Parent's can't dicipline their children in the UK?

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by G4scott, Jul 5, 2004.

  1. G4scott macrumors 68020


    Jan 9, 2002
    Austin, TX

    :mad: :mad: :mad:

    I think this is outrageous. When I was a kid, if I knew I could get away with whatever I wanted without my parent's punishing me in a way that actually affected me, I would probably be a spoiled brat!

    Too many children these days don't get enough discipline at home. Some of these kids need to be smacked upside the head, or given a good spanking.

    Child abuse may be a problem, but if you ask me, it's nowhere near as big of a problem as undisciplined children causing trouble.

    When a parent doesn't smack their children, they are sometimes losing control, of the kid!!!

    What is this world coming to?
  2. Jalexster macrumors 6502a

    Jun 8, 2004
    I don't think that parents should hit thier children.

    Instead of abusing your children phisicaly or mentaly, just try and talk things through.

    I find that it helps to actully listen to thier argument. Work out what they got wrong. Instead of just saying "I'm right because I'm the adult" Say "I'm right because you are wrong, and now i'll prove it".

    If a child wants to do something against your wishes, tell them why you think they shouldn't do it, and then find out why they think they should. Then point out what is wrong with thier argument against yours. Keep in mind that some parts of thier argument will be right. And some of yours will be wrong. Do not try and work around this.

    It's a much better system. When I finally got my parents to work with it, all problems in my house have stopped.

    I'm 15 by the way. And I don't have any friends, and spend most of my day on the Internet. That includes Xbox Live.
  3. King Cobra macrumors 603

    Mar 2, 2002
    First off, the "to spank or not to spank" debate will never end, because different people have different ways to raise [their] children. I suppose that it depends on the dependency of the lifestyle of the past generation of parenting and that certain generations will never change.

    Second, I am not a parent, but my theory about the sons and daughters of parents is: Let them run mostly wild. If parents put a restraint on a child, that can be a positive thing or a negative thing. Restraints could be used to introduce those children to the environments of the library, or a restaurant, or most any other public atmosphere. But it's negative when the child cannot find any real reason for the restraint to be in place. It's also negative if the parent refuse to explain fully why the restraint is there, or if the parent put it in place for the sake of not allowing their child to say/do the same things back to their parent (a.k.a. an authority). All of those restraints to me constitute "parental authority" because they are put on a child unnecessarily.

    I'm particularly against spanking because of this: The child will not like getting hit, and he/she will want to hit back, but when that "hitting back" is refused or denied, the child will find the hitting unfair, and that child will remember the event. The restraint here not allowing their child to say/do the same things back to their parent. But spanking is worse than just a "No, you can't do this" because it's physical parental authority, so the child will not only feel like he/she is being treated unfairly, but he/she is being treated unfairly in a physical manner. I'll describe why that's such a bad thing in the paragraphs that follow.

    If the parents of that child constantly overdue the restraints above -- no real reason, no full explanation, or for the sake of authority -- then that child feels like he/she is being treated unfairly. The child takes notice of it, because he/she will remember how much he/she wanted to get out of that restraint. Further abuse of "parental authority," or constant usage of "parental authority," becomes more and more evident to the child. That becomes "a bad thing" specifically because as the unnecessary restraints build up, so do the child's memories of wanting to get out of them. The reason for that specifically is the child didn't try to get out of the restraints at the time his/her parent placed the restraint on him/her. Eventually, the child builds up enough of those memories that a feeling of hatred towards his/her parent develops. That's where you get an increase in family fights -- the child's hatred buildup is released finally.

    Likewise, with the case of spanking a child too much, or by force of habit, both the child's feeling of being treated unfairly and the awareness of physical parental authority increase. So as unnecessary physical restraints build up, so do the child's memories of wanting to get back at their parents. The reason for that specifically is the child didn't try to hit back at the time his/her parent spanked him/her. Eventually, the child builds enough memories that a feeling of hatred towards his/her parents, but the feeling is of wanting to do physical destruction to his/her parent. Instead of yelling in family fights, however, the family fights that occur will most likely be much worse, involving both yelling and physical retaliation. That situation can be much more serious if such actions involved older children, as they can do much more physical damage to their parent than younger children on average.

