Our expert says:
Maybe its partly due to families being more scattered these days ( so relatives are less available to help ) but it appears to me that the baby-sitter is dead - at the mall, I see families seem routinely now to take every child, down to infants in arms, on shopping expeditions, which is far from pleasant for kids.
I also disapprove of smacking kids on the head, and agree that a moderate pat on the bottom does no harm at all. As for long-term effects, it's hard to separate out such specific events. Where there's a generally consistently loving and caring relationship between parents some such incidents probably don't cause problems, especially when they're part of an orderly and clear and consistent system of rules, consequences chd discipline. Where there is not a consistently loving, caring relationship, that in itself can cause problems, and acts of violence in a temper that reflect more a chaotic parenting style, are surrely unhelpful.
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