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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am SO freaking disturbed by what I saw today at the library. DD is 16 months and usually LOVES story time at the library. She dances and has NO fear or shyness. Today just before story time started, this mom violently spanked her daughter right in front of DD. It was so disturbing -- to both of us! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/bawling.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="bawl"><br><br>
I just wanted to go over and rescue that poor little girl from her mom. DD didn't take her eyes off the mom or the little girl for the entire time. She was so clingy and wouldn't even get off my lap to dance.<br><br>
I am so upset that she saw this. It came out of no where and was worse than a normal spanking. This was rage and the mom really reared back her hand to get good leverage. Grrrr.....<br><br>
Would you have said anything? I didn't at the time -- mostly because it took me so off guard and I was really focused on DD -- telling her that she would NEVER be spanked and that I would protect her and make sure no one hurt her.<br><br>
It is so hard because I don't know how much DD can really understand. That spanking made far more of an impact than any words I can share with her about it. I don't really know what to do...<br><br>
What would you have done?<br><br>
Rachel
 

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Take it up with the library staff. Tell them what happened and how scary it was for your daughter. Then ask them to institute a no-spanking policy within the library. You need to handle it with a calm professional attitude. If you start ranting or overdramatizing being 'victimized' they will think you are just a crazy person.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That's a really good idea. I will call and talk with the lady who runs story time and let you know what she says.<br><br>
Thanks,<br><br>
Rachel
 

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Wow... I'm so sorry about what happened. I echo the idea of the PP, but I wonder if they can institute such a policy at all (without 10 tons of stupid red tape). Makes me so glad I don't work in a public library.<br><br>
That woman is probably so self-absorbed that she has no idea how she just impacted TWO small children.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yea, I really really really wish I had picked up my copy of playful parenting before the story time. I could have just handed it to her and walked away...<br><br>
I actually felt sorry for the mom too. I think that most of the time when people spank, it is because that is how they were raised and they don't have the resources (or the open mind) to try different strategies.<br><br>
The whole thing makes me sick...
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/bawling.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="bawl"> poot babies.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>My3Kids'Mama</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/bawling.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="bawl"> poot babies.</div>
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<br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
poot!<br><br>
~Nay
 

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I agree with the others about talking to the library staff. Let me know how that goes over. I can help out if they need to hear from others in the community.<br><br>
If you've seen the woman/child before at storytime, you might see them again and have a chance to test the waters about her spanking. You have nothing much to lose by recommending a good parenting book or class to the woman... Or at least have the issue addressed (either by staff or by yourself) that she scared cora. Despite her use of spanking, she should consider how her actions affect those around her. It might be best if staff talked to her, if you think it's necessary, so you don't become the target of her hostility...
 

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I'm pretty sure I would have been way too shocked to say anything. But in this case, had I had the presence of mind, I would not have had a problem saying something to her if I could have come up with something to say. I'm soooo sorry your dd had to see that!
 

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tribalmax, rachel, Now I know what it's like! DS and I had the unfortunate experience of witnessing a spanking. We sometimes go out and play cards at a friends house with several other people. We all have kids, so the kids play together and the adults play cards together. It was time for the hosts' kids to go to bed, and their 4 year old was being belligerent. So the dad took the kid to his room and spanked him. We didn't see it, but we could hear them both screaming and the smacking. DS seemed scared, he froze transfixed staring at the hallway they had gone down. I felt so bad for him, I comforted him, and after a while he seemed to forget about it. I can't really say anything, since we are guests at their house, but it was heart-breaking to witness.<br><br>
Edited to add: Did you contact the library about it?
 

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<div style="font-style:italic;">tribalmax, rachel, Now I know what it's like! DS and I had the unfortunate experience of witnessing a spanking. We sometimes go out and play cards at a friends house with several other people. We all have kids, so the kids play together and the adults play cards together. It was time for the hosts' kids to go to bed, and their 4 year old was being belligerent. So the dad took the kid to his room and spanked him. We didn't see it, but we could hear them both screaming and the smacking. DS seemed scared, he froze transfixed staring at the hallway they had gone down. I felt so bad for him, I comforted him, and after a while he seemed to forget about it. I can't really say anything, since we are guests at their house, but it was heart-breaking to witness.<br><br>
Edited to add: Did you contact the library about it?</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> Poor everyone involved! I would talk to the library, too. But spanking isn't technically illegal, is it? So really can the library actually institute a no spanking policy? I am really curious!<br><br>
My daughter witnessed a spanking once when she was about 15 months old. We were eating breakfast at Disney on vacation and some parent was getting mad at his child for watching the TV in the cafetaria and ended up spanking him for turning around to look at it <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">: . My daughter looked at me and shook her head no violently while tapping herself on the arm (she wasn't saying "no hit" yet). I didn't witness the spanking, but I heard it, and from my daughter's reaction, I knew that the little boy had been spanked. Poor kid.
 

