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Has anyone had an experience with the subject of what the Catholic Church teaches on children being spanked by parents for disipline?

I have a good friend who is going through some difficulty and I am beside myself.

My parents spanked my siblings and I on rare occasions and my Dad was from the old English school of using a belt. My Mother stopped him during the 50's and said lightly with the open hand and only one the butt.

Wow, now I have been researching the subject here in America, with respect to the corporal punishment law in all states. In the school there are still over 20 some states that allow teachers to use corporal punishment to control behavior. There are many states that are trying to get corporal punishent banished in schools and with parents across America.

The Psychological community has done some gathering of statistics on adults in prisions who have been spanked as a child; and other stats to see if physcial pain of corporal punishment is the cause of psychologial problems.

They say that most parents who were spanked for disapline believe in spanking their children.

Aug 8th 2012 new

I don't know what the church teaches, but this looks interesting.

My mum & dad taught me that corporal punishment should definitely decrease as the child grows older since s/he becomes able to understand other punishments better. It should be only with an open hand,'s the scary have to be told why you're getting the swat, repeat it back, and then stand for a moment while the parent tells you again and counts the swats. The anticipation was always worse!

As a parent, my folks have told me that when my son tries the "book in the pants" trick, it's probably time to find alternate punishments altogether. However, don't laugh whatever you do when he tries it. :) That trick shows logical reasoning and means he can understand toys being taken away or whatever.

There is some research in Europe you might want to look into too.

Aug 8th 2012 new

You know the debate about corporal punishment is indeed difficult to understand. I feel that I can only offer my sympathies to tell you that I am as confused as you. You see, when they stopped instituting corporal punishment was around they same time that everyone starting treating little kids as though they could do no wrong. They didn't simply STOP spanking, they stopped doing alot of things. Also, we have people being born to parents who often are not upstanding people to begin with so whether they are following their example or whether it has to do with spanking I don't know. One thing I do know. I do not believe it should be done at school. It should only be done inthe home. Any physical punishment must be countered by the idea that your parent still loves you. If it is not, I would say that person would resort to violence to start any fight. A child isn't going to believe that the teacher that spanked them loves them. They don't really know them all that well(well, I guess they often see them more than their parents...but there isn't that bond). Part of the idea of corporal punishment is that it is someone who loves you doing this and they are doing it because children must learn consequences. So, if it DOES work.....I still wouldn't support it in schools. And it should definitely decrease as it gets older. But corporal punishment or not...many children and people are not taught consequences. I believe this is part of the problem in society. People assume...."Well, if it doesn't hurt me, it's okay".......all actions have far reaching consequences. And if people don't have to face punishment for wrongdoing, they never learn.

Oct 9th 2012 new

my father beat me bloody on several occasions. i'd have to stay home from school for a few days until i wasn't black and blue. didn't do me a damn bit of good. just solidifed my determination to continue defying him.

spanking only works with pre-schoolers ages 2 1/2 to 4. it's the gesture of putting them over your knees, transferring control of the situation back to the adult. the spank itself can be light, lighter even than when you're playig around with the kids. it's the gesture and the posture. never hit a kid in anger. never.

Oct 13th 2012 new

Legitimate corporal punishment, i.e., the infliction of pain (get that, pain, not harm) on the body by an authority for evil actions committed, is within the competence of parents to their children by the Church's doctrine of subsidiarity.


The psychological community doesn't really hold much weight in my eyes since the very etymology of the word "psychology" is the study of the soul, which soul the psychological community denies exists.

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