I keep running across these word images that piss me off. They describe a correlation between spanking and “suffering” from an “affliction” called “respect for others.” Yes, that’s an overuse of quotation marks, and for that I apologize. It’s still rankling my brain, apparently.
I won’t go into great detail, but I personally believe that spanking teaches a person to be afraid, unhappy, and scared of being themselves. It teaches a person to cower down to those in authority – not due to respect. It tears apart a person’s self esteem, and teaches them they’re worthless.
So I made a conscious decision to treat my child differently. She was spanked – a handful of times in her entire life. For serious things only. And it wasn’t to teach her respect for others. It was to show her that what she did was absolutely unacceptable in any way shape or form. And later, we would have a conversation about how I despise spanking, how it tears me apart, and how I was sorry to have been angry enough to spank – and how it could have been different.
I raised my child with love, thought, and understanding. I’m in no way perfect – I yell (I yell more than most, so don’t compare yourself to me – you have no idea how much I yell; it is a serious fault of mine). I am quick to lose my temper. I am selfish in many ways. But I taught my daughter to be a giver – by example. Not by speaking of doing so. I taught my child to respect others – by example and discipline. I taught my child that there would be consequences for every action. I was consistent, I was firm. And I was honest. When I made mistakes, I owned up to them. I didn’t break a single promise – if I couldn’t reasonably make it happen, it didn’t become a promise.
Spanking doesn’t teach respect. And respect is not a damn affliction.
The above image is MY version of the “discipline” and “respect.”
Respect is learned. And earned. It is not borne of fear and violence.
I Can Improve #5:
I will continue to teach myself to avoid yelling.