Those who were corporally punished: What were you punished FOR?

Lot of posters in nostalgia threads claim they were

– paddled in school

– spanked/paddled by their parents

– slapped by random adults who caught them committing a transgression away from home

and of course, if it did happen away from home, they got in MORE trouble when their parents found out, dunt dunt dunt.

So two questions.

  1. What kind of behavior earned a paddling? And did you know the rules going in, or was it random? And come to that, did you weigh the cost-benefit ratio before committing one of these transgressions? Or were paddlings so common they weren’t much of a deterrent?

  2. Why further punishment when your parents found out? Because you’d brought shame on the family? Because what you’d done was so horrible, you had to pay full penance? Or were they merely angry, instead of meting out further discipline?

For the record, yes, I was spanked as a kid. And that was mostly justified. But I was also slapped in the head, punched, kicked, thrown up against walls, and so on and so forth. Not justified, IMO. Plus, there was the old Wall of Sound: being berated nonstop for half an hour or more… And most importantly, there were never any stated rules. Sometimes it was a matter of crossing a line I didn’t know existed. Other times, as my mom freely admits, she/he/they simply had to take their frustration out on someone, and I was at the end of the line.

As such, I’m not really sure where I stand on spanking. I’m okay with it in theory, but I can’t help wondering: Were all these legendary paddlings truly justified? And did they truly curb unsatisfactory behavior?

Definitely had to learn the rules as I went, and never seemed to get them all. For simple trangressions, not being to dinner on time, sneaking a cookie, tracking in mud; I got a few swacks with a large belt. For the really bad things, not milking the cow on time, wasting food, fighting with a sib, breaking something, the ironing cord came out and I got most of it on the backs of my legs. Of course this was from Mom. Stepdad would just lash out with a fist for pretty much everything that he thought I did wrong, although good size switches intrested him for a few years. Not always to the face though, he hated it when I bled on him, the fists not the switches, the switching went to the back and rear and legs.

None of them seemed to stop me or teach me anything as they continued until I was too big to hit.

For the record, I did not spank my kids.

Mostly being near my brothers when they woke up my dad - he had a nasty temper and was indiscriminate about spreading the pain. He stopped eventually after my mom gave him a black eye and threatened worse if he didn’t reign it in.

Mom only slapped me once when I was 13 - I deserved it. God, 13 year olds are a snotty bunch. Taught me to watch what I called my dad around here, but nothing else.

It depended on which caretakers were doing the punishing.

I don’t remember my mother hitting me, but I do remember her spanking my sister. I don’t remember what that was for.

My father spanked me with a belt a few times, usually for lying to him about something. Once I was taking too long to deliver my newspapers, so he came outside while I was putting the inserts in the papers and started swatting me with his belt, telling me to go faster. He kept at it as I ran the whole paper route, through apartment buildings, about three miles total. As we finished and headed home again, he told me I could slow down now, but I kept running.

His second wife hit both me and my little sister a lot, for just about anything. If she left me or my sister Kelly in charge of her babies and one of them had a dirty diaper when she got home she would rub the shit in our faces. If I took off all day and didn’t call home she would tie me to the railing in front of the apartment or lock me in a shed all the next day. She blacked my eye & gave me a concussion for saying that I didn’t feel like I was accepted as part of the family. They sent me to a foster home shortly after that, so I guess I was right.

I was paddled by teachers for not turning in homework and for being disruptive in class.

My adopted dad had a strict and well-defined system of how many swats you get with the belt for what offense. Most of these were dereliction of responsibility and dishonesty. If I didn’t do my homework and got bad grades for it, if I lied about something.

I’ve tried to forget all this stuff. If I have a child I will never spank them. My lousy upbringing and lack thereof has made me very averse to violence in any form.

Ignoring direct commands and wandering off. We didn’t get spanked past age 5 or so–by that point, we were expected to be able to understand other sorts of consequences. But my parents looked at obeying direct commands and wandering off (at places like Disney world or the mall) as safety issues, and they pretty much conditioned us not to. It was certainly not a frequent occurance.

  1. Only one teacher hit me with a paddle at school. She had said something that hurt my feelings and I couldn’t stop crying. So she hit me on my leg with a paddle to make me stop. I was mortified and humiliated even more. And, of course I continued to cry.

(2) That night was my introduction to drugs. My mother gave me half of a pheno-barbitol and rubbed my back to get me to sleep.

I did get a switching at home when I lied to a teacher about some homework. I deserved that. At least that time my mother didn’t use the belt.

Most of the time I was beaten with a belt as a sudden response to my mother losing her temper. She has a Narcisscistic Personality Disorder and was also going through menopause while I was going through early adolescence. Add to that that she is extremely stubborn and has a quick temper and is never wrong. I’ve seen her break out windows with her anger. But most of the time, I was the window she broke. She slapped me some as a child and one really hard time as a teenager for saying, “Good grief.” We were getting ready to go to Prayer Meeting. Before we left the driveway, she made me get out in the headlights to see if she had left marks on my face. The whippings continued until I left home to go to college, but she didn’t slap me again.

All of this happened while my father was at work. He never lifted a hand to me. But I couldn’t bear it when he was angry or disappointed with me. I dreaded that more than any physical pain. His respect meant the world to me.

Mother had to be counseled about hitting another resident at the assisted care where she lives. She had hit one man with her umbrella for calling her a hussy.

I, and both siblings, were only spanked for lying to cover up an offense, never the offense itself or lying for no reason, up to about 11 or 12 yo. I was born too late ('82) for corporal punishment in public schools or generally in public.

Should I have kids, I would consider the same policy. One sibling has decided against any corporal punishments with his kids, my other sibling’s kid is only 3 months old but has said he will use the same basic policy our parents used.

My mom never spanked me, but my dad would spank me a lot if I messed up on a question on my homework, then he would rewrite up the entire page (sometimes with questions not on the original) and make me redo it until I got 100%, spanking me each time I messed one up.

I think he did it sometimes if I was being cranky or mouthy, but not really that much on those occasions.

I got slapped around by Mom when I would hit my little brother. Anytime I did anything bad to my brother my Mom would hit me back.

My Dad would hit me if I didn’t let him watch something on TV when he got home. We had one TV back then, so I was out of luck if I wanted to watch anything when Dad got home from work.

My Grandfather once beat the crap out of me for watching a sex scene in a movie. And also if I didn’t lower the TV volume when he was talking on the phone I’d get hit.

That’s at least what I can remember. The beatings stopped when I was around 14. I probably deserved most of them. I was a real brat back then.

This was in the 90’s BTW. My parents came here from Russia in 1989 and weren’t so up to date on the social norms here.

I was spanked by my parents. Once by my dad for not telling the truth. IMHO, I was a little too young to call it lying. I was younger than 4, not sure exactly how old. The other times I was spanked by my mom it was for her not liking my attitude. I don’t recall ever being spanked for a clear rules violation, and I was never just smacked at, it was always a “formal” spanking on the butt. The endless lectures were more dreaded than the spankings.

I’m told ( but have no memories of it ) that my brother and I were spanked for running into traffic, and sticking utensils into light sockets. They maintained all their lives that it was justified, and I have to agree despite my general disapproval of spanking. We were apparently too young to reason with, and the goal was to keep us alive, after all.

Mucking around at school when specifically told not to. We were always given the choice of several strokes of the strap or an hour’s detention after school. Naturally every boy chose the strap. It was painful for about five minutes, but was all over and done with quickly.

That makes sense to me- my kids won’t get punished for telling me the truth, ever. There will ALWAYS be consequences for lying to me.

My mom may have spanked us once or twice, I don’t really remember. I remember my dad spanking me once, and him smacking my brother on the thigh once, but that’s it. As someone posted above, his disapproval hurt so much more than any spanking.

ETA- We probably deserved WAY more punishment than we received- we were hellions.

I got spanked *once *in school, and it never happened again. I had gotten a ‘D’ on a handwriting exam. I had to take it home and show it to my parents. I was a forgetful kid, and honestly, didn’t care about handwriting anyway. I was an all A student in everything else.
Mrs. Donlin was an old hag who hated kids and hated teaching and should have retired long since. When the third day came and I forgot it again, she paddled me - pants on, and in private, but it was still unbelievably humiliating.
My mother was furious, and bitched her out. A good student, getting paddled?

As for my parents…they were not good parents but they were not physically abusive but for one time I remember. I got spanked, with a bare hand, on the ass for lying.

One time, my mother had told me not to take the bike beyond a certain area. Well, I gave into peer pressure and went, and she caught me. That day was terrible - she was furious and that was the day the high heels and shoes came out. She chucked them at me, and hit me with them, and it was a bad day.

What kind of behavior earned a paddling? Anything they didn’t like. “Backtalk” was a biggie, which was basically saying what you thought of felt about anything that they’d disagree with.

I got the belt for crying.

I remember being spanked frequently before age 5, but I can’t remember what FOR. I know it was basically a consequence of my parents losing their cool. Spanking was never a calculated punishment- I remember being chased, grabbed by the arm, and given several quick smacks to the butt. I don’t think this was child abuse at all, but it was obviously not the most effective punishment, seeing as how what lesson I was supposed to learn doesn’t stick in my mind.

My mother whipped me with a belt because I was afraid to get into the swimming pool for lessons. When we got home she whipped me.

As I grew up I convinced myself that she did it out of her fear because she could not swim and wanted me to be able to swim. Which is true. But I think there could be better ways to encourage someone to get into a pool.

Being a brat. Being a brat… I didn’t lie (I sucked and still do at it), so that was not the reason. Mostly acting like a bratty spoiled kid. By both my mom and my dad.

They stopped once I got like 10. I learned not to behave that way (and actually, I really hate the way I acted then shudders). I did get a slap in the face a couple of times as a teenager, I deserved it. I backtalked to my mom. Learned not to do that and control my temper. She later gave me some ice packs for my face and nose.

I may have gotten spanked when I was younger if I did something that was dangerous (like putting finger on sockets or running to danger), but I don’t remember. And it was always with the hands, and never on the face (except the slaps as a teen).

Mom spanked me, open hand on the butt till I was about 6-7. Then it was verbal lectures, yelling, privilege revocation and sometimes apology letters. This was the case until one day (I was 12 or 13) I lied to her about the completion of chores so that I could go out and play, so she did the normal thing and banned me from going to a hockey game. Well I threw the worst tantrum of my life when she was leaving to go without me, I started upending bookshelves and breaking stuff inside the house. She placated me and we had a pleasant chat about how throwing tantrums and breaking things was completely unacceptable and how anything that was broken would be repaired from my chore allowance and sent me to bed. I assumed I was getting away pretty good on that one. In the morning she woke me up, asked me if I remembered the conversation from the night before, and then proceeded to hit me with a belt (on the back/backside).
It was the only time I strongly remember corporal punishment; it stuck and it was effective. I seriously remember making a conscious decision not to be such an asshole after that. But I do think that the only reason that it worked was because it happened after a pretty serious bit of assholery on my part and it only happened once. I think that if it had happened more often that it would have taken some of the sting out of that lesson.
I don’t have any children so I don’t have any comment on whether or not I would use corporal punishment my children.