    In conclusion, I find that there is more reason to not spank children at all vs. spanking on any level, and thus I support more of a "Let them run mostly wild" routine of raising children as opposed to a way of raising children based on restraints.
  4. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles

    Next time you reason w/a two year-old lemme know how that goes. ;)

    A couple points of this purposed law that I found insanely stupid are:
    1. They qualify "reddening of the skin" as "actuall bodily harm" and
    2. You can't do anything that would cause "psychological distress."
    So, basically, any form of discipline is out the window.

    Nothing like letting the inmates run the asylum.

    EDIT: King Cobra, I see them more as rules than restraints. Don't wander off alone. Don't play in street. Don't play w/electrical sockets. Don't hit other kids. Don't take other kids' toys. Don't knock things off of shelves/tables. Obey what your parents tell you. Don't lie. Don't steal. Don't talk to strangers. Children have to be taught all these things. And Children will push limits to see how much they can get away with. A friend of mine's daughter has basically trained her parents. The daughter is 3 or 4 now and completely out of control. Why? Because her parents never put their foot down. The child knows this and does whatever she wants.

    There is a difference between disciplining your child and abusing it. I support the former, but not the latter.

  5. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles

    Just make them spend a weekend at Chuck E. Cheese (or any other indoor entertainment establishment aimed at 6 year olds). Seriously, spending just a few hours there makes you want to not have kids at all. ;)

  6. kgarner macrumors 68000


    Jan 28, 2004
    My wife and I try not to spank our son (2 yrs old), but sometimes it really is the only thing that gets his attention. I think that spanking has a place in the spectrum of discipline. I, personally, try to reserve the harshest punishments, for the most aggregious infractions. I was raised in this philosophy, I was spanked but only for major things, and I think that I am fairly well adjusted.
  7. Jalexster macrumors 6502a

    Jun 8, 2004
    My argument was that of a person who know whats best, as I gave the example that when my parents worked with my system, no more fights happen. Except when people are actully trying to upset me on purpose. This happens when I for example ask a simple question and get a respone like "**** of you ****ing ****er", And I then ask them why they are angry. They then automaticaly become uncoperative to try and think that they can "pay me back" for bothering them.

    This never works, ecspecialy if they try to use phisical violence (in the case of my brohter), to get thier message across (it dosen't work because when I fight back, I disregard all rules, like don't hit people in the head, or don't hit them in the groin)

    I've gone on enough about that.

    If a child is doing things for no reason, it's because they are too young to understand the meaning of rules, and therefore you can't talk them through the situation.

    It's true that young kids have no sense. I was smart enough to learn the meaning of rules at a young age.

    Young children don't follow rules because they think it's fun to upset you. This is ordinary human nature. This stops at home at a young age, because they learn the authority of the parent. Other, less controled places, like school, this dosen't EVER stop. This is why bullying happens, because the kids LIKE annoying others. Same thing goes for video games, kids LIKE killing people, because it's against the rules, and upsets people.

    In a workplace there is still cases of bullying, but not often, because by then they have learnt that they could loose thier job if they do something wrong.

    The worst place is the net.

    You can't really get in trouble on the net, if you cover your tracks. Here is a great example of what I am talking about: "The Wicked Attacks" at -

    Anyway, all this is my opinion. But keep it all in mind.
  8. King Cobra macrumors 603

    Mar 2, 2002
    There are two things about what you said that stuck out at me: First, if the parents fully explain the "why" so that the child understands the consequences of violating that rule, then that's fine. Second, what I discussed in my above post wasn't about rules like that. My intent was to show the effect of placing illogical restraints, not reasonable rules, on children. Things like ~"You're not allowed to do that even though I am allowed to do so, I'm your mother/father" or ~"You're not allowed to do that just because I said so" or ~"No, do not perform this harmless activity unless I'm watching you" are kind of the restraints I'm getting at, with the first ~"
  9. WinterMute Moderator emeritus


    Jan 19, 2003
    London, England
    All smacking really does is prove to the kid that it's OK to beat people around, my cousin regularly smacks his son (9) for small infringements because he's a twat with no imagination, his son runs wild anyway and thinks up new and exciting ways to avoid punishment and blame his mates for stuff he's broken... usual kid stuff.... :rolleyes:

    My daughter is much more likely to do what we want if we tell her she can't have her Gameboy for a week, or all TV is suspended etc. as punishment, plus she knows that hitting is wrong. That said, kids are alien beings best viewed through the telescopic sight of a phased plasma rifle.... :cool:

    I'm all for a bit of personal mayhem, I've got black belts in karate and aikido to prove it, but I know the difference between right and wrong, a kid doesn't, and no amount of reasoning is going to make them understand until they are ready.

