English 1302 Sec 207
29 November 2012
Children Disciplinary Problems
Spanking is the most common form of punishment used today for younger children. Disciplining a child has parents wondering what they should do to learn a lesson from a mistake. Through various researches, I found that some parents believe spanking is a form of abuse, while the other side of parents believes that it is a form of discipline.
The parents that believe spanking is a form of abuse have very good arguments of why a parent shouldn’t spank their child. Here are some points on how they thought of it. For one, they believed that a child shouldn’t receive a spanking for disciplinary issues because it will only make then aggressive in the long run when they grow up. These parents believe that spanking is done out of anger and that kids never learn a lesson from spanking. Children that were spanked as a child are more likely to repeat the pattern whenever they have children. A large amount of research and a variety of early intervention programs are devoted to understanding and treating early aggression. Aggression and antisocial behavior tend to be stable over time and predictive of a variety of adverse child outcomes including school failure (Loeber & Dishion, 1983; Olweus, 1979; Tremblay, Pihl, Vitaro, & Dobkin, 1994), it tends to lead towards a child’s perspective of things when aggression is token into place. Spanking is thought to help control children but research from numerous studies show that this is not the case. Many child-development experts don't recommend spanking, hitting, pinching, or other forms of physical punishment, such as forcing a child to stand in a comer. In most cases, they say that the punishment usually fails to change a child's behavior, which is the overall goal of discipline. Some other reasons why they believe that it is a form of abuse is that children who were spanked more are more likely to misbehave in school, have behavioral problems and start using drugs. Also, spanking makes aggressive behavior worse because it teaches a child to lash out when he or she is angry. Other forms of discipline can be more constructive; leaving a child with some sense of guilt and help them, form a conscience. Parents who turn to spanking as a last resort for "breaking their child's will" usually finds that they have underestimated their child's will. Also consider the legal argument. If physical punishment were directed against another adult, it would be called assault and battery and that's illegal. Spanking carries the risk of an angry chain-reaction that sometimes ends in child abuse. Also, spanking makes aggressive behavior worse because it teaches a child to lash out when he or she is angry. Other forms of discipline can be more constructive; leaving a child with some sense of guilt and help them, form a conscience. Parents who turn to spanking as a last resort for "breaking their child's will" usually finds that they have underestimated their child's will. Also consider the legal argument. If physical punishment were directed against another adult, it would be called assault and battery and that's illegal. By the 1970s, a number of states had abolished the use of corporal punishment in school. In the 1980s, anti-spanking advocates began pushing localities and states to make the corporal punishment of children by their parents illegal, as Sweden had done in 1979. Many feminist activists saw protecting children’s physical rights as a natural extension of the laws protecting women from spousal abuse. When a parent spanks their child out of anger or frustration, it sends the wrong message to the child. Such studies document increased fighting in school, hitting of parents, dating violence, and delinquent or disobedient behavior in children who were spanked. Importantly, these studies show links between corporal punishment and negative child behavior even in the absence of physical abuse. For decades a long and distinguished list of experts has denounced spanking as ineffective, even dangerous. Ineffective, they say, because it only teaches a child to fear his parents, not to respect them, and dangerous because using force can injure a child and warp his understanding of how to interact with others: namely, that it's okay to hit someone to get your own way. And experts warn that children who have this antisocial lesson beaten into them are more likely to exhibit violent behavior later in life. That is, even when parental physical punishment does not cross the line into physical abuse, it appears to contribute to aggression and antisocial behavior in children (Gershoff, 2002). . The goal is to not cause pain, but to teach the child a lesson. Child characteristics such as age, gender and temperament also appear to influence whether children are spanked and the association between spanking and subsequent behavior. Several studies suggest that boys tend to receive more physical punishment than girls (Giles-Sims et al., 1995; Smith & Brooks-Gunn, 1997; Straus & Stewart, 1999). The reason for this difference may be due to different parental expectations for boys’ and girls’ behaviour or because boys tend to exhibit more aggression than girls (Gershoff, 2002; Parke & Slaby, 1983). Aggression in early childhood is associated with a difficult infant temperament (Smith & Brooks-Gunn, 1997), which may elicit harsh treatment and forceful discipline by parents in an attempt to stop unwanted behaviors. Spanking should be if at all possible brought away from because it causes too many negative effects on children and on their development. Doctors from the Academy of Pediatricians say that in fact, spanking will not help solve the child’s problems but make them worse because they’re being brought upon harm from their parents (Eisenhauer). If it is at possible one should find other ways to discipline their children instead of using physical punishment. Spanking in severe forms can lead to antisocial behavioral outcomes in children. Children who are spanked in my opinion seemed to have this type of behavior especially if I knew that they had been spanked continuously. Lower levels of maternal education and higher levels of stress and depression, are also associated with child behavior issues (Giles-Sims, Straus, & Sugarman, 1995; Kelley et al., 1992; Smith & Brooks-Gunn, 1997). Which brings me to corporal punishment when used may impact whether child outcome is positive or negative. One parental factor that appears to moderate the association between physical discipline and child outcome is parental warmth (Gershoff, 2002; McLoyd & Smith, 2002). Physical punishment gives children pain and with that it may lead the child to believe that it is ok to treat others that way and to cause harm to others. Those are some good point given across about the talk of not spanking a child and the effects it was have on them. But I want people to understand that that’s not the only side to recognize of the disciplinary issues of not spanking a child. Which brings me to explain some issues of persuasion on spanking a child is ok for parents to do. Most parents believe that spanking is ok to do as a disciplinary issue towards their children to teach them right from wrong.
