The Thin Line Between Child Discipline And Domestic Violence
There is a very thin line between the two topics. It is rather disturbing that most people mix it up. It is also a very sensitive and cultural topic in our community, precisely the black community. The term ‘Domestic Violence” is so bland in our hearing. It has become a term we find it hard to relate to. The case is not that it is something that does not happen but because it is something that we do not take so serious like we take the issues of our corrupt political leaders. To the majority of people here in Nigeria, it’s just Baba Titi beating up his wife for probably upsetting him, it is not that deep, let’s move one. These mentality and attitude has eaten so deep into our community, domestic violence doesn’t provoke us. Domestic violence isn’t just a thing we need to overlook. It is a very sensitive issue. Thanks to the modern civilization and influence from the western world, Nigerians now pay attention to any issue relating to domestic violence. Although, when I asked my colleagues, friends and even family; it was quite interesting to note that they all associate domestic violence to the beating a man gives to his woman or vice versa. I, though think otherwise. Domestic violence isn’t just about adults beating each other. I am not saying a man beating his wife should be acceptable, It shouldn’t. I am just saying why can’t it be that father that’s physically hurting his children so bad?
According to National Coalition against Domestic violence (NCADV);
Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault and or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, psychological violence and emotional abuse. The one constant component of domestic violence is one partner consistent effort to maintain power and control over the other
This definition stress the word “power” and “control”. Like I stated earlier there is a very close line between discipline a child (controlling that child to behave right) and violating that child. It will be highly hypocritical of me to say that to discipline a child is wrong. Children can be excessively stubborn. A child that isn’t set straight when he does wrong is going to have a lifelong of making terrible mistakes and living the consequences. Children need to be disciplined and corrected but parents shouldn’t do it to the extreme. I asked my followers on twitter and many were of the opinion that the beating and spanking they got actually shaped them to be responsible adult. Spanking a child is closely related to setting a child straight in our community. To Discipline a child is a deep root in our culture. It is one of the root stank that our cultures are built on. However, to discipline a child should not result in emotional trauma, psychological issues he might have to deal with later in life. To Discipline a child should not have the same definition as domestic violence. According to my twitter, some people are of the opinion that a spanking that results in scars and bruises is domestic violence and I agree. Any discipline you give to your child that results in black eye, maimed hands or legs, scars and bruises that lasts a lifetime is actually domestic violence. Imagine hurting your child so bad, he or she has low self-esteem? Or that your sweet little boy turned out to be a wife beater.
Excessive beatings don’t have good results; they are stories that never end well. Of course, there are some that turned out well despite being beaten excessively but the percentage is way too low compared to others. Some of the people asked said during that time in their childhood days, they felt the discipline was too much but looking back now, they are glad they got that discipline. Personally, looking back I am exceeding glad for some beatings I got back then but there were so many excesses. So many that don’t bring smile to the lips and these memories have somehow influenced my relationship with these parties badly. There are several ways of discipling a child. You don’t have to spank all the time. Don’t break your child, don’t let them fear you. Let them love you for always correcting them. Domestic violence isn’t just baba Titi beating up his wife. It isn’t that angry boyfriend that slapped his girlfriend at Shoprite. Domestic violence is also that man that naked his child locks the door and spends an hour beating the child till she faints. Don’t ruin your child because you want him to correct and at the same time, don’t pamper your child that he becomes rude and uncultured. It’s a balance between the two. You have to fight for that balance. The most important thing is to do everything in love. Correct your child in love. Love is gentle, love is kind. Love makes you bother as to whether your child is actually behaving right because he knows it is the right thing to do or he is just behaving right because he is scared you can beat him so bad, he won’t be able to tell the tale of it.
I am @_Fraulious on twitter.