Refuting Pearl’s Analysis of Spanking Studies

In a recent post, I shared discussion of an addition to To Train Up A Child by Michael Pearl.  There is an exerpt from the chapter on the No Greater Joy website.  In this article, Michael Pearl refutes studies which have shown spanking children to be harmful and shares the results of some other studies which he claims show the opposite.  Of course, there are flaws in his logic.  Here is an example.  He states:

Child psychologist Elizabeth Owens, scientist at the Institute of Human Development at the University of California, Berkeley, conducted a study. She concluded, “If you look at the causally relevant evidence, it’s not scientifically defensible to say that spanking is always a horrible thing. I don’t think mild, occasional spankings in an otherwise supportive, loving family will do any long-term harm.”

Here is the study of which he speaks. MariJo7 from GCM has kindly given me permission to share her analysis of the study: [Read more…]

Turning Loving Parents Into Monsters Since 1994

Forgedimagination explains exactly how the Pearls’ teachings turn  loving parents into monsters in Raised To Be A Monster.

Advice Line: Can You Help These Readers?

I have had 2 solicitations for advice so I’m opening up the advice line.  Can anyone help these readers?

Marissa Stone asks:

Can you give me some advice on teaching honesty to kids?
Right now it it feels like I am trying to push a car uphill. Not totally impossible but hard. How can you teach honesty to kids when the lies of our elected officals steroid use of his favourite soccer player or the fraud of a local CEO are all glorified in the media? What if dishonesty has worked in the past? I have used the example of a doctor who cheated in med school as an example. That dosn’t work. I don’t what else to try. If anyone can give me pracical advice that would help.
Thx

Anonymous asks:

Hi, just an anonymous question to post…has anyone heard of “crying in arms” approach to help children deal with emotions, frustrations, growth spurts and such. I have a 5 month old and came across this, but I don’t like the idea of “sleep training” but do believe that their sleep patterns are different to ours and we have to guide them how to sleep successfully. Has anyone tried this/heard of it/views against it. Thanks.

Attachment Only By Day? – Part 2

Note from Hermana Linda:   This is the continuation of a conversation in the comments of Steph’s article on Attachment Theory.  Read Part 1 here.   This exchange starts here.

Hi Steph, thank you for your kind reply. I totally see your point. I didn’t mention the details on how my child responds when separated. She ofcourse resists a bit but goes back to normal play within a minute or two. Getting back together is a happy time for both of us but she doesn’t need extra attention but she is loving as always. I can only speak from my own experience and I am trying to find the truth without any bias. When you say brain damage, I can’t understand that because my daughter met all her developmental milestones 6 months ahead of her peers and she is nearly 4 now and has even started reading. I often see how totally she trusts me to keep my word and to take care of her if she is in any kind of danger.
I understand God doesn’t want us to cry as it makes him sad as well. But I do see in so many peoples lives that God allows some painful experiences so that they will shine even more brightly for His glory. When we did sleep training, we did make sure that she is completely safe, fed, changed and comfortable and we watched her through the video monitor to make sure her safety. Sure it was hard for us and hard for her. And I wouldn’t do it for a minute if it was not beneficial for her. That training has just done her so much good that she became more fresh and attentive during her wake times and happier.

[Read more…]

Attachment Only By Day? – Part 1

Note from Hermana Linda: We appreciate getting comments and read every one.   This comment from Jo about Attachment Theory elicited such an insightful response from Steph that I have decided to highlight it here.

From my personal experience with my own child, if you provide consistent care and love in meeting the needs of the child throughout the day, a little sleep training at night develops an even healthier attachment. My child is the most securely attached child I have seen because she is able to stay away from me without much distress as long as I tell her beforehand and also comes back to me with even more love when i get back to her. Crying it out works perfectly but should only be done if the parents are able to provide love and care for the child and securely attach in every way. We did sleep training for her when she was 9 months old and within 3 nights, she started sleeping through the night and sleeps in her own room. She is a very happy child then and now.

The Golden Rule

Sally Clarkson explains how meeting your baby’s needs is following The Golden Rule in Pick Up Your Baby!  Do Unto Then What You Would Have Done To You!

Babies, Children and Sin Nature

Stephanie just started a new blog called The Shepherd’s Apprentice.

In her first post, she explains about the sin nature of babies and children and how we should respond to it.

