Why don’t we spank our kids anymore?

I received a request from another blogger to do a post here. Specifically, they wanted to know what *you* – meaning you, dear reader – had to say about a certain topic.

Personally, I think that says quite a bit about you. Mainly, that you’re outspoken and engaging and awesome and basically the best freaking blog audience/readership ever. Where’s the fucking award for that?


“i came back and read all of the comments on the “whine” post. i’m curious as to how many who commented ever received a swat on the butt like i did. as a child i knew i didn’t like the way that felt (emotionally and physically) so i stopped stupid behavior. please don’t get me wrong, i am in no way suggesting you beat your child, but i am honestly interested in your readers’ experiences as children themselves. would you consider writing a post and asking them?

i just wonder how we got from a culture where kids got beat for everything (belts and wooden spoons) to a culture where a quick swat once or twice did the job to a culture where no one dare lay a hand on their child and whether or not that is a good thing…”

She brings up a good point.

I know that as a parent, this is something that I struggle with internally. Maybe that in and of itself is enough to exclude me from the Good Mom Club – but it’s the truth.

I spent a good chunk of my childhood in an abusive household. Specifically, I watched my mom get her ass beat on a regular basis. I hesitate to say that I was “abused” – because, well, maybe it was just spanking. It certainly wasn’t what my mom was going through. I never wound up in an emergency room or had to explain away bruises on my face.

But I clearly remember one Easter hoping like hell that someone in my Dad’s side of the family would do something when they discovered a black and blue hand print on my upper thigh.

Whether it was me or my mom on the receiving end, there is no doubt that it was a violent environment. As a result, I find myself caught between two truths:

* I hate violence. Of all kinds.

* I don’t trust my own judgment.

I can have a violent temper. I’m a volatile person by nature – something I’m working on constantly – and when my temper flares I often feel like I have nowhere to put it. I don’t trust myself when I get angry like that and so, as a rule, have decided not to ever spank my kids out of anger.

But I also don’t think that spanking is wrong.

But but BUT – I don’t know how to tell my son “we don’t hit” while I’m swatting him on the ass for hitting. There’s no way I could get past the hypocrisy of that.

Buuuuut – you can’t ignore the fact that we’re raising a nation of entitled brats. Honestly. Let’s talk about our feeeeelings. No. Lets do what the fuck we’re told once in a while because that’s what we do.


I’m caught.

And this blogger raised a good question, I think. Because it seems like the answer – and what’s best for our kids – might lie somewhere in the middle. It seems like, once again, we have a pendulum swinging so far to one side that we’re losing our sense of balance.

I’d like to join in with this person in asking – what do you think?* What were your experiences, and how are you choosing to pass that on to your own children?

Is spanking OK? Why or why not?

*Please note that in this specific case I am not asking for your advice on how to raise my children. My kids are happy, health and fine and not at all in danger of being abused. Seriously.

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