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"worse than a normal spanking" calls for a call to the police. You don't have to make the call as to whether it was a "legal" spanking or not - let the police take care of that. (I learned this after witnessing a brutal mall spanking one time.)
 

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Yikes, I am not sure what i wouldhave done in your situation either, it's really hard to confront people in a situation like that, but I would agree, perhaps ask library stafff to post a no spanking policy.<br>
oops, gotta run...
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Well, the library won't do anything. I guess I am just going to say something to the mom if I see her again. I want her to know that her actions and choices affected my daughter too...<br><br>
And I will have something prepared if this happens again with another mom...<br><br>
Grrr...<br><br>
Rachel
 

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It's too bad the library won't do anything when an adult hits a child. I doubt that they would think it was ok if a child hit another child.<br><br>
If you do get an opportunity to talk with the mom, maybe you should use the word "hit" rather than "spanked." ... "my daughter was terrifiend when she saw you hit your daughter last week." I don't know, maybe it would raise immediate objections rather than opening her mind to what she was doing. Tough call.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I doubt I will use the word hit. Unsolicited parenting advice is still unsolicited parenting advice (whether it is from the "right" side or the "wrong" side). I am not going to tell her how to parent. As much as I think spanking is wrong -- it is legal and hearing me tell her it is wrong is only going to put her off and make any communication between the two of us unlikely.<br><br>
I think my goal in this situation (and if it ever comes up again) is to simply communicate to the mother that her actions affected my child. If the discussion leads itself to talking about parenting methods, I will share some of GD with her...if not...I will walk away knowing that I did what I could to raise her awareness.<br><br>
What do you guys think? Does that sound ok?<br><br>
Rachel
 

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Rachel, what you say makes good sense. I think your goal is very worth while & appreciate your desire not to give unsolicited advice. It may even be that your approach has the added benefit of causing her to re-evaluate.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>sugarbeth</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">"worse than a normal spanking" calls for a call to the police. You don't have to make the call as to whether it was a "legal" spanking or not - let the police take care of that. (I learned this after witnessing a brutal mall spanking one time.)</div>
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That was my first thought after reading that. I probably would have left and called the police. At least get the ball rolling on figering out if that poor child is being abused.
 

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Next time, hug your daughter close to you so she can't see what's going on. AND LEAVE THE ROOM! Even if, for whatever reason, you don't feel like you can say anything to the hitting parent, there is *no* reason your daughter has to look at what's going on.
 

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In a clear voice I could have hugged my child and told her that I will never hurt her like that because it is not right to hit people and how happy I was to learn a better way of parenting. I might even have said that I wished the little hurt child a bright future dispite what it has to deal with.<br><br>
Yup, I would have been rude to the mother. Chances are a baby would not have understood this, my 6 year old does though and I think she might have said something as well. She has often asked why other parents spank and are mean.<br><br>
She remembers when she was 3 and I was pregnant with a surrogate baby and Daddy (military) was away. She had jumped out the van as was trying to get food into the house and she bolted aross the street. She got on the slide and would not come down and I could not go get her. I was so upset. It took near an hour to get her and I was so pissed off. I brought her too her room and spanked her. And lord how I cried after. I can not think how long I cried with her, I know the icecream melted. Nothing mattered. I knew what I had done was wrong and I cried. That was the line. She had not a mark, but the pain in her eyes was terrible. I talked to her for a long time, even if she could not understand it, about how my parents used the belt on us and how I hated it and just how sorry I was and how it was not ok. I then called a friend over to help me and together we looked up other ways to parent and I a whole new world opened up.<br><br>
My daughter remembers that spanking and she asks if other parents feel badly too. I hope they do I tell her. She knows Mommy learned a lot about parenting after that as did her Daddy and things are so much better now.<br><br>
Boy is this little boy we are expecting lucky to have such a great big sister who helped their parents learn so much.<br><br>
Blessings,<br>
Kimmy
 
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