Why I Changed My Mind About Spanking My Children

Why I Changed My Mind About Spanking My Children

why I changed my mind about spankingWhether we know it or not we often tilt towards parenting the way we were parented. My mom used to be a teacher and was in her younger days a very adept disciplinarian who spanking seemed to be an intrinsic part of her being. She still is very strict but has lost the energy to spank like she used to do; I have never stopped wondering if she is the same person when I see her and her grand children. She never hesitated to put her hand or cane down on us when we misbehaved or disobeyed. Many times I obeyed or behaved not just because I wanted to, but because I did not enjoy the pain of her spanks and I wanted to avoid it.
Now, when I got married I naturally thought I should spank my children into obeying me. I did it both impulsively and tactically; intensifying it when I thought the offense was intense. But now, I have changed my mind, let me tell you the reasons why…

1. I Read A Book
I read a book written by Myles Munroe and David Barrows on Kingdom Parenting. In this book, Myles Munroe recommends spanking, but not with the hands, he says our children should remember our hands for love and warmth and not spanking. I recommend this book for all parents because there is so much to learn from it. Please note that this is no paid advert or referral.
I agreed with him for a while and stopped spanking with my hands, but now I do not want them to remember me for spanking at all, not with my hands, not with sticks, not with belts not with anything… I thought to myself that whatever instrument I was spanking with, my hands would still have to lift it up.

2. They Distanced Themselves
I saw my boys do the same thing I did to my mum to me; they distanced themselves from me. I didn’t notice it at first and when I did I wondered why until I heard them talking one day and discovered spanking was one of the reasons. They noticed I do it impulsively, giving them rapid slaps on the nearest part of them I could reach.
I didn’t want that distance, it broke my heart and I wanted them to be comfortable staying close to me at anytime, whether they did wrong or right, without being afraid that my hand was going to come down on them any minute. My husband used to spank too but not with my kind of frequency… and I must admit he has his way of loving them I need to learn.

3. What The School Staff Taught Me
Recently my husband and I visited a prospective school one of our sons might be attending, when we got into one of the offices where we were to be attended to, a staff told us something that has not left my mind. He said to us that they do not believe in spanking their students, they discovered spanking teaches them violence.
Boy! Did I see this in my home! My husband always has to remind them never to use their hands on each other. I believe that if we had never laid our hands on them they really might have not learnt to use their hands on each other.
As we walked out of that compound, I discovered my husband and I were thinking the same thoughts as we started talking about what the school staff had said. This made our decision even firmer and I am convinced (my opinion please) that our decision regarding spanking is good for our children and us.

What About Proverbs?
He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes. Proverbs 13:24
The Bible calls it “the rod of correction” in Proverbs 22: 15 I believe this has to do with corrective measures not necessarily sticks or spanking…

I thought I could make my children obedient by spanking them but I think differently now. They might obey me in actions but not really from their hearts.  I want my children to obey me from their hearts because they love me and believe I have the best in mind for them not because they fear me;  because they love God and want to please Him.

There are several other ways of disciplining a child, teaching a child obedience or making a child obedient like Teaching Them God’s word, praying for them and with them, denying them their favourite toys or games, putting them in a sober corner (not naughty corner please) and withdrawing some privileges…

I know every one will not agree with me on this. Does spanking really yield positive results? Be sincere, what will it be for you, what are your views on this?

Copyright © Teshuva 2014

Sharing With: Faith-Filled FridayThriving Thursday, Thought Provoking Thursday


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Ugochi Oritsejolomisan

Ugochi Oritsejolomisan

Ugochi Oritsejolomisan is a Christ-follower, wife to Benson, mother of 3 awesome boys, God's agent, speaker and blogger. Writing to inspire you for a better life in God! Find her on: google
Ugochi Oritsejolomisan

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40 Comments

  1. Im passionate about teaching parents on they should raise thier children well that is my burning desire i feel so unhappy to see especially teen agers who have no vision and to see Parents failing to teach their children so i want you to support me with information on how best can i carryout this program. There is a lot that needs to be done here in zimbabwe please help

    1. I will be glad to help Belvin. If you email me at teshuva7@gmail.com we can get into details.

  2. Hello from Jerusalem.

    I really was blessed by what you had to say.

