vulnerable. Hurting them is not okay.
hurts today... and tomorrow!
is criminal assault, it is not discipline.
is often abuse. When an adult is emotionally upset
and loses control, it can escalate into tragic
injury of the child.
be painful, degrading, humiliating, scary, disrespectful,
is often a matter of learned behavior. For some
abusers it may be an expression of overt or hidden
jealousy, hate, contempt, hopelessness and/or
helplessness. A person abusing is out of control.
experience bruising, welts, broken eardrums, burns,
dislocated joints, broken bones, slashes, bites,
scalds or genital mutilation.
physical abuse and torture leaves no physical
scars, but can be just as devastating. This can
take the form of:
- shaking, pulling, twisting
- restraints and confinement,
- slapping, choking,
- hitting, pulling ears,
- being given poisons,
- pinching, thumping in
- second hand smoke,
- extreme tickling and
- hair pulling,
- water torture, electric
- asphyxiation, strangling,
- and withholding food,
medical care or the necessities of life.
- It can also include
unnecessary medical procedures like enemas,
- being forced to stand
outside in the cold,
- or to stand with arms
out or in a squat,
- to wear soiled underpants
over the head,
- or to stay in a soaked
There are caring,
successful ways to teach our children that do
not involve physically hurting a child.
hurting children doesn't work and is in fact counter-productive.
Research has clearly identified that the more
severely children are physically disciplined,
the greater and more frequently they act out and
THEY DID - I DO
That's what they did
That's what I feel like
doing to me
That's what I
to do to my art
but, I don't
I work on the images
The rage gives me energy
energy to tell - - -
there will be no more secrets
Look at me
Really see me
bruises and all.
My body remembers
things my mind
has locked up
in a small dark closet
It shouldn’t have happened
but it did.
I don’t know where
to draw the line
Now that I’ve grown
when I was too young.
like a lit cigarette to my skin.
SECRET NO MORE
The pain is mine
The knot in my stomach that is there now
Has been with me all my life
The gruesome craving to eat raw meat today
Taught to me by cult members yesterday
Encouraged by mother, the witch
How did I get there ?
In my daddie’s car of midnight blue
Oh how poignant !
This child’s favourite colour.
The joy of the colour masked the fear
and set the tears to shame
The tricycle - midnight blue, of course
To share a ride with sister
I was too small to help.
I hurt for I was stepped on as I fell at my daddie’s
I cried but no one cared,
So I went to the garden to bury another soul of mine
I was a baby wanting to be held
wanting to be hugged
wanting to be loved
wanting to be cherished
But I was nothing, just another piece
The tightness of my breath
The pain in my chest.
Will not stop me any longer.
I will run no more.
I will open the doors, not in vigilance
But in preparedness to yell
NO MORE ! NO MORE !
The secret will be told
I will hug and love and cherish the
child in me
There will be no more beatings that
cause life long bruises
EXPOSE; EXPOSE; EXPOSE
In the garden, I will cultivate my
It is me
It is mine
A secret no more.
What is Physical Abuse?
Physical abuse teaches children that love equals
degradation and slashing pain. It teaches that
its okay for big people to hit little people
but not for little to hit big, and when you get
big, you can do this too. Physically abused individuals
carry scarring, both physical and emotional.
The actual meaning of the expression
spare the rod, spoil the child is
that the rod is a shepherds crook, to be
used to redirect the child.
- Physically hurting children
causes psychological, emotional harm.
- Physically hurting children
is bad discipline.
- Physically hurting children
is an angry reaction - not a thought out process
by a parent.
Generation and cultural legacies of abuse exist
and are practiced in Canada.
There is no clear definition of
physical abuse, and there is no consensus among
professionals as to the definition of physical
abuse. Physical abuse is considered criminal behaviour
in adults, but not in children. Children must
go to extremes (show their bruises) in order to
establish that abuse is taking place. The legislation
overly protects adults/parents but does not equally
Physical abuse is emotional abuse.
Kids are not resilient. They cannot get
over anything. Kids are vulnerable... trusting,
Physical abuse hurts. Hurting children
is never okay.
Physical abuse is crippling.
Physical abuse is criminal assault,
Physical abuse is learned behaviour.
What Im doing to you is what my father
did to me but its not okay. There are many
other parenting alternatives now that werent
known in my fathers time.
Physical discipline doesnt
change behaviour. Physical discipline is often
abuse. There are other caring/successful ways
to teach our children.
Armstrong, Louise. The Home Front:
Notes From the Family War Zone. New York: McGraw-Hill,
Burby, Liza N. Family Violence.
San Diego: Lucent Books, 1996.
Coloroso, Barbara. Kids Are Worth
It! Giving Your Child the Gift of Inner Discipline.
Toronto: Somerville House Books, 1994.
----------, Parenting With Wit
and Wisdom in Times of Chaos and Loss. Penguin
DePanfilis, Diane and Marsha K.
Salus. A Co-ordinated Response to Child Abuse
and Neglect: A Basic Manual. (Online) Available
Greenberg, Keith Elliot. Family
Abuse: Why Do People Hurt Each Other? New York:
Twenty-First Century Books, 1994.
Leach, Penelope. Children First:
What Our Society Must Do - and is Not Doing for
Our Children Today. New York: Knopf, 1994.
Lutz, Sherri and First Nations
Education Association. Family Violence: A Handbook
for First Nations Workers. Brentwood B.C.: First
Nations Education Association, 1994.
MacMillan, H., Fleming, J.E., Trocome,
N., Boyle, M.H., Wong, M., Racine, Y.A., Beardslee,
W.R. and D.R. Offord. Prevalence of Child
Physical and Sexual Abuse in the Community: Results
From the Ontario Health Supplement. Journal
of the American Medical Association, 1997, 278,
Marshall, Peter Graham and Anthony
St. Pierre. Now I Know Why Tigers Eat Their Young
- How to Survive Your Teenagers With Humour. Vancouver:
Whitecap Books 1992.
Pelzer, David J. The Child Called
It: One Childs Courage to Survive.
Deerfield Beach, Fla.: Health Communications,
Stacey, William A. The Family Secret:
Domestic Violence in America. Boston: Beacon Press,
Stark, Evan. Everything You Need
To Know About Family Violence. New York: Rosen
Pub. Group, 1989.
Straus, Martha B. Abuse and Victimization
Across the Life Span. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins
Swisher, Karin. Domestic Violence.
San Diego California: Greenhaven Press, 1996.
Varga, Lazlo I. and Barbara Coloroso.
(Video) Winning at Parenting Without Beating Your
Kids. 125 min.
I don't like when
people hit other.
How woul you like
to be beet?
I think it is scary!
Myles, age 11
HELP STOP CHILD ABUSE
DO KISS & HUG
Stop the Violence
We can stop the cycle!
The legacy of the belt
Think before you act.
Love your child.
Honghu, age 8
My love and life
Kynan, age 6 and
Tristan, age 14.
Spanking is not
Raise a hand to a child
only to hold
and love them.
Stop the hurt!
I think people
should stop fighting.