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How to get results!

You can punish your children in love — and GET RESULTS!
But to be effective, to really have it pay off, you need to know HOW to punish,
what with, how often, how soon, how hard — and when NOT to spank!


 THE MERE suggestion of spanking a small child, or "hitting" a child, as the psychologists like to refer to it, will send some into a veritable frenzy of indignant anger!

But why? Why SHOULD the human mind be so HOSTILE toward loving, kind, careful punishment by a parent who is earnestly teaching and guiding his child? It is because that mind is CARNAL! "For the CARNAL mind [natural, fleshly, not begotten of God's Spirit} is ENMITY toward God. It is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be!" (Rom. 8:7)

God is love. But God PUNISHES every child upon whom He lavishes His heavenly love! (Heb. 12:5-11) His very nature is that of a loving, just Parent who administers PUNISHMENT for His own children's good!


Not The "Last Resort"

As we saw in the last installment, the child psychologists say "The word 'punishment' should not appear in our dictionaries except as an obsolete word . . ." (Psychological Care of Infant and Child, Watson, pages 63-65). And advise parents that they usually "turn to this extreme as a last resort, and because they think that nothing else will work" (The Complete Book of Mothercraft, Parents' Institute, page 365).

But, as we saw clearly proved, the God-ordained method of spanking children for disobedience, and for instilling right habits in them at the early age when they cannot reason for themselves, is the BEST method! It's the God-GIVEN method. It's the way that really WORKS — that gets results!

We have seen what effective punishment should accomplish! How to aim for the long-range goals, and how to administer the first spanking!

The way of God is best — it is the RIGHT way — NOT the "end course in a series of happenings that has carried both parent and child away from feelings of love and understanding" as deluded men and women advise.

The abuse of children, the WRONG METHODS of punishment, and some extreme cases of child beating have swung the child psychologists to the opposite extreme of the pendulum. The past several decades, they have advocated NO punishment whatever.

Because myriads of deceived parents have followed these spineless seasonings, the chiefs of our greatest law enforcement agencies have warned of coming mountainous crime waves unparalleled in the annals of history!

J. Edgar Hoover has said our very NATION is in stark DANGER from this terrible crime wave among youth that is the new phenomenon of our times!

For those parents who have begun to really see the truth of God — and who want to follow and practice that truth, these articles are written.


What Should You Use?

If you have really SEEN, and you know that you can and must punish your children when they need it — and do it in love — then you need to know HOW! What do you use?

You've heard of the old razor strap, the belt, the buggy whip, the ruler and pencil of the school teachers of a few decades ago. But should these implements be used?

We have already seen how two or three fingers o f the hand should be used for a very young child, and first tested on your own forearm or thigh. Generally, it is best to spank with the hand. But, again, there are many cautions.

First, never try to spank a small child with the whole hand through his diapers! Before you would ever accomplish the job of administering a proper spanking to drive the lesson home, you might run the risk of injuring the child's back. The whole hand against one or two thicknesses of diapers would not really be felt except as a clubbing type of blow to the child.

As was already covered thoroughly, you should raise the corners of the diaper, and sharply spat the child with only two or three fingers! Make it be felt — but first try it on yourself to be sure.

Before continuing with these methods, let's understand where you should spank a child! It is certainly all right to spat the back of a child's hand as he reaches for a forbidden object, such as a lighted stove, china vase, or something he may pull down and break. In fact, as one author states, "A slap on the hand of the infant who is reaching for a forbidden object has the advantages of immediate and direct association with the misbehavior and of being quickly over. To do any good the slap must be sharp enough to be felt, but should not be severely painful." (As the Twig Is Bent, Hohman, p. 49)

But these are the only areas in which you should ever spank a child! Either high on the backs and sides of the legs, directly on the buttocks, or occasionally on the backs of the hands. You should NEVER "box his ears" or strike a child about the head or face.

ANY time a parent is seen slapping a child on the face, or thumping him on the head, striking him anywhere else but the areas described, and then never hard enough to bruise or injure, that parent is probably punishing in ANGER, and is truly "hitting" the child — not really punishing in love!

