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Husband potched 5 year old for hitting
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Mommyg8




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 11:36 am
little neshamala wrote:
That is just crazy. There was for sure something he could have done chinuch wise. The options Hashem put in place for him were not to either hit his child, or let him bully yours. There was an option C.


It's been a while ago, otherwise I would tell you to call him and explain this to him Rolling Eyes .

Obviously conventional methods weren't working and he was out of ideas. And his son was out of control.
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amother




Chocolate


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 11:50 am
I agree with those who say that a rare potch will not damage your child, although finding better methods is always great.
HOWEVER, one thing you should be careful about is showing that you disapprove of your husband's chinuch in front of your child. You can discuss privately with your dh if you want to suggest other methods, but the worst thing for such a child is to see that the parents do not have a united front. That is something that can definitely cause more harm than any potch. With the exception of real abusive behavior, it's really important for children, especially those who are acting up, to see that the parents are on one page and don't undermine each other's authority.
ETA: Undermining the authority of the other parent can happen even when parent doesn't contradict the other one outright but shows with body language/facial expression that they disagree. It's ok for two parents to have somewhat different parenting styles (again, not discussing abuse), and it's important to respect your husband's role as your child's father.
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Rappel




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 11:53 am
amother [ Chocolate ] wrote:
I agree with those who say that a rare potch will not damage your child, although finding better methods is always great.
HOWEVER, one thing you should be careful about is showing that you disapprove of your husband's chinuch in front of your child. You can discuss privately with your dh if you want to suggest other methods, but the worst thing for such a child is to see that the parents do not have a united front. That is something that can definitely cause more harm than any potch. With the exception of real abusive behavior, it's really important for children, especially those who are acting up, to see that the parents are on one page and don't undermine each other's authority.


Amen v'amen!
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amother




Mistyrose


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 11:56 am
I was potched quite a few times as a five year old for hitting, and I'm really grateful that my parents put me in place. I was a chutzpadik, naughty little girl, and I needed some serious discipline.

I was never hit as an older kid, but by then I understood words and a potch was really unnecessary. And I already knew that biting and hitting my brothers was wrong, because I got a taste of it when my dad potched me. And it didn't feel good.

I have always had (and still have) a great relationship with my parents and all my siblings. I turned out to be an all right, healthy, happy individual. I don't think hitting is okay, but sometimes kids need some tough love. And you have to send the message to them in a way they'll understand. I really wouldn't worry about it too much.
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little neshamala




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 11:56 am
amother [ OP ] wrote:
my husband got so fed up when my son threw something at him that he angrily potched him (on his arm), yelled at him that he is not allowed to hurt people, and put him in his room. .


What some posters have said about potching being ok in certain circumstances does not even apply here.
He clearly potched him out of anger.
This whole scenario is wrong OP.
Im not saying its easy to do it right, because it can be SO SO SO DIFFICULT, I know, but the bottom line is your scenario was just wrong, even by potching standards.
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amother




Floralwhite


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:08 pm
thunderstorm wrote:
It sent a mixed message to the five year old. Why am I not allowed to potch and hurt people but Totty is allowed to potch and hurt me?

I tell my kids that tatty and mammy can't potch you and hurt you. we aren't allowed to hurt you. but we were told in our Torah that I need to teach you how to become a good Jew and if I need to I will have to give you a potch to help you remember how to grow up the right way.
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cm




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:09 pm
Totty is teaching ds to hit.
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leah233




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:17 pm
cm wrote:
Totty is teaching ds to hit.



Based on what the OP wrote he clearly knows how to hit already. And does so regularly.

Totty is teaching him what getting hit feels like and that there will be real consequences if he does it again.

I agree that he should not have been hit out of anger.
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little neshamala




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:24 pm
leah233 wrote:


Totty is teaching him what getting hit feels like and that there will be real consequences if he does it again.

.


Teaching a child what it feels like to be hit is never a justifiable reason to hit them.
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leah233




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:28 pm
little neshamala wrote:
Teaching a child what it feels like to be hit is never a justifiable reason to hit them.


Why not?

