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Should I spank my SS??!!

Maneater's picture

I'm really conflicted about this one. DH is a big disciplinarian of SS who is only 1year & 2 months old. My DH is really big on having a very well mannered well behaved child. We can already tell if we are not hard on SS at this early age, he will def. be out of control. When he doesn't get his way, he will either throw his head back & bang it on the floor kick & scream, or fall out to the floor if he is standing & kick & scream. As soon as he throws a temper tantrum DH picks him up gives him a good spank & sits him in his crib & won't let him out till he settles down. If SS reaches for cell phones or plug in sockets DH will only tell him once in a very stern "NO" if he continues DH walks over & smacks his hand. DH is not at all unreasonably abusive, & anybody who is around while SS is being corrected or spanked, doesn't have a reaction. Nobody thinks he is a hard disciplinarian but me. I think I'm just soft hearted & have way more patients then DH. I can tell SS "NO" for about ten times befor I even feel like smaking his hand. Any way the problem is that DH wants me & expects me to back him up on this & wants me spank & correct SS just like him. Well as y'all can imagine I feel very uncomfortable spanking a child that is not my own. DH knows how I feel, but he doesn't understand me, he thinks I should forget about not being his BioM & treat him just like if he was my own. I've tried & tried but I'm just not as tough as DH, & when he sees me not being as tough he gets upset with me. I am very comfortable taking a full on mother role while SS is with us & I'm pretty much in charge of everything, feeding, diaper changing, putting him down for naps, I buy his clothes shoes, anything he needs, of course DH helps out, but I'm the primary care giver while he is in our care. But I can't seem to get down the disciplin role down up to DH standereds.

Have any of you SM ever had this problem? Or do you guys think I should never spank SS even if DH wants me to. Could it have long term negative affects on SS if I spank him? I know not if DH does because he knows that's dad, but SM? I really don't know about this one...

herewegoagain's picture

1st a 1 1/2 yr old is a baby...
2nd if anyone spanked my child, I would get CPs involved IMMEDIATELY

stepmisery's picture

Your husband is well-intentioned but he's off the mark. He is hitting his kid over every little thing.

If a full-blown temper tantrum is occurring, pick him up, set him in his crib and skip the spanking. Reaches for the cell phone - adult fault, never leave it down and available at this age. You do have the house babyproofed? Because there should be no open sockets.

Child is curious about socket? IMMEDIATELY move to child, firmly say no, distract and redirect to acceptable activity.

He tantrums because he does not yet have words to say how he feels. The only way he can express it is physically. This does not mean you have to "be hard" on a child.

Parents need to be firm and consistent. Quiet consistency will go much farther than dramatic scenes ending with spanking. Parents also need to set the stage for success, i.e. baby proof the home, have a regular routine of meals, playtime, rest time.

Good parenting is get-up-off-your-ass parenting, not barking orders from the recliner.

Disneyfan's picture

The child is a baby doing what a baby his age do.

Just because people don't comment when dad spanks the baby, doesn't mean they approve.

How does BM feel about you hitting her son? Since both parents are in the child's life, I think both should be on the same page with SPs spanking the child.

I would have never agreed to my son's SM hitting him and she and I get along great.

Some parents are willing to fight (physical not legal) over this issue.

overworkedmom's picture

I agree with the other posters- he is still a baby and acting like a baby should.

1-2-3 magic is a great discipline book and can give you the structure I think you and your DH are looking for without resorting to spanking-- especially since you are uncomfortable with it.

I have and will "spank" my children (a single swat to the butt). I will not spank my SS, he goes to his room for time out. FDH will spank him, but I refuse, not my place. FDH will not spank my children either.

Rags's picture

First off, mom's and dad's are different. They have different perspectives, biologies, emotions and roles. So, don't turn this in to a bigger issue than it probably is. IMHO of course.

Second, spouses should be on board with an agreed disciplinary approach for all kids in the household and both spouses should support the other and be as consistent as is reasonable.

I sounds to me from yoru post above that you and yuor SO are pretty well in alignment on parenting and that your SO's discipline is both reasonable and effective. SO, get on board as much as you can. He may be more stern and forceful but a pop on the butt or a swat to the hand to a toddler to get the message across that a behavior should stop is perfectly acceptable and effective. A swat to the hand accompmanied by a firm and startling "NO" and a face to face age appropriate explanation is absolutely appropriate and neccessary particulary when the behavior being corrected is protective. The message to a toddler not to play with power sockets is not only critical it is life saving. Physical discipline gets this across.

