Kid's Corporal Punishment - a Risk to Mental Health

Occams Barber

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Kid's Corporal Punishment - a Risk to Mental Health
Various sources*


A new study by the Australian Catholic University (ACU) has revealed that children who are smacked repeatedly by their parents are nearly twice as likely to develop anxiety and depression later in life.

The study of 8500 18 to 24 year olds found 61% experienced corporal punishment, as children, four or more times.

Females who were hit as kids were 1.8 times more likely to have a major depressive disorder, and 2.1 times to experience anxiety. Males were 1.7 times more likely to develop depression, and 1.6 times more likely to develop anxiety if they’d been smacked.

Professor Darryl Higgins, a lead researcher for the ACU study, believes it paints a clear picture that even infrequent exposure to corporal punishment puts children at risk of mental health disorders.

Professor Higgins is calling for smacking of children to be made illegal in Australia consistent with laws banning corporal punishment in 62 other countries.

According to the Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children, the evidence that corporal punishment is harmful to children, adults and societies is overwhelming:

“The more than 250 studies included in our review of research on the impact of and associations with corporal punishment show links between corporal punishment and a wide range of negative outcomes, including:
  • direct physical harm
  • negative impacts on mental and physical health
  • poor moral internalisation and increased antisocial behaviour
  • increased aggression in children
  • increased violent and criminal behaviour in adults
  • damaged education
  • damaged family relationships
  • increased acceptance and use of other forms of violence”
“The message from research is very clear: corporal punishment carries multiple risks of harm and has no benefits.”

*Sources:
OB
 
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Occams Barber

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Sometimes kids need to be smacked. Like when they go through that phase of kicking their parents for fun.

As a child I was never hit.
I have two grown sons - I never found a reason to even consider hitting them as kids.
My grandkids have never been hit.

Hitting children is child abuse - plain and simple - and, as the OP shows, it has ramifications for future mental health and anti social behaviour.

OB
 
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Sketcher

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As a child I was never hit.
I have two grown sons - I never found a reason to even consider hitting them as kids.
My grandkids have never been hit.

Hitting children is child abuse - plain and simple - and, as the OP shows, it has ramifications for future mental health and anti social behaviour.

OB
If you punch them, sure. But I'm not talking about punching.
 
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Occams Barber

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If you punch them, sure. But I'm not talking about punching.


I don't care whether you slap them, punch them, kick them or smack them. They're all abusive acts of violence.

I'm amazed that you expect to cure their violent actions (kicking) by being violent.

OB
 
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RDKirk

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About 15 years ago, I was working in IT for a major company that had lots of H1b visa hires from China and India. There was one Chinese woman newly in country and assigned to my team at the time, sitting in the cubicle adjacent to mine.

One morning, she rolled in her desk chair around the cubicle partition into my cube. she looked conspiratorially to the left and right, then leaned in very close to me and whispered, "I just heard that in America parents are not allowed to spank their children. Is that true?"

Apparently, the night before, someone had called the police on her Chinese neighbors in her apartment building who were heard spanking their children.

This is actually a common joke that I've heard from comedians of several different nationalities, as well as among blacks: Ill-behaved white children are the result of parents who are afraid to spank their children. Modern white parents are a common joke among everyone else in the world.
 
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Sketcher

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I don't care whether you slap them, punch them, kick them or smack them. They're all abusive acts of violence.

I'm amazed that you expect to cure their violent actions (kicking) by being violent.

OB
It's a very easy lesson: if you instigate physical violence, you'll get a physical response that you do not enjoy. Failing to make a distinction between a smack on the rear end and a punch or a kick or any blow that can deal actual damage is amazing to me.
 
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RDKirk

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It's a very easy lesson: if you instigate physical violence, you'll get a physical response that you do not enjoy. Failing to make a distinction between a smack on the rear end and a punch or a kick or any blow that can deal actual damage is amazing to me.

The window of effectiveness for corporal is, however, very, very narrow in the age of the children. From the experience of my children, I'd say between three and five. Older than that, the window has passed. And in any case, it should not take more than a small handful of occasions.
 
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Occams Barber

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It's a very easy lesson: if you instigate physical violence, you'll get a physical response that you do not enjoy. Failing to make a distinction between a smack on the rear end and a punch or a kick or any blow that can deal actual damage is amazing to me.


