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Abuse or Discipline? What do you think?

Posted by on May. 16, 2008 at 3:35 PM
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Recently I wrote a post asking for advice or pointers on how to discipline my soon to be 14 year old autisic son for when he goes into one of his fits of rage and can sometimes get physical, and there was one reply that really stuck out to me and kinda floored me. The following was one of the replies that I recieved. Please tell me what you think of this. Do you think this abuse or discipline?





by Lucky_Charm3 on May. 16, 2008 at 9:37 AM


My answer is not going to be popular and I may get bashed but, I did it, and it worked.

My oldest, 18, was 14 at the time. We got into a minor argument over her sherking her chores. She kept getting louder and louder with me. I asked her to go to her room so we could both calm down. She stood face to face with me and said no. She said, "what are you going to do if I don't" I told her again, go to her room. She pushed her body up against mine, causing me to lose my footing. She then balled her fist up.

I beat her ass! I beat her as if she were an adult. She has never, ever crossed me again in that manner. And my now 14 year old has never even attempted.

Both my kids talk to thier friends about it, how they know not to cross me, Jess jokes about how she may be bigger, but mom is stronger.

And before anyways says it, they are not afraid of me, they tell me everything, come to me with things that I do not want to hear as a matter of fact!






by on May. 16, 2008 at 3:35 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Julianne301
by Group Owner on May. 16, 2008 at 3:54 PM
That particular situation sounds more like self-defense than anything else.  In my opinion, the way it is described, it is not abuse. 

When my then-16 year old tried to become violent with Me I found myself holding my arms Tightly wrapped around her ... my hands holding onto My Own Arms, not hers ... and hanging on for dear life until she stopped trying to hit me. 

I was very Sore for days afterward, but that was it.  She was not able to hit me and I did not hurt her.  My arms were like a cushioned vice-grip around her upper body, wrapping over her biceps and torso.  After that she never challenged me again either.

This also helped her younger sister (who she had been Assaulting on a regular basis) to feel safe.  Whenever her sister threatened her, my younger one would say "No you won't ...Mama won't Let you!"

They had grown up with their birth parents being in physical altercations All day Every day and considered That to be a way of "communication."  Getting them to understand that Hitting is not acceptable was Extremely Difficult. 
Diannkittle28
by New Member on May. 16, 2008 at 6:29 PM

Quoting Julianne301:

That particular situation sounds more like self-defense than anything else.  In my opinion, the way it is described, it is not abuse. 

I can understand self-defense and discipline, but I don't believe BEATING a child like he or she is an adult is right. Her mother was an ADULT and her daughter was a CHILD. I don't believe that anybody has the right to beat a child like they are an adult. Now I agree that if one of my children without a disability got up in my face and raise their hand to me or got in my face and talked to me like that, there would be severe consequences, but I would not beat them. There is no reason for any person to hit their child with a fist and beat them like they were an adult....I am sorry, but that is the way I see it.  But maybe I feel so strongly about it because my mom done that to me before and I didn't even get in her face nor was I disrespectful, she did it twice. Once because my sister was upset because her boyfriend just broke up with her, and I said who cares about his sorry ass, just let him go, because he treated my sister like dirt, and my mom start punching me because I said that, and she said later that she hit me like that because my sister thought she might be pregnant. WTF so my mom punches me because I told my sister not to worry about his sorry ass. And once my mom punched me because my sister fell asleep in class and we didn't know and we couldn't find her and she starting beating the crap out of me because she thought I should have been watching out for her....This is my older sister, I might add, and I was suppose to watch out for her? So I swore that I would never hit my kids the way my mom hit me....And if that wasn't bad enough, I was the only one out of all the kids, that gave my parent respect and that was befpre the hitting incidents. So I don't know about that saying "you reap what you sew" Well WTF...how do I deserve what I am going through...Abuse is abuse and I don't think there is no justification for it...I am sorry, but I don't.......
Julianne301
by Group Owner on May. 16, 2008 at 6:43 PM
You are right about that, too....the "beating her like an adult" being unnecessary, but I would never Beat anyone ... child Or adult.  Defending myself or my child - yes I would do Something, I am Sure.

Considering I would have Never in my life done that kind of behavior toward my own parents, I can honestly say I would not know what I would have done in the other lady's position. 

My own 14 year old is 180 lbs and as tall as I am.  Although I have NEVER touched her, it only takes a Look to settle her down when she is acting up. (This is the one who the older sister had been beating her.)  She also knows better than to do what the other mom described to Anyone.  She is much more respectful than that.

If her daughter is an adult size and trying to take her own mother on in a fight, it seems she Had to do something.  Did she have to go so far?  No.  Is it abuse?  I still think not ... Mainly because it was not Ongoing ... only in a case of defense and maintaining parental control in her own household.  The adults run the house, not the kids.

