Lessons Learned From Spanking: An Issue of Child Abuse

by Mark
(Location Undisclosed)

I learned all those lessons (see article on this site What Spanking Really Teaches for a list of those lessons) from all the spankings I received from my mother growing up. I especially learned the part about fear and being a "bad" boy. I am now in my thirties and still struggle with these issues.

At work or in my social life, I constantly worry about what will happen if I do some thing wrong. I always expect the worst, like my boss is going to be extremely upset or I am going to get fired. If I do make a mistake, I do think that I am a 'bad' person and that I deserve any punishment I am going to get. It is very debilitating to live my life this way and I am trying to change, but it is extremely difficult since these responses were created while I was in my earliest and most vulnerable stage of development.

The use of spanking destroys what should be loving relationship and sense of safety between a child and a parent. How can a child confide in a parent, feel safe, or loved when he feels that if he makes a mistake that he will be humiliated by being stripped of his clothing and spanked?

Note from Darlene: I believe the above message was too valuable to leave as a comment following my article What Spanking Really Teaches, where only a limited number of people would view it. I have, therefore, moved the above to this article page from where it was originally.

I do not know if this is the same Mark as the one who shared his story on this site already. Even if it isn't the same person, please read Mark's Child Abuse Story in order to understand the impact spanking had on him as a child.

Email addresses, phone numbers, home addresses AND website/blog URLs in visitor comments are STRICTLY prohibited, and could result in being banned from making further comments on this site.

Comments for Lessons Learned From Spanking: An Issue of Child Abuse

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Jul 28, 2008
You are NOT "bad"...
by: Darlene Barriere - Webmaster

Thank you, Mark, for sharing how the childhood spankings you received at the hands of your mother continue to affect you, even in adulthood. Your contributions to this site most definitely help other visitors. I can only hope that writing of your experiences is in some way cathartic for YOU. If you haven't already, please consider some form of counselling in order to help you with the emotional residue you deal with every day. You are NOT a "bad" person. You are NOT deserving of maltreatment. Hold your head up high, Mark. You survived all that your mother inflicted upon you; and now you have much to offer as a human being. You are an articulate, compassionate and empathetic man. These are honourable qualities. Celebrate those qualities, rather than focusing on the negative impact your mother's treatment had on you. You are truly so much more than the "lessons" her twisted methods instilled in you. You have those qualities in spite of not because of what you endured.

Again, thank you for being such a contributing visitor to this site.

Darlene Barriere
Violence & Abuse Prevention Educator
Author: On My Own Terms, A Memoir

Jul 29, 2008
The cycle continues
by: Mark

Thank you for your kind words, Darlene. I have been therapy for depression for about year now. It is during therapy, while trying to find the root cause of the depression, were I have come to realize the profound effects my mother's use of spanking has had on me.

I was at the beach a couple of weeks ago when I heard a mother angrily calling for her daughter. My heart broke when I saw this little girl about 3 or 4 years old running towards her mom with her hands covering her bottom. Her mom just grabbed her arm, yanked down the bottom of her swimsuit and gave her about 6 spanks and told her that "you come right away when I call you". Even at this young age this little girl has come to fear her mother. How can parents not see that their children are afraid of them and that this is terribly wrong ?

Jul 29, 2008
You're welcome, Mark
by: Darlene Barriere - Webmaster

Mark, I share in that heart-sinking, nauseating realization that right before our eyes yet another child will—and does—suffer as we did, and in some cases, still do suffer. As long as parents and society as a whole continue to believe that "discipline" is synonymous with "spanking" or some type of "physical pain", as long as parents and society continue to adopt the mindset that striking a child serves the purpose by ensuring the child "behaves" rather than understanding the long-term negative consequences of such "discipline", we will continue to raise children who develop a skewed sense of who and what they are; which in turn will continue to turn out scarred and dysfunctional adults. We will only "learn" when we begin to accept that children deserve respect and that they too should be awarded rights.

Raising a hand? Too many negative side effects to be considered truly effective.

Darlene Barriere
Violence & Abuse Prevention Educator
Author: On My Own Terms, A Memoir

Nov 12, 2008
by: Mark

Another long term consequence of the spankings are the nightmares/flashbacks. In these episodes, I am being dragged toward the spanking chair by my mom as I struggle to get free and beg not to be spanked. I usually wake up as she strips off my clothes puts me across her lap, though some times they get as far as the spanking itself. When I do wake up I am shaking, sweating and my heart racing. I lie awake for the rest of the night tossing and turning.

Mar 13, 2009
Mark thank you
by: Maurice

Mark, I am 62 and even still I am scared of people in authority out of fear what will they do if I trust them to tell them something. The fear of being caught is another fear from my spanking days at school. I HAVE LET GO OF A GOOD DEAL BUT IT STILL AMAZES ME THAT PEOPLE IN AUTHORITY ARE STILL IN CHARGE OF MY LIFE. Thank you sincerely Mark for sharring your real feeling at your age.

Feb 14, 2012
Spanking is scarring and being scared for life
by: Anonymous

I agree with Mark, I deal with the nightmare even to my adult years and I'm 38. I get nervous when doing important stuff like exams not because I am actually afraid of the failure itself but it's because of being afraid of being a disappointment and being a good for nothing.

I am a fun, outgoing person with an ability to make people laugh even as a child, but I grew withdrawn, scared and painfully shy somewhere between the ages of 5 and 20 because i was afraid to displease my mum again who administered the spankings, so I ended up not saying anything and couldn't confide in anyone and spent a lot of time crying by myself even into adulthood. I got spanked for crying, so I developed an unnatural tendency to cry at a lot of things simply because i was terrified of being spanked, and I did get spanked anyway for crying, so I later learnt to hide it away by crying when i was alone. As a result I can't hold long conversations with people like a normal person. I get stressed easily sometimes and can spent 2 days not sleeping because of stress.

I had very few friends and even in my 20's I wasn't allowed to go out but once a week, and not allowed out after dark.

I've come some way away from all that nightmare but the effects are still there. I don't have very many friends and I'm still afraid to go out and date at night just because mum says so and I have never managed to bring myself to disobey her. While she is right in being worried for my safety but I'm still frustrated at being locked up at home by my own fears and insecurities.

I hope no one would ever need to go through all that. And hopefully the people who have been through all those nightmares will have the courage to speak up for those they see being put through the same thing.

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