She then posts about Selfish Babies or rather, if there is such a thing.

She ties it up with a look at Sin, How To Get What You Want.

Not bad for her first day.  😉

Is Defiance Real?

I have been thinking a lot about defiance lately.  Is it real when it comes to young children?  Most parents would emphatically answer, “Yes” to this question.  I am not so sure though.  According to dictionary.com, defiance is defined as “A daring or bold resistance to authority or to any opposing force.”  To me, this means being able to stand up for what we believe is right.  This is usually a good thing.  Yet, when people discuss children as being “defiant,” it is always viewed as a very negative thing.  In fact, most Christian pro-spankers tell parents to spank/hit children mainly for “defiance.”

Are young children truly being “defiant” when they refuse to do something we want or say, “No!” to us?  I tend not to think so.  Why?  Because defiance is very subjective.  What one person views as “defiance,” another person views as developmentally appropriate behavior or an indicator that something much deeper is going on within the child.  See, to judge whether or not children are being “defiant,” we must look into their hearts.  Only God can do this.  [Read more…]

Dr. Sears Looks At Baby Training

William Sears, M.D. looks at Christian Parenting and Baby Training in a parable called, The Journey of Michael and Susan.

Sally Clarkson Looks At Obedience

Veteran Mother and writer, Sally Clarkson, looks at first time obedience in Obedience is a pathway of Maturity and Faith.

More about Teaching

The Hippie Housewife explains the Basics of Gentle Discipline, focusing on Teaching Skills which makes a great follow up to yesterday’s post on Teaching Babies. She offers skills to prepare babies and children for the future.  As she explains:

These future-oriented solutions provide the child with skills that will be used throughout and beyond childhood. The focus is on developing the child’s own internal control rather than on managing behaviour through external control, thereby assisting the child in navigating life in a way that keeps their dignity intact.

She also links to some very helpful posts to provide background which I also recommend and have linked to in the past.

Note that this post is part of the 2012 Carnival of Gentle Discipline which you can find at the bottom of the post.

Teach Your Babies Well

The following was originally posted in thread on Gentle Christian Mothers called, “…And I’m the Strict One!“and is a follow up to my previous post, Teach Your Children Well.

At 4 months, what you want to be doing is starting the phase of ‘discipline’ that I call “show and tell” — it’s not a phase where you expect the baby to *do* anything at all. I mean that! And I know it doesn’t make sense to say “start discipline” and “the baby doesn’t do anything” when you are coming from a punitive mindset.

What “show and tell” means is that you are building the vocabulary for whatever you want him/her to be able to do without thinking twice once s/he is a toddler. You build vocabulary by saying a word and simultaneously doing that thing to the baby.

For example, when you say “Up” as you pick a baby up, that’s ‘show and tell’ — but of course, “Up” is not an instruction you want your toddler to follow later, so it’s not a good example of how ‘show and tell’ is a good start to good discipline. It’s just an example of the way that people naturally know that ‘show and tell’ is how you teach stuff to babies. It’s how they learn. That’s why it’s the method you choose when you teach everything, including when you teach the vocabulary you want them to grasp for following instructions. It’s a game. It’s no big deal.

At this stage you have TONS of time. Start by thinking and trying out what words you plan to use as your primary ‘words of instruction’. Once you’ve got them figured out, you need to *stop* using them as ordinary parts of chit-chat and *only* use them when you are going to be ‘show and tell’-ing. Your instruction words should be short and sweet. When possible, they should say what ‘is happening / what to do’ instead of ‘what not to do’. Try not to start with more than 6 to 10 instruction words. Select them carefully and always use them identically. (Many of these instruction words are going to sound like [Read more…]

Black Earth Pastor Gets 2 Years in Prison in Child Abuse Case

Philip Caminiti, pastor of , has been sentenced to 2 years in jail and 6 years probation according to an article in the Wisconsin State Journal.  His lawyer, Yolanda Lehner, appears to be taken aback by the whole thing which she likens to the Spanish Inquisition.

Looking Back It All Went By So Fast…

Vita Mutari looks back at 17 years of being a mother and shares her reflections and advice for new moms in, Left to cry…alone.

Pastor Found Guilty of Child Abuse

The Wisconsin State Journal reports that Philip Caminiti, the pastor of the Aleitheia Bible Church, was found guilty yesterday, Wednesday March 21, 2012.  This is very important as it will set a precedence that pastors can be held accountable for their abusive advice.

