Foster parents are required to swear that they will not spank the children in their care. This is the same agency that gives helpless children back to parents that have beaten (not spanked) them either many times or severely at least once. These decisions have resulted in the death of many of these children at the hands of the natural parents or someone living with the natural parent.
Some people think that spanking a child is immoral, but God created morals, and He said, “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.” The meaning is that children should not be spoiled; not “spoiled” as in getting everything they want but as in ruining the child. He also says that we should not set up ridiculous rules that a child can’t follow, or that we should discipline unjustly.
Spankings should be done only out of love and for the child’s good. Every child deserves to go through life feeling loved and protected. And, many children will never require a spanking. They are affected more by a look of disappointment in the parent than many children are by a spanking.
A toddler may only need the slightest tap on the hand by a parent to get the message that what they are doing is wrong. A child of any age that is able to change their actions with an explanation does not need spankings. And, spankings are not to be used for pain. Spanking should be just enough to get the child’s attention and make a point.
Fathers may not be the best ones to do the spanking. Fathers sometimes hurt a child when they spank because they don’t know their own strength. Neither parent should spank when they are really angry, or they could lose control and cause harm.
Spanking a toddler on the behind should do no harm and little good because of the diaper padding. Spanking harder to make up for the diaper could result in kidney damage. It is much safer to give a little slap on the thigh.
If you do spank, it should be done with your bare hand. If your hand stings, you spanked too hard – your adult hand is calloused and a child’s behind or thigh is not.
Toddlers can only be spanked when you catch them in the act since they don’t have the ability to connect the spanking with something that they did earlier.
A few small spankings when a child is very young may result in no need for any more spankings later. Parents who say “If you do that again, I’ll spank you,” but don’t spank send a message to the child. It could be that the child is “allowed” to do the same thing six times before actually getting a spanking – and this may be worth it to the child. Or, the message could be that the child can actually do whatever they want and only hear threats – knowing full well that the parent never follows through with any threats.
Older children may actually prefer a spanking to losing a privilege, activity or toy. In that case, use what “hurts” more – the loss of something fun.
It is not only okay to hug a child that you just spanked, it is a good thing to do. This tells the child that he or she is still loved – it is the action that you did not like. In fact, telling the child just that goes a long way. You could also tell your child that it makes you sad to have to spank. The child’s behavior just may improve because making you sad is more hurtful than a spanking.
Children of all ages not only need limits and rules, they want them. A child with no limits can feel unloved. Or, a child with no limits can feel overwhelmed and frustrated with the huge responsiblity of taking care of himself or herself and eventually act out these feelings in even worse behavior.
A child with no rules of how to act properly will do just what is being taught – act improperly. When you give a child no rules, the child will give the parents no respect. Deep down, they know that it is the parents’ job to set the rules.
“Wait till your father gets home!” is not a very effective means of discipline. Mothers should spank or discipline when necessary.
If a parent ever accidentally spanks too hard, an apology would go a long way toward taking away the sting. When spanking too hard is done purposely, the parent should seek immediate counseling.
There are other things to remember about kids. Shaking a child of any age is never okay. This can cause permanent brain damage or death.
When a baby or toddler wants to stand in the high chair (which is very unsafe) and refuses to sit, pulling their legs out from under them will get them into a sitting position but could also break their spine.
Words can hurt a child more than spankings or even beatings. Think twice about the words you use in anger with the tender soul in your care. Messages like “I hate you,” “you ruined my life,” or “you disgust me” can be so damaging. And comments like, “you’ll never amount to anything,” “you’re always bad,” “you never do anything right,” or “you’re so stupid” told to a child enough times usually come true. Not because the parent was right, but because the child thought that was the way he had to be.
As much as it seems against nature to not want children, to be blessed with a child and then hurt the child purposely is lower than almost every animal.