Social Media Poster: “Respect for Others”

Spanking and hitting can cause low self-esteem, unintentional injury and negative behavior outbursts.

Ranting is not something I regularly engage in but…

By Jackie Saulmon Ramirez | September 3, 2014

As many of you know, I volunteer for Parents Anonymous of New Jersey, a leader in the prevention of child abuse. If you have read many of my posts you will also know that I struggle with anger/rage issues. For me, the commitment to non-violence parenting was both heartfelt and life changing.

Fathers teach daughters what to expect in a relationship by how they treat their wives.

Last week, while eating lunch and killing time on social media, I ran across a post by a woman I knew as a well-educated and kind person. The post sent my anger through the roof in a flash, insinuating that she was proud to have learned “respect for others” through her parents spanking her.

My parents spanked me as a child. As a result I now suffer from a psychological condition known as “Respect for Others.”

In effect, the post encourages people to spank their children claiming it teaches respect for others. When I have seen this in the past there were many people who seem to agree and it saddened me. I could not let this pass without challenging her to re-think that post. Here is what I posted:

I never re-post these things encouraging hitting because some parents can start out spanking and are not able to stop. It is also possible to teach respect and manners without the use of violence; my girls are living proof. Think of this poster the next time you hear about a child that was beaten. I was a mom with anger/rage issues; if I got started I would not be able to stop.

Daughters often mirror the respect paid to them by their mothers.

After posting (venting) I felt somewhat relieved; I spoke respectfully using “I” messages to state another perspective. During the day as other people commented or ‘liked’ the woman’s post but I did not look until the end of the day. When I reviewed the comments I found something surprising; instead of people agreeing with the post, they had taken a similar stand against it. To me it reinforces the fact that when one person stands up, it gives others the courage to stand up for what is right too.

“Don’t believe in teaching respect with violence!”

“Absolutely disagree. 99% of the times I was hit, I did not deserve. I was also smacked as part of group punishment when they couldn’t figure out who was lying. Children are not worth less than adults and must be accorded the same rights. For being smacked (amongst other things) I’m now mostly estranged. Parents need better support and we all need better education of life matters in schools, not just the obsession with exams and grades. my respect for elders was severely damaged by my elders taking to violence to win an argument. They couldn’t win with reason so chose a totalitarian option.”

“Don’t agree with corporal punishment. There are better means of deterant and protection.”

“Surely you are aware that increase in rudeness disrespect and down right ignorant behaviour have no connection with discipline being made a criminal offence.”


“Both parents being forced into full time work does not help. There used to be a term “latch key kids”. Now kids are supposed to be handed over to carers almost before they have gotten to know their parents and high pressure schooling to follow. No wonder there is a “generation gap”.”

They got it; they understood the point: Spanking is not noble and teaches nothing except that if you are bigger you can use violence to get your way. We tell kids to stand together against the bully and the same principle worked here: People do not have to go with the flow; one person can make a difference.

One of the beliefs of people: “I was spanked (whipped, hit) and I turned out alright.”

People love their parents (even abusive parents) and we make this up to rationalize the confused feelings that have become blurred over time thinking, “I love my mother and father so those spanking must have been good for me.”

Parental myth: “I only spank lightly with little taps.”

People who are frustrated or angry cannot judge correctly how lightly they are hitting. Emotions dull judgment so that they literally are not in their right minds. Knowing that, do you think it is acceptable to encourage someone like me to hit a child?

Family members who are respectful of each other live harmoniously without feeling the impulse to hit or spank.

And my favorite myth: “If I don’t spank my child they will be spoiled.”

‘Spoiled’ behavior comes from poor parenting skills and acting out as a result. Spanking is a parenting tool used by parents who do not know other, less violent options or choose spanking because of other myths.

As members of our larger community, that village that raises the child that was spoken of so often, I would challenge each of you to stand up and speak the truth about those social media posters. Tell them this:

“Spanking children does not teach respect for others; calm, non-violent discipline does.”

PHOTO CREDIT: Courtesy of JSRamirez Under Flicker/CC License.
PHOTO CREDIT: Courtesy of Peter Werkman Under Flicker/CC License.
PHOTO CREDIT: Courtesy of US Department of Education Under Flicker/CC License.
PHOTO CREDIT: Courtesy of Christine Szeto Under Flicker/CC License.

Copyright © 2014 Jackie Saulmon Ramirez. All Rights Reserved.

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About Jackie Saulmon Ramirez

Jackie has volunteered for more than twenty years for children and family issues. Currently she writes for parents in the "Reminder" and "Parent Rap" Facebook page. If you are interested in receiving the "Reminder," send her a message.
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14 Responses to Social Media Poster: “Respect for Others”

  1. I have always been of two minds on spanking. I don’t believe there is any value to spanking as a deterrent to bad behavior. On the other hand, especially with toddlers there might be a value to a swift swat to the behind when they place themselves in dangerous positions is the best response.


    • Jackie Saulmon Ramirez says:

      I understand that thinking but I stick with non-violence. If I ever gave myself permission for a single “swat” I might not be able to stop, that is precisely the dangerous position. I am that rare mother that could hit over and over and not be able to say when it is enough, the one who stops when it is too late. I am the one that makes the news. And I am not alone.


  2. I use non violence as discipline. Discussing inappropriate behavior and much love will lead kids or grand kids to the right path. Hugs, Barbara


    • Jackie Saulmon Ramirez says:

      I never thought of myself as a tree-hugging pacifist but after realizing how important that is when bringing up children, I must own that title. Like the story of the wind and sun trying to get the man to remove his coat, more gentle ways really do win out. Thank you so much, Barbara, for sharing this information.


  3. Steven says:

    Spanking comes from poor parenting is right on the money.

    I was brought up with the belt and hard slaps across the face. Looking back, my parents were just ignorant and imitating their past. I know this because sometimes I see a spoiled child and my first internal reaction is to ‘whack it’. But as I’ve told you before, in Japan they reason with the child even when they’re little. Passers by ignore it.

    There are still stupid parents. I can’t tell you how many people I see give their child who’s misbehaving sugar to calm them down. (!!!) But that’s another story. 😉


    • Jackie Saulmon Ramirez says:

      Well, Steven, they say you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar! 🙂 It is true, though, that parents who do hit children to get them to cooperate do not know how or have little time or interest in learning non-violent methods. Since you were abused, if you ever have children, I would suggest you learn how to discipline within the first year so that when you have the need, safe, non-violent ideas will be second nature. The really funny thing is that non-violent methods are easier and more effective.

      Thank you for stopping by. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • Steven says:

        Me have children? ha ha ha ha ha

        Never. Actually, I just wrote about that. 🙂

        Oh, I wasn’t abused. I was spanked. I think there is a difference. Neither are good but I’ve never looked back and thought I was mistreated, just poorly raised. 😉


      • Jackie Saulmon Ramirez says:

        To be hit is to be abused. Hopefully the gift that keeps on giving ends with you. 🙂


  4. Dalo 2013 says:

    Interesting post, and I would agree with you ~ teaching violence through violence is ridiculous. Well written and thought out, nice post!


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