    I have a free ebook on this subject which agrees with your point of view.

    I would be happy to send it to you or link it.

    Blessings,

    samuel martin

    1. Thanks very much Martin, I am glad to know we are not few that believe differently on this issue.
      You can send me the e-book via teshuva7@gmail.com.
      Have a very blessed week!

  3. I agree with not spanking. My daughter is only two, but I see many others her age and around her age in the faimlyspanked many time and results do not seem to be as effective as alternatives My daughter is well behaved especially in public. She plays well with others and never hits. People love to use the scripture about “sparing the rod” as a basis for spanking, but what about the scripture we all use for comfort in Psalm 23- “Thy rod and thy staff comfort me.” A rod and a staff are used my a shephaerd to guide and correct his sheep. I think that is “rod” is being used in the same way in the first scripture. As parents we are supposed to guide and correct are children as God does us.

    1. Praise God my sister. Like you I believe a child can be chastised by so many means besides spanking, and will yield positive results. I see that in your two year old. Thanks a lot for coming by and sharing with us here, do have a super blessed day!
      Love

  4. I’ve been working on a blog post about spanking off and on for about a month now, I’ve been a little hesitant to post it because it’s so controversial, but your post is confirmation for me. I suggest you and others who may be in question about spanking read this article, it is very well written and I agree with it 100%. http://www.gentlechristianmothers.com/articles/laurie/gcmguidance.php

    1. It is so very controversial, but my prayer is that God will give us all insight to His word. Thanks a lot for coming by and sharing your thoughts, do have a super blessed day!
      Love

  5. Great thoughts, the rod of correction works, not the rod of destruction. as they grow older, words work more than rods. Great discernment is needed to avoid turning them to rebels. I believe that a total avoidance of discipline will grow militants. Over-discipline like spanking,scalding,knocking,wounding etc. also raises hardened criminals. Have a great day.

    1. I agree with you, we must trust God for discernment. Thanks a lot for coming by and leaving your thoughts, do have a super blessed day!

  6. We have smacked the hands of our children when they were small – you know when you get into that complete deadlock with them? However, there have been times I have done this in anger and regretted it – it makes me feel nasty afterwards. Whereas other forms of punishment such as sanctions feel corrective without the guilt. Thanks for sharing so honestly – such a thought-provoking post.
    Thanks for linking up at Essential Fridays.
    Blessings
    Mel from Essential Thing Devotions

    1. My thoughts too Mel, thanks a lot for coming by. It was my pleasure sharing, do have a super blessed day!
      Love

  7. Ugochi, this is a very interesting read — very thought provoking. I am not a parent, so I certainly can’t judge you or side in favor of spanking. From a personal stand point as an educator, I would say that it’s important to know your child — each child has different bents and a unique temperament. What works for one child might not work for another. I also think it’s important to know how to spank correctly — not out of anger, but out of love. Some situations might not warrant spanking, while others would. I think each family should fast and pray and ask God for discernment about how to best discipline and train one’s children.

    1. I agree with you, what works for one might not work for another. We should really seek God’s guidance on this important issue of child discipline. I have seen that spanking doesn’t work well for our boys.
      Thanks a lot for coming by and leaving a note, do have a super blessed day!
      Love

  8. I’m sorry, but I beg to differ that spanking makes people violent, if 99% of our generation in Nigeria would be fighting mortal combat, since we were mostly spanked.

    I also don’t even think spanking made many of us distant from our parents. In fact, many people (including me) thank God for the discipline we received from our parents.

    We are 4 kids in my house. The first 3 of us got spanked/cained by our disciplinarian mother, and we turned out very very alright. In fact, the last one, who stopped being spanked after a while cos she had to go to US at an early age cos of some unfortunate family issue, is in fact the one giving wahala now.

