Shocking stats on smacking kids

According to the Parent24 Kids Nation Survey a whopping 30% of parents are still choosing a smack on the bum as a method of discipline with their kids. This stat is cause for alarm, according to Educational Psychologist Catherine Radloff.

She comments:

“The fact that 30% of parents still think that smacking a child is an acceptable way to discipline children is a very distressing statistic. It can be tempting to think that a smack sorts out disobedience or bad behaviour in a child. However, numerous studies have found that physical punishment increases the risk of broad and enduring negative developmental outcomes. Smacking a child sets a bad example of how to handle strong emotions. It may also encourage children to lie or hide their feelings to avoid being smacked and can lead to a resentful and angry child.”

All is not lost, however, the results of the survey also indicate that 41% of parents use reasoning in the event that discipline is necessary and 24% opt for the time-out/naughty chair approach. 5% responded that they had no discipline measures at all.

More on discipline styles:

Kids need boundaries, not hidings

Of course I smack my kids!

To smack or not to smack

Disciplining other people's kids

A 'good' beating?

Why smacking?

Many SA parents choose the smacking option in response to learned parenting behaviour; they were smacked themselves as children so, to them, that’s the way to discipline a child. A commonly-repeated phrase is “I was smacked as a child and it didn’t do me any harm”.

Another problem with physical discipline is that different parents interpret the application of it differently. One parent’s light pat on the bum could be another parent’s beating with a belt or a stick. In a society where domestic violence is rife, child abuse is also taking place on a large scale.

As Catherine stated, it may seem tempting as the easiest option, but it does not set a great example to the child about how to handle emotions.

According to world renowned speaker on parenting, Dereck Jackson, there are 3 stages of discipline, as follows:

The first stage is to set clear rules and boundaries.  When a rule is broken, the second stage is to issue an assertive, effective command. And if that command is not obeyed, the third stage is to take action (consequences).

His consequence suggestions are as follows:

Ages 4 to 5:  Go to your room for x minutes.

Age 6 and older:  No TV and/or games and/or cellphone, or computer, for a period of time.

Click here to see the full results  of the 2014 Parent24 Kids Nation Survey.

Would you reconsider smacking based on the advice of specialists?
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