Domestic Corporal Punishment: Breeding Another Generation Of Domestic Abusers

Bashir Turawa

Corporal punishment is defined as “a form of physical punishment that involves the deliberate infliction of pain as retribution for an offence, or for the purpose of disciplining or reforming a wrongdoer, or to deter attitudes or behaviour deemed unacceptable.”

The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child defined corporal punishment as “any punishment in which physical force is used and intended to cause some degree of pain or discomfort, however light.”

Corporal punishment comprises hitting, spanking, tearing and other forms of physical inflictions. It also extends to forcing a child to inhale harmful substances such as pepper or smoke.

Over the years, parents are known with the habit of applying corporal punishment whenever their children err. Some parents are of the inhumane habit of tearing their children’s body with blade and applying pepper whenever they engage in petty stealing at home. You can imagine how painful and heartless that could be. When children engage in anything which is appropriate for children of their age but their parents find fault in, they are subjected to corporal punishment, all because they expect them to start behaving like someone who is grown enough not to commit any offence.

Research has shown that corporal punishment has done more harm than good in the lives of children and it also instills violence in their minds. For instance, a child who was a victim of corporal punishment will grow up to adopt such inhumane punishment there by subjecting his children to pains. It may also extend to getting violent upon the spouse.

Effects of corporal punishment on children include increased aggression, anti social behaviour, mood disorder, anxiety disorder, etc.

A child who is always a victim of corporal punishment will encounter increased aggression because they will always vent their anger which they couldn’t show to their parents on people outside. You could imagine the kind of parent the child will grow to become.

Children who are used to physical punishments may find it difficult to relate well with people in the society as such children will view the society based on the situation they are being faced with at home and not how the society actually looks like.

A child who is a victim of perpetual beating and other acts of corporal punishment will be thrown into being moody for a very long time which is dangerous to their psychological wellbeing. You will find such children losing focus at school and other aspects of life since only the punishment meted on them occupy their thoughts.

Corporal punishment causes anxiety disorder. A child faced with the challenge of corporal punishment will always be anxious at very slight instances due to the fact that they’ve been made to look out for the type of punishment that awaits they whenever they commit any offence. This is not good for their wellbeing.

There are ways to put children in order whenever they commit any offence. Children could be sat down and talked to about anything the parents feel the child is doing which is not right. The children should be made to see reasons why it’s bad to engage in acts like that.

Another way to rebuke a child of any wrongdoing is to place restrictions on them. Deny them access to some things that they enjoy such as phones or internet till they show signs of positive change.

Children could also be made to do extra house chores at home as a way of punishing them for their mistakes. All these are better off than inflicting them with physical pains which may last as long as they have immediate family of their own and start doing same to them.

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