Do Children Actually Need To Be Beaten?

August 30, 2018

When a lot of people recall childhood beatings, it’s often with a hint of wry humour and I’m usually just blown, like

Excuse me, what about getting beaten is funny? Your dad or mom had you hospitalized and left a permanent scar on you and you’re laughing almost fondly? What in the Stockholm Syndrome is this? I often find that the longer people tell these stories, the humour fades and their true feelings of the events are exposed – whatever they may be. Admittedly, if I were asked to recount such tales, I’d probably laugh in the process of telling it as well. Well, that just might be because I’m damaged. Who knows?
Corporal punishments or what we call beating, is tightly woven into the average Nigerian or African’s correctional culture. It starts at home with parents, aunts or uncles and older siblings, and extends to school and sometimes even religious institutions. In fact, it’s not the strangest thing to see a man or woman “discipline” a complete stranger’s child for some wrongdoing or other. They say it takes a village to raise a child and this village believes in the supposed effectiveness of beatings. However, with all the beatings and supposed discipline, crime and immorality are still rife in the society.
View this post on Instagram

#stopbeatingchildren

A post shared by DjWoske Thoughts #Woske (@woskethoughts) on

A lot of people will argue that beatings didn’t leave any lasting mental scars, that they’re actually better for it. These same people look forward to beating their children for not much other reason than ‘well, it was done to me and I turned out well’. That might be true, but you could definitely have turned out a whole lot better. In an environment that often disregards mental health, it would be hard for you to even tell the signs. Damaged people damage people.

There are many detrimental effects of corporal punishment.

If you were beaten as a child, it’s okay to admit that you are damaged. It makes it easier to notice the signs and break the cycle. Unless you have the very spawn of the devil as a child (which is very unlikely) there’s no way he/she won’t be able to discern right from wrong, especially if broken down and properly communicated to them. It doesn’t have to be etched on their bodies through beatings. In contrast to what parents are trying to achieve, the child most often only learns to fear punishment, rather than understand why he should follow rules. They become sneaky and learn to hide bad behaviour well, because of the fear of punishment. AKA “wrong is what gets you punished; right is what gets you praise or avoids punishment.” Morally upright, indeed. See this.
Beatings don’t teach your child to behave properly. A child who gets beaten for fighting a sibling won’t magically learn how to get along better in future. Parents are in fact just sending a confusing message by doing exactly what they’re trying to get the children to not do. Children do what parents do, more than what they say. Effective discipline should always teach new skills, and parents are responsible for the child they raised. Parents often lose it and react, and in the process don’t teach anything other than that their child should be afraid of them. Parents who use corporal punishment often react out of desperation before they really consider the underlying reason. The child just gets beaten without fully understanding what they did wrong, simply learning that their parents don’t like it and not to do it again… and get caught.

Parents who employ corporal punishment as a discipline tool are simply training their kids to resent them.

Beatings damage your child’s self-esteem, their ability to interact properly with others, their view of the world and their view of how they deserve to be treated!

View this post on Instagram

Sighhh #stopbeatingchildren

A post shared by DjWoske Thoughts #Woske (@woskethoughts) on

Beatings push your children away from you, and they become vulnerable to picking up vices from strangers. They also perfect bad habits such as lying. Why make your child grow up traumatised?

Punishment isn’t the only facet of discipline! In fact, if your discipline consists of just negative consequences, it isn’t very effective.

Some parents, when asked why they beat their children, will say out of frustration “I don’t know what else to do.” How would you feel if you were meted out that same punishment by a spouse or loved one with the excuse of them not knowing how else to let you know you’d made a mistake? That would be termed ‘Emotional Pain and Suffering’ for an adult, so why do we believe children don’t have the same feelings that adults do? The screaming that comes from a young child being beaten is not so much the result of physical trauma as it is emotional trauma. They experience the overwhelming emotional pain of rejection, worthlessness, and the betrayal is usually much worse than any physical pain.

So, is #StopBeatingChildren a relevant movement in the Nigerian society? Yes.

