We may have come across many an act of corporal punishment, but this one is just weird and plain horrible.
Stepfather chains boy by the neck
A 10-year-old boy refused to go to school, so his stepfather decided to punish him, in the most bizarre way possible.
The incident happened in Malaysia, and police were alerted to it by members of the public. When they broke down and forcibly entered the house at Indera Mahkota, they were in for a shock.
A boy was tied by the neck to a gas cylinder, using a steel chain. He had only his pants on. He was unconscious.
He was rushed to hospital for treatment. Thankfully, the boy was found to be in good health and did not show any signs of trauma.
His stepfather (who apparently is a soldier) and mother have been arrested as part of investigations.
Kuantan police chief Asst Comm Abdul Aziz Salleh told The Star Online, “Early investigations reveal the child was tied up because he did not go to school the day before.”
Datuk Shahaniza Shamsuddin, chairman of the state Women and Family Development has been quoted by The Straits Times as saying, “He will be placed in the hospital until the case is resolved because this is currently the safest place for him. The Welfare Department and the hospital will monitor his condition and send counsellors if necessary.”
“We will wait for the investigations to be completed and if needed, we will get a court order to put the boy in protective custody. Further action will depend on police and the Welfare Department’s investigations,”
The incident has created outrage in Malaysia, with many people condemning the act as cruel and inhuman.
One of the chief reasons why parents resort to corporal punishment is because of its shock value and instant results it promises.
In fact, when we recently published the findings of a study which said that spanking children may lead to anti-social behaviour and mental problems in adulthood, we were surprised to find that most readers disagreed with it.
The general consensus seemed to be, “Well, it was part of our childhood, and most of us grew up normal, unscathed, and well mannered.”
The question that remains however, is why would we want to hurt our own flesh and blood, little angels we so lovingly brought into this world?
Can we shift to a more non-violent method of discipline instead? Here are some tips:
- Get Calm: You have probably had a really rough day and feel like you are on the verge of losing your mind. When you feel like you are getting out of control, try to leave the situation.
Maybe go to another room, but do not leave the room in anger or defeat. You could say, “I’ll be in the next room if you want to talk to me.”
If you really can’t leave the situation, try the reliable ‘count to 10’ method for some much needed release.
- Never hit a child when you are angry: You are merely releasing your own frustration, and hitting a child in such a situation will merely lead to physical harm and undesirable consequences. If you can feel that mad rage getting to you, take a time out and ask yourself these questions:
- Why am I going to hit my child?
- What am I trying to teach him?
- What will he really learn?
- Is hitting the only option that I have? Am I going to hit my child to help him reduce the behaviour or am I simply releasing my own anger?
- Can he learn that lesson without me hitting him?
You will find that by simply taking some time out to think about these questions, you have calmed yourself a bit and are now thinking more rationally.
- Be kind but firm: An effective way of discipline is to get down to your child’s level, make eye contact, touch him gently and advise him, in a kind but firm manner. Getting down to your child’s eye level automatically makes you less intimidating.
Another alternative to hitting is giving your child a choice between rectifying her mistake and a ‘bad’ alternative. For example: “Would you like to stop playing with your food or would you like to leave the table?”
- Explain the consequences: Instead of punishing by hitting, aim for making the child accountable for his mistakes.
Punishing might merely lead him to be very scared and he may try to cover up or hide his mistakes in future. Instead, emphasise on what the child has learnt from the mistake, and how he can make amends for it. This does good for the child’s self esteem.
(Source: The Straits Times, The Star Online, Image: Screengrab The Star Online)