I agreed upon with the parents that took side with spanking their children to show a form of discipline rather than seeing it as abuse. Parents find it really difficult now a day to act upon a child’s behavior and there is an issue that brings parents to believe that most parents discipline their children to much which is spanking. I understand kids are young and they don’t know better but eventually they have to know how to act around adults or friends. And that’s what the discipline is for to show them the meaning of acting right. . Through a child development field study showed that most parents supported that spanking is ok. In the United States, spanking is 1 of the most widely used practices for disciplining preschool aged children. Approximately 94% of 3- and 4-year-old children have been spanked at least once during the past year. Corporal punishment techniques (e.g., spanking) have existed for many years and remain a permanent form of discipline with children. Studies generally estimate an overwhelming majority of parents continue to spank their children (Larzelere, Kuhn, & Johnson, 2004; Straus & Stewart, 1999). The majority of the American public and professionals concerned with children remain convinced that corporal punishment is sometimes necessary (Davis, Smith, & Marsden, 2005). Psychologists spank their own children (Anderson & Anderson, 1976) and tend to recommend spanking to parents less, but they still remain split in their views as to whether the American Psychological Association (APA) should make a blanket policy statement on it (Schenck, Lyman, & Bodin, 2000). Despite considerable professional and public controversy (Straus & Douglas, 2008) about corporal punishment, research continually indicates, through reviews and meta-analyses, that corporal punishment or spanking is effective in the short-term suppression of undesirable behavior (Larzelere & Kuhn, 2005a; Benjet & Kazdin, 2003; Lerman & Vorndran, 2002). Although it is not as common as among older children, a substantial minority of parents report spanking infants and toddlers. In a national survey conducted by the Commonwealth Fund, 11% of parents reported having spanked a child 6 to 11 months of age, 36% reported having spanked a child 12 to 17 months of age, and 59% reported having spanked a child 18 to 23 months of age 2. This raises the concern that spanking a child at these ages may not achieve the benefits claimed for its use with children aged 2 and older and could negatively affect developmental transitions that take place before age 2. The fact that over 90% of Americans are spanked as children, and most are not violent, abusive, or criminal adults, contradicts an assertion that corporal punishment unilaterally will have negative effects on children (Straus & Stewart, 1999). Most of the research on physical punishment “lumps” together non-abusive punishment with a wide range of more severe and inappropriate punishment responses (Larzelere & Kuhn, 2005a).They see it as a form of discipline that the child needs to learn that when they’re doing something wrong, they need to get spanked to show that it isn’t right to be acting up.
A parent isn’t going to spank their child unless they feel they’re doing something wrong, or they are just not acting right appropriately. I as a child once, have been in this situation just like every other child that has been spanked at a young age. Always use other techniques (such as time-out) first. Only use spanking for behaviors that are dangerous or deliberately or repeatedly defiant of your reasonable instructions. Hit only with an open hand, it is difficult to judge how hard you are hitting your child if you hit him or her with an object other than your hand. Paddles and belts may cause bruises and should not be used. Spanking should never leave more than temporary redness of the skin. Hit only on the buttocks, legs, or hands. Hitting a child on the face is demeaning as well as dangerous. In fact, slapping the face isn’t right at any age. Your child could suddenly turn his head and the slap could damage his vision or hearing. Give only one swat, that's enough to change behavior. Spanking your child more than once may relieve your anger but will probably not teach your child anything else. Don't spank children less than 2 years old. Spanking is absolutely inappropriate before your child has learned to walk. Spanking should be unnecessary after the age of 6 years. After that you should be able to discuss problems with your child. Because of the serious risk of causing blood clots on the brain, never shake any young child. Use spanking no more than once a week. The more your child is spanked, the less effect it will have. If you find yourself spanking your child more commonly than this, attend a parenting class or seek counseling.
