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Author Topic: Completely Random Thoughts  (Read 1790085 times)

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Offline Tripe

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8445 on: September 10, 2013, 11:19:11 AM »
I'm working on a Muppet Babies version of the Rifftrax Forum.
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Offline LucasM

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8446 on: September 10, 2013, 11:46:03 AM »
First - from the feel of assorted posts here - I think this discussion has appeared to single out Imrahil, both from the tone of his responses, and that he is the most vocal person on the side of spanking 'not being that bad'.  I just want to be clear that I am NOT singling him out, I am using what was shared by many, with his phrasing simply being the clearest global argument on the side of spanking not being that bad (others gave more specific examples).  From what has been shared I do not feel he (or anyone who has spoken up here) would be/is a 'bad parent'.  Do I agree with everything anyone has said here?  No, including some things said on the 'anti-spank' side [but I have been near tears from mental exhaustion for the last five days and cannot afford to address everything, probably should not have done this much].

With that in mind...

So you don't want to hit your kid; ok. That doesn't make it "abuse" if someone else chooses to discipline differently, any more than it's "abuse" if someone else lets their kid watch 10 hours of TV a day.

I don't understand your point. Two wrongs don't make two rights.

My point is that calling it "abuse" is an abuse of the term. There are legitimate cases of child abuse that happen.  Occasional spankings are not even remotely in the same category, and this hyperbole is ridiculous.

It is true: a swat on the rump to get a kid's attention is quite different than hitting a kid until it bleeds or breaking a bone.  But a good rule of thumb is that any time a parent uses a 'weapon' (anything other than it's open hand on a kid's clothed butt, alternatives being a switch, a ping-pong paddle, or stripping its clothes off to swat it's butt, whatever) it falls in the category of abuse.

The swat on the rump never has the exact desired effect (research in learning shows this).  Of all the ways to alter behavior, physical punishment is the least likely to get the desired result, with the largest chance of getting unwanted 'side' results.  [Retrospective studies show that the pain involved associates to whatever the child is thinking at a given time, FAR more than what it is physically doing.  With a child whose attention is not specifically on what the parent wants to change, then the pain/punishment results in unwanted effects, because the child associates it with its thought.]

A key issue as far as how damaging different types of punishment work is the temperament of the child which varies tremendously.  The exact same punishment (say: spanking) can be responded to in many ways by the child.  They can become timid, afraid to deal with the world or stand up for themselves even when they are right ('learned helplessness', possibly the most common response); they can spend their lives depressed without being able to figure out why; they can develop fears that can express as anything from obsessive compulsive behavior, to perfectionism, to anxiety disorders with or without panic attacks with no 'source' they can figure out; they can become hardened to the world, where what is done to them is ignored &/or they are indifferent to the suffering of others (because they had to be indifferent to their own); they can become generally angry and cynical and doubt whether empathy is a reasonable response to anything; they can become domineering and want to control everything in their environment, including others' behavior (lot of this with extreme religious or political types); they can become passive-aggressive because this was the only way to 'get back' at the person who hit them without being hit again; or they can become bullies, who transfer their own being hit into hitting others.  For pain/punishment to result in any of those (or others) it qualifies as abuse.  There is probably a very, very tiny group who respond to being hit by a parent (swatted on the butt on up) where that treatment had minimal effect on their overall thoughts and reaction to life.  But I've actually never met anyone where that was true, in - or out - of doing therapy.

Part of what Variety of Cells said, is also what Imrahil was saying (though he was focused more on the legal or Psychological use of the term),
Spankings fit the definition of abuse, but probably not the definition of child abuse, depending on the severity.  The point of a spanking is to inflict pain,  sometimes more psychological pain than physical, which seems to match nicely with: "to treat in a harmful, injurious, or offensive way".  I wouldn't even consider it a stretch. But again, child abuse means something different.
the strict dictionary definition of 'abuse' fits spanking.  But what Imrahil was saying is that it does not fit the legal or Psychological definition.

Effectively, for me, anything that ended up with someone in my office seeking therapy for either actions or feelings they could not understand constituted abuse.  Didn't matter the severity of the treatment objectively, but how their temperament as a child reacted to it.  Since a majority of parents seem to not be tuned in enough to their child to determine what effects such things as spanking will have on their child, and since punishment (especially yelling or hitting) is the least effective method for behavior change (with the highest rate of unwanted side-effects of any of them), and because of all that I saw while practicing, I am basically against it.

But based on the law, there are only upper limits on what a parent can do to their child while raising it.  So I just try to share what I know, and parents - knowing that - can do as they please, hopefully armed with a little more information so that they can make a more informed decision than they might have otherwise, on how the way they treat their child may affect its personality.
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Offline Thrifty Version II

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8447 on: September 10, 2013, 12:25:21 PM »
I tread lightly here; I don't like to give parenting advice because I don't have kids and REALLY don't want to be one of those childless guys who dispenses child rearing advice.  I think you definitely need to be stern and emphatic with kids sometimes because, let's face it, they'll walk all over you if you don't.  You need to, I think, be prepared to be harsh enough that they spend some time hating you, but not so harsh that they get to the point where hating you is the norm.

Regarding physical punishment... I don't have a strong opinion on that.  But I think the word "abuse" is a strong word with strong connotations, and I don't like to see it bandied about lightly.  I think abuse is systematic; an ongoing program of using negative physical or emotional force to hurt someone.  Abuse is targeted and systematic bullying, not scattered incidents.  I feel like it really throws the conversation out of whack when you bandy about a word like that too casually.