All IMHO of course ... and you are doing just fine IMHO.

smdh's picture

Nobody should be spanking a baby for behaving normally. All kids his age throw tantrums. How is spanking him going to fix that? He doesn't even understand why he is being hit. Tantrums are best dealt with by ignoring them. I have a child the same age and I can't imagine hitting him simply because he can't tell me why he is frustrated (or because he is tired or hungry or wet). If it is truly just an "I can't have my way" tantrum, he should be put in his crib where he can't hurt himself and ignored until he calms down and then hugged. He will learn they are ineffective and stop doing it.

Maneater's picture

Thank you all for your response. I hope I didn't offend anyone. I promise there is no child abuse going on here. Our house is not fully child proof, but we keep a very close eye on him CONSTANTLY. Sense he doesn't stay with us most of the time, we want to teach him what is safe and not safe. Rather then child proof the entire house and give him free range just because we know he wont hurt himself. For example, we have a 2 story house, so I have a gate that I use to keep him away from the stairs. But even then we don't let him go near it because we want him to know that a.) stairs are not safe YET, b.) anything with a gate is off limits. I like this better then having the gate up and letting him go to the gate, touch it, try to shake it, or climb over it, because he does that. So he is learning now to just look at the gate from a distance & when he thinks we are not looking he sneaks over to touch it, so we say "NO" firmly, & watch his reaction, he now looks at us & walks away, but every now & then he does test us, & instead of walking away he will touch it again or bang it, thats when we walk over smack his hand and say "NO" & that works. BUT ONLY WITH DH. I have noticed not with me so much. I think he is learning that he can get away with more with me. Same thing with our plugs, we don't child prof them because we are constantly plugging things in & out, so my DH just wants to teach him that its off limits, rather then just putting up child protectors & feel safe about him touching the sockets. That way if he is ever at a relatives house or any where that doesn't have child protectors, he knows to AVOID them. As far as the cell phones, I know he is curious about every thing in his surroundings, & I know its natural for him to reach out to cool devises. But we are generally trying to teach him the meaning of the word "NO". So we don't mind that he is reaching out for our cell phones we just want him to understand that if we say "NO" it means to leave it alone no matter how cool it is. Also we do not spank him when he is fussy or throws temper tantrum for no reason. He only gets a good hand to the diaper if he throws a tantrum when he doesn't get his way. I personally don't mind letting him throw a tantrum at home cause I can ignore it no problem, but what do you do if its in public? I was alone with him at Michael's one day, I had him sitting in the cart and he was pointing at something in the isle that he wanted, but I kept walking and he yells still pointing at the item, I said "NO" & kept walking, OMG he threw the biggest tantrum!!! People actually followed the noise cause it sounded like I was killing him, but I had not touched him. It was so bad & I was so embarrassed, I had to walk out the store with a kicking, screaming, crying 11 month old!

Thats when I realized I couldn't just ignore his tantrums at home, I want him to learn that tantrums is not an acceptable form of expressing raging anger.

smdh's picture

I think steps should discipline, especially in shared custody. Its my house. I live here all the time. She lives here 50% of the time. Why the hell should I have to tolerate bullshit? Plus, you can't have responsibility for a child and have no authority. If you can't discipline a little kid, you can't keep them safe. McCrazy argued that I had no right to discipline her precious angel (then 2). The co-parent counselor asked me what I thought about that. I told her that is fine, but what happens when SD2 runs toward the street and I try to stop her and in her mind "mommy said I don't have to listen to you" keeps playing over and over and she gets flattened. Who is responsible for that mess? Me or her?

I just don't think spanking a 1 year old child is necessary to keep them safe. There is a wide, wide range of discipline to teach them not to do something in between saying "no" 100 times and spanking. DS1 throws tantrums. I ignore him. He stops. He touches something he shouldn't? I tell him no once firmly. He does it again, I put him in the gated room where he can't hurt himself. I am consistent. He is learning. I don't have to hit him.

Rags's picture

Sparents are equity parents to all children in their home. Disciplne and Spanking included.

IMHO of course.

SanAntonioSoccerMom's picture

Why on earth would anyone spank a 1 year old baby? That is ridiculous.

And no, step-parents should not be spanking their stepkids. That is for the bios to do, but I always found better ways to punish other than spanking. IMO spanking is always done out of anger, frustration, emotion. There are better ways to parent.

Hitting begets hitting...