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Parent's Use of Physical Punishment Increases Violent Behavior - Essay Example

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Name Physical Parental Punishment and Violent Behavior among Children It is a debatable subject whether physical punishments by parents are harmful or harmless and whether it actually develops disciplined children…
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Parent's Use of Physical Punishment Increases Violent Behavior

Download file to see previous pages... Also, children may develop depression and asocial behavior as they grow old. While some psychologists argue that physical punishments may lead to disciplined children, there are various risks associated with it. By evaluating the risks of physical punishments, I wish to assess the various alternatives to physical punishments so as to bring out a positive upbringing in children. Physical punishment has been associated with adverse consequences in children including aggression, psychopathology, and criminal involvement (Boutwell, Franklin, Barnes & Beaver, 559). Research has proved the positive relationship between physical punishment and aggressive behavior among children (Kandel, n.pag.). Statistical studies have shown a positive correlation between the two variables with a stronger correlation among males. Among children older than five years of age, physical punishment is one of the critical variables that contribute to aggressive or violent behavior. According to Kandel, the terms ‘violence’ and ‘aggression’ are used interchangeably which limits the scope of the study (n.pag.). Aggression among children is calculated on a series of aggressive actions which is then totaled to provide a sum score. However, such methods of coming up with an aggression score lacks consistency and results would be more reliable if there was a standardized methodology. Another important variable that may affect the relationship between physical punishments and aggressive behavior is abuse. While abuse is divided into three categories of low, moderate, and high abuse, its correlation may provide useful information regarding the relationship. Nonetheless, research has provided an important finding pertaining to the relationship between physical punishments and the development of aggressive behavior among children. The development of aggressive behavior is affected by the severity and the frequency of physical punishments. Thus, not all physical punishments are similar and hence not all such punishments lead to aggressive behavior. Physical punishments vary in their intensity as some parents might carry out abusive violence while others may exercise mild physical punishments (Kandel, n.pag.). A study was conducted on a sample containing 3 year old children and the risk of physical punishments was analyzed. Using the spanking frequency at age 3, the aggressive behavior was measured at age 5. The research showed that children who were spanked 2 or 3 times within the same month showed symptoms of aggressive behavior developing at age 5 (Lee, Taylor, Altschul & Rice, 1476). A greater risk of negative outcomes was posed when parents used physical punishment more than twice a month. The early years of an individual’s life are central to their growth and development and that is why physical punishments at a young age expose children to several adverse outcomes. Antisocial behavior is among other adverse consequences of physical punishments. However, not all children develop antisocial behavior as a result of spanking although enough evidence is present of the positive relationship between the two variables. It is suggested that a third variable seems to be involved in the aggressive behavior of children. It is also important to consider that not all physical punishments may have the same intensity or frequency. Furthermore, genetic risk factors have been found to be impacting antisocial behavior (Boutwell, Franklin, Barnes & Beaver, 559). But since physical punishme ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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