Voters: 705. You may not vote on this poll

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#121 of 206 Old 02-12-2007, 01:31 PM
 
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Spanked, slapped repeatedly, beaten while being humiliated...very, very, very violent...I was abused nearly every day and the threat of being hit was there on "off" days...I swear my mother "got off" on it...I have since concluded that their must be a mental illness issue...It's been a long trip to heal and I am still working on it...I can remember thinking odd things like "hey, since I turned 15, my mom seems to only hit me in the face now...that's great!" and/or "wonder if I will cry today."
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#122 of 206 Old 02-12-2007, 10:16 PM
 
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I was only spanked a couple of times in my life. The worst part was the threat. 'If you don't do this then I will hit you'. Okay I wasn't physically hurt, but there was still that emotional terror; the emotional abandonment of someone I loved.

I also remember my father hurting us (my sister and I) out of anger. We hadn't done anything really wrong/bad/naughty - he was just frustrated with something silly. Sadly, my mother dismissed these incidents.

For example, I remember when my father used a whole roll of tape on my sisters' head. She must have been about 4 at the time and she was trying to wear a hat, but it kept falling off. So my father pulled out the tape and literally taped this hat to my sister. I remember her crying, I was so scared. I talked to my mother about this a few years ago and she remembers the incident fondly and thought it was funny.

I have to admit, it was only at this point did I realise that my mother was not a scared bystander, but an inactive participant. My parents aren't bad people, just not as 'respectful' of children as they think they are. Still made me determined to always treat my child (and everyone elses) with the same respect as I expect from other adults.

Perhaps in that way they did do something good. I am now a better parent/person because of my parents weaknesses.
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#123 of 206 Old 02-23-2007, 10:17 PM
 
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I was never punished or given consequence boundaries or spankings,
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#124 of 206 Old 02-24-2007, 04:15 AM
 
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My parents did not spank. I was spanked once by my grandmother for wetting my pants-very shocking and humiliating. My mother was spitting nails mad at her MIL for that.
My mother lost her temper with me when I was 13 and she hit me. We both ended up in tears and hugging. I was being the worst I could ever be and she had unbelievable stress going on at that time. Her and I still discuss it, I think the episode hurt her more than it hurt me.
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#125 of 206 Old 02-24-2007, 04:35 AM
 
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I was never spanked when I was very little (up till maybe 5 or so?) then started getting spanked, that graduated to a wooden yardstick, which graduated to just full-out physical abuse (as opposed to the other types of abuse which just continued, some worse some not as bad as I got older). I was a near-stereotypical-perfect kid, but my mother continued to blame me for the abuse she put me through, including attending "tough love" meetings and telling people *I* abused *her*, though all I ever did was try to defend myself with minimal force. Oddly she also loved to recount stories of how she was a martyr and saint for refusing to spank me when I was little.
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#126 of 206 Old 02-25-2007, 10:31 AM
 
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I chose 'abused' - physically, verbally, emotionally.

I find I need to work extra hard to use GD, and am not always successful, but I don't hit my kids.
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#127 of 206 Old 02-25-2007, 10:44 AM
 
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I voted 1-4 times throughout childhood. I was "spanked" exactly three times. Twice by my SF and once by my mother. Once when I was about 5 and was standing on the piano bench and rocking it. I was warned to stop several times but didn't stop. The pop on the butt did not really bother me. I received another pop on the butt when I was about 10 and I kicked my brother in the head on purpose (I still contend that it was self defense: ). I was humiliated and cried for about an hour. The third time was a swipe at the head by my mother when I was about 14 and I was being a mouthy PITA. I think we were both really surprised and it never happened again.

I don't consider any of it abuse per se...but not particularly effective. I still hold resentment about being struck when I was 10.

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#128 of 206 Old 02-27-2007, 07:04 PM
 
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I remember twice getting spankings. I was around five or six, they weren't painful (soft swats with an open hand on the butt), but they made me really angry! I was a prissy goody-two-shoes child, and I didn't get punished much in general. My brother was spanked more often (also pretty gently), to no noticeable good effect.

I don't think it was harmful at all, but it was also sort of pointless.
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#129 of 206 Old 02-27-2007, 07:31 PM
 
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Anyone who was taught to believe that they "deserved" to be hit, were emotionally abused, imo.


