No Spanking


Is spanking child abuse? What does the research say about spanking?  What are the benefits of NOT spanking?

I have converted to the “no spanking” side of the argument. I used to be for spanking, and used it with my child. However, after attending a seminar* about it (which included a biblical scholar to explain the common verses frequently used to support spanking) and saw some global statistics about the use of spanking, I changed my mind. I did a complete 180 and now promote no corporal punishment.

From that seminar which I attended in 2007, I  learned that if parents stopped spanking, the research shows that it would increase:

  • mental development
  • academic performance in elementary school
  • chances of completing a university degree
  • occupational achievement and income

Another eye-opening statistic was that the larger the percent of children in a nation who were spanked, the larger the percent who hit a dating partner. For example, in Taiwan, the percentage of children who were spanked or hit a lot before age 12 is around 80%, and the assault total is around 40%. By contrast Sweden has about 20% of children spanked, and 20% hitting of a dating partner.They gave four key reasons why children should NEVER be spanked:

  • Spanking is not necessary.
  • Spanking has harmful side effects.
  • Spanking undermines long term effectiveness of parents
  • Contradicts the ideal of the family as a place for love, not violence

And now, some more research has been revealed to further support the “no spanking” idea. A five-year literary research effort was conducted by Scientific American. According to the article, there is a higher correlation between spanking and aggression, anxiety, depression and brain impairment.

If you would like to change your parenting style, give me a call. I have a lot of techniques you can use instead of spanking.


Faith Gallup, LCSW



*Summit Conference III: International Leaders in the Child and Non-Violence, April 10, 2007, Hartgrove Hospital. Presented by Dr. Madeline Y. Gomez, and PsychHealth, Ltd. With Dr. Murray Straus, Samuel Martin and Professor Jerrold Atlas.