Anyone who knows Me knows that I do not condone hitting in any shape, form, or fashion.  However, the description given sounds like self-defense ... but over-the-top and out of control. 
newmommie
by Group Admin on May. 17, 2008 at 9:29 PM
The way I see it, and the way the law sees it (at least in my state), is if it leaves a mark, it's abuse, if not, then nope.
The law is really very simple when it comes to physical abuse.  It doesn't matter if you meant to leave a mark or not, if it's there=abuse.  That may not be really "fair" but it's the law.
Stuffed_Back_In
by on May. 18, 2008 at 1:37 PM
I don't know how much help I can be.  I had a very "old school" mom, who'd "beat my ass" for anything.  I soon learned to behave, not out of an understanding as to why not to do something but cause I didn't like getting "my ass beat".  That is no way to raise a child.  Am I completely opposed to a simple spanking.  No, but I can see no reason as to why they are necessary.  But then my son is only 7 months and I am not going to judge other people so long as it is a "spanking" and not a "beating".

That particular scenario sounds familiar.  With her, by the time I was 14 any bit of back talk was seen as being confrontational.  If I tried to stand up for my rights (silly me), my mom told me that if "I thought I was big enough to act like a women, she'd treat me like one".  That was wrong.

That situation seems a little different. 

Being older I and seeing and hearing some of the things I have I can understand why she may feel that way. Some of the kids now days are getting out of hand.  I see it on the news everyday.  It is sad. 

Personally I think holding her like the other mother did would of been better.  I don't believe it is appropriate to hit your child just cause they threaten you.  If my 14 yr old son hit me, that would be different.  I'd see it a someone trying to defend themselves.

What confuses me is what does her reply have to do with your original reply.  I'd think a 14yr autistic boy and a rebellious 14yr girl would be in two different categories.  Not meaning to say anything disrespectful toward your son but different in regards to ability to handle frustration and anger and your discipline when it gets out of hand.  I don't think it would be appropriate to beat his ass like a man who thought he could hit you. 

        

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Julianne301
by Group Owner on May. 18, 2008 at 9:09 PM

Quoting Stuffed_Back_In:

I don't know how much help I can be.  I had a very "old school" mom, who'd "beat my ass" for anything.  I soon learned to behave, not out of an understanding as to why not to do something but cause I didn't like getting "my ass beat".  That is no way to raise a child.  Am I completely opposed to a simple spanking.  No, but I can see no reason as to why they are necessary.  But then my son is only 7 months and I am not going to judge other people so long as it is a "spanking" and not a "beating".

That particular scenario sounds familiar.  With her, by the time I was 14 any bit of back talk was seen as being confrontational.  If I tried to stand up for my rights (silly me), my mom told me that if "I thought I was big enough to act like a women, she'd treat me like one".  That was wrong.

That situation seems a little different. 

Being older I and seeing and hearing some of the things I have I can understand why she may feel that way. Some of the kids now days are getting out of hand.  I see it on the news everyday.  It is sad. 

Personally I think holding her like the other mother did would of been better.  I don't believe it is appropriate to hit your child just cause they threaten you.  If my 14 yr old son hit me, that would be different.  I'd see it a someone trying to defend themselves.

What confuses me is what does her reply have to do with your original reply.  I'd think a 14yr autistic boy and a rebellious 14yr girl would be in two different categories.  Not meaning to say anything disrespectful toward your son but different in regards to ability to handle frustration and anger and your discipline when it gets out of hand.  I don't think it would be appropriate to beat his ass like a man who thought he could hit you. 
This is also what I was thinking...that these are two Totally separate types of cases.  Any autistic child needs certain consistent-care types of things.  There are Programs made to especially aid in handling autistic children. Tried, testing, and true ... but each child is specific and individual in his/her reactions to these.
Diannkittle28
by New Member on May. 19, 2008 at 8:19 AM

Quoting Julianne301:


Quoting Stuffed_Back_In:

I don't know how much help I can be.  I had a very "old school" mom, who'd "beat my ass" for anything.  I soon learned to behave, not out of an understanding as to why not to do something but cause I didn't like getting "my ass beat".  That is no way to raise a child.  Am I completely opposed to a simple spanking.  No, but I can see no reason as to why they are necessary.  But then my son is only 7 months and I am not going to judge other people so long as it is a "spanking" and not a "beating".

That particular scenario sounds familiar.  With her, by the time I was 14 any bit of back talk was seen as being confrontational.  If I tried to stand up for my rights (silly me), my mom told me that if "I thought I was big enough to act like a women, she'd treat me like one".  That was wrong.

That situation seems a little different. 

Being older I and seeing and hearing some of the things I have I can understand why she may feel that way. Some of the kids now days are getting out of hand.  I see it on the news everyday.  It is sad. 

