Reaching down to pick up her dance bag off the ground, I began to close the van door, knowing the child safety feature would not allow complete closure. This really got her attention. She grabbed the bag, used her body to block the door, and hopped back into the van. “Wait! I want you as my mother.” She even wanted to go home with me. Skeptical, I clarified, “Are you sure? It means you must commit to being my daughter from now on?” She nodded.
While there have been no more 9-1-1 calls and unexpected visits from police officers, this experience is another one of those parenting life lessons. Most of all, I am thankful the deputies “dropped by” when the scene was calm. If they were on my doorstep on any other regular evening, things might have turned out differently. I wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving, and may you enjoy a day free of a surprise visit from your local Sheriffs’ deputies.
“I am so sorry,” I said. I was sorry for many more things than I could say. This is one moment I wish could be erased from my memory and done again, though differently. Ideally, I would greet the mother and child with a warm smile, take an extensive history, perform a thorough physical exam, discuss a list of possible diagnoses with mom, and send blood tests accordingly. I would reassure this mother we would properly evaluate her concerns.
Whether or not we reach 100, 1,000, or even 10,000 miles together in our lifetime, we will have time spent enjoying one another. Time is a gift we should all appreciate. I am well aware of the fact in 10 years, she could recoil at the thought of taking a walk with dear old mom, but what if she doesn’t?
Reviewing the anti-spanking literature revealed no randomized clinical trials exist proving spanking is ineffective or harmful. Many challenges were identified when drawing conclusions from Dr. Gershoff’s review study. Spanking is defined loosely, making the definition subjective. The research tends to be correlational; therefore, cannot support causation for spanking being beneficial or detrimental.
Ultimately, the developmental outcome of child-rearing is primarily determined by the overall quality of a parent-child relationship. Non abusive spanking by loving parents who use correct methods were able to achieve effective behavioral management and a rapid re-establishment of affection between parent and child following interventions.
The bottom-line is this: The question as to whether or not spanking is beneficial or detrimental has not definitively been answered by science. The one thing expert psychologists on both sides of the debate agree upon is the data is not conclusive.
“My eyes are burning, oh my eyes. Mommy, help me.” My daughter was upset and screaming in pain. I went tearing out of my room and ran into the bathroom. “Ow, my eyes are stinging.” It was hard to decipher exactly what she was saying besides having pain in her eyes. “What happened?” I asked, thinking to myself, how did you damage yourself unattended in less than 60 seconds? “It sprayed me.”
“If you get bit by a dog, then you will get rabies.” – 4 year old daughter “You mostly get rabies from bats.” – 7 year old son “Dogs get shots to protect them from rabies.” – 5 year old son “OK, phew.” – 4 year old daughter very relieved “Umm, how about we try to avoid getting bit by dogs?”–Mom preferring prevention strategy