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Poll
Question: Should parents still wash kids' mouths out with soap?
Yes - 10 (23.8%)
No - 16 (38.1%)
Only if it was for major disrespect - 11 (26.2%)
Never and parents who do should go to to jail - 5 (11.9%)
Total Voters: 42

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Author Topic: Should parents still wash kids' mouths out with soap?  (Read 20688 times) Average Rating: 0
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scamandrius
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« on: October 14, 2009, 11:31:39 AM »

A mother was arrested for washing her 8 year old's mouth out with soap.  I don't know about the rest of you, but my mom did this to me, only once.  Even though she regrets doing so, she said she had to because she had to follow through.  I told her "no" on too many occasions and the next time I did, I got it.  And it was liquid soap too. I had to spend the rest of the day trying to get the taste out.  I think I was eight too.

Here's the article and the source:  http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local-beat/Mom-Arrested-for-Washing-Kids-Mouth-With-Soap--64112132.html

A Palm Bay woman and her boyfriend were arrested Monday for child abuse after the couple went old school to punish their 8-year-old daughter for swearing.

They washed her mouth out with soap.

We don't know about you, but we would petition President Obama and Congress to make it mandatory for every parent to carry a bar of Irish Spring in their back pockets with all the profanity kids use today.

Police claim Adriyanna Herdener and Wilfredo Rivera went too far by placing a bar of soap in the girl's mouth and letting it stay for 10 minutes. Herdener did not intervene in the discipline.

The girl eventually vomited and Rivera took her to the local hospital, where hospital staff called police.

No one wants a child to be hurt or inhumanely punished, but parents' discipline choices in this country have come down to calling Dr. Phil or hiding the joysticks to the Wii.

Next time your kid has a potty mouth, just give them some gum.
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« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2009, 11:42:13 AM »

I got the soap on the toothbrush once growing up. Once was enough.
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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2009, 12:23:58 PM »


My  mother had a thin wooden branch (switch) with my name on it.  It was always standing behind her bedroom door.

All she had to do was give me that look...and remind me about the switch.

It was enough.

She never had to use it...but, the threat was there.

I think today's kids get off too easy.  They have no discipline and are completely spoiled.  They have no respect for