Personally I think holding her like the other mother did would of been better.  I don't believe it is appropriate to hit your child just cause they threaten you.  If my 14 yr old son hit me, that would be different.  I'd see it a someone trying to defend themselves.

What confuses me is what does her reply have to do with your original reply.  I'd think a 14yr autistic boy and a rebellious 14yr girl would be in two different categories.  Not meaning to say anything disrespectful toward your son but different in regards to ability to handle frustration and anger and your discipline when it gets out of hand.  I don't think it would be appropriate to beat his ass like a man who thought he could hit you. 
This is also what I was thinking...that these are two Totally separate types of cases.  Any autistic child needs certain consistent-care types of things.  There are Programs made to especially aid in handling autistic children. Tried, testing, and true ... but each child is specific and individual in his/her reactions to these.

I think that she was just trying to give me a suggestion on what she did to her daughter and guess I could decide whether I wanted to try it or not. Well definitly not. And I had people say, that I can't use autism as an excuse for his behavior or how I discipline them and I hate to tell them, but yes I can and yes I have to. People can not possibly know what it is like unless they have raised an autistic child. But that is not why I chose not to beat him, I won't beat him because of the word itself "BEAT" and I will not beat any of my children because to me it is abuse. I seen my sister beat her kids, my mom beat me on 2 different occasions with her fist, and I could not and would not ever do that to my child. I asked for help because I want to help my son, not hurt my son. So asking for pointers on how to discipline him in an appropriate way was more of what I was looking for. I do believe in spankings, but that is kinda harder with him, because he is older. I believe that spankings are more for younger kids and another form of punishment like taking away privledges is for older kids (teenagers) which is what I do with my son, but with him being autistic and going into his fits of rage, he can sometimes get physical and I have a hard time with that. I did one time when he hit me, I smacked him on the leg because I couldn't get to his butt and he got even more angry and I had decided at that moment that hitting was not the answer and that his was teaching him that hitting is ok, as long as you expect to get hit back and that is not the message I want to send to him. I just want him to know that is unexceptable and it will not be tolerated. So I have to somehow get that message across to him and I don't know what privledge I can take away to get that point across. I also hoped there was someone on cafemom that had an older autistic boy that could give me pointers, but most of the ones on here have kids younger. So I just take one day at a time.
Julianne301
by Group Owner on May. 19, 2008 at 3:13 PM
After asking for help resources in my adoption group, this is one of the replies.  Hopefully this can offer some kind of real assistance and support for you:

by crayzmamaof3 on May. 19, 2008 at 11:15 AM

My son (9) is high functioning. I haven't used the supports that are local, but they are around. Well, my husband and I went a few times during the diagnosing stage.

I live in MA. This is the website of the place I have participated in. They are great. Maybe they will know of someplace where you are located. They had different groups and offered lots of resources and support.

www.communityresourcesforautism.org

Hope this helps.

OnnaMishun
by on May. 31, 2008 at 10:02 PM

There is a fine line between abuse and discipline.  People can say what they want about us but we applaude this mom's courage to do what I'm sure was extremely difficult for her.  I think the word "beat" can take on different meaning when it comes to discipline.  We don't abuse our children but there comes a time when a line is crossed and it has little if anything to do with their ailments.  I tell mine sometimes if they get into serious trouble (knowing they knew better) "I'm going to beat your little butt."  That's not to say I beat them to the point of abuse but there's nothing wrong with some things in certain situations.  I see this no different from the ritual young boys seem to take with "calling the old man out".  In this case it was the mother that got called out instead.  Many boys that turn adolescent do it to their father at some point.  I'm sure it happens with girls too.  Different people see things different ways.  If I had done that to my mother, I'm sure it wouldn't have been much different.  My mother was not abusive in any way.  If anything, she spoiled me but she didn't put up with my back talk or slack either.  I didn't grow up warped or a black sheep of the family or anything and actually I think I've done quite well for myself.  She raised me with lots of love and when I needed it a firm hand.  There's nothing wrong with that to me.  Take it how you want it.

christinejas
by on Dec. 30, 2008 at 10:35 PM

Always stop and think before acting no matter what you do.      It sets the best example possible for your child.    How powerful a role model is someone who keeps their head when everyone else or anyone else would lose theirs?        Sometimes I count to three,  sometimes it is to a thousand- b'zillion.     Time out yourself for how ever long you need to get it together.    Moms need a break,   our job is seriously important,  we are training the future of the world.   AND IT IS HUGELY CHALLENGING.  Especially with some of our kids with special needs.   I know what I am talking about.

Give yourself a break,  you hard working woman!   Take your time,   breathe,  think about life twenty years from now.      I guarantee this method of  "stop and think"  will never lead you to a place where you wonder about your  actions.    You will end up feeling as great as you are!     This is a great forum for supporting each other!   

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