Beat Children Under 2 Years Old?

Beat Children Under 2 Years Old? November 30, 2018

By taking a gander through some older posts by Michael Pearl of No Greater Joy I found this long horrific post. Michael is claiming that if you haven’t beaten your child into complete submission before two years old you’ve failed your job as a parent. Trigger warning for descriptions of abuse. He thinks you should beat children under two years old, and that horrifies me. From a piece titled ‘Little Foxes Spoil the Vines’

This sounds like a totally normal reaction of a toddler put into a very boring situation that has zero relevance for the child. Perhaps a better strategy might be examining what they can do to engage the children’s interest. Children do not always have long attention spans, and it’s unfair to expect a toddler to sit still for long periods.

Let’s be very clear here. The ‘Training’ that Michael Pearl is referring to here is beating your child. Using a 1\4 inch plastic plumbing line on a baby too young to make it’s needs easily known. If that’s not child abuse I don’t know what is!

Michael continues on making remarks about training horses and if you do not train the horse correctly you can be badly injured. I hate the idea of his training any animal because in the past Michael has spoken of training all sorts of animals with pain and brute force.  With animals that might buy you some small obedience, just enough so that you’ll be unawares when the animal decides to pay you back.

“Spanking” – a harmless sounding euphemism for beating the tar out of that child with plastic plumbing line.

Let’s examine the evidence. None of the Pearl children are successful by any measure. We’ve seen an ugly divorce, living without running water, unable to simply pick a basic choice when asked, men that will not work leaving women scrambling to come up with home-based businesses to provide only basic levels of livelihood.

There’s been a great deal of legitimate research lately on what happens when physical punishment is meted out in homes. None of it good. Homes with brutal punishment are more likely to produce teenage criminals. It causes anxiety in children, increased aggression, malignant self concept – believing you are bad, increased risk of depression and mental illness. People that were beaten and abused as children are more likely to be spousal abusers. So many negative things have now been linked to harsh physical punishment.

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Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement by Kathryn Joyce

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About Suzanne Titkemeyer
Suzanne Titkemeyer went from a childhood in Louisiana to a life lived in the shadow of Washington D.C. For many years she worked in the field of social work, from national licensure to working hands on in a children's residential treatment center. Suzanne has been involved with helping the plights of women and children' in religious bondage. She is a ordained Stephen's Minister with many years of counseling experience. Now she's retired to be a full time beach bum in Tamarindo, Costa Rica with the monkeys and iguanas. She is also a thalassophile. She also left behind years in a Quiverfull church and loves to chronicle the worst abuses of that particular theology. She has been happily married to her best friend for the last 32 years. You can read more about the author here.

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  • Martin Penwald

    People that were beaten and abused as children are more likely to be spousal abusers. So many negative things have now been linked to harsh physical punishment.

    I’m not sure that Mikey would consider that a bad thing if he were to recognize it. This man belongs to jail.

  • Nea

    None of the Pearl children are successful by any measure

    Exactly! In one breath he claims that children abused according to his dictates will someday rule the world; in the next he’s inviting scrutiny of the happiness, mental balance, and success of his children – who are not happy, not mentally well balanced, and so completely unsuccessful that they can’t even keep their own families running smoothly, much less be poised to be the inventors, employers, and civic leaders of the future.

    …and in no breath does he admit that his runaway ex-daughter-in-law successfully use the abusive nature of his advice in court to get custody of her kids, much less that multiple children have been abused to death because of him.

  • Nea

    We know that Mike-Mike abused Debi, from their own “hilarious” stories about their “divine” marriage which include him:
    – emotionally freezing her out within hours of the wedding
    – driving her to physical collapse within a couple of days
    – isolating her while he went off and amused himself
    – bragging that it took a full decade to consider that she might have human needs or valid opinions

    …and on and on and on

  • Tawreos

    He does know that it is possible to teach children their limits without beating them, doesn’t he. Sorry, I forgot we are dealing with a sadist that does know this, but will beat the children because it gives him pleasure and reinforces his ego.

  • Zeldacat

    Sadly I suspect the only way to force children to conform to Mikey’s limits is beating them because his expectations are so far beyond anything age-appropriate – abuse is the only way to force them to conform.

    He redefines things (beating=spanking, etc) and expects everybody to arrange everything for his personal convenience. Babies and toddlers are inconvenient. He can’t accept that.

  • SAO

    Pearl and his adherents should go to jail. The idea that there is no god and if some virus successfully mutates and you die a slow, lingering, painful death is more merciful universe than one run by Pearl’s god.And if there was a god, surely he’d have sent a lightening bolt to Pearl long before now.

  • Saraquill

    And he laughs when children die by his methods.

  • Saraquill

    I think Pearl would have deemed the lightning bolt a “blessing” or “act of the devil” and keep doing his garbage.

  • SAO

    I was assuming the lightening bolt would introduce Pearl to the devil and how he would spend the rest of eternity.

  • Friend

    Kids have short attention spans? So do adults. Our church has “busy bags” with crayons and paper. I take my grownup “busy bag” to every appointment. The Pearls miss the fact that people are born restless and curious, and that’s a good thing.

