Obviously there are some who think ANY kind of corporal punishment is child abuse. Sadly, there are those on the opposite end of the spectrum who believe that parents have the right to discipline their children however they feel appropriate, no matter what. I know this because I know of a family who beat their infant's little bottom with an actual rod until it bled - and believed that this was appropriate discipline because of their religious beliefs.
I would say most of us fall somewhere in between. When does physical discipline become abuse? Here's a few examples of different "lines" I think people have:
- Striking with objects. My mom spanked us with wooden spoons, and DH was spanked with a belt. Some believe that you should only spank with your hand.
- Striking in any other way than an open hand. Certainly punching your child is different than a swat. Although my mom would pinch me sometimes!
- Striking any place other than your LO's bottom. I know many who feel strongly that you should only spank a child on their bottom, where there is the most "padding."
- Leaving a mark. This seems to be the biggest "line." I know that if anyone I knew "spanked" their child to the point of leaving a mark, I would be seriously concerned.
So, what's your line?