    This new law won't change much, kids are still going to get beaten up for no reason, and those kids will grow up thinking it's OK to hurt people. Same old same old.
  10. m.r.m. macrumors regular

    Oct 25, 2003
    my parents started out being very strict with my brother and myself. it lessened over the years since we had understood basic moral values. i got "smacked" a couple of times, but i can truthfully say that i deserved it, and i harbor no ill will towards my parents. it hardly ever happened, but when it did, i felt ashamed of bringing my parents to this (after the initial anger passed ;) ). it should be an absolute last resort used seldomly as to not lose it´s disciplinary effect. i´m 23 now, btw. ;)
  11. G4scott thread starter macrumors 68020


    Jan 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    I'll say it, I've been hit more than once, and I know why I was hit. I screwed up. I did something my parent's told me not to do, and I got what I deserved. Do I think hitting is the only solution now, because I was hit? No. I haven't hit anyone, other than jokingly, for as long as I can remember.

    When used properly, spanking can be a proper punishment, but there are other things to do before actually using force as a punishment. The only thing is that talking to your children will not always work. You also have to teach your children not to hit back. My brother hit my mom back once, and him, nor myself or my other brother, ever dared to think about hitting our parents after that.
  12. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    Why should adults and animals be legally protected against violence but not children?

    I'm not a parent but I see this as a reasonable argument. Was beaten viciously as a kid, though...
  13. rainman::|:| macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2002
    i won't get into arguing how children shouldn't be hit as punishment. it's pointless and no one would respect my opinion anyway. but, if you hit your kids hard enough to leave welts, bruises, and scratches; or you cane your children, you're guilty of child abuse. in my book if not by law.

  14. mkaake macrumors 65816

    Apr 10, 2003
    not too hard to tell which ones of you are parents ;)

    i am too...

    and here's my take: there are people who overuse spanking/slapping/hitting, and that's not a good thing. but there are times when it is necessary.

    in my family, when my five year old (just turned five a month ago) gets a spanking, we sit down first, talk about why it's going to happen. but more importantly, i let her know that i love her.

    that said, she knows if she's done enough to get a spanking, she deserves it - usually afterwards, she'll come up and hug me, and generally hang all over me for the rest of the night - only after the spanking (most of the time) does she realize how she was acting, and she feels remorse for it.
    its at those times that you can reason with her - but for those of you who don't have kids, there - are - times when you cannot reason with them - they do not have a fully developed mind, so there are times that no matter what you tell them, they see absolutely no reason that they shouldn't touch the hot stove or run out in the road.

    so i look at what's worse - spanking, which my daughter fears (it doesn't feel good), or let her 'run loose' - which in our case, in an apartment, does and can mean running in the road and potential hospitalization or death. that's why the 'run wild' argument doesn't hold water with me.

    oh, and even though those of you w/o children will prolly disagree with me, she doesn't have the urge to hit back after a spanking - again, after talking with her (and holding her and letting her know i love her after it happens), she knows that she got spanked because she did something very wrong... its not daddy beating on her because he's in a bad mood.

    big difference there. problem with passing a law, is that it assumes the 'bad mood daddy' instead of the more normal, reserved daddy.

  15. mkaake macrumors 65816

    Apr 10, 2003
    children already are protected against violence... this is taking it to the extreme of a red mark... which my daughter gets just from falling down on a soft carpeted living room... her skin is of the type that if i gave her a hug just a little too tight (which for her isn't very tight at all ;)), her back would be red. kind of hard to discipline in situations like that.

    that said, don't know if i made it clear in my above post, but spanking is always the last resort, not the first in my house.

    oh, and i do feel really bad that you were 'beat' that hard as a child - that's just not right :(
  16. elmerfudd macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2004
    stem real child abuse

    this law seems to try to tackle the child 'injuries' cases tackled by hospitals, emergency services and social services. The last two cases that made headlines were chronic cases that were documented by hospitals but couldn't do anything except refer them to social services. The children then got lost in a bureaucratic quagmire of incompetence until too late.

