• November 14, 2023

Negatives Consequences of Corporal Punishment

Negatives Consequences of Corporal Punishment
Share on

By Alusine Fullah

We might condone spanking—even spanking carried out for the wrong reasons—if we could show that it improved children’s behavior. But there is no evidence that spanking or other corporal punishment does so. It often has the short-term effect of stopping a particular behavior while the parent/ teacher is present, but the long-term effect of increasing the child’s likelihood of bad behavior when the parent is absent.

A question arises as well as to whether a child’s behaviour is the cause or the effect of corporal punishment: for instance, do aggression and other behaviour problems of the child lead parents to spank or does the use of corporal punishment cause the behaviour problems?

Research finds that boys who receive frequent corporal punishment often become more aggressive, girls more withdrawn.  The practice backfires in other respects, too. Parents who administer corporal punishment are also more likely to receive it. This is true especially for mothers and teachers, who are at greater risk of receiving violence from their children and pupils than their fathers.

Other risk factors of corporal punishment are linked to partner violence. Partner violence increases the risk of corporal punishment within a family for multiple members, including parents and teachers. Meanwhile, corporal punishment is most dangerous and probably more likely when the parent or caregiver is under major stress. Teachers and parents who believe in the value of corporal punishment are more likely to physically abuse their children when dealing with increasing levels of stress. Caregivers of elderly or dependent family members are known to undergo tremendous amount of stress.

Individual risk factors associated with corporal punishment include depression, anxiety, lower grades in school, aggression, delinquency, and slower physical development. Not surprisingly, many children who receive corporal punishment come to feel they have little control over their own lives. They are less likely to be ambitious, confident, optimistic, or happy.

The harm caused by corporal punishment merely begins in childhood; it does not end there. Research shows that among adults who were spanked as children, there are more instances of crime and racism, a sense of personal injustice, general tolerance for violence and aggression, and belief in the value of extreme solutions to social problems for instance, belief in the death penalty. Corporal punishment in childhood is an even better predictor of violence in adulthood than either social class or the viewing of violent TV shows!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *