I am not a corporal punishment kind of person. In theory I prefer to discipline with love. And logic. Kind of along the lines of the "Love and Logic" philosophy.
I didn't always feel this way. But after waiting nearly a decade for a baby, meeting him, watching him grow, and loving him more every day, I changed my mind. I just always want him to always know that I love him. Even when he screws up. In my experience, spanking does not convey that message. (And in fact conveys just the opposite!)
In practice I am not perfect and in the heat of the moment, I have slapped my kids a few times. But I always apologized afterwards and explained that it was not OK fo me to hit them just because I was angry or hurt. (Now if I could get better about avoiding the raised voice emotional reaction as well, which is probably just as damaging as a raised hand. But breaking out of the mold you were raised in, when raising your own children, can be a very hard job. Please pray for me on this front!)
Really, I don't even like the "time-out" concept so much any more. Except maybe Mamaebeth's version which I read about a few days ago. I used to use time-outs with Sammy, until I read Holly Pierlot's thoughts on instead preventing the behavior before it gets to the point of needing a time-out. I think what struck me the most, was the idea that I am the first and biggest model of God's love to my children, and God doesn't treat me this way.
Anyway, the reason for the post... I wanted to share an article I ran across today at Catholic Parenting that really reinforced my own thoughts/conclusions/revelations on the spanking topic. And gave me a few new reasons not to.
Did your parents use corporal punishment with you as a child? If so, was it effective in preventing misbehavior in the future? What effect did it have on your relationship with them? Or on your self-concept? Do you use corporal punishment with your kids? Why or why not? For those of you that do, are you able to keep emotion out of the spanking? Like the principal used to, and my parents never once did. (Not that I ever did anything to get spanked by the principal... But when he did paddle a kid, he was always so calm and collected about it. You knew it was 100% a punishment and not a partial punishment, partial revenge for making him angry.)
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