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01/04/2010 08:51 AM ID: 82313 Permalink   

Study: Spanked Children Happier, More Successful


A study of 2,600 people conducted by psychology professor Marjorie Gunnoe of Calvin College, Michigan, has found that people spanked as young children are happier, more likely to volunteer, do well in school, and go to university.

Politicians and children's groups in the UK have claimed that smacking is abuse and have tried to criminalise it due to alleged long term harm. Gunnoe found that clear behavioural problems only seem to develop if spanking continues into adolescence.

"The claims made for not spanking children fail to hold up. They are not consistent with the data. I think of spanking as a dangerous tool, but there are times when there is a job big enough for a dangerous tool," said Gunnoe.

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  Is there a difference between  
spanking and other corporeal punishment?
  by: H. W. Hutchins   01/04/2010 09:44 AM     
If you bother reading the article - severity and age.
  by: tantryl   01/04/2010 02:02 PM     
Bullshit. I was spanked with just about everything my dad or mom could find and i´m far less successful then my doctor friend who´s parents made it a point to never physically abuse.
  by: splicer   01/04/2010 04:14 PM     
Spanked monkeys are happiest.
  by: theironboard     01/04/2010 04:30 PM     
  Unbelievable garbage  
This woman´s research is already being debunked! She uses outdated data for one, secondly, is the methods she used were reputed numerous times by colleagues! Spanking is HITTING! The younger you hit, the less likely you are doing to cause a change in behavior. Do you think, for example, a 3-4 year old will understand clearly WHY you are hitting them? All they know is it hurts! Is that what a parent is trying to accomplish to hurt their child? If you hurt..and the older the child, particularly over age 10, the more likley you will cause anger, frustration, hatred, and even more likeliness of fuuture potential violence. I´ve worked with children of all ages for over 25 years, raised 2 sons of my own without ever hitting them. When you learn patience yourself, and utilize NON PHYSICAL, age appropriate consequences CONSISTENTLY, these other methods do work. It is a lazy or uneducated parent that hits.
  by: Seattledad   01/04/2010 04:36 PM     
oh my, lol. That was bad. :P

  by: deadvenusblue     01/04/2010 04:39 PM     
  To the non spankers  
big difference between spanking and abuse. Some kids are good with just a time out, the rest are unaffected, and true that the children wont understand why they are spanked sometimes, the Jist is fear me until you understand me. The child cannot comprehend the damage a car will do to them, and if they don´t fear you the car which they don´t fear WILL kill them. That said, life if full of dangers ESPECIALLY parents who take their miserable lives out on innocent children, but sometimes a correction is in order and like it or not some people need correction that why there are prisons.
  by: OrIgInAl_ThOuGhT   01/04/2010 05:06 PM     
Good point. There is a HUGE difference between spanking and abuse. Sometimes, a message needs to be sent in clear, unequivocal terms and that may be the need to do it. Sometimes even the threat of being spanked is enough.

That said, it should only happen a couple of times in a kid´s lifetime, and for very specific reasons.
  by: cranky_paranoid     01/04/2010 05:34 PM     
  Michigan oh Michigan  
We have been busy news for SN this last few weeks, especially with research and lists. I don´t spank my kids and it isn´t my thing, but I am not going to tell a parent that a swat on the ass is abuse. Someone already said it but the difference between a spanking and a beating is night and day. Would I be happier if no one spanke? Sure, I would also be happier if the amount of single teen moms dropped and that all the baby daddys actually had to pay a realistic support since most of the bounce as soon as the infant isn´t ´new´ anymore.

Open hand spank on the ass is not the same as I saw many of my friends deal with and that was cutting their own branch or getting the ´paddle´ which even as a young child I thought was wrong.
  by: TaraB     01/04/2010 05:55 PM     
  Child buttock-battering vs. DISCIPLINE:  
Child buttock-battering vs. DISCIPLINE:

Child buttock-battering for the purpose of gaining compliance is nothing more than an inherited bad habit.

Its a good idea for people to take a look at what they are doing, and learn how to DISCIPLINE instead of hit.

I think the reason why television shows like "Supernanny" and "Dr. Phil" are so popular is because that is precisely what many (not all) people are trying to do.

There are several reasons why child bottom-slapping isn´t a good idea. Here are some good, quick reads recommended by professionals:

Plain Talk About Spanking
by Jordan Riak,

The Sexual Dangers of Spanking Children
by Tom Johnson,

by Lesli Taylor M.D. and Adah Maurer Ph.D.

