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Added: Anne Auerbach - Date: 21.09.2021 21:32 - Views: 32124 - Clicks: 4191

Despite all the warnings and criticism, four out of five parents still spank their kids. Many experts believe the negative consequences outweigh any behavior benefits. Who's right? Lewis Goldberg admits his 5-year-old son, Nathan, is strong-willed and difficult to discipline.

Spanking has probably crossed your mind at some point. Maybe your child is ignoring the rules or talking back. Time-outs aren't working, and neither is any other consequence you've tried. Suddenly, you start to wonder, "Is a swat on the bottom so bad?

That depends on whom you ask. Finding spanking supporters isn't as challenging as you might think. Of the 1, readers polled on parents. That figure is consistent with a study published in the journal Psychology, Public Policy, and Law , which found that nearly 80 percent of kids are spanked at least once by fifth grade. Spanking -- the act of striking 's buttocks with an open hand -- is a form of corporal punishment, a catchall term that includes hitting with a belt, paddling with an object such as a stick or a large wooden spoon and slapping with an open hand on the face.

Most child-development experts include acts such as tapping a toddler's diaper-cushioned bottom when he misbehaves and smacking the hand of a kid protectively as he reaches for a hot stove in the same category. Since all of these punishments entail hitting, the American Academy of Pediatrics AAP urges parents not to resort to them under any circumstance. The committee's position is that spanking often evolves into abuse, which endangers 's safety and can cause psychological damage, leading to aggressive behavior, substance problems, and acts of delinquency during adolescence.

It recommends alternative tactics, such as verbal reprimands though not yelling , taking away privileges, and giving time-outs to deal with the misbehavior. Clearly, though, a lot of parents aren't getting the message or have decided they know what method is best for them -- and their kids.

The "terrible twos" and "trying threes" tend to test a parent's resolve more than any other phase, so it makes sense that kids in these age groups are the most likely to be spanked. Nearly one third of parents of preschoolers have no qualms about using corporal punishment as a means to correct bad behavior, according to an April national poll conducted by the University of Michigan's C.

Mott Children's Hospital. Even First Ladies aren't above delivering a swift swat now and again. In a USA Weekend interview last spring, First Lady Michelle Obama admitted to spanking her daughter Malia once or twice when she was little but said it was "completely ineffective. Phil she did the same to her twin daughters, Barbara and Jenna, when they were young. Research shows that the likelihood of being a spanker depends in part on where a parent lives.

In the United States, families in the South and West view it more favorably than their counterparts in the Northeast and Midwest, according to the C. Mott Children's Hospital poll. And one study published in Family Relations found that African-American parents are 9 percent more likely to spank their children than white parents are. Put simply, spankers tend to breed spankers. Women who were punished physically during childhood are nearly 50 percent more likely to discipline their kids the same way, according to a Ohio State University study. A common refrain among parents who spank is, "My folks did it to me, and I turned out fine.

's sex also seems to play a role. Boys, who are stereotypically more rambunctious than girls, tend to be spanked more often. Indeed, "aggressive" behavior -- anything from grabbing a toy out of another child's hand to pulling the dog's tail to biting a sibling -- is the top reason parents spank, numerous studies show. While many pro-spanking parents cling to the effectiveness of the method, a spate of evidence suggests that striking often backfires, making him more, not less, unruly.

In a Pediatrics study, 3-year-olds who were spanked more than twice a month were 50 percent more likely to exhibit hostile tendencies by age 5. And the potential downside for is severe. In her review of 88 spanking studies, Dr. Gershoff found that kids who are spanked have a ificantly higher risk for aggression, depression, and relationship problems both as children and, later, as adults.

She points out that in the past kids breathed their parents' secondary cigarette smoke, rode in cars without seat belts, and lived in homes with lead-based paint. However, not everyone agrees with Dr. Taylor's spanking analysis. One camp of experts argues that an openhanded swat to the buttocks is harmless -- and, in fact, can be helpful. Den A. Trumbull, M. He cites a review of 26 spanking studies published in Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review.

The researchers concluded that spanking disobedient 2- to 6-year-olds worked just as well at reforming their behavior as 13 alternative disciplinary approaches such as giving a time-out, reasoning with , and taking away privileges as long as the parent lovingly and rationally explained the reasons for the action. Only when the corporal punishment was severe such as striking the face or when it was the family's sole discipline method was it deemed harmful compared with other methods.

At times, they simply won't stay in a time-out and they can't be reasoned with," says Robert Larzelere, Ph. That's where conditional spankings -- those that are intended to back up these milder disciplinary tactics -- come into play. Larzelere and Trumbull contend that many older defiant kids learn to cooperate with time-outs and reasoning so they won't require corporal punishment anymore. Trumbull says. The studies cited by both spanking supporters and detractors are hardly infallible. For starters, you can't study physical punishment in the randomized, double-blind way you can with, say, drug trials.

The findings can merely point to an association between spanking and negative or positive outcomes rather than a clearly defined cause and effect. So it comes down to a chicken-and-egg problem of sorts: Are kids spanked because they misbehave, or do they misbehave more because they're spanked? There's also the issue of intent. But detractors say what happens behind closed doors isn't necessarily so benevolent.

Parents tend to resort to spanking when they're angry, stressed, or tired, which makes carrying it out in a calm, controlled manner far more challenging. An estimated two thirds of child-abuse cases start off as disciplinary acts and then degrade into something far more menacing.

In a survey published in Pediatrics and cited frequently by the AAP, half of the respondents who admitted to spanking their kids said they did so because they "lost it. Despite these risks, many parents have no intention of abandoning corporal punishment -- a fact that concerns the AAP.

There are healthier ways to raise a well-behaved child. If you use your hands to punish because nothing else seems to work, try one of these alternatives -- and stick with it for at least 21 days, suggests Parents advisor Michele Borba, Ed. Make it work: By praising your child when he's being good, you may need to punish him less.

Let him know exactly what he did right "You did a great job of using your words to express anger, not your fists" so he knows what to do in the future. Make it work: When your child is whining or having a tantrum, pretend you can't hear her. The attention-seeking behavior may escalate before it subsides, but hold your ground. If you don't respond to it, she'll eventually stop. Make it work: Follow the one-minute-per-year guideline i. When it's over, calmly talk about what your child did wrong and how he might fix the problem or avoid it next time.

Make it work: Help your child connect his misbehavior to a negative outcome. For instance, a 4-year-old who spills milk on the floor must clean it up, and a 6-year-old who pedals her bike into the street might lose her riding privileges for a week.

The Great Spanking Debate. By Belle: University Chancellor December 01, Save Pin FB More. Credit: Dan Saelinger. Wooden spoon and red lollipop. Originally published in the January issue of Parents magazine. Parents Magazine. By Belle: University Chancellor. Be the first to comment! No comments yet. Close this dialog window Add a comment. Add your comment Cancel Submit. Back to story Comment on this project. Tell us what you think Thanks for adding your feedback.

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The Great Spanking Debate