Study Says Spanking Negatively Affects Children – What Do Africans Think?


A team of Psychologists have conclusively condemned spanking as a disciplinary measure. They say it has series of adverse effects on the children in later years.

The experts from the University of Texas, Austin and the University of Michigan recently published their research which posits that the more you spank your children, the more likely they are to show higher levels of anti-social behavior, mental health issues and aggression.

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The team analysed the cases of 160,000 children in a 50-year period of time.

In the African context, this assertion might only make sense to a few millennials compared to a large majority who still stick to the age old physical punishments meted out to children for disciplinary reasons.

It is however interesting to know that 81% of Americans disagree with the study. They insist that spanking is a necessary punitive measure to correct and discipline children.

Elizabeth Gershoff, Associate Professor of human development and family sciences at The University of Texas, said:

“Our analysis focuses on what most Americans would recognize as spanking and not on potentially abusive behaviors,”

“We found that spanking was associated with unintended detrimental outcomes and was not associated with more immediate or long-term compliance, which are parents’ intended outcomes when they discipline their children.”

While some people who were spanked as children have no problem with it, some others have a different stories to tell.

The study was projecting the idea of a less harsh way of instructing the children. They advocate that parents/guardians should opt for a sort of dialogue to discuss what a problem is and how it has affected them. They stress on the need of using a “thought language” that does not make the child feel hated and condemned.

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Well let’s just say “different strokes for different folks.” As much as this method has worked for some, there is no guarantee that it will do wonders for another.

The underlining fear in the argument is how well parents are able to manage their anger before their children while punishing them. How well they manage their temper definitely affects the process and result of the punishment.

Let us know what you think about this.