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#130 of 206 Old 02-27-2007, 09:52 PM
 
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my mother would say I never was.. but I remember 1 or 2 times...
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#131 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 12:50 AM
 
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I voted abused. My siblings and I were regularly spanked as well as other things. I remember a wooden spoon, a wooden spatula and a yardstick all being broken at one point or another. I remember bieng sent out to pick out my switch when I was *maybe* 4 years old not even old enough to go by myself...I remember the puzzlement at what they wanted me to do. I was humiliated (when I was almost 4 I had an accident cause the bathroom was in my parents' bedroom and the door was locked and they didn't answer and my at the time sf (though he adopted me later - it made me cry) rubbed my nose in it so I wouldn't do it again. Once I was eating an apple and I dropped it on the floor accidently and he stepped on in crushing it with boots that were covered in gunpowder...then made me eat it. I was given glasses when I was a very small preschooler, then I would set them on the edge of the table because that was all I could reach and when they would fall and break I would be spanked and not allowed to have a drink for the rest of the day. Once when I was about 4 I was told to keep an eye on the running bathtub and I got distracted in the hallway playing so it ran over and he put me in it and held me underwater. To this day I have a fear of water. When I was about 10 my mother went to spank me and I involuntarily moved (they bought into the whole spank till they stop resisting, so believe me I tried so hard to not resist and it just isn't possible) and she hit the bedframe so hard where my butt had been that she thought she had broken her hand. (Even then I was horrified...if it hurt HER that much why couldn't she see that maybe it was too hard to hit ME?). I remember once I was in bed and he came in and was mad at me for something (I can't remember what) and he told me to pick out my favorite shirt (it had a rainbow on it and I LOVED it - it was my wear-it-every-day-cause-I'm-4 shirt ) and he just tore it to shreds. When I was in 6th or 7th grade I did something I wasn't supposed to and so he called me in from the backyard where I was playing with my neighborhood friends, had me stand in front of the large window that looked out on the backyard and grab my ankles and spanked me with a belt in front of them all.

The most awful thing about it for me is that even now my father won't say anything when approached except maybe a sarcastic sorry or, more likely "get over it", though he's nicer to us now. My mother insists that she never knew that any of this stuff happened - though the broken impliments were all her (and she bragged about it - bout how strong willed we were that she had to spank so hard); my father would generally use his belt or his hairbrush (it had airvents) on our hand (with the warning that we better flip it over cause if it hit the back he'd probably break some bones - and yes, he said that). And even the water episode and the shirt episode and the window episode and countless others - though she wasn't the one doing it, she was right there watching. But she says she never knew he did any of it and if she had she would have stopped him. Basically it's my fault for not telling her. Nice, huh?

I'm not sure why I'm spilling all this, I don't know if any of my irl friends know this and it's not something I usually dwell on. But even just typing it I'm suddenly freezing and shaking. I think that as much as I'd like to jump on my soapbox and preach about why I don't spank my kids, when it comes down to it, it's really just because I'm so scared that if I were to spank them that I might so easily cross that line, yk? I'm much, much different than either of them; that doesn't matter to me though. I just have this irrational fear that my kids might some day hate me the way that I've hated my parents. I would give up my kids before ever getting close to having my ds thinking that the only reason why he doesn't run away or kill himself is because he has to protect the little ones. That's how I grew up, though.
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#132 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 12:51 AM
 
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Wow, that was depressing. I guess that's why I don't dwell...
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#133 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 01:26 AM
 
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Originally Posted by 3lilmonsters View Post
Wow, that was depressing. I guess that's why I don't dwell...

I understand. Sometimes, I don't know if it ever gets easier to remember. The past can no longer hurt you unless you let it. You have the power to choose to live in the present. As we choose to dwell in the past, *WE* bring the pain of the past into our present and we re-create the pain for ourself. I am not suggesting to suppress or deny the past. It informs my choices every day, many, many times as a parent. But, the pain can not repeat. It is over now. <sigh>


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#134 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 02:42 AM
 
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I also chose abused because my dad would lash out at us over insignificant things and just corner us hitting and yelling. It was awful. I can remember falling out of a tree and telling my friend to get my mom, but not tell my dad because I knew I'd get hit for falling and getting hurt. By the time I was thirteen I thought of calling the police, but I never did. My mom and grandma would watch. They hated it, but they never stopped it.

