Pope Francis and Spanking: 4 Things to Consider

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People know that, as a Catholic Parenting author and family therapist, I encourage parents to eschew corporal punishment in favor of more effective methods discipline that are more respectful of the dignity of the parent and the child.   As a result, I've been getting emails all week from people about Pope Francis' recent comments which are being touted in the press as a ringing endorsement of spanking.  Before we all get our wimples in a knot, here are a few things to keep in mind.1.  What d … [Read more...]

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Spanking Decreases Gray Matter in Children’s Brains

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CNN reports one more shocking reason corporal punishment isn't the answer....Researchers say physical punishment actually alters the brain -- not only in an "I'm traumatized" kind of way but also in an "I literally have less gray matter in my brain" kind of way. "Exposing children to HCP (harsh corporal punishment) may have detrimental effects on trajectories of brain development," one 2009 study concluded. (Click for link to the study abstract). Harsh corporal punishment in the study was … [Read more...]

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Catholic Bishops Weigh in on Corporal Punishment

Is it possible to articulate a consistent, coherent Catholic position on the use or corporal punishment?  As a family therapist and Catholic parenting author.  It's a question I spend a lot of time prayerfully considering.  Many good parents on both sides of the debate have very strong feelings on the subject and it can be confusing for parents to have to sort out the pros and cons on this issue.  My own thoughts on the subject have been widely circulated.In light of this, I was honored to  … [Read more...]

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