Generally it is going to, be better to spank with your own hand. That way, you can feel it, too, and you will be even surer you are not overdoing it.

Many parents utilize a small switch, which will sharply sting, but never break the skin or bruise. As the author already quoted said, "Spanking or nettling small legs with appropriately small switches are only two of the methods that may be used." (As the Twig Is Bent, p. 49)

Certainly, nothing in the old-fashioned buggy whip category should be used. An extremely effective implement is one of the lighter ping pong paddles, applied to the bare buttocks. (This I know from personal experience!)

With children from two to six or eight years, many parents use the father's belt. However, caution should be used in applying a belt. Certainly the end with the buckle, or any belt that has metal affixed to the portion to be used should NEVER be applied to a child. A very heavy, thick leather belt, especially if striking the child on the edges, if it is being used double, could inflict severe pain and even possible injury. Some parents literally do not know how hard they are striking their children! Therefore, even as was recommended in the application of one or two fingers to a very young infant, the parent should strike himself sharply once or twice on the thigh with the belt, just as he might test the temperature of the baby bottle on his wrist. In this fashion, you may always be sure of the exact strength of the blow, and you will not run the risk of "over punishing" or injury.

The old-fashioned idea of the "hair brush" is more mythical than factual, and with today's modern plastic hair brushes and the like, should never be used.

The place to punish a child is squarely on the buttocks! As has already been covered, very high on the sides of the thighs, or with a small switch, on the backs of the legs, would be equally as appropriate. HOWEVER, this must be wisely decided depending upon the severity of the punishment, and the implement used! Be extremely careful if punishing with a belt that only the shortest portion of the belt is used, and that it is not allowed to wrap around the child's little body, or in any way run the risk of striking so as to injure or cause severe pain. Use common sense — punish your child in LOVE — calmly — not in the heat of emotion — and you need not fear "over punishment."

It is very strongly recommended NOT to use anything that could properly be considered an "implement" for punishment short of one year of age! Parents are strictly cautioned to be extremely careful in the application of proper punishment to a very tiny child.

Now that we have discussed how spanking should be done, let us cover, in principle, other important things to remember.


It Must Be Prompt!

To be effective, spanking should always be prompt! Frequently, because of "embarrassment" in the presence of friends, being in a public place, driving in a car, or other difficulty which seems to make the immediate application of punishment somewhat problematic, parents will defer punishment until later time. This should never be done! The child (and the younger the child the truer this is), will tend to lose sight of the seriousness of his offense, and the exact relationship between the offense and the punishment meted out becomes somewhat unclear in his mind after a period of delay.

"Punishment, to be effective, must be prompt, especially with a very young child. Prompt punishment does not mean hasty punishment, in anger. Rather, it means bringing the results of an act close enough to the event so that a child, whose memory is short, will not have forgotten why he is being punished" (p. 179, Childcare and Training, Faegre and Anderson).

As the example already cited in a previous installment of the parents eating in a restaurant with a child, the parent should think more of the child and of the child's future than he does of the mere "opinions" of people seat ed around. He should quietly and calmly take the child out of the restaurant, apply the proper punishment, and return, rather than deferring the punishment until later.

"The fundamental in all discipline is to be sure you are right, then go ahead. Go ahead in a way which leaves no shadow of doubt whether you or your child wins. Whatever you do, do something decisive. Do not tell a child who coasts down a dangerous and for bidden driveway that he cannot use his coaster any more that day and then let him coax you into giving it back in five minutes. Do not spank a child and cuddle his tears away, murmuring: 'Daddy is sorry he had to spank you."' (pp. 50-51, As the Twig Is Bent, Hohman).

Only when punishment is administered IMMEDIATELY after the offense, and especially is this true with a very young child, will it be truly effective. This is the only fashion in which the very young child can be expected to ASSOCIATE the immediate retributive chastisement with the wrong action.

The more swiftly the punishment can follow the act of disobedience, the more effective it will be! This is a principle which should NEVER be forgotten.



To punish for' an infraction one day, and then to allow the same infraction without punishment the next day is totally confusing to a child.