My dad and I have a decent relationship now, but it took a long time. My brother hasn't spoken our dad in 7 years. I'm sure my dad felt justified in his "spankings" at the time. Any kind of physical punishment is wrong, imo. I struggle not to hit my dd at times because that type of angry reaction just seems to be stuck inside of me after living with an abusive parent for so long.
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#135 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 02:47 AM
 
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Wow, that was depressing. I guess that's why I don't dwell...
I'm so sorry. Your post has me feeling so sad for the little girl you were. Have you ever talked with a therapist about your experiences? It could help, even you're not debilitated by your past abuse.
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#136 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 06:07 AM
 
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I was never spanked.
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#137 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 06:31 AM
 
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i feel for all of you that have been abused. i´m very sorry. you must be very proud of yourselves being gentle parent.

i chose spanked very often, but not abused. when i got older my mother would slap me. and then older, since she got embarresed to do it in public, she started pinching me!!!! ouch!!! i don´t know why but this made me laugh always...i remember her face, very red in anger over anything, and ahving to pinch me to get her anger out.

i´m struggling every day not to hit my son. i´m starting therapy because i´m afraid to hurt him someday. i just have to hit something when i get angry, so i turn around and hit the door or the bed. i hate it.
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#138 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 07:58 AM
 
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I voted "abused". I was hit with a wooden spoon, jug cord, a stick and anything else that was handy. I used to repress my crying because i didn't want to give them the pleasure of seeing me cry. This only infuriated them more- but i was determined i wouldn't shed a tear. My brother and sister were also abused. We all have issues with trust and rejection in our relationships.
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#139 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 11:10 AM
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Mom didn't use spanking as a threat or anything. I was spanked exactly one time, when the family was on a trip back east and we were at some great aunt's or something and I was being an obnoxious kid and she was uber stressed out with being back with the family. One light "swat." And she still remembers that fact to this day... I don't think she's happy about having done it. Makes me think of how even adults can get thrown off when traveling, so I'll be sure to be respectful of my kids when they are on trips.

I see this as the record to beat... I'm hoping 100% spank free with our kids, although this serves as a warning that even the most AP type moms can snap, so it keeps me vigilant.
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#140 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 11:18 AM
 
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I'm so sorry. Your post has me feeling so sad for the little girl you were. Have you ever talked with a therapist about your experiences? It could help, even you're not debilitated by your past abuse.
I haven't. Well, only to the extent where I just said that I had been treated poorly. I was there for an entirerly different reason. I've thought about it, but I haven't actually done it yet because I worry what the reprocusions may be. When I read a book that is about abuse, or see a movie...or if I spend time with my parents even I get very impatient with my children...I lose much of what I want as a gentle parent and become more snappy and become more of an authoritarian, rather than just being authoritative (if I got that right...normally I'm in charge, but I work with the kids...when I'm exposed to my parents the working with the kids kinda goes out the window).
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#141 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 02:59 PM
 
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I haven't. Well, only to the extent where I just said that I had been treated poorly. I was there for an entirerly different reason. I've thought about it, but I haven't actually done it yet because I worry what the repercussions may be.
I found it validating to have my experience as a child repudiated by a "professional". However, the anger that was unearthed meant I needed new tools to manage the emotions. I certainly didn't learn healthy emotional responsiveness in my family of origin. The counselor did help with that. We did some hypnotizing with calming self-talk, mantras that would surface when the anger was fueled by my parents, or other parents who are similarly embracing fear and intimidation in their parenting, or ds triggered the "oh, no you won't" of my childhood.

Meditating and Thich Nhat Hahn's book "Peace Is Every Step" helped give me perspective about reasons underlying hurtful parenting practices. But, I still choose not to have a relationship with my father...I haven't been strong enough to stay in my peaceful space when he is around. Too many old wounds, emotionally. But, the counseling does focus on the *negative* experience, and that had a place in healing for me; but I didn't find that regularly dwelling in that painful place was beneficial to our family. The anger and negative energy is hard to soothe, when stirred up again and again, ime. This forum can do that too.

