29 July 2008

No Smacking!

this spanking is ok........ but just this kind!

By Kate Sikora
the daily telegraph
July 30, 2008 12:00am

SMACKING and yelling at children is causing a rise in mental health problems, with three-year-olds suffering from depression and anxiety.

At least one in seven children are affected by a mental illness.

Some psychologists are reporting a 60 per cent increase in the number of youngsters displaying anxiety and social issues.

A study from the Murdoch Children's Research Institute has found that harsh discipline and parental stress is increasing the risk of mental health troubles in young children.

Stressed parents lashing out at their kids are behind the growing problem.

Study author and child psychologist Dr Jordana Bayer said constant smacking and yelling at a child was fuelling abusive behaviour.

"We are not talking about a parent who smacks just once," she said.

"Remember when parents smack or hit their child, they might learn to do that as well. When parents are stressed, it's more challenging to be relaxed and respond to their children in ways they would like to respond to them."

Researchers have been following more than 700 toddlers, aged between seven months and three years, to reveal the risks of parenting practices.

Children subjected to physical punishment are more likely to kick, hit and bite others and become socially withdrawn.

Parents who continue to smack their abusive children could be setting them on a path of alcohol and drug abuse, crime, unemployment and suicide.

Dr Kimberley O'Brien, of the Quirky Kids Clinic at Woollahra, said stressed parents were placing too much pressure on their children.

"We have seen a 60 per cent increase in demand for our child anxiety classes in the past six months," she said.

Mental health has become one of the nation's biggest health issues.

Psychologists are seeing toddlers biting their nails, while older children are wetting the bed and pulling out their eyelashes as a result of anxiety.

Despite a push by experts to ban smacking, some adults are still using the "traditional" method to discipline children. Childhood Foundation CEO Joe Tucci said hitting youngsters had become outdated.

Mother-of-four Mary Hadeed knows how stressful raising kids can be, but said smacking was a last resort.

She said she was a big believer in "time out" not just for her children but for herself as well: "There are a lot of things that you can put in place before it gets to smacking - for me it's a last resort. I very rarely smack.

"For me it's about treating each of them as an individual and figuring out what's most important to them and then using that as a way of disciplining them without it having any long-term effects."

Dear Readers,

I have
never believed any child should be hit in any way, or called names or made fun of in any way by those responsible for raising them. There's always an alternative to striking/slapping/spanking/hitting/kicking/punching/belting/swearing at or anything else that brings your person in contact with a smaller person.... child.. The abuse I suffered as a child/young person still haunts me to this very day. And the physical abuse is much harder to deal with then the sexual abuse I had to deal with.
I'm very proud to say that my sister and my brother have both broken the chain of punishment(?)/abuse that have plagued more then two generations of my own family.

One should only stroke and love your child.
Encourage them and yes punish too.
But never with a hand.
Only your heart.

No child should ever be hit.

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