Don't believe me. Go to the website I gave you in the OP (repeated below), read the summaries of the research then decide. Not only is hitting kids likely to cause problems, it has no known benefits for kids.

Hitting kids is a traditional thing which happens, often without thought, because it's part of the culture in the same way we mistreat minorities.

Research | Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children (endcorporalpunishment.org)

OB
 
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Sketcher

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The window of effectiveness for corporal is, however, very, very narrow in the age of the children. From the experience of my children, I'd say between three and five. Older than that, the window has passed. And in any case, it should not take more than a small handful of occasions.
Don't overdo it, certainly.
 
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Sketcher

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Don't believe me. Go to the website I gave you in the OP (repeated below), read the summaries of the research then decide. Not only is hitting kids likely to cause problems, it has no known benefits for kids.

Hitting kids is a traditional thing which happens, often without thought, because it's part of the culture in the same way we mistreat minorities.

Research | Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children (endcorporalpunishment.org)

OB
I don't believe them either.
 
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Occams Barber

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The window of effectiveness for corporal is, however, very, very narrow in the age of the children. From the experience of my children, I'd say between three and five. Older than that, the window has passed. And in any case, it should not take more than a small handful of occasions.


You actually hit 3 to 5 year old kids??

Words fail me......
OB
 
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Occams Barber

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@Sketcher
@RDKirk

While you are thinking about the issues associated with hitting a child, consider what you expect of child minding/kindergarten/preschool/early childhood/early elementary minders/teachers when disciplining your children. These are Australian rules but I assume the US would be similar. If you expect this behaviour of people minding your child why would you not apply the same standard to yourself?

Examples of inappropriate discipline:
The following are some examples of inappropriate discipline which may constitute a serious breach of the National Law and/or National Regulations and could potentially be considered criminal matters:
hitting, pushing, slapping, pinching or biting a child
• force-feeding a child
yelling at or belittling a child
• humiliating a child
• physically dragging a child
• locking children away (or isolating them)
• depriving a child of food or drink
• unreasonable restraining of a child (this may include restraint in a high chair)
• excluding children from events
• consistently moving children to the office or other space away from the play areas
• moving children to another room as punishment
• verbally or physically threatening a child. Other examples of inappropriate practice are:
• negative labelling of child or family
• criticising a child’s actions or behaviours
• discouraging a child from taking part in activities
• blaming or shaming a child
• making fun of or laughing at or about a child
• using sarcastic or cruel humour with or to a child • excessive use of negative language to a child, such as, “no” “stop that!” “don’t…” “you never...”
inappropriate-discipline.pdf (acecqa.gov.au)
OB
 
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timothyu

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Perhaps the depression has more to do with the era of leaving no child behind where the incompetent are rewarded the same as the competent. Then reality smacks them in the behind and the concept of consequences goes right over their heads.
 
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Hammster

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He who withholds his rod hates his son,
But he who loves him disciplines him diligently.
— Proverbs 13:24

Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child;
The rod of discipline will remove it far from him.
— Proverbs 22:15
 
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ximmix

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He who withholds his rod hates his son,
But he who loves him disciplines him diligently.
— Proverbs 13:24

Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child;
The rod of discipline will remove it far from him.
— Proverbs 22:15

Does this mean that God approves of kids developing anxiety and depression later in life or is he just indifferent to it?
 
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RDKirk

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You actually hit 3 to 5 year old kids??

Words fail me......
OB

A swat with a shower shoe on the butt. I slap my wife's butt harder.

The consequence is unpleasant, but immediate...and then it's over, the matter is done.

My son, when he was about four, actually expressed an explicit preference for a quick swat rather than some extended emotional turmoil of any other kind of response, like a lecture.
 
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Hammster

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I wondered how long it would take someone to come up with the Proverbs quote.

Congrats - you win the Tin Badge for Most Predictable Response.

OB
I’m a Christian. The Bible trumps so-called science.
 
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o_mlly

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A new study by the Australian Catholic University (ACU) has revealed that children who are smacked repeatedly by their parents are nearly twice as likely to develop anxiety and depression later in life.
The study will not be published until 2023 and subsequently peer reviewed.

We all develop anxiety and depression cycles as that is part of the human condition. If the study has discovered and validated a control group then the conclusions would have more weight. We'll have to see.

I note that Professor Higgins is head of the Department Institute of Child Protection Studies. Research bias studies indicate that sometimes researchers find only what they are looking for.
 
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