"The habit of obedience should be developed by the second birthday and firmly fixed by the third. It should become automatic. By the end of the first year, the foundation should be laid. This foundation arises out of a firm, calm, CONSISTENT treatment of the child during the first year. The child will get his first lesson of obedience in learning inhibitions. There is something which babies should not do; mother says 'no' and sees to it that the baby does not do the forbidden thing [by punishing IMMEDIATELY if an infraction occurs]. The mother must be sure that the first lessons are absolutely successful. She must say 'no' only with good reason, but when she says it she must see that the child obeys" (pp. 148-149, Training Children, Pyle). (Emphasis ours)

I have observed many parents make the gross mistake of totally inconsistent punishment and training. The underlying cause for inconsistency is that the

parents have lapsed into the habit of punishing their children ONLY when the children finally "get on their nerves" to the effect that the parent becomes angry, and "lashes out" at the child in retributive haste!

Frequently, parents will say "But I DO spank him!" and then go on to argue "But it doesn't seem to do a bit of good!" ALWAYS, at the root of a statement such as this, is discipline that is totally ineffective because it is not being done consistently.

This is perhaps the most common of all parental failings in administering just and loving discipline! On one day, mother may spank little Johnnie for having pulled a knife out of the drawer. On the following day, she may totally ignore Johnnie as he plays with a whole fistful of knives and forks.



Here, too, is one of the greatest errors of parents today.

"Johnnie! Get back up there on that chair and finish your dinner!" says the parent. But Johnnie ignores the parent, going about his own pursuits as if he had not even heard the voice of the parent. Most parents are taken in by this "ignoring" which all children will "`try" with their parents, and so are convinced Johnnie really didn't hear the command! The command is repeated and repeated — and repeated! FINALLY — the child may even be picked up and PLACED on the chair by the frustrated parent! OR what is just as likely (in the practice which I myself have observed on many occasions) after five or six fruitless admonitions, the parent himself may turn away from this futile attempt at child training and go back to his newspaper or other pursuits, letting the child have his own way! Parents who say, "Did you hear me?" are those who always speak more than once! Parents who say "What am I going to do with you?" are parents who always speak more than once! Parents who say "Am I going to have to give you a spanking?" are parents who ALWAYS speak more than once.

Have you been using these phrases? Do you speak more than ONCE to your children?

Speak to your child once! Then, if disobedience follows, IMMEDIATELY apply the proper punishment! It is only in this way that punishment can be truly effective!

It is truly amazing the degree to which a child's hearing may be sharpened by only speaking ONCE, firmly, and sharply! Thousands of parents seem to be in blissful ignorance of the fact that their children could be trained to literally "jump at the snap of their fingers" if they cared to use the diligence to gain this end. You may have heard of the children who were startled into humble quietude by the mere "clearing of the throat" of their father as a warning. You may have heard of other children who could have been silenced with a mere look. But by far the more average is the child who can't be quieted with a thousand admonitions, and who never listens to his parent!

This is such a common failing of parents that it deserves ample discussion! Check up on yourself! Begin to speak only ONCE!

If you want your child for something, simply say, "Johnnie, come here!" If the child ignores you, wait just a moment or two, then arise from your chair, calmly bare the child's bottom and apply about five or six good sharp swats! If Johnnie pretends he "didn't hear you" and tearfully tells you he didn't realize you were calling him — you may be positively assured that if you explain the reason why he is being spanked, he WILL hear you the next time!

I have seen so many dozens, yes even hundreds of parents speaking time and time again to their children without any visual effect that it is truly amazing!

You, as a parent, should begin to speak to your child only once! Say, "Eat your dinner!" And then, if, after a few moments, the child is still toying with his food, showing disinterest, or daydreaming — calmly take him down from the dinner table, into another room, lower his pants and give him a good effective spanking! Allow him to remain in his room until the crying has completely subsided, and until he is settled down again, and then firmly place him on his chair and say, "Eat your dinner!" This time, you may be fully persuaded, the chances are far more likely that he is going to finish his dinner! However, let's assume he DOESN'T. What then? This brings up the next basic principle.