    In the proverbs 22 scripture, it states that it is the nature of a child to be foolish/mischievous, anyhow you want to put it. Talking to a 3 year old does not drive correction out. In fact, the whites have done study, on how if you inflict pain on a child, the lesson lasts longer. You spank a child, and when they are becoming teens, you reason with them, and talk to them, not the other way round.

    As I like to end in cases like this, we all have to make our choices, and stand by the consequence of those choices. In the end, it is your decision whether to spank or not to spank your kids.

    1. I understand you very well, spanking works well for some and does not work well for some. By violence I do not mean street fights, I meant our older children might think it is the way to make their younger ones obey hence they would start laying their hands on them too.

      I too was brought up in Nigeria my home town, with countless spanks, but it did not communicate love to me, it only communicated pain. Until I came to know Christ I harboured resentment for my mum. However, whenever my Dad, talked to me in the wee hours of the morning, I would cry in sobriety and make up my mind not to do whatever it was again, I loved him and wanted to please him. Like I said in the post, my obedience to my mum was not out of love and wanting to obey, but in fear of the spanking `I could get otherwise.

      Inflicting pain in a child might make them know right from wrong and cause them to heed to instruction, but I have seen where constant rebuke and admonishment also achieved the same result. I would of course naturally slap the hand of a child if he is bringing it to fire…
      Now I have seen where a child keeps going to electricity and each time he goes his parents remove him, this went on for as long as he went towards the socket and as he grew older, he knew he was not allowed so he looked to see if they were watching and if he thought no, he would go for it but still they would remove him… as he grew even older, he hardly bothered to go…
      Spanking made me behave well in the presence of my mom but when I am away from her… I lived a very silly life when I left home, then I wasn’t within reach of spanking and my dad had passed…
      I believe in Chastisement- rebuke, admonish, reproof, discipline… Spanking is one way, and I believe every parent should chastise with the medium that works for their children.

      I CANNOT afford to leave my children to themselves without due chastisement; by God’s grace my children are not characterized by unruliness, disrespect or being out of control. The word of God is working wonders in their lives, our examplary living is also helping. We debunk their hearts and minds when they get back from school and from what they see on media. We teach them and also pray for them to love righteousness and hate wickedness.
      Our children our the primary assignment God has called us to after serving Him and making disciples, if we fail in raising them according to God’s standard we have truly failed.
      I choose to discipline my children when they do wrong, I choose not to leave them to themselves without adequately correcting them, I choose to show them right from wrong and by God’ grace influence them into choosing right.
      Thanks a lot for coming by, I do appreciate your honest and straight forward response to this.
      Have a super blessed week!
      Love

  9. {Melinda} I read one of your responses to a comment above … I think you hit the nail on the head. Our attitude and motives as we discipline our children are so important. They KNOW, even at an early age, when it is motivated by impatience or anger or if it’s motivated by love. Such a difference in their response when we handle it from an attitude of calm and love. Not easy. By a long shot. But something we all should be striving for.

    1. Not easy at all Melinda, not easy…

  10. {Melinda} Solid reasoning. We didn’t do much spanking with our kids as they were growing up. I found it wasn’t very effective. Withholding privileges that were important to them seemed to work much better in motivating them to change their behavior.

    1. I agree, as toddlers spanking my make them fear doing whatever it is they are not wanted to do but growing up, it hardly ever works. I remember one of my sons just stiffening his body for me and was like go on and do it…
      It was not pleasant to me at all.
      Thanks for coming by Melinda, I appreciate your visits. Do have a super blessed day!
      Love

  11. When I was little we had to stand in the corner if we did anything wrong. Nose in the corner. No turning around or it would add time.Even though it really was just a couple of minutes to a child it seemed long. My mom tell a story of when my brother had to stand in the corner and he asked her if he could just have a spanking instead. He learned nothing from being spanked. Just it was over quick and he could go play. Having to stand in the corner and think about what you did wrong taught us more and it’s exactly what I did with my own boys when they were little.

    1. I am glad to know that not-spanking has turned out well for some. I am beginning to believe some more…
      Thanks a lot for coming by Susie, do have a super blessed week ahead!