If as the OP wrote nothing else she tried worked why is corporal punishment still so off limits?
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southernbubby




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:31 pm
Previous generations regarded a potch as normative parenting and most of us didn't hate our parents because a potch was the most common form of punishment. As long as a potch doesn't become a beating, the child understands the meaning behind it.
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amother




Violet


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:33 pm
I am not of the opinion that children should never be hit. That being said, I have a bunch of rambunctious boys and I can't remember the last time I lifted a hand to them.

It is not the end of the world. Worse, is if you are arguing with your husband about it in front of your son.
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amother




Powderblue


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 12:33 pm
An occasional well deserved spanking here and there won’t kill anyone. We are seeing the results of our hand off generation- a bunch of spoiled entitled kids and teenagers.

Though I disagree with the way your husband hit out of anger as you describe. The fact that he hit him on the arm (and not a slap on the hand or tush) is further evidence that this was done as a knee jerk almost revengeful action.

Discipline, especially physical (when warranted), should alway be administered in a controlled and measured fashion. He should’ve taken him into a room, calmly explained what he did wrong, and given him a firm spank or two.
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little neshamala




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:03 pm
leah233 wrote:
Why not?

If as the OP wrote nothing else she tried worked why is corporal punishment still so off limits?


I seriously cant believe youre saying this. Among all the texts that I have ever encountered to do with spanking children halachicly, I have never once read any opinion that its ok to hit a child to show him what it feels like. If you can hit with that reasoning, can you scratch him too, if he scratches others? How about punch? (You know, if all else fails....just to show him what it feels like so he wont do it to others)

The following is cut and pasted from an article Rabbi Yakov Horowitz wrote on chinuch. Read it, see what the outlook some of our Gedolim had on spanking in general, then try to apply a good reason for hitting a child to show him what it feels like. Convince me that it isnt plain old mean.

(Pasted)

For the record, there are other quotes from our chazal (sages) that support potching children, and many contemporary poskim concur with that approach. But our great rebbi, Rav Avrohom Pam, z’tl would often comment that this is an instance of “Halacha v’ain morin cain" – [even though] halacha may support potching, we do not ‘paskin’ or apply this method nowadays. Our rebbi explained, that due to the enhanced sense of personal freedom and individual rights nowadays (and this was a generation ago), hitting children is unwise and counterproductive.

Rabbi Shlomo Wolbe, z’tl as well, was known to advise parents, that if they are considering hitting their children, they should be aware that their children will ‘hit them back’ for each and every potch when they grow older, by rebelling against their authority and teachings. (See Peleh Yoetz – under ‘Hakoah’.)

There is a timeless Ritva commenting on the gemara (Moed Koton 17a; see Shulchan Aruch Yoreh De’ah 240:19-20) which says that it is forbidden to hit a grown child, since it violates the prohibition of lifnei iveir lo setain michshol (causing another individual to sin), as is entirely possible that the adult child will sin, by striking or cursing his father in response to being hit.

More than 650 years ago, the Ritva (1250-1330) noted that the gemara prohibits hitting a grown child [only] since it is more likely that an adult would strike back. However, he says, that if even a young child (yeled) is of the temperament to lash out verbally or physically when hit, the prohibition is extended to him as well. I would suggest that in our current society and culture, where corporal punishment is frowned upon and often viewed as abuse, it would stand to reason that the practice of potching children be categorically suspended across the board.
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mommy201




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:14 pm
amother [ Powderblue ] wrote:
An occasional well deserved spanking here and there won’t kill anyone. We are seeing the results of our hand off generation- a bunch of spoiled entitled kids and teenagers.

Though I disagree with the way your husband hit out of anger as you describe. The fact that he hit him on the arm (and not a slap on the hand or tush) is further evidence that this was done as a knee jerk almost revengeful action.

Discipline, especially physical (when warranted), should alway be administered in a controlled and measured fashion. He should’ve taken him into a room, calmly explained what he did wrong, and given him a firm spank or two.


