I wrote this post more than a year ago but never actually published it. Not sure why. Perhaps I was worried about a backlash, perhaps his behaviour changed for the better, for that day at least. Whatever the reason, despite being older and more able to discuss actions and consequences, I still need ideas for modifying his behaviour.

Mike and I were never really for or against SMACKING as a punishment. And please note, I am talking about open hand smack, with no implement, here.

My thoughts were that the behaviour modifying aspect was really just behaving well to avoid pain, so not the best motivator for good behaviour.

But then again, my parents smacked me and I think I turned out ok (with a good dose of goody-two-shoes thrown in as well).

The issue never really came up with Megan. She is very like me and does what she is told because she doesn’t want to get in trouble. Growling is severe enough for Megan.

But Alex is a whole different story. Growling doesn’t work, explaining consequences doesn’t work, taking things away from him doesn’t work, time out doesn’t work…are you seeing the pattern???

I have caved a few times, under pressure and smacked Alex. And I have felt so bad about it afterwards. Like I have let him and myself down.

And what does it say to Alex? “Mum says I can’t hit, but she can” ?? And he does hit- is that my fault?

And what else can I do when he won’t stop yelling, squealing, hiting, throwing?

Because I can definately add smacking to the list of things that “doesn’t work”!!


10 thoughts on “Smacking…

  1. I do smack on occasion but I have found it pretty ineffective to be honest. It just makes mine naughtier and the bad energy continues through the day. If I think about it I truly believe that smacking is teaching kids that when we don’t get things the way we want then inflicting pain is ok and I don’t agree with that. Still I do smack in occasion so no judgement here. I also read I post one day suggesting that smacking is abuse. It was presented like this: if your husband smacked you for doing something you agreed you wouldn’t is that ok? We know it’s not. I think she had a point. In society we do not accept physical pain as a repurcussion in any other situation but somehow when it’s kids , people who are actually smaller than us and weaker, we say it’s OK. I really think this is important to consider.

    I don’t know what the answer is. I just aim to not smack and then if I do once every so often it’s not frequent. I find with my son that what works really well is to say come sit with mummy and have a chat. I make him sit on my lap and give him a cuddle and try and just explain what we are doing and why and why it is hard if he does xyz. He is only 2 so have aways to go…I could be back asking for the same advice next year LOL. Good luck!!

    PS Please don’t be offended my any of my points. Like I said. I don’t judge AT ALL. I have just found this info interesting food for thought.

    • Absolutely which may be why it took so long for me to post it! And I agree, I hate the idea that my words are saying ‘don’t hurt your sister’ but my actions are hurting him. Totally contradictory!

  2. We do time out in the bathroom with the door shut. It gives everyone time to calm down and breath before we go crazy. Sometimes one trip for a short time, Others it’s ages til she calms and some times on “those” days is multiple visits of varying lengths til she remembers that we are not giving up on this. But it’s only the bathroom that it works for. Anywhere else in the house or anywhere that she can be seen(ie see our reaction or get a reaction from us) it doesn’t have the same effect.
    Good luck.

  3. We may have mentioned this before but your children sound just like mine – one compliant and one rebellious. I don’t smack because a wise man once told me “You want your children to love you, not fear you”. But I honestly can’t stand those anti-smacking crusaders trying to impose their righteous morals on how other parents should and should not discipline their kids. Where do they get off?

  4. I just wrote about yelling, similarly :-(. You’re right that spanking seems to send a mixed message if you don’t want him to hit. But I’m at a loss because I don’t want to yell and found myself doing it. Keep me posted.

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