Side effects of harsh punishment
1. Parents often spank in response to children's aggression. Yet the punishment itself models aggression. 2. Harshly treated children develop a chronic sense of being personally threatened, which prompts a focus on their own distress rather than a sympathetic orientation to others needs. 3. Children who are frequently punished soon learn to avoid the punishing adult, who, as a result, has little opportunity to teach desirable behaviors. 4. By stopping children's misbehavior temporarily, harsh punishment offers immediate relief to adults. For this reason, a punitive adult is likely to punish with greater frequency over time, a course of action that can spiral into serious abuse. 5. Adults whose parents used corporal punishment are more accepting of such discipline. In this way, use of physical punishment may transfer to the next generation.