    Personally i prefer to build a relationship with my daughter: when she was too young I gave her the time and attention she needed, whilst using language for her to learn. The most important thing for a child is its relationship with parents and all too often 'unruly' children are just trying to get attention! Heck we all know how ducklings bind to the first thing that moves as they leave the egg but we assume that children are somehow above all this!

    Things come to a stand off when she gets into a tantrum: she sort of becomes locked into a panic/anger loop and the only way to get her out of it is by a little shock: usually a slap on the buttocks. I try to leave it as a last resort but before I get angry to avoid loosing control. At close to 5 years she knows the feeling of a spanking and the treat is usually more than enough. If i had to start spanking today, it would be useless because it would have to be stronger and I'm not going above a single red bum spank. Today it's usually enough to talk things out because we both care for each other and try to understand each other. That said, I don't want to build a glass bubble around her: she has to learn what hurts by herself otherwise I become her jailer!

    I sometimes wish that children were raised by qualified professionals. Children are not a right but a duty: our contribution to society and some parents are pretty clueless about relations in general and with children in particular.
  17. Awimoway macrumors 65816


    Sep 13, 2002
    Allow me a moment to take this suggestion seriously…

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! :p:rolleyes::eek:

    I remember when I had had a head full of such lofty and noble ambitions about child rearing as the ones you've described at length.

    Then I had kids.

    Real kids.

    Not the perfect little theoretical ones the parentless are always imagining with the patience of Job, the wisdom of Solomon and the guilelessness of Jesus. Don't get me wrong. You absolutely must teach your kids right and wrong. But that by no means guarantees that they'll choose the right. Kids who are too wiggly, too immature to pay attention or remember what they can and can't do, too brazen or curious to care will often end up in trouble. And that's pretty much all of them.

    I've got a child, 5, who angrily flings chopped strawberries in syrup on the carpet when she gets told in a calm, respectful tone that she needs to clean the room she trashed. She's pissed because she hates to clean, and no amount of patient reasoning with her at that point is going to sound like anything other than nagging to her.

    So now, my young Dr. Spock (and I don't mean the Vulcan), how at this point are you going to get her to learn responsibility and clean her mess?

    A cooling off period? Doesn't that reward her for staining my off-white carpet, subconsciously communicating to her that this is an effective strategy for avoiding the very thing she doesn't want to do?

    A threat? "If you don't clean your room, I'll clean it, and everything I pick up will go to the Salvation Army?" Not a bad idea, but that punishes both of us because it's still her mess, her room, her things that I'm cleaning, so she learns nothing about responsibility, and if I get rid of them all then she'll just cause more trouble by playing with things that aren't hers (and I'd have to replace the clothes I got rid of, which is money out of my pocket and turns into an easy way for my little clothes horse to get a new wardrobe). Moreover, it does nothing to deal with the now more immediate problem that strawberry juice is seeping into the carpet and will leave a permanent stain if it isn't cleaned quickly, which is also her responsibility since she made that mess too.

    You see, often the problem isn't just education. It's also motivation. Motivating my child to be responsible. To correct her mistakes.

    I'll tell you what I did. I put her over my knee and gave her one spank. Not a particularly hard one. I can't say if the House of Lords would, on inspection, find any inordinate posterior redness, but it was enough to mildly humiliate and humble her, to bring her back to her senses (like the old-fashioned movie cliché "Snap out of it!" slap on the face), and remind her that she does not run the asylum. She cleaned the strawberry mess. She cleaned her room. She wasn't happy about it. There were tears. But the motivation was there, and the concept of responsibility was reinforced (despite however little it may have sunk in — these things take time).

    I make a point of being kind to her later, to remind her that I do love her. And the way she'll bring me her drawings and tell me they are presents to me, or just come and sit on my lap and put her arm around me and tell one of her knock knock jokes (that, invariably, aren't funny, but she thinks they are) tells me she does not spend her life cowering in fear of me. She knows I love her and I know she loves me. But we are not equals. I am her father, not merely her friend. And sometimes she gets out of control. And I have to be firm on those occasions because I am responsible for teaching her responsibility.


    I think a lot of your idealism stems from your age. You are, if I'm not mistaken, a teenager, correct? I can't imagine spanking a teenager. It seems ludicrous. You are old enough to reason with. But that doesn't work with young children.