Learn alternatives to spanking. Isolating a child in a corner or bedroom for a time-out can be very effective. Learn how to use other forms of discipline. Spanking should never be the main form of discipline a child receives. Never spank your child when you are out of control, scared, or drinking. A few parents can't stop hitting their child once they start. They can't control their rage. They must learn to walk away from their children and never use physical punishment. They should seek help for themselves from Parents Anonymous or other self-help groups. Through experience of punishment as a kid I got spanked for pretty much anything, but my parents weren’t doing it just to do it. They spanked when they needed to too show me what I did wrong and why I did it. As I grew up as a young teenager, I realized that they weren’t trying to hurt my in any way but they wanted me to learn what I did wrong and for it to not happen again. It helped in a way because I now know what I did wrong I look back at it and think why would I do that? But every kid has different attitudes; every kid is brought up differently depending on the parental behaviors of their child once they’re born. To further understand potential benefits of corporal punishment and before making public policy recommendations with children, there should be clarity about exactly what is meant by corporal punishment. The professional literature tends to define corporal punishment as spanking, but that term in and of itself is not defined clearly. When safety is the issue, it's hard to dispute that spanking works, and my experience backs this up. But other methods, like positive reinforcement, are better ways to change behavior over time, say experts. While spanking might make a child take his hand away from the stove and avoid injury, they say, it won't necessarily keep him from trying it again or even make sure he understands the connection between his action and the consequences. I do believe that spanking is a right way to straighten up a child but to a certain extent. Some parents intent to take it to another level of aggressive behavior when spanking a child. While many adults would argue that hitting people is wrong, spanking children continues to be used as an acceptable form of discipline because many parents think spanking will teach children not to do things that are forbidden, stop them quickly when they are being irritating, and encourage them to do what they should (Leach, 1996). Some parents also believe that the nonphysical forms of discipline, like time-out, do not work (Samalin & Whitney, 1995). Spanking is also a practice used more in some areas of the country than others (primarily in the southern United States) and in some cultures more than others (Flynn, 1996; Scarr, 1995). Punishment serves to protect and guide an individual. Children are not able to grow into responsible contributing members of society without guidance. Punishment should be on a graduated scale - the larger the negative impact of the action on the child, or others, the more severe the punishment, or consequence must be. Spanking should never be done in anger, or out of frustration. Out of 1,200 respondents, 85% thought that spanking a child as a form of discipline was well within their rights as parents. The most common responses contained the Bible quote, "He that spareth his rod, hateth his son." Others stated their opinions based on their own experiences being spanked as children and felt that, "All actions should have consequences, a swat on the butt is okay." Many, however, added that it was only okay as long as the spanking was in moderation. That it is used as the ultimate in the severity of a consequence is appropriate. In a society that currently dismisses every form of punishment as being harmful to the child (time outs lead to abandonment issues, yelling to self-esteem issues, groundings to confinement issues, spanking to inappropriate touch issues), how does society expect to be able to continue if parents are not able to teach the confines of social acceptance? Spanking doesn't literally just mean the kind where a child is bent over your knees and whose bottom is struck with a hand (or even belt). Most define spanking as any physical contact that involves striking a child for the purpose of stopping a behavior or action or getting their attention.
So it brings to my thought of it all, and I chose to side with the parents that took the side of parents spanking their kids to show a form of discipline rather than seeing it as abuse. Parents find it really difficult now a day to act upon a child’s behavior and there is an issue that brings parents to believe that most parents discipline their children to much which is spanking. I understand kids are young and they don’t know better but eventually they have to know how to act around adults or friends. I would recommend people to look more into the depths of spanking a child for disciplinary issues since it has to be one of the good topics out right now. And that’s what the discipline is for to show them the meaning of acting right. Some kids never get disciplined and are brought up around negativity and think its ok to do bad things and it’s not, so showing some sort of discipline as a parent is very important in my opinion.
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