But also, I believe that these gentle parenting message boards serve a similar catharsis and validation for many parents. But, "don't hit" isn't enough, imo; I've learned new and different tools. The tools of self-awareness, self-care, communication (NVC), validation, and unconditional parenting have helped to provide a *new way* to parent. Seeing that ds's life will never be what I experienced allows me to be imperfect and not damn myself, like was done as a child. Learning self-acceptance is the first step to healing. Unlearning the voices (my mother's "shoulds") in my head has been a journey. Perhaps, the secret is The Secret. Our thoughts create our experience. And we can change the world, by changing our thoughts toward what we *want*, rather than what we *don't want*.

Counseling can help with that. Or come join The Law of Attraction thread for positive energy and positive intentions. Moving *toward* something positive is much easier than moving "away" from the past.


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#142 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 06:40 PM
 
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I'm not sure how to vote.

I was spanked regularly and wouldn't consider that alone abuse, but was also verbally/emotionally abused. I wasn't sure if the first option was if you thought the spankings were abuse or if there was other abuse.

I find myself having the urge to hit my *16 month old*, though I know I never would because immediately after it brings back the hatred for how my parents, mainly my dad, raised us. I remember watching full house and shows like that wishing my dad was more like Danny Tanner and not understanding why he couldn't discipline us the way Danny did for the girls. If it weren't for the internet, I probably wouldn't not CIO, nurse into toddlerhood, consider CLW, etc but I would NEVER EVER even consider spanking as a form of punishment.
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#143 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 06:42 PM
 
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Spanked regularly. Never abused.
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#144 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 07:02 PM
 
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I was abused with a wooden board about an inch thick and a foot long...almost everyday. I won't be spanking my children.

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#145 of 206 Old 02-28-2007, 10:46 PM
 
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I was abused as a child. To this day, my parents believe they did what was right for us and was the one and only possible way to discipline. However, with an unmedicated bipolar mother and a father with a complete lack of anger management, discipling always equals beatings, in addition to groundings, taking away of privileges, etc, for a single transgression. I was beaten with a wooden paddle, wooden spoon, hands, leather belt, and plastic coathangers. I have had deep bruises, bloody welts, splt lips, bloody noses, boxed ears, etc. My parents didn't think it was abuse unless it was uncalled for (i.e. the child did nothing wrong) or left permanent scars, such as broken bones.

Unfortunately, the emotional scars still haven't healed. I still cry when I talk about how I felt as my dad sat on my chest, screaming at me to shut up and backhanding me across the face when I was fifteen. I don't even remember what I did wrong that time. It couldn't have been anything too bad. It was probably "backtalk," which my dad considered to be any words that disagreed with anything he or my mom said. We weren't allowed to have a different opinion or we were talking back. I was a good kid - I didn't drink, smoke, do drugs, stay out late, have sex, skip school. I got good grades, went to church even though nobody else in my family did, and was involved in lots of extracurriculars. Of course, if you ask my mom, I was an out of control teen who slept around (lost my virginity at 18 to my future husband thankyouverymuchmom) and was just horrible. In her mind, I was out of control because I was out of HER control. At about 15, I stopped letting her know everything about my life just because she asked and she decided that I must be hiding horrible things.

I still fight my anger issues. When I get really frustrated I feel out of control and I tend to freak out. I scream, cry, and throw things. I've even hit my STBX. I have NEVER hit DS. I have stopped myself more than once from smacking his hand. I'm sure I'll be tempted to do more than that as he grows, but I hope I will be able to fight that and not hit him. My brother as well has always had anger issues, from a very young age, though his wife has helped temper that a lot, as well as being out of the house. My little sister was always the spoiled baby and got the least of the abuse, and has the fewest issues with anger.

I do have a good relationship with my dad, despite our past. He's a LOT better with his anger, especially since my brother and sister and I were out of the house. I've only seen him get really angry once in the past five years (for good reason that time!). My mother and I will never have a good relationship as long as she refuses to confront and seek help for her mental illness.

Every time I talk about this it turns into a novel, so I'll shut up now.
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Spanked, slapped repeatedly, beaten while being humiliated...very, very, very violent...I was abused nearly every day and the threat of being hit was there on "off" days...I swear my mother "got off" on it...I have since concluded that their must be a mental illness issue...It's been a long trip to heal and I am still working on it...I can remember thinking odd things like "hey, since I turned 15, my mom seems to only hit me in the face now...that's great!" and/or "wonder if I will cry today."
I haven't been able to read the whole thread. I just can't do it. I feel so sorry (although that's not nearly a good enough word) for all of your child selves who were spanked/hit/abused.

