So, after I wrote my post on spanking, I decided to talk to my daughter about it. She’s 8, so I feel like we can have some very thoughtful, productive conversations. It’s probably important to note (if you didn’t read yesterday’s post), I don’t spank. I don’t feel like it’s useful, helpful, or in my daughter’s best interest. I’ve never really told her that, but she knows we don’t spank, so she’s clearly coming from a biased position.
Here’s kind of how our conversation went…
Me: So, Buddy, I wrote a little blog post today about spanking. I thought it would be a good way to get people talking. What do you think about spanking? Is it a good way for parents to punish their kids?
Her (horrified look on her face): No! It’s a terrible way to punish your kids!!! I mean, if a child is doing something bad or disobeying their parents, hitting them will just make them feel more angry and then they will want to misbehave more to get back at their parents! Hitting a child makes them feel angry with their parents, like they can’t trust them. And why would they want to obey a parent they can’t trust?
Me: Wow…that’s a great observation. I love hearing your thoughts on this!
Her: And besides, we’re kids, so we’re going to make mistakes! We’re still just trying to figure it all out, and it’s our parents’ job to help us, not hurt us. Talking to us and teaching us always works better.
Me: Hugging her tight. Unable to speak because I’m choked up.
That’s a pretty interesting take from an 8-year-old, don’t you think? I was kind of blown away, to be honest. And proud. Very, very proud. My daughter is a reasonable, thoughtful, and articulate little human being. I guess my strategy is working.
For today anyway. Talk to me again when she’s 13!