Most compelling of all reasons to abandon this worst of all bad habits is the fact that buttock-battering can be unintentional sexual abuse for some children. There is an abundance of educational resources, testimony, documentation, etc available on the subject that can easily be found by doing a little research with the recommended reads-visit

Just a handful of those helping to raise awareness of why child bottom-slapping isn´t a good idea:

American Academy of Pediatrics,
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry,
Center For Effective Discipline,
PsycHealth Ltd Behavioral Health Professionals,
Churches´ Network For Non-Violence,
Nobel Peace Prize recipient Archbishop Desmond Tutu,
Parenting In Jesus´ Footsteps,
Global Initiative To End All Corporal Punishment of Children,
United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

In 26 countries, child corporal punishment is prohibited by law (with more in process). In fact, the US was the only UN member that did not ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
  by: PDeverit   01/04/2010 05:56 PM     
  Spanking is hitting!  
I understand some of you are trying to justify hitting an innocent child..and it continues to amaze me. Prisons? They are for the adults that commit crimes, not for children..geez..and sometimes they need to be hit? why? please justify why you think so. Firm, consistent non-physical discipline, which, by the way, means TO! What happens when parents hit is that they are angry or tired or both. If they take a "time out" themselves to calm down, and TALK to their children, they can utilize consequences that do work. Sorry, but there is NEVER AN EXCUSE to justify hitting a chld, and, particularly, a teenager. I wish that every parent PRIOR to being allowed to have children be REQUIRED to ake parenting classes that can show them methods that are proven successful that do not include hitting. hitting causes embarrasement, humiliation, and physcial pain. The person you trust the most in your life, mom and dad, are hitting you? Causes a loss of trust all too often.
  by: Seattledad   01/04/2010 05:57 PM     
  Misleading Article  
The study is not completed!
"One of those new population studies underway is called Portraits of American Life. It involves interviews of 2,600 people and their adolescent children every three years for the next 20 years. Dr. Marjorie Gunnoe is working with the first wave of data on the teens."

Saying that this study proves anythings is akin to sayiing that a sports team who is ahead in the ist or 2nd inning has won.
Today thousnds of parents will think they have scientific prrof that hitting is ok when that in fact is not the case.
  by: mothersson2002   01/04/2010 06:42 PM     
When you spank, you are teaching the child that knocking the crap out of someone is okay.
  by: Lurker     01/04/2010 06:50 PM     
  Ban Corporal Punishment of Children  
For those that wish to work toward banning corporal punishmentbof children, please coonsider signing this petition:
  by: mothersson2002   01/04/2010 06:52 PM     
I´ve read a lot of other articles that show plenty of data and research to the contrary. My understanding is spanking does have an immediate effect on the child (aka they´ll shut up) but has been shown to have negative effects in the long term. And a child will repeat any behavior they see at home, which can lead to them hitting other kids on the playground.

It seems like the lazy way to discipline, considering it´s immediate effects.
  by: barryman9001   01/04/2010 07:11 PM     
  i got my ass whooped  
when i stepped out of line, and every other method had failed. i turned out just fine. i was not abused in any way.
  by: robplatt   01/04/2010 07:17 PM     
  Child buttock-battering vs. DISCIPLINE:  
The vast majority of professionals agree that child buttock-battering isn’t healthy. A marginal few (mostly religious fundamentalists) think that child bottom-slapping is good. They use the same selective literalist interpretation of the Bible as was used to justify “witch”-burning, depraved torture methods for those accused of sin and heresy, slavery, racism, wife-beating, oppression of women and a host of other social ills.
  by: PDeverit   01/04/2010 08:13 PM     
"i turned out just fine."
Is that your own opinion or someone elses´? (teehee)
  by: John E Angel     01/04/2010 09:19 PM     
My moms :) I´m 27, own my vehicles, helped build two companies. Am a full-time developer/network/system admin.

My point was it all boils down to the individual. When I swore, my mom would put tobasco sauce on my tongue. Guess what, I rarely swore (as a child). If I could recall the pain from getting a wooden spoon on my ass, I usually minded. My sister was treated the same way, and shes a good person too.
  by: robplatt   01/04/2010 09:55 PM     
  I promised My Kids I Would Not Spank Them  
unless they hit each other. If they did I was not going to be a judge and would give both participants a swat.

Kids being fairly intelligent continued to wail on each other, just never around me.

I settled for this as the best I was going to get.
  by: ichi     01/04/2010 10:40 PM     
I don´t believe it. I known people who were never spanked in their life, and they are sooooo successful, happy, and a pleasure to be around.

But on the other hand, you see spoiled brats that grow up to be multi-felons. Those people obviously don´t want to follow the guidelines that the government and the local state laws. Nonconformists is the proper name I do believe.