I was spanked once, by my father, because my mom told him I deserved it. It was a "wait 'til your father gets home" kind of day, and she stood behind my father to make sure he spanked me. Bare skin, open hand, and he sobbed the whole way through it. He was raised in a home in which he was forced to cut his own switch, and swore he would never do that to one of his children.

My mother is bipolar, and refused to seek treatment until I was 16. Before that, were years of screaming, locking us in our rooms, locking me in a dark closet with no food or water or bathroom breaks for almost 16 hours (I was 6) while my little brother (4 at the time) slid crackers under the door for me. I was slapped across the face once because I microwaved her pizza to reheat it instead of heating it in the oven the way she liked it. I was 9.

And surprisingly, my parents were pretty AP. My brother and I were breastfed until about 15 and 16 months, when we self-weaned, I vividly remember cosleeping until I was about 6 or 7, and my mom was a very attached SAHM until we started school. She was just a really unhealthy woman.

So, was I physically abused? No. Emotionally and verbally, hell yes. And I'm nowhere near over it. Every time I look in my children's eyes, I can't fathom treating them even close to as negatively as my mother treated us.

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#146 of 206 Old 03-01-2007, 03:57 PM
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yup, every day of my life by my mom on the butt or slapped cheek until I was thirteen. Then it mysteriously stopped.
My dad didn't hit us but would make us kneel for long periods of time.
All in the name of instilling discipline, character, or some other c***.

Many times I wished not that they wouldn't have spanked me, but that they would have taught me a more effective form of communication.
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#147 of 206 Old 03-01-2007, 04:04 PM
 
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I voted that I was spanked a few times a year...though only a couple years was this the case.

I never spank...never will.

I don't think I was abused but my mum beats herself up over doing this to me and my sister. She equates this to abuse and wished she never did it. I feel bad for what she feels but I feel no form of harm from this form of discipline. Luckily I just know that I have made a better choice for my daughter. I read alot about the continuum concept and though my continuum wasn't likely met...I have strong ties to my family and feel pretty secure in life.

My exh was all for spanking and he thinks since we were both spanked and turned out just fine that he thought our kid would be okay with it too. Thankfully I converted him...I don't think he would ever do it now...he learned a lot about how to actually teach a child rather than scare them. Yeah!!!

Just my 2cents

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#148 of 206 Old 03-01-2007, 07:13 PM
 
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I was never spanked, but I wouldn't put a after that.

I was emotionally abused instead. I think I might have preferred physical discipline, which at least would have been less time-consuming than having hours-long "conversations" about my my many shortcomings every day. My mother seemed to feel that she hadn't gotten through to me until I was in tears.

The only saving grace was that my father wouldn't put up with it, so when he came home at 7 or so, it stopped.

(And no, I'm not advocating spanking. I would never spank a child.)

Sonja , 40, married to DH (42) since 5-29-93, DD born 11-3-2004, DS born 1-18-2007.
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#149 of 206 Old 03-01-2007, 07:36 PM
 
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I voted I was spanked a few times a year. And really, its not that big of a deal to me. I probably won't spank my children, but more because other tactics, such as time outs and such have a longer "lesson" in my opinion. I don't really care that I was spanked, and I don't think that it impacted me negatively in any way. I do understand that other people may have reacted differently to an experience such as mine, and that if you had the same experience and you think it was abuse, then that's valid and I'm sure it affects you as abuse. It is just not my experience. In any case, certainly hitting isn't a good lesson in the "do as I say not as I do" department. Interesting how the poll has turned out, and to all of you who were abused by your parents.

Mama of two... DS born at 35w5d (11/06) and DD : born full term 38w3d (5/09) on what would have been my dad's 64th birthday. Always missing my dad who died of oral cancer 3/11/09.
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#150 of 206 Old 03-02-2007, 01:21 PM
 
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My sister and I were spanked a lot as children. I didn't consider it abuse but I would if I did the same to my daughter (eg: spanking bare bottomed with a hairbrush). I'm 37 and still have issues with the lack of respect it showed me. I hated my parents so much when they did it. They are very educated, upper middle class people and I think it was just what they thought they were supposed to do. I get mad just thinking about it. I've never, ever had the urge to hit my DD though.
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