  12. Okay. I guess I don’t see where else in Scripture it tells parents how to discipline a child. So, to not spank seems to me to not do it the way God ordained the correction of a child (with grace and love of course).

    Anyways, I think that is all I’ll say.

    You know where I stand and what I think is biblical. 😉

    I hope you have a great rest of your day!

    -Justin

    P.s. glad I didn’t offend you

    1. Of course I know the Bible recommends using the rod, The Bible also recommends chastisement as I mentioned in my last reply. Maybe I am the one who needs to work on myself, maybe I need to learn how to spank with grace and love. Maybe my children see impatience in my eyes when I spank… I really do not know.
      But I know if I do not chastise my child I would be sinning against God, and I do know the implications of that. I CANNOT leave my children to themselves without due correction and chastisement when they are wrong.
      Justin if I allow offense I would be committing sin and I want to keep my heart void of offense, besides I know you don’t mean to offend.
      Thanks a lot for speaking in love, have a super blessed weekend!

  13. Hello Ugochi, always a pleasure reading your blog. Growing up I remember my grandfater never spank me. I got away with everything. That was his way of showing me love. My grandmother used to always tell him he is not doing right by me. My father spanked me maybe 3 times. That’s all I ever needed. I love order and dicipline in my own life. Now I have my children daughter now 20 & a 5 yr old son. I always discussed my daughter’s behavior with her when she got a spanking. Sometimes spanking came first but we always discussed why by end of day. Now that she is away from home. She thanks me for how I raised her, spanking and all. Now with my son I am doing the same. I don’t feel bad. I am a parent for a reason & God has given us His words & the Holy Spirit to help us train our children. I pray & have devotions with my son daily. I am attending an African origin church. The children there are out of control! They are messy and undiciplined. Parents have NO CONTROL of their kids. They say “here in america we can’t spank our children” I just don’t understand if we are praying, fasting and seeking guidance from God why are the children’s behavior not seen? Children are our future and if there is no good guidance what kind of future will there be? Thank God for His unfailing never ending Grace on us all. Bless you!

    1. I know spanking puts children in order, I by no means think it is a sin to spank and thank God our schools and government has not banned spanking. What I am saying is I do not see it yielding results in my children, maybe I did not do it right. It hardened them, distanced them from me and made them to start hitting each other.
      I CANNOT afford to leave my children to themselves without due chastisement; by God’s grace my children are not characterized by unruliness, disrespect or being out of control. The word of God is working wonders in their lives, our examplary living is also helping. We debunk their hearts and minds when they get back from school and from what they see on media. We teach them and also pray for them to love righteousness and hate wickedness.
      Our children our the primary assignment God has called us to after serving Him and making disciples, if we fail in raising them according to God’s standard we have truly failed.
      Thanks for coming by Annmarie, have a super blessed weekend!

  14. Boy, we did get the spankings back in my day. I remember my mom whipping me all the way up the stairs with word coming out of her mouth for each smack. “I (whack) – Told (whack) – You (whack)” lol. I don’t hold it against her at all, and never felt abused.

    We have four kids. I did spank my oldest (he’s almost 26 now) every once in awhile, I guess out of habit from what I was used to in my youth? But it was rare and I just never carried that practice on with him or the other three who followed.

    1. I am glad to know I am not making a wrong decision. am sure if it was not working for you, you would have resumed spanking. Thanks a lot Rosey, I am encouraged. Have a super blessed weekend!
      Love

  15. Okay, thanks for your response. I guess what I am concerned with is that if God says to “use the rod of correction.” To not use it would be disobedience on our part, right (as parents)? To use your argument, if children follow their parents example, would they follow the example of picking and choosing what parts of the Bible to follow?

    I hope I am writing with grace because that is how I am meaning to write. I don’t mean to offend. Obviously we disagree, but I want to write and communicate grace.

