Bad Mom Advice: Why Beat Your Kids When You Can Make Them Beat Each Other?

largeWelcome to my weekly Bad Mom Advice column where I attempt to answer all of your parenting questions as only I know how — with zero degree in early childhood development, but with the experience of raising four kids and not having any of them in prison – yet! Plus, I back all my advice on numerous scientific research, which may or may not include me making fun of your dumb kid behind your back and drinking a bunch of wine! Welcome to Bad Mom Advice!

My kids want me to hold them all the time but frankly I need more space. What to do?
Gross. Put them outside. If you can’t just leave them outside I suggest you hold them as much as they want. Because eventually they grow up and become major jerks and they are too busy taking all of your money and blathering about the new Kid Cudi CD news (OK, this I actually cared about because Beth Gibbons from Portishead will be on it!!!!!) and it’s near impossible to cuddle a 16-year-old on your lap. I know it can be a drag when you are trying to TCB but your kids will only want this attention for a few very short years and then you end up all lonely like me, bribing your kids with cold hard cash to hang out with you. Also, distraction works. But kids are smart so they can’t really be distracted by toys and stuff, which means you have to give them shit to play with that is either really expensive to replace or has sentimental value, like your iPhone or your wedding dress. That will keep them busy.

When is it acceptable to hit a child?

When they are 18-years-old and they make a video about how they find it hiiiii-larious that a girl may have been raped, then you have my permission to punch them in the throat. I don’t believe in hitting. I don’t think it really accomplishes anything other than showing your kid that if they do something wrong you can really hurt them. I can’t really think of a circumstance where it “makes sense” to hit a child, and most kids respond better to time-outs or conversations about why you find their behavior unacceptable. I can see maybe a quick smack on the bottom if they are doing something crazy-dangerous and you need to get their attention, like running out into traffic or starting to stick a fork in an electrical socket, but even then I am just saying a smack on their boooo-tay and a stern talking to. I know many parents don’t agree with me, and spank or hit their kids frequently, but I could just never bring myself to do that. I was always more into taking away their prized possessions or lecturing them for hours. So no, don’t hit your kids, but feel free to take away all of their Easter basket candy and send it to me. That will teach ‘em.

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