    This is not to say that you are equal to your parents yet. No sir. I just saw the movie "Elephant" today. It's a fictionalized account of the Columbine massacre. In one scene we see the killers opening the front doors of the school and walking in with their weapons. Then we cut to three girls in the cafeteria, talking. One is complaining that her mother woke her up again rifling through her bedsheets and searching her room. The part of me that is only 10 years removed from high school first thought that that's an incredibly insulting invasion of privacy. Then the parent in me realized that if Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris' parents had snooped through their kids' things even once a lot of people might still be alive today.

    Parenting isn't easy. It isn't cut and dry right and wrong. It's easy to go too far. It's easy to not go far enough. It's common to have no idea if you're doing the right thing. It's easy to forget that your kids are growing and changing and what was appropriate last year might not be appropriate this year.

    My point? I wish the critics without kids would sit down and be quiet. You'll never know what being a parent is like unless you are actually a parent.

    Oh, and thank your parents for trying. They may really suck at it (my mom gets an A+ for teaching me how to read and write and love learning and an D- for emotionally mature parenting), but I guarantee they love you and are trying about as well as they know how.
  18. whooleytoo macrumors 604


    Aug 2, 2002
    Cork, Ireland.
    Really sorry to hear that!

    You should note children are already protected against any harmful form of abuse - as of course they should be. This act would merely 'lower the bar' as to what constitutes harmful abuse. Some campaigners are pushing to go much further than this article states, and any form of spanking, even a slap on the wrist or bottom, would be a criminal act.

    While I'm opposed to using spanking, you can't simply apply the same rules/laws to children as to adults - if a parent makes a child go to their bedroom, is that kidnapping?
  19. King Cobra macrumors 603

    Mar 2, 2002
    And allow me to show you how much I respect that... [​IMG]

    Once again, someone has completely missed the aim of my lecture. I was not talking about situations where the child, being at fault for something, should not be restrained, but rather where the parent irrationally decides to put a restraint on the child. Harsh restraints on a child for a child's wrong doings depend on the way parents raise their children.

    That's none of my business, and that's also irrelevant to what I said in my lecture. Again, I focused on a dedicated response to the article, more particularly, focusing on the effects of a parent's decision to place unnecessarily on a child a restraint. What you are getting at is a completely different topic: Training a child to learn responsibility for his/her wrong doings. So, in other words, Dr. Spock had you mated 16 moves back. :D

    I repeat: Mate in 16 moves.

    Again, as I said before, parents have different ways to raise their children, most likely extending from the past generation of parenting. Some ways work more than others, and some ways only make matters worse.

    I never presented any theory or idealism as to how exactly to parent. I posted my thoughts as to why unnecessary restraints, both physical and parental, are a bad idea, and concluded that physical parental authority is a bad thing and worse than strictly telling the child to shut up. I wish that people that show as much seriousness as this --> HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! :p:rolleyes::eek: <-- would sit down, stay quiet, and read my posts more thoroughly before responding to any of them, regardless of length.
  20. Adurbe macrumors member

    Jan 22, 2003
    We have to remember there is a differnce between smacking and a clip round the ear.

    a smack is defined in our law (uk) as a full stregnth blow with unclenched fists (belt and slippers are assult) and that from an adult to a child is wrong. It doesn't take that much force to show a child he/she is wrong. A glare is often enough :p

    somtimes force is required how many times has a girlfriend given a quick kick to your shins when you say somthing at the table your not meant to? and i bet you you stop :p :D
  21. JesseJames macrumors 6502a

    Mar 28, 2003
    How'd I get here? How can I leave?
    I was a little hellion when I was a kid. My relationship with my mom was like Foghorn Leghorn and that dog he's always tormenting. Of course I'd get clobbered but I'd feel that I had asserted myself. I was a pretty precocious little demon-child.
    Children can be little monsters. If they step out of line parents should use their discretion on suitable corporal punishment if applicable.
  22. Ajmbc macrumors regular

    Jan 29, 2003
    I know alot of kids/adults that are out of control and mean who were not diciplined enough. Kids will push you as far as they can go, if you just say no, it is more of an incentive to keep going. I agree- Spankings should be used as a last resort, but the kids who are getting spanked aren'tas much as they are embarassed.


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