a tale of tails, tenacity, and tedium, as told by me, usually barefoot and bellowing

Saturday, December 26, 2009

I Don't Know Why...

this subject came into my head.  A strange one, to say the least.  Maybe it's a sign and I shall talk as if I were a professional but this is taken purely from personal experience.

No longer are we allowed to "punish" the children, every child knows the rules of child welfare and some use it to their advantage.

I was not raised in that time.  When I was a child, there were three things that could happen.  You could get a spanking, a talkin' to, or whuppin'.  Some people may call this a whipping but believe me, it was a whuppin'.

A spanking is the use of hands to leave red finger prints upon the bare legs.  Stings a little but not really the worst that could be had.  This was for minor infractions, such as not asking to be excused from the dinner table, not listening in the store, or forgetting your manners.

A talkin' to was very scary.  There were two kinds of them.  One was a serious talk about how your misbehavior could cause the world to come to an end as you know it.  The second was a much stronger, louder one that left you shaking and crying and wondering if a whuppin' was coming next.

I can think of a few things I did to get a whuppin' but the worst whuppins in our house were brought about by dishonesty.  I was told there was nothing worse than a liar.  Sometimes there is a reason to steal, but NEVER is there a reason the lie.

The instrument for a whuppin' can be anything handy.  A belt, an extension cord, a brush, a keen switch, a wooden spoon, a shoe...ah, the list goes on.  The worse instrument for this was "pick your own".  I have had many trips to the garden to pick out a switch.  This is very difficult and makes you think hard. Crying all the time, trying to find something that would not hurt. I have tried the tiny switches or limbs from the peach tree...they can make you bleed if used properly and they make you dance.  I have retrieved sticks thinking they would not sting as much as a switch but I only did that once. If the stick broke, you had to choose another one.  You did not bleed but you had bruises.

Funny that I do not remember the reasons but I do remember the whuppins. 

One time Mom was looking for me.  I was sitting on the front porch in tears, wondering what I had done now.  Beverly was playing the  piano and knew I was in for a whuppin'.  My legs were shaking, tears were rolling and I waited in dread for Mom to discover me on the porch. Beverly pretended to faint and fell  off the piano bench.  It distracted Mom long enough to forget about me so I didn't get one that time.

Mom always kept a round extension cord by the china cabinet, handy for use.  It was black and at least six feet long, the heavy duty kind.  You considered yourself lucky if she grabbed the plugs because the middle wasn't too bad but the plugs really hurt when that end was used.

I guess I have said all that to say this.  It did not hurt me, it made me think, it molded me into a responsible adult.  It made me know there were consequences to my actions.  It made me excel at every thing I have tried to do, because I felt Mom was there ready to give me a whuppin' if the result did not please her.

It also made me not spank my children, it has made me spoil my grandchildren, it has made me unsatisfied with any end product no matter how good it is and has made me feel that I am never quite good enough.

It has made me strong, flexible, creative, and it has given me a never give up attitude.  Thanks, Mom, for the mixed blessing.

11 comments:

Grammy said...

I only got one whopping from my mom! And never never Never did I do any thing wrong again. My kids got a few spankings and grands. Get a talking to. They were given way more love and freedom than I ever received. But you are right. That is what made me who I am today too.

mrscravitz said...

Yep! I remember those days. Only ours was always a spatula. Never had to go pick out my own. My kids saw the end of a 'paddle'. Oh yes, the dreaded paddle. Me and my siblings are responsible adults. My children are responsible adults. Constructive punishment goes without saying! We ARE better adults for it. When punishment is handed down without reason, I feel that is abuse. Children should ALWAYS know the reason for the punishment.

Queen-Size funny bone said...

I think the worse thing I got smacked with was a hair brush.

DesertHen said...

I remember a few good spankings! I do remember one time I had said a bad word and my friend told on me. I think I was 7 or so at the time. I remember my mom coming out the back door with the flyswater in her hand....I knew what that meant, so I ran. I ran around the pool several times with mom chasing me. I remember laughing....and not looking where I was going. Next thing I knew mom was right in front of me...gulp!! I got a spanking with that flyswater and my mouth washed out with soap!

The Farmers Oldest Daughter said...

I remember those days. I won't say what it was with, but boy it hurt and left whelps and lots of bruises. My dad was not one bit happy about it. I didn't do that to my child, but there were the looks I would give her and also the stern talks. She knew what I meant and she knew she had done wrong.

Rudee said...

I'm not a big supporter of the whuppins, but maybe that's because I was a good recipient of them. I believe there are better ways to communicate what is right and what is wrong, beginning with being a good role model. I still have issues with my mother's passive-aggressive ways, but since she isn't here to defend her behavior, I can't really discuss it all. Suffice it to say, I'm a good girl, but I don't think it had anything to do because of her, but more, in spite of her. Whew. I need a therapist.

Treasia said...

Oh yes, the "good ole days" of past life. I was the recipient of only one whupping in my life. That was all I needed and never forgot it. You had to have done something really bad to get one of those.

Call me crazy but I've seen a lot of kids in today's world that is sorely in need of many whippings.

SkippyMom said...

We visited my grandmother every weekend growing up. If we lied, stole or didn't show our manners we were ordered to go out to the forsythia bush and pick a switch. If you picked to small you were sent back to get a "real" one.

You didn't want to pick too big because that would hurt, right? Funnily enough my grandmother never hit us. Just the march out to the bush, with the threat of a whuppin' was enough to straighten us up, believe me.

Diandra said...

I don't know exactly how old you are (and I kind of assume I may be a bit younger - I am 27 - but I'm not sure), and I got my spare of spankings and other physical - uhm, consequences for my actions. And although not everything about it was bad, I remember enough about it that, when the BF and I had some serious future talk, I promised to instantly leave him if he should ever beat our kids (who currently are only possibilities). Of course I will only know for sure once we are there, but I hope there will be enough possibilities to educate and, if need be, show consequences, without having to hurt them.

I know I have learned many things from my parents' ways of education, but the most important lesson is that I don't want to be like them.

Nezzy said...

A whoopin'. My Grannie Walden said it, my Aunt Mildred said it but mama wasn't from 'round these parts. This farm chick got spankings and plenty of them. I've always been one to push the limits. We regularly spanked when needed. I've taught school, Sunday School, Kids Church and been working with children all my life. It only takes a couple minutes to tell which children are disciplined by a good swift smack on a well padded behind.

There is a difference in beating a child and giving a bit of consequence for poor behavior. Ya know spare the rod thing!

So glad ya'll got this off your chest! Have a terrific day fill with perfectly behaved children!!!

Pat said...

I was a pretty good kid - really! Never got a spanking that I can remember. My dad would threaten us with a belt and fold it in half and "snap" it, but he never hit us girls.

I did spank my kids, but I really don't like the idea of hitting as they get older - to me it is a sign of violence.

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