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Is it ever okay to strike your child?

I was watching an episode of "beyond scared straight" where juvenile offenders are taken into a prison to show them what jail is like. One kid was talking and I was appalled at the utter lack of respect this kid showed his mother.
The kid is 14 years old and according to his mom he has spit on her, slapped her, pulled her hair, stolen from her, forces her to buy him cigarettes and alcohol or he beats on her and he has even pulled a knife on her. I made the comment to a friend of mine that if my 14 yr old (I don't have one yet my kids are still little) but if I had a 14 yr old and he spit on me or slapped me that I would knock him on his butt. How does a 14 yr old 'force' his parents to buy him smokes and booze? That's totally uncalled for, if he beats her up then what is she doing to stop this behavior?
My friend was shocked at my reaction and told me that you never ever ever hit your child no matter what. I asked her, so what if your 14 yr old son is holding you down and punching you? You are supposed to just take it?
I don't believe in beating the snot out of your kids but I do spank mine when they act up. I don't break bones or leave bruises but my kids know who is boss and it ain't them. I think a lot of the trouble with teens today is that the law says parents can't punish their kids when they act up and the kids know this. So they run the streets and treat parents like dogs and then when the parents get tough the kids call CPS and claim child abuse.
Where do you draw the line? I am not saying beat your kids till they are black and blue but you can't just stick your head in the sand and ignore the behavior. Kids need authority and strict parents that follow through with their threats of punishment whether its a kick in the pants or loss of privileges. Am I totally off on this? How can so many people blame the parents for kids bad behavior and then tell the parents that they can't discipline their children? It doesn't make sense to me.


Asked by AnonNdrag at 6:56 PM on Jul. 22, 2013 in Parenting Debate

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Answers (26)
  • I would guess that he behaves this way now because he wasn't disciplined when he was little. By the time our children were 14, I had turned all discipline over to their dad and they did not like to have to deal with him. When they were little, most of the discipline fell to me, and I spanked their butts for being disrespectful and disobedient. It wasn't a beating, but I made sure they felt the sting of their bad behavior. If this mom hasn't done that, she probably can't handle him at 14.

    Answer by NannyB. at 7:10 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • OK yes in this situation if my 14 yr old (He's not 14yet but) spit in my face you damn well better believe he would be knocked flat on his ass, but I don't just go around punching my kid no. It's situational for sure.

    Answer by cassie_kellison at 7:04 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • First time my kid hit me would be the last time he hit laid his hands on me.

    Answer by funlovinlady at 7:09 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • I've spanked my kids probably three times in ten years. I don't buy into the "never hitting a child thing." That's great for those that want to employ 8 thousand useless time outs. My kids have been spanked for walking into the street and other dangerous behaviors.

    In this instance, this child clearly has had no discipline and when kids raise themselves, how do they learn respect? I'm not suggesting they needed to spank him but something needed to be done long ago.

    Answer by jeanclaudia at 7:38 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • I agree with you OP. The discipline should fit the crime. Yes, I spank. I even spank in public when the situation warrants it. My kids fight with each other to hold doors for me and others, they use yes/no ma'am, say please and thank you, and are told No more often than Yes.

    Just the other day my dad took us to Bob's Burgers and Brews for dinner. I had JUST told my six year old to keep her feet on the floor and stop climbing the railings. I turn around and she's climbing the railings again. I popped her butt. She didn't flinch or start bawling, it wasn't hard enough for that. She DID stop messing around and walked out of the restaurant right next to me. You should have SEEN the looks of the people that watched me pop her butt. You could almost taste their outrage.

    Society can go to hell. When my kids are screwing up, they will face consequences. Lack of discipline is the biggest problem right now.

    Answer by Rosehawk at 7:41 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • I've told my kids before that they'll never be too big for me to whoop their butts if need be. I have also told them that I brought them into this world, and I can take them out. It's never okay to let your kid pound on you.

    Answer by Ginger0104 at 7:44 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • I do discipline my kids- I have never had an issue with giving them a well deserved pop every now and again.
    Similar to Rosehawk's example, sometimes they just need their little brains jump started.

    Recently I was having some issues with 14 yo DD. Went to go smack her in the mouth. Of course my dumbass forgot she is a trained boxer. It quickly deteriorated to me having to defend myself.

    She ran away and I had the cops bring her butt home. She told the cop I had slapped her. His response- "That's her job. To keep you in line. You probably mouthed off and deserved it. And in this state it isn't illegal".

    IMHO- we must always parent our child. They are never too old to be reminded there are certain expectations. And civil behavior is the most important expected behavior.

    And yes, she is doing much better after 6 weeks of no contact with the outside world.

    Answer by feralxat at 8:08 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • Where has the discipline been for 14 years?

    In a situation like that anyone would have to defend themselves so it would have to happen.


    Answer by virginiamama71 at 7:04 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • That little punk would have his ass beat if he ever dared do something like that to me. I love my kids with all my heart, but there's no way in hell I would allow them to spit on me, hit me, intimidate me, etc. They'd have to arrest one of us, that's for sure. Hope the program works for that little heathen b/c no parent deserves that kind of treatment. And I don't want a little animal like that running the streets. If he has such a disregard for the woman who gave birth to him & put a roof over his head, food in his belly, etc., then he won't have respect for anyone.

    Answer by mrsmom110 at 8:37 PM on Jul. 22, 2013

  • It would take A LOT for me not to slap the shit out of anyone who spit in my face, including my teenage son. I don't think battery/assault of your kid (or anyone) is okay, but a slap for that mess? I wouldn't be proud of it but....yeah.

    Answer by maecntpntz219 at 9:07 PM on Jul. 22, 2013