    -Justin

    A good resource: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005GG6BYC/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_il_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B005GG6BYC&linkCode=as2&tag=agapeth-20

    1. It is okay Justin, I am by no means offended. I saw this coming before I put up the post, and I did ask for honest responses.
      First, I am not picking and choosing what scriptures to obey. I am only saying that there are other godly and Biblical means of achieving the results we want to see in our children. Like I said in my first response, I am not a good spanker, and I am not enjoying the resultant ungodly fear and distance.
      The Important thing to God I believe is that we do not leave a child to himself/herself, they must be CHASTISED- scold, upbraid, berate, reprimand, reprove, rebuke, admonish, chide, censure,lecture, criticize, pull up, take to task, bring to book;
      Since we can chastise them by other godly and Biblical means and get the desired result, I would rather not spank.

    2. Justin,
      Let’s understand not only what God’s Word says, but also what it means. I think you will agree with me that the meaning is far more important than just what the Bible says.

      Are you 100% sure you know the meaning?

      I would be interested to hear from you.

      samuel martin
      jerusalem israel

  16. This is an interesting read. For those of us that has already become used/addicted to spanking, I will want to know the steps I can employ to stop. How did you finally stop, how long did it take…

    1. Ha, ha, ha… I did not say I have stopped. I only changed my mind, it has not been easy at all. Like I said, I was a very impulsive spanker and this is not easy to stop abruptly, but I can say that I am happy with the progress I have made so far.
      About how, first I reminded myself that I wanted my children to obey me because they love not fear me. Spanking put a very ungodly fear in them and distanced them from me.
      I started talking more, I didn’t have patience to do this before because I wanted immediate results. I try to talk to and with them with a level tone and this seems to sink more into their hearts. I have actually talked them into crying sorry tears a couple of times, reminding them of past scriptures we have studied and showing them new ones, sharing my or others life lessons with them. This has yielded results for us.
      Basically, I believe patience is key. When we work on our threshold of patience, we would spank less and less…
      I have not stopped completely, but I am getting there.
      I hope I was able to answer you, thanks a lot for coming by, have a super blessed day!
      Love

      1. Thank you so much Ugo. I am truly thankful for your response.
        http://www.blcompere.com

  17. If the Bible tells parents to spank their children, why do it a different way? Isn’t it God’s way of discipline?

    Ultimately their sinful behavior is a matter of the heart. So I don’t spank my child to make them good. We would talk about what they did and why they are going to get spanked. But I must address their heart. Sometimes it may be a long conversation and sometimes it may not be.

    About it creating violence, I never had that issue. Naturally, my human heart creates sin. I don’t think spanking increases my sinful heart, in fact it doesn’t if spanked correctly because I know it is the way God has designed parental correction.

    -Justin

    1. I know God expects us to use the rod of correction, but my thought is that He does not mean rid as in sticks or other physical instruments. He means disciplinary measures to correct them.

      I know sin abounds in the heart of a child, but with prayer, teaching, dialogues, exemplary living, and other measures they can be corrected.

      The Holy Spirit can work in them both to will and do The Father’s pleasure as we play our parts in their lives.

      You know children often do what they see their parents do, that is why I believe that spanking can make them think it is okay to get physical with their siblings and others when they offend them.

      Thanks a lot for coming by to share your thoughts, I know this is a highly delicate matter. But I see that I am not a good Spanker, it does not work well for us because it puts fear in our children and we have discovered other corrective disciplines that can also achieve what spanking would without the fear, measure that pass the message well into the minds of our boys.

      Have a super blessed day!

  18. I completely agree! We have never felt comfortable spanking our children. We have received a lot of judgment and criticism from Christian friends, but it is just something that we feel very strongly about. I also feel there are a lot of good reasons not to do it and you’ve covered a few of them here. Thanks for sharing at thriving thursday 🙂

    1. I always felt bad after spanking them, I didn’t think there was any other way. Thanks a lot for coming by with this encouragement. It was my pleasure sharing, have a super blessed day!
      Love

      1. “I always felt bad after spanking them” – I have heard this from scores of Christian mothers. This is mother’s intuition telling you it is wrong. God placed this intuition inside of you.

        Great to see you embracing this vision.

        Many women from all over the world also heeding this call.

        Blessings

        samuel martin
        jerusalem israel

        1. Thanks Samuel, I appreciate you!

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