Offline Variety of Cells

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8448 on: September 10, 2013, 01:19:29 PM »
I kind of find it funny that humanity has had a set of basic knowledge toward child rearing for thousands of years, which, in that time, tended to generate normal enough human beings - with the occasional bad seed here and there - but now, because we are so much smarter than our forebears, we must now throw aside those techniques, lest every child that is raised according to them become a basket case.

I just don't see it...

Humanity has also gotten along just fine without computers until recently. Humanity will throw aside old techniques if it finds new ones that suit it better.  Changing and adapting is something we are quite good at. We no longer think blood letting is such a good idea, despite it being a tried and true method until science started to say otherwise.


Offline Lembach

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8449 on: September 10, 2013, 01:36:49 PM »


Offline Edward J Grug III

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8450 on: September 10, 2013, 02:30:06 PM »
Actually, bloodletting never worked...

Did it?

My point is, it doesn't quite work to compare something that provably never worked to something that apparently did.

There are still people that believe in and use bloodletting. It has worked for thousands of years, that is the proof they need.

Similarly, and less on the fringe, looks at homeopathy or acupuncture. Tons of evidence to show they don't work.

People will still argue it does, it always has and it always will.
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Offline Variety of Cells

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8451 on: September 10, 2013, 02:34:56 PM »
Actually, bloodletting never worked...

Did it?

My point is, it doesn't quite work to compare something that provably never worked to something that apparently did.

Some people became healthier despite blood letting, and I would argue that some people grew up into functional humans despite being hit as children.

Which goes further to prove that humans are a resilient species than blood letting and violence are effective. 
« Last Edit: September 10, 2013, 02:38:20 PM by Variety of Cells »


Offline Variety of Cells

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8452 on: September 10, 2013, 02:39:50 PM »
Maybe for a fun topic change we can talk about circumcision.

Ugh. Something else I have strong opinions on and feel obligated to defend my position on.  No thanks.


Offline goflyblind

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8453 on: September 10, 2013, 02:40:48 PM »
dF = 0
d*F = J


Offline anais.butterfly

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8454 on: September 10, 2013, 02:52:13 PM »
I'm just not going to breed. Eff the human race, I want to be part of its destruction.


Without bombing Syria that is.
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Offline modelmeg

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8455 on: September 10, 2013, 03:00:31 PM »
I think I was spanked once. I can't remember why or whether it was on my bare butt or not. All I know is that I must have terrified my parents more than angered them. You know? Just scared the living shit out of them and they didn't know how to react. But I don't remember it as anything traumatic or painful. In fact, I'm not even sure how accurately I'm remembering it. That said, I have an incredibly loving and rational family that gets along and always tried to understand and accept me. When I was starting to show signs of depression, anxiety and OCD at a young age, my parents had no idea what to do so there were some screaming matches but they tried their best to learn everything they could about what I was going through. I imagine many, many parents have spanked their kids once or twice. I don't love that idea but I'm not going to shout "ABUSE" at it. However, if that's your go to way of punishing your kid, no matter what they do, then that's a problem.


Offline anais.butterfly

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8456 on: September 10, 2013, 03:14:49 PM »
Anais is the Coolest Butterfly I know  ;D


Offline Edward J Grug III

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8457 on: September 10, 2013, 03:32:02 PM »
I've seen no real proof that a good swat on the ass to let an unruly kid know who sets the rules generates broken people.  As I said before, thousands of years worth of productive, normal people stand as evidence against the contention.

All these other comparisons are specious, and based on actively ignoring the main premise.

To be clear, those were arguments showing how weak the argument 'it always worked' is. Maybe, without physical punishment we would have had 90% less domestic violence or serial murderers or we would all have achieved worldwide peace - You don't know (I don't know either by the way) - It wasn't an argument for or against spanking, it was an argument that your argument is without merit.

If you haven't seen any evidence against spanking, it's only because you haven't looked.

Studies show that aggressive children are more likely to have been spanked. Even those that refute the studies say 'But even these scientists contend that spanking beyond a specific set of criteria (children age 2–6, no objects, in private, less than once per week) is still harmful.' (Those are from wikipedia, and it took two seconds to find them, but trust me, we read a lot in the lead-up to having a baby)

http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1983895,00.html

http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/125/5/e1057

http://www.cmaj.ca/content/161/7/805.long
______________________________________

To those downplaying this to a swat on the bum, that's not where this conversation began - it was about 'whipping' and even involved the child having to go fetch their own whipping implement, adding a physiological component to the physical punishment. (Not trying to single anyone out, or criticize anyone - Our parents were all doing the best they knew how)
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Offline Variety of Cells

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8458 on: September 10, 2013, 03:37:18 PM »
I've seen no real proof that a good swat on the ass to let an unruly kid know who sets the rules generates broken people.  As I said before, thousands of years worth of productive, normal people stand as evidence against the contention.

All these other comparisons are specious, and based on actively ignoring the main premise.

There's a much better way to make my point that I involves statistics based vocabulary that I have forgotten, but just because something doesn't always have a measurable negative effect doesn't mean it "works". You can not prove that hitting a child caused them to be a functional person, all you are saying with your evidence is that there are functional people who have been hit as a child.

EDIT:  Edward's post is much better.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2013, 03:39:10 PM by Variety of Cells »


Offline Tripe

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Re: Completely Random Thoughts
« Reply #8459 on: September 10, 2013, 03:59:50 PM »
Actually what you'd need would be hollow bones and super massive muscly man-boobs.