Thursday, November 08, 2012

Spare the rod, spoil my child? No way!

I will be honest. I do not believe in sparing the rod. Before some mummies go up in arms about how the rod has detrimental psychological effects on a child, let me assure you. I do believe in positive parenting too, as well as all those ‘time in, time out’ and upbringing concepts that child specialists recommend nowadays. However, I also believe that one cannot totally remove the rod from the family environment.

My choice of a rod is a thin rattan cane. Those that give a good ‘piak’ sound are the best: sturdy at the handle but flexible at the end so that a swift flick of the wrist will do the trick. I must surely sound like an abuser by now. But hey, my kids have to count their lucky stars that I am not choosing a bamboo pole, like the ones my grandmother used on my father and his siblings. Those really must hurt.

My choice rod will be placed at strategic spots in the home, so that they can be whipped out any time, any day. This is also meant to outsmart my kids as they grow older and attempt to throw away the canes without me knowing. I can just imagine some reading this in great horror, determined to convince me otherwise.

Hold your horses. Like I shared earlier, I believe in positive parenting too, in talking reason to my kids to help them learn and become better persons. But I do think that if I spare the rod totally, then I may just end up being taken advantage of by my kids, or become the abused. Spare the rod, spoil the child. That is oh so true.

I think there needs to be a balance, a warped sort of balance, where the presence of the cane is always there, always looming, but the actual execution is rare. Not just rare, but avoided as much as possible, unless really necessary in extreme cases. When necessary, I mean, when all talking, all reasoning, all time ins or time outs have failed. It does happen, I’m sure, and it will happen.

I just have to think back to my younger days, when I would test my already patient mother to the absolute limits and drive her crazy. Who wouldn’t, when your daughter hugs your handicapped brother, only to fall to the floor with him and causing his two front teeth to be chipped? Who wouldn’t when your daughter climbs up and down furniture, slams doors numerous times a day or fails her studies and yet still doesn’t seem bothered? 

Oh yes, I still remember my mum running after me round and round the house with a cane, before finally cornering me (I still wonder how that happened) and giving me four quick whips on the thigh, two on each thigh. She sat me down after, to talk and apologise to me, with tears in her eyes, explaining to me her actions.

If protractors against caning want to call this abuse, then I say it’s loving ‘abuse’, an action born out of love for the child to be a better person.

An abuser will not hurt intentionally, nor tear, nor take the effort to talk reason.

Only a parent will. Only a parent can feel the deep pain that a child feels. Only a parent will bear the pain, in order to guide a child to be a better person.

And I want my kids to be good individuals. If I am forced to use a cane some time during their growing up years, I will.

When that happens, I will be ready, with a cane with a big C.

For if one doesn't discipline the child, the world will.

Linking up with:'s Talkative Thursdays


  1. Well said!! It's one thing to be able to discipline a child through talking and another through caning. I guess most of us have been through this stage and we remember the times when we were caned for something wrong we did. It is deeply etched in our minds and never to be repeated. So the cycle repeats! :p

    1. Agree! I think we realize that some caning is Ok. I mean, we have been through it and we turned out ok. :)

  2. I know what you mean, totally, and I'm cool with it. But so far I only picked up the cane a couple of times and somehow I just don't have the guts to use it with force, so I leave the hitting part to the hubby while I do the reasoning part. =) Hee. No right or wrong in parenting, just what we believe works for our kid! As long as you believe it's best, don't need to care about what others say! =)

    1. Yah.. I also wonder where I will have the heart to really ht my kids. We will see! But yeah.. Totally with you on the point about not caring what others say. :)

  3. We do have canes in the house.. one for every room in fact and one in the car too.. they serve as reminders for the kids to behave themselves and are used rarely. One bad canning is good enough for them to remember how painful it can get if they cross the line.

    1. Wow.. One in the car too? I guess it makes sense.. Kids can get rowdy in a car. :)


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