Playing or Smacking, Which Got My Child in Hospital?

Smacking or not smacking children is a debate that will be discussed in national and international circle for a long time. The argument “of spare the rod and spoil the child” will be discussed both by parents, religious leaders and child therapist. I believe the rod does not have to be a (stick; figure of speech).

The meaning of smacking has been mis-represented in the media greatly and has sometimes been termed has hitting. My understanding of smacking is using the hands to tap in order to get a reaction. One definition of ‘smack’, according to The Paperback Oxford English Dictionary is “a sharp blow given with the palm of the hand.” I believe hitting on the other hand involves the use of an object and according The Paperback Oxford English Dictionary, one of the meaning of ‘hit’ is “strike with the hand or a tool, bat, etc.” This meaning gives a differentiation to the two words and I believe this should not be bleared. In the circumstance that the line between these two words are bleared, the government’s rules and laws are used to protect the right of children. In instances where the primary careers of children have crossed the line, actions have to be taken to protect the child and keep them from harms way.


I believe that sometimes, smacking is used by parents to get an instance reaction from children in order to keep them from danger or hurting themselves further. A good example that has been used by parents is a toddler about to touch a hot radiator. Depending on the reflex action of the parent, it can either be a tap on the hand, a quick snatch of the child,s hand away from their aimed direction, a pick up or turning the child away. Whatever reaction a parent might have taken, choosing to smack the child does not mean being a bad parent. Having two boys that were boisterous as toddlers (they are still boisterous) has put me in situations that I had to use smacking to stop them from hurting themselves. In situations where I have left them to rough it out and learn from their actions it has landed them in A&E with black, swollen eyes and lips, which was very scary to see as a parent.

As children grow older, getting to 5 years+ and begin to have a better understanding of the world around them, I believe smacking should be reduced to the minimal and more of talking, and reasoning should be engaged with the child. This will help children in understanding why certain behaviour and actions are not acceptable in the community.