Firstly, you don't know that entitled kids and teenagers come from the hands-off parents.
I would go furthur to say that the "spoiled, entitled kids" come from parents who've had their parents be hands-on (not in a good way) and not teach their children how to communicate effectively which leads to them not teaching their own children children effective communication and relationship building which leads to "entitled and spoiled".
It doesnt mean that because someone parents in a gentle fashion that they are going to be left with spoiled kids. Its not one or the other. More likely the gentle parent will be more understanding and empathetic and help their children much more then the other tough approaches.
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leah233




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:31 pm
little neshamala wrote:
I seriously cant believe youre saying this. Among all the texts that I have ever encountered to do with spanking children halachicly, I have never once read any opinion that its ok to hit a child to show him what it feels like. If you can hit with that reasoning, can you scratch him too, if he scratches others? How about punch? (You know, if all else fails....just to show him what it feels like so he wont do it to others)



I never said you can hit a child ONLY to show him what it feels like. I said that you can hit a child to show what it feels like and there will be serious consequences if he does it again. After all other efforts at discipline have already failed.

There isn't going to be any text that is going to list all situations where hitting is warranted.
I don't believe that if a child is frequently scratching, hitting and throwing things at a parent and all other efforts at discipline have failed then hitting is still off limits.

If there is no serious consequence for a child frequently scratching, hitting and throwing things at a parent you are basically telling him that doing so is frowned upon but acceptable behavior. I may not like it but you have nothing to worry about if you do things I don't like.


Last edited by leah233 on Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:33 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Cheiny




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:33 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
My 5 year old is going through a stage (for about 2 months already) where he gets violent when he is upset, including hitting, scratching, throwing things etc. I have suffered some real scratches from him. None of the disciplinary methods I've been using seem to help, and today my husband got so fed up when my son threw something at him that he angrily potched him (on his arm), yelled at him that he is not allowed to hurt people, and put him in his room. This was gut-wrenching for me to watch as I strongly believe potching is harmful, but my husband insists that this is the only way because nothing I'm doing is helping, and this kid needs to know he cannot cross a red line of hurting his parents.

What do you all think? I'm feeling so torn.


So your dh’s rationale is that the way to teach a child not to hit is by hitting him?
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trixx




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:36 pm
Chayalle wrote:
I understand your husband's frustration, and he's right that this kid needs to know he cannot hurt others, including his parents.

The question is how to get him to know that. You don't post what other methods you have used. I think the putting him in his room part is appropriate, maybe without the potch or the anger. If he is hurting people, he has to be contained - and he should know that. Like if an animal would hurt others, he is put in a cage. If a child is hurting others, he cannot be part of society, and must be calmly and firmly put into his room until he is ready to rejoin the family safely.


How did no one address this?
A child isn't an animal. A child lashing out is a child in pain. Being sent to a corner will not help him deal with his overwhelming emotions or help his little body calm down and get re-regulated. What kind of thoughts are marching thru his mind as he sits in time out? I'm bad, mommy hates me, I can't be part of my family (!!?!!)

Such a kid, even tho you want to slap the living daylights out of them, needs time IN. They need a snuggle and a hug. This is not permissive and it's not new agey and it's not soft. This is realizing that the kid is in pain and can't manage his intense emotions. Why is he hitting, why can't he use his words? Clearly he hasn't mastered the impulse and sitting in time out won't teach him that.

Not to say that he shouldn't be removed from the situation. He should be - but not left to "figure it out" on his own. Time out teaches nothing.

OP read Positive Discipline
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leah233




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:38 pm
Cheiny wrote:
So your dh’s rationale is that the way to teach a child not to hit is by hitting him?


No It's teaching him that if you hit someone they will hit you back .And yes if someone hits you stand up for yourself and hit them back.

The bullies know to pick on the kids who are scared to fight back.
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mommy201




 
 
 


Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:47 pm
leah233 wrote:
No It's teaching him that if you hit someone they will hit you back .And yes if someone hits you stand up for yourself and hit them back.

The bullies know to pick on the kids who are scared to fight back.


Since when does the Torah advocate for nekama. What are we actually "teaching"?

Regarding bullies. Bullies and the kids who get bullied, many times stem from the same issues. A child who gets connected to and it not scared to express their emotion can be empowered to stand up to a bully.
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