  • Friend

    I do know some high achievers who, as children (siblings), were ordered to smile while their mother beat them with a coat hanger because the Bible says “spare the rod and spoil the child.” They have all struggled emotionally as adults.

  • Nea

    Is that a surprise, when they’ve been abused into a false display of emotion while being actively abused? That the false display would make them feel that even THEY aren’t defending themselves, that they’re participating in their own abuse? That’s going to permanently damage one’s ability to handle normal human emotions.

    The Pearls (and Duggars) basically claim to have beaten any unapproved emotions out of their kids, then claim that somehow the forced display of happiness is a real emotion. One of the Pearl girls doesn’t even realize what she’s saying when she claims that she was “almost never spanked as a child” and then says she can’t count the number of times she was “spanked” for not displaying the mandated joy.

  • Nea

    That didn’t work so well for him, did it? Mike-Mike loves to talk about his “uproarious laughter” – I’m sure that his first line of cruelty within his family isn’t the plumbing supplies, it’s “I’m laughing at you” because that can be more cutting and cruel than physical abuse. As Dr. Blasey Ford pointed out, “Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter.”

    But it was really, REALLY telling that when he was implicated in an actual child murder his go-to reaction wasn’t a defense (“She got my advice all wrong”) or empathy (“OMG this is horrible to have happened). It was a blatant attempt to dominate the whole world by sneering laughter.

    And then widdle Mikey found out that instead of being cowed or even impressed, the whole world was disgusted.

  • Nea

    A good thing? It’s literally the first thing they beat out of their kids. Literally. Touch? Beat. Reach for? Beat. Try to crawl off the blanket? Beat. Ask a question? Beat.

  • Nea

    I wonder what the abused Debi is deeming Mikey’s strokes and potential dementia? On one hand, she’d finally be free of his abuse. On the other hand, she’s spent a lifetime passing on his “teachings” that women are worthless without a man.


    Everything this man writes about children is absolutely dripping with disdain. A young child couldn’t possibly actually be thirsty or need to relieve themselves — oh no, they’re obviously just manipulative evil little sh*ts out to annoy Michael Pearl. A young child couldn’t possibly actually ever need to be near their mother – nope, they deserve to be beaten for even daring to ask to go to her. It’s like he hates all little children for existing and is positively gleeful whenever they get beaten for the sin of being young.

  • AFo

    And here we see how fundegelicals measure success. According to Mike, his children are “successful,” not because they have stable jobs or good homes in good neighborhoods or have made some kind of positive contribution to the world, but because they are perfectly obedient automatons who follow the lifestyle he beat into them. I just keep thinking about how my parents compare to the Pearls; if I were living like any of the Pearl children, my parents would have dragged me back home and put me in therapy, while Pearl would see me living alone in my own apartment, with a job, and say my parents had failed me. He lives in the Twilight Zone.

  • heleninedinburgh

    I believe he bragged about raping her on their honeymoon, didn’t he? The man is a waste of good oxygen.

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    He said he wanted to break the honeymoon sex record set by some moron he knew. Which horrifies me because you know he was fixing to brag about it to his buddies.

  • heleninedinburgh

    Because that’s sooooo modest.

  • Lucy

    One of the Pearl girls doesn’t even realize what she’s saying when she claims that she was “almost never spanked as a child” and then says she can’t count the number of times she was “spanked” for not displaying the mandated joy.

    That girl was definitely compartmentalizing. That or only counting the “spankings” she thought were “unreasonable” (which, in Pearl world, would be not many, because to them nearly every beating spanking is deserved).

  • Saraquill

    I don’t know why he and Debi have children, considering how they treat them.

  • Friend

    Be! Fruitful! And! Multiply!

  • Mary Hannah bates

    Again, you do not beat a dolphin to get it to do what you want. Guide dogs do not help their person because they fear the switch. Don’t beat animals or people. Just don’t.

  • Sunshine

    That’s disgusting! That man needs to be in jail .

  • persephone

    Mikey loves being the center of everyone’s world. He is so effed up. He was beaten severely as a child and thinks that this is acceptable and right. People who go through that often seem to develop narcissism, as they find they have no one to depend on who won’t abuse them except themselves. His children smile at him with rictus grins, commonly also seen on the Duggar children, who follow TTUAC advice.

    I would not be the least surprised if Mikey’s current brain issues are related to the beatings he took growing up.

    You don’t have to beat children to teach them basic manners, including not disturbing other people, and making their needs known quietly.

  • persephone

    Mikey is going senile; Debi is freaking out; the kids are failing to manage anything in their lives. Yeah, that’s exactly the life I want. /s

  • Hippie Mama

    Nea, do you have a link for the Duggar daughter saying she was spanked for not being joyful? That’s something I’d really like to see more about.

  • Nea

    It was Rebekah Pearl, not a Duggar, and links are on this blog when it was discussed. She was “grumpy” Er parents told her they named her joy, and then beat the shit out of her every time she didn’t live up to her name.

  • Hippie Mama

    Thanks. So sad.

  • Astrin Ymris

    Michael is suffering cognitive decline? When did this happen?

    Never mind– I found it. Don’t you love the way Debi talks about what a shame it is that you can only use the patient’s on stem cells for treatment, just as if she and other right-to-lifers had nothing to do with that ban?