We need to recognize beatings for what they are – abuse. We need to break the cycle of abusing our children because we were abused. There are other equally effective methods of disciplining a child without physical (or verbal) abuse. Parents can try, for one, actually talking to the kids like they’re human beings with brains. They should also try educating them as patiently as possible about the dangers or implications of their bad behaviour. Ignore them, ground them, take away something they love, clearly express your disapproval and lecture them if need be, just do anything but abuse them. The mental scars you inflict on them will last longer than any lesson you’d like them to learn.

What are your thoughts on using corporal punishment as a discipline tool?

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this

October 28, 2019

You’ve tried to like them, or at least, you’ve tried to be comfortable around them, but something about what many people think are cute pets puts you on an automatic lets-know-what-we’re-doing mode. I get this, which is why I decided to write about your (probable) experience with the so-called man best friend. The first question […]

Watch

Now on Zikoko

Recommended Quizzes

April 14, 2020

Every friend group consists of very different and specific characters — from the parent to the fun one — and it can be a little tough figuring out where you fall. So, we’ve created a quiz that lets you know exactly what kind of friend you are. Take to find out:

November 28, 2019

There are so many talented and stunning Nollywood actors that make it hard not to fall in love with them. So, while we all know the likelihood of us ending up with any of them is super low, it’s still fun to imagine a world where we actually stood a chance, and that’s why this […]

November 20, 2019

Last month, we thoughtfully made a quiz telling you guys exactly when you’ll marry, but some of you claimed that your spouse was nowhere to be found. Well, now we’ve created one that’ll tell you exactly who you’ll be dragging down that aisle. Take and start planning that wedding: 11 Quizzes For Nigerians Who Are […]

January 2, 2020

Do you have even a single romantic bone in your body? Well, if you’re not sure about just how sweet and thoughtful you can be to someone you love, that’s what this quiz is here to answer. 11 Quizzes For Nigerians Who Are Ready To Marry  Are you ready to marry? Take these quizzes.

December 11, 2019

In the past month, we’ve made quizzes that guessed the last time you had sex, how many people you’ve slept with, and just how good you are in bed. For our latest attempt, we will use your taste in Nigerian music from the 2010s to ascertain what you’re like in bed. Take to find out:

More from General

March 10, 2022

Offers opportunity for young changemakers from Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa to join the Global Citizen Fellowship Program for a year-long, full-Time, paid placement International advocacy organisation Global Citizen has today announced that application for the 2022/23 Global Citizen Fellowship Program powered by BeyGOOD is now open until 29th April 2022. Fifteen young African changemakers: […]

March 8, 2022

Triller, the AI-powered, open garden technology platform for creators, has joined #BreakTheBias, the global campaign in honor of  International Women’s Day (#IWD2022) on Tuesday, 8th March.  All Triller platforms will feature stories from 30 incredible women in the music and entertainment industry who are working to end gender bias, along with a specially curated #BreakTheBias […]

March 4, 2022

In view of the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, MTN has announced it will be offering free international calls and SMS to all existing prepaid and postpaid customers, effective immediately. This offer is aimed at supporting customers to stay in touch with their loved ones while eliminating associated International Direct Dialing (IDD) costs due to high […]

March 3, 2022

ASUS has released its new Zenbook 14 Flip OLED (UP5401EA) and Vivobook Pro series (N7600/N7400). Pre-orders are available now. The Zenbook 14 Flip OLED (UP5401EA) is a slim, light and ultra-versatile convertible design equipped with a 4K OLED HDR NanoEdge touchscreen, having a 16:10 aspect ratio to give you a bigger visual workspace. The Asus […]

February 26, 2022

FairMoney Microfinance Bank, a leading fintech firm is currently revotionalizing  the digital banking space in Africa. The firm known for its dominance of micro lending in Nigeria has  transitioned into  a full fledged credit led digital bank. With this new height reached, comes a promise to provide Fair banking for all. FairMoney prides itself as […]

Feature image
February 26, 2022

Ensuring that Valentine’s Day fell within ten-day chocolate marketing period may have been a masterstroke for Ghana’s chocolate marketers. But they were also helped because a campaign launched 15 years ago to encourage local consumption of chocolate is beginning to bear fruit. By Zubaida Mabuno Ismail, bird story agency. “I have run out stock of […]

Watch

Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.
X