 

Trail Set to Begin for Pastor of Aleitheia Bible Church

The Wisconsin State Journal reports “Trial set to begin for pastor who allegedly instructed followers to beat their children with dowels.

A Psychology Professor Critiques the Pearls’ Teachings

Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas has uploaded a video from FOX News in which “SMU Psychology Professor George Holden, who specializes in child-parent relationships and positive child rearing, talks critically about Michael and Debi Pearl’s book “To Train Up A Child,” which advocates spanking.”  More information about Professor Holden here.

The Heart of the Matter

Rachel Miller, who blogs at A Daughter of The Reformation, discusses her concerns about the Pearls which go far being spanking or use of the rod and to The Heart Of The Matter.

Since the NY Times article about the Pearls, the story has gone all the way Down Under, as this story in The Sydney Morning Herald demonstrates.

Speaking of the NY Times article, here are the Letters To The Editor  about it.

Also, QuicksilverQueen  is still writing her detailed Book Review of To Train Up A Child and how it relates to the deaths.  In this review she freely shares how being raised by these teachings affected her and what she was really feeling when her parents thought that she was joyously submissive. She has reviewed the first 3 chapters.

A Closer Look At The Pearls’ Teachings and Adoption

Christine Minich takes a look at The Pearls’ Teachings in:

The Disturbing World of The Pearls in which she looks at Doublespeak and Definitions as well as some examples of his abusive teachings.

and The Disturbing World of The Pearls Part 2 in which she takes a look at their heretical Theology.

Also, TulipGirl tries to shed some light on the underlying philosophy of the Pearls’ Teachings with On The Pearls And Parenting, Once Again.

The Toronto Sun has an article about the Pearls’ Teachings in Was child abused to death due to advice from book?

Missizzy posted a Recipe For Disaster on  the Websleuths.com message board which explains what happened to Lydia and Hanna.  You might be interested in the rest of the conversation, it is really quite interesting.  I hope it is ok for me to link to this.  If anyone objects, please email me at hermanalinda@whynottrainachild.com and I will remove this entire paragraph.

I also thought I’d mention this post from Civil Thoughts about Adoption Education because that is so important.

Original Sin

Lisa Bennet (Broken Daughters), who was raised by Pearl followers, looks at the concept of Original Sin and how it corresponds to the Pearls’ Teachings. In this post, she links to a very upsetting post by Libby Anne which contains an 1831 quote from Francis Wayland which sounds very much like Michael Pearl.

You might also be interested in this post in which Lisa looks at the concept of Purity.

The Pearls’ Book NOT Banned in New Zealand (Working on Amazon)

New Zealand’s Censorship Compliance Unit has decided not to ban nor restrict Michael and Debi Pearl’s book, To Train Up A Child, according to this article in the Marlborough Press.  While I don’t believe in book banning, it seems to me that if a country has that policy, this book should fall into that category and I am a bit confused as to how they reached their decision.

I do believe in encouraging book sellers to stop selling offensive books and so does  Milli Hill at Peaceful Parenting who explains why Amazon should stop selling books which promote Child Abuse, especially To Train Up A Child. This piece includes a long quote from Debi Pearl in which she explains how one should use the switch on a child under one year old.

Note: The petition to which she links is the same one to which I link in my side bar. If you have not signed it, please sign it and share the link. Thank you.

Reflecting the Character of God

The Hippie Housewife discusses how we should reflect the character of God for our children.  She looks at how attachment parenting looks a lot like how God cares for us and warns us about 3 heresies which are cropping up in many Christian teachings.

Along the same lines, Pearl In Oyster (PIO) explains that we should imitate how God disciplines His children.  She uses her testimony of how God treated her when she was out of His will as an example.

 

 

Does God Want Us To Break Their Wills?

Elizabeth  Esther has  a post which discusses the idea that Even God Does Not Break Our Will.

Along the same lines, The Wartburg Watch has reposted a letter from Bob Dixon explaining Why He Finally Left Sovereign Grace Ministries After 30 years.

