Many people believe that the only thing wrong with today’s young people is that they were never spanked. However, researchers reveal that spanking your child might actually be bad for them.

Discipline is necessary, and I myself cannot deny that every now and then a kid just needs a good ol’ fashioned spanking. However, spanking your children regularly or as a routine discipline technique might actually be bad for them. Se, Murray Straus has dedicated his life to figuring out the negative effects of corporal punishment. He specifically researches the effects it has on the psyche of a child and its effects that carry on into adulthood. He has authored several critically acclaimed books, one being “Behind Closed Doors and Beating the Devil Out of Them

Aside from his some fifteen years of research on the negative effects of corporal punishment, one study conducted by Straus went into the link between spanking your children and the IQ of the child.

“All parents want smart children. This research shows that avoiding spanking and correcting misbehavior in other ways can help that happen,” Straus says. “The results of this research have major implications for the well-being of children across the globe.”

The study sampled 806 children ages two and four and 704 children between the ages of five to nine and four. They discovered that the children who were not spanked ranked five points higher compared to those spanked in the same age group of two to five. Children who were in the age group five to nine years who were not spanked ranked a score of 2.8 points higher than those who were.

“How often parents spanked made a difference. The more spanking the, the slower the development of the child’s mental ability. But even small amounts of spanking made a difference,” Straus reveals.

According to Straus:

“The worldwide trend away from corporal punishment is most clearly reflected in the 24 nations that legally banned corporal punishment by 2009. Both the European Union and the United Nations have called on all member nations to prohibit corporal punishment by parents. Some of the 24 nations that prohibit corporal punishment by parents have made vigorous efforts to inform the public and assist parents in managing their children. In others little has been done to implement the prohibition. . . .

Nevertheless, there is evidence that attitudes favoring corporal punishment and actual use of corporal punishment have been declining even in nations that have done little to implement the law and in nations which have not prohibited corporal punishment”

It is also important to note that spanking your children teaches them aggressive and antisoical behavior from a young age. According to an abstract study“The issue of spanking (whether or not to be used) is a real challenge for the researchers because spanking is not allowed and is considered to be unethical, and similar studies cannot be used as potential selection factors. In this study, a propensity score matching is used, which is based on the lifetime frequency and latest occurrence of spanking in s big and nationally representative sample (N=12,112) and also lagged depended variables to give as accurate causal estimates outside an experiment as possible.”

In the conclusion they claimed the following: “If children got corporal punishment at the age of 5, the problems in their behavior increases by ages 6-8. The statistically rigorous methods of this study have shown that hitting leads to a damage of children’s externalizing behavior after a certain period of time.”

Greshoff has explained this in more details in an interview, saying that, “Corporal punishment manifested in the frequency of having an argument with other children, participation in a fight or by a disruptive behavior in the classroom. Smacking makes children believe that they should be good when the parents are around, otherwise they will be hit. The child has no idea how to handle themselves when the parents are not around. We all get upset when we fail. The job of a parent is to teach the child how to manage and handle that. Smacking cannot teach anything.” 

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