Perhaps it’s the
sheer amount of heroin skull-crushing depression news-cycle today, but a study has found that parents who discipline their children in public using “negative touching” (we’ll get to the definition of that in just a second) are found to have way less control over their kids than those who do it with positive touching, according to a new study.
“Negative touching” is
the name of Lena Dunham’s comedy album arm pulling, spanking, and general parental douchebaggery – the child raising equivalent of wearing an Ed Hardy shirt with shorts and sandals, if you will.
The parents who touch their children appropriately, however, have found that the children are much more likely to take direction and grow up to be entirely more pleasant beings. I added the last part there, but only because it is true and if you hit your kids they’ll turn out to be assholes. Like Chris Brown, for instance.
So what’s the moral of the story here? Make sure to touch children appropriately in public. Apparently. From CBS:
The researchers … observed 35 incidences of “positive touch” as discipline, including hugging, tickling or gentle patting. Male caregivers were more likely to touch a child during discipline than female ones, and the majority of the time it was in a positive manner.
Stansbury said that too was surprising because dads are stereotyped as disciplinarians while moms are nurturers.
“I do think that we are shifting as a society and fathers are becoming more involved in the daily mechanics of raising kids, and that’s a good thing for the kids and also a good thing for the dads,” she said.
And the dads might be onto something – kids disciplined with positive touch were more likely to comply more often and more quickly with less fussing than those punished by negative touch. Even if a child complied after being slapped, they often pouted or sulked afterwards, the researchers observed.
Stansbury said next time a child needs discipline, she recommends a gentle, positive touch because “negative touch didn’t work” in her experiment.