“Smacking never did me any harm”, well, personally, to me it did.  To even smack an animal is frowned upon, imagine seeing someone hit an animal? Not many people would think that it's okay to hit an innocent animal.  Smacking children, as with violence against anyone, should not be acceptable. My biggest reasoning for this is because I believe many parents are probably only smacking when already in a state of anger.  If parents are frustrated and in a state of anger, do they really know how hard they are smacking? 

 

I have no doubt smacking will work for some families and that many people of my generation got smacked and “didn’t do them any harm,” but it doesn’t make it right.  I also know a lot of people that were smacked who have more than a few issues or poor family relationships. 

 

We should move with the times, learn from experience.  The world is evolving so rapidly and we are not living in the world we were 10 years ago, let alone 30 years when it was considered 'okay' to smack. Maybe some parents have a method in place were, similar to the time out technique they may give a warning, then a light smack.  Or maybe they do it in anger as a last resort.  I have never smacked my kids, but they most definitely are disciplined by time out or confiscation methods, depending on the nature of the incident.  I have overall well-behaved, kind, caring kids, that feel safe, loved and respect adults and rules.

 

I was smacked as a child, so my relationship with my parents is pretty non-existent and I have little respect or love for them. I think the main contributing factor that caused this is the smacking.  I was smacked at home and bullied in school, I had no safe place, no one I could rely on. 

 

I even remember when I got older, my parents started to say I might be too old for them to do it, so they recruited my older brother.  I think because of the way I was smacked it made it seem okay to then make verbal comments and use blatant threats, which to me is abuse.  A parent should be trusted, respected and does not abuse their right to discipline a child. 

 

My childhood was lived in fear, fear of been smacked and fear of school bullies. This is not what I want for my children, I do not want their respect from fear, I want it from love.  I want my children to know home is a safe place, even if nowhere else is.  I never had that as a child, although it was seen as acceptable.  I have grown in to a well-balanced adult but this is not thanks to my up bringing this is from my own hard work and determination not to be put down, not to be like them, the people who hurt me.  I had many issues growing up I had to work through to get to the stable person I am now.  I hope my children grow up wanting to be like me but better than me.  I think too many people in this world aren’t given the love they need and crave, part of that love does include discipline and respect but not fear.

 

Mine is not a lone story.

 

I have heard increasing people telling of how smacking had negative effects on them.  Maybe some people will think I was just weak, but it knocked me down to make me stronger.  A child should have somewhere or someone with who they feel safe and loved.  Love is an as important ingredient as discipline. 

Michelle Partington

I'm Michelle 32, married. I gave up work as a veterinary care assistant to be a full time mum. I have two kids a boy and girl, they are 11months apart which has been a challenging adventure but is mostly amazing.

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