Old Case of Spanking Caused Renal Failure Discovered

Under Much Grace has discovered information of a case from 2002 of a boy being  “disciplined” into Renal Failure.   Disclaimer:  this is not the case of parents disciplining their child, this is a case of 22 yr old men disciplining a young boy for way too long and ending up in jail.  One later wrote a book about his jail experience and how he continued to serve the Lord in jail.  The whole story is very disturbing on many levels.

She also has an article exposing the dangerous teachings of Ron Williams of  Hepzibah House.  He is very clear in his teachings, actually using the term, “beat,” and advocating starting in infancy.  Here is a quote:

As soon as the child begins to express his own self-will (and this occurs early in life) that child needs to receive correction. My wife and I have a general goal of making sure that each of our children has his will broken by the time he reaches the age of one year. To do this, a child must receive correction when he is a small infant.

Born Sinners

Rachel Stone discusses whether babies are Little Sinners and how that teaching relates to spanking.

Heartbreaking Abuse

Warning, the first post should not be read by sensitive people:

The Breaking the “Diabolical Will” of Infants in the IFB – Even at Hephzibah House: Pondering Pearl and Lydia Schatz Part VII

There But For Grace: Why Good People Make Dangerous Choices (Pondering Pearl and Lydia Schatz) Part VIII


Humiliation at Hephzibah House: Restriction and Control over Restroom Breaks

More Responses to the 20/20 IFB Story

Bob Bixby shares an update from Tina Anderson’s husband. Tina, as you may remember, was featured on the 20/20 story about abuse in some IFB churches.

And here are 2 more responses to the 20/20 show:

20/20 And The IFB Culture by Baptist Thinker

IFB by David Schmidt from Thoughts of an Unlearned.

And if I may make my own comment on the show and the responses, I must say that I am rather disappointed that I am not seeing more discussion of the part about the harsh teachings of using corporeal punishment of babies in some of these churches.  I have seen only a few references to harsh punishment and that is it.  Elizabeth Vargas was properly shocked at the idea of spanking infants for crying in church and then the topic was pretty much dropped.  I found one blog post about it.  In each of the other pages about it to which I have linked lately, I have seen much discussion in the comments about sexual abuse and coverups as well as how linked the IFB churches are or are not.  I have seen mentions of spiritual abuse and legalism.  I have seen no outrage for the idea of spanking infants nor even a discussion of what age would be ok to start.  I must be missing something.  If someone has seen such discussion, I would be interested.

 

edited to add:

I see that Bob Bixby posted something On Whipping Your Children today.  Also, I see from my comments that people are, indeed, discussing it.  Apparently, I am just not reading in the right places.

 

Understanding The Nature of Children

Discipleship Parenting writes about Understanding the Nature of Children in which she looks at what the Bible says about the nature of infants and children and what our response to them should be.

Dulce de Leche also writes about the sin nature of babies in Sons of Adam Daughters of Eve.

Damaging Effects of Punishment on Children

GreeneGem explains the damage  which was done to her by her mothers trampling on her Boundaries.

Speaking of damage, did you know that when babies are left to cry it out, their little bodies are being flooded with Cortisol?   Discipleship Parenting looks at what  effect that has on them.

Meanwhile Pearl, from An Apprenticeship in the Art of Gentle Discipline, looks at the Spiritual Discipline of Parenting to Sleep.

Spanking Infants???

Elizabeth Esther posted about the 20/20 exposé of abuse in some IBF churches and interprets Pastor Brian Fuller’s remarks.  She explains the teaching of first time obedience  and how common the spanking of infants really in these churches. By the way, some of the comments of this blog post seem to have inside information in them.

Also, I want to make it clear that  not all Independent Fundamental Baptist Churches have abusive teachings.  I am a member of an Independent Fundamental Baptist Church which does not.  The pastor often reminds us that salvation is by faith in Jesus and what He did alone and you cannot add anything to that.  He reminds us that saying a prayer or baptism or anything else will not save you, you are saved by believing that what Jesus said and did is true.  They do believe in corporal punishment but I have never heard of anyone there spanking an infant or using an implement.  While they might say that they believe in wifely submission, what I see looks more like mutual submission.   I see no signs of the patriarchal movement, most of the women in that church wear pants.  They also cut and dye their hair and nobody says a word about it.  Women work outside the home and girls are expected to go to college.  On top of that, many in  the congregation uses public schools.  So, I don’t know how extensive the abuse in IFB churches is but I believe that churches need to be considered on a church by church basis.  After all, they are independent.


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