It all depends on your parents, people you hang out with, goals, self esteem, environment, education, and personal achievements. Some kids need their asses kicked, others don´t. Some kids have everything, and they are still rebels. Some have nothing, but have goals to be the best. It all depends on the person, not if he/she was spanked as a kid.
  by: slayer06   01/05/2010 03:21 AM     
All right genius, where does the article mention that spanking, and/but other physical contact does/doesn´t have a similar effect? Please do point that out for me.
  by: H. W. Hutchins   01/05/2010 03:51 AM     
A lot of people signed up to comment on this, huh?

I was spanked as a child, and I want to point out that not all spankings are created equal.

Someone mentioned the importance of understanding why you´re being punished. My parents always let me know why: ´I told you not to go down there because it´s not safe, but you did it anyway, so you´re getting a spanking.´

Also, the spanking wasn´t a hard smack. It was probably just enough to where I didn´t want to incur another one. And my parents stopped doing it when I was quite young, like by 15 or so.

(Just kidding on the age part ...)
  by: Ben_Reilly     01/05/2010 06:21 AM     
  I´m with Ironboard and Ben on this one  
I was spanked as a child and I turned out to be awesome!
In conclusion: spanked kids make AWESOME ADULTS!

(the conclusion is just a joke. (since I´m always harping on the rhetoric of argument.))
  by: shaohu     01/05/2010 11:22 AM     
  Spanking vs a Darwin Award  
"Do you think, for example, a 3-4 year old will understand clearly WHY you are hitting them? All they know is it hurts! Is that what a parent is trying to accomplish to hurt their child?"

Yes!, but in a controlled sitution...

I spanked my kid one time on the but when she was leaning against a screen window on a 2nd floor apartment. I was mad, scared, but in control. I would rather see them cry with a red ass than be splattered on the lawn.

Sometimes you have to relate a little pain with something until they learn how to properly analyze dangerous situations on their own.

I just hope there aren´t a lot of cases where kids never learned to relate pain to a dangerous situation, and something terrible happened.

Toss me in jail, but my daughters´s still alive, and I am pretty sure the red mark is gone.
  by: ChicksHateMe   01/05/2010 01:41 PM     
I got my tail WHOOPED when I was coming up. Nowadays in our extremely sissified society, it would be considered child abuse. I´m from the time of picking your own switch and getting it inspected before the smackdown. I´m from the era of getting that tail whooped fresh out of the shower. I´m from the era of being brought out of sleep due to a whoopin. I´ve been whooped with everything from a hand, extension cord, fly swatter, vine, branch, belt, hairbrush, my sister´s "my size barbie" (lol, that one still makes me laugh), etc. And I looooove my parents to death. I deserved all the whoopins I got. I´m happy, and very successful today.

When my daughter get´s out of line and the situation calls for it, she get´s spanked. I hate doing it, and I won´t go to the extent of what my parents did (because I hate even popping her butt once or twice), but she does get spanked. She loves me and is a daddy´s girl. She´s 4 and she understands why she get´s spanked when she does, because I make her tell me why she is about to get one.
  by: C.O.G.   01/05/2010 03:39 PM     
Heh, I got spanked, but not too often because I learned right from wrong pretty quick. If I did something, and got spanked for it, I was such a genius that I would think to myself before repeating a devious act, "Hm. Nah, I did that before and it didn´t end well for me." Plus I got to watch my older brother get spanked for crap, and I learned not to do it =P

I was the sort of child that could adhere to my parents request without much more than verbal discipline, but they didn´t play favorites. So I got the same. I like to think I didn´t turn out terrible. I mean, I love my parents and I hope I can do half as good a job, so, meh.

I can´t stand watching Supernanny though. Watching adults trying to reason with 3 year olds is astonishingly stupid. =P Not that they´re all 3 year olds. It´s just those specific episodes when she´s trying to hold the attention of a kid who just wants to do what kids desire: whatever they want.

Does the Supernanny have kids? Hm.

  by: Dayron   01/05/2010 04:02 PM     
  Dead on COG Dayron  
AMERICA is too soft, if your don´t show your child what the line is the system and or the POLICE will, just because you are right doesn´t mean that you win or won, they won´t learn to pick their battles, and I´d be interested to know what the Rates are of Adults beating their parents when they are old and feeble if they were or weren´t hit. I bet you the ones that didn´t get corrected young are beating them (their parents now. Besides You guys can´t be serious about this, I mean I see TEENS all the time disrespecting their parents, yelling just showing their ass, and I bet anyone that, THAT child was the fruit of the non hitting parenting method. If a person doesn´t respect there parents they arn´t going to respect anyone else and trust me your little prince or princess will grow up into someone else´s problem, and when they do get hit by someone they wont know what to do, they will fear them and be controlled by them, for their own selfish and nefarious purposes better YOU than THEM.
  by: OrIgInAl_ThOuGhT   01/05/2010 04:40 PM     
I was never spanked as a child and I turned out just fine, however, I am very open minded and realize I may have missed out on an important area of my development.

Therefore, if there are any youngish women, preferably brunettes, smaller framed, (nerdy/glasses a plus) who would like to help me conduct some research - I would be very appreciative.

I have, in fact, been very naughty by the way.
  by: spiggy   01/06/2010 03:30 PM     
I apologise for attempting to answer your question. My high horse has never been so ashamed. I was just preaching and ranting and raving with all that support/opposition I was throwing behind the article/study/professor.

Congratulations on your brilliant interpretation of my comment, oh wise guru.
  by: tantryl   01/07/2010 06:39 AM     
I beg to differ with you. Maybe when you were 3 or 4, you couldn´t figure out why you were being spanked, but I sure could. I understood very well that when I pulled the dog´s tail, and I got spanked for it, that pulling the dog´s tail was bad. The same with the first time I left the back yard without permission. And the same thing the first time I stole a candy bar from the store.

I don´t think that a 3 or 4 year old has to be a genius to figure this out. And I don´t think you´re giving them enough credit.

Every successful person in America that´s over 40 was probably spanked as a child. If a child plays with a knife, and gets cut, that´s a lot more effective than a parent trying to reason with the child to get him/her to stop playing with knives. "Ouch, that hurts! I´d better not do that any more."
  by: WillyMaykett   01/07/2010 02:59 PM     

  by: kidladen   01/08/2010 03:17 AM     
  Results of bottom-slapping  
People used to think it was necessary to "spank" adult members of the community, military trainees, and prisoners. In some countries they still do. In our country, it is considered sexual assault if a person over the age of 18 is "spanked", but only if over the age of 18.

For one thing, buttock-battering can vibrate the pudendal nerve, which can lead to sexual arousal. There are multitudinous other physiological ways in which it can be sexually abusive, but I won´t list them all here. One can use the resources I´ve posted if they want to learn more.

Buttock-battering teaches your child nothing. And they may end up speaking and behaving like the previous poster. As you can see he very clearly has delayed empathy development.
  by: PhDeverit   01/08/2010 09:24 PM     
  My thoughts  
I have 2 kids and NEVER have spanked them but as kid I was spanked a couple times and it was not a big deal. Yes, I remember it hurt and I have absolutely no idea what I was supposed to have learned from it but I am not scarred physically or emotionally.

There is a fine line between parent inflicting pain on a child out of anger and spanking as a lesson, but a line is there. I think if you talked about it with the child before doing the spanking it is considerably different than grabbing them in a rage, throwing them over your knee and smacking their behind as hard as you could.

I believe when children see the rage and anger in their parent’s eyes and then feel them inflict pain it is really something they will likely emulate in the future (anger = cause pain). If a parent discusses it with them first it not only calms the parent so they are not hitting in anger, it creates a different message (punishment = pain). So, pain is probably an effective method of teaching a lesson but not how I want to raise my kids and generally not recommended as an educational tool.

That said, it did not screw me up and was just not that big of a deal for me. Kids are amazingly resilient and fragile at the same time. Adults are whiners, lol.
  by: UnknownElement   01/10/2010 08:57 AM     
  it really depends...  
I think of spanking as a dangerous tool, but there are times when there is a job big enough for a dangerous tool. You just don’t use it for all your jobs.”(
By Georgia Warren of The Sunday Times in L)
,,,,,,,,i definetely agree,,,
and it still depend on the parents how to discipline their children,,some parents had grew up through "spanking/smackin"g discipline.took it as a "love discipline",led to them to good grades,good person.Some parents grew up by the same way of discipline but took it on a wrong way,led them into a rebel child/teen,,or a trouble person.
..In my personal opinion,,i will go less on spanking discipline.When kids having tantrums mood,talking and letting them know that you´re hearing them,would make them stop rolling in the floor,,,when they make mistake,,a good parent-child talk will more likely goes inside their hearts,what kind of message or lesson would you like them to know or to learn,,a simple hug and kiss,is more effective action rather than a piece of stick as tool for spanking,,,,
Children who gets spank,obey their parent out of fear not out of respect.they become less open to their emotion.
Again ,this is my own opinion,,i speak through my own experience,,and by looking around..friends,,neighbors.Thank you :)
  by: asianlady   01/11/2010 09:24 PM     
  by: Seattledad  
good point of view ,sir,,,:)
  by: asianlady   01/11/2010 09:34 PM     
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