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Women have domestic violence shelters...why don't children have similar resources?

I was watching Issues with Jane Valez-Mitchell, and she was talking about the mom who killed her teenagers because they were being mouthy. It was revealed that prior to the murders, one of the girls confided to the school nurse that the mom abused her by slapping her around. The nurse called the police, and the police confronted the mom, but because they were no marks on the child, there was nothing they could do.

Jane questioned whether or not the current law regarding corporal punishment should be revisited? If those kids had been taken out of the home when the girl told the nurse her mom abused her, she would be alive today.

I think children should have the right to live in a household free from the fear of physical punishment. Just as women have domestic violence shelters and hotlines to aid them in fleeing an abusive situation, children should have the same resources available to them.

How do you feel? I'm not looking for a spanking/non spanking debate. I'm asking if you think children should have the right to live in a home without the fear of being spanked/hit/whatever term you use to suggest corporal punishment?

I think schools should teach children that if they have a fear of being punished corporally by a parent or guardian, they can talk to a trusted counselor.  


Asked by Anonymous at 9:23 PM on Feb. 2, 2011 in Parenting Debate

This question is closed.
Answers (12)
  • I wish I had some where to go when I was a child. My parents were very abusive and CPS never did anything about it. My parents would lie, said us siblings did it to each other and they believed my parents over us kids.

    Answer by mommy_of_two388 at 2:29 PM on Feb. 3, 2011

  • It is called foster care!

    Answer by idaspida at 9:27 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • I think there is a difference between a 3-7 year getting spanked and a teenage girl being "slapped around' by her parents. If you tell a child "Hey, you can leave your parents house if they spank you, then that is giving children more rights than they have earned." Yes, earned. More should have been done about the family situation, in that case, than was. CPS should have been called but, they weren't.

    Answer by matthewscandi at 9:29 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • I dont think spanking is corporal punishment and there is such a thing as foster care the problem is the system is so under educated and over used too many kids slip through the cracks theres also places like Covenant House where kids who need to run can go-- it is tough though you need to feel empowered as a child to get up and get help very sad to be very young or very old in this country

    Answer by MELRN at 9:30 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • I have no idea if they have these everywhere, but I remember working at a place that had some kind of 'safe place' sign. I think places like fire departments and police stations often have them too. Maybe it's not communicated to children enough that there are places they can go if they are not safe at home, but I think between school counselors, CPS, and public places that are considered safe places, there are people who are trained to help kids in trouble in many communities. Making sure kids know they have the right to live without abuse is probably the biggest thing.

    That was a very sad story about those kids. I wonder if they even knew what kind of danger they were in before it happened.

    Answer by pam19 at 9:31 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • But children don't have to be spanked in order to be disciplined. Parents can choose a different method that doesn't involved physical punishment. The definition of spanking is too general. Basically, so long as it doesn't leave a mark, it's legal. What if the child just doesn't bruise as easily as others? So if a man hits me, it's ok so long as there are no marks?

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 9:32 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • I am a teacher and april is child abuse month and i will always talk to my class about abuse. about how to tell someone - my dh was abused and it sucks (no i dont tell them that!) but in OH the CPS is pretty powerless. unless that child's life is in immediate danger, they really dont have the time, they are completely underfunded. Just a visit from CPS is enough to straighten most parents up. I do not think in this country that clings to the idea of freedoms that you will ever outlaw spanking, and defining the spanking vs the abuse will always be a fuzzy line. I agree in that my son lives without threat of physical violence. But i cannot say that all spankers are bad for doing that. it works with some kids. some people dont know anything better and at least they do Something about their children acting out. And if a man hits you and leaves no mark and you call the cops - you would have to prove he did it.

    Answer by AmaliaD at 10:07 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • So if a man hits me, it's ok so long as there are no marks?

    That is how it is. Is it unfair? Yes, but that is life. You can't have you husband arrested for hitting you unless there are marks.

    This is not even a spanking v non-spanking because "slapping around" your teenage daughter is not spanking. There is not even comparison.


    Answer by matthewscandi at 10:40 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • But matthewscandi, there are moms on here that have no problem slapping their kids, pinching them, flicking them, etc, and their justification is, "Well, we didn't leave any marks, so obviously it's not abuse". Singer Pink was quoted saying:

    I think parents need to beat the crap outta their kids I think the whole spanking thing and how its gotten all PC (politically correct) is for the birds.

    There are scores of people who agree with her, and it's scary. Has physical punishment become so commonplace in our society that someone could make such a statement without suffering any sort of reprimand?

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 10:44 PM on Feb. 2, 2011

  • They do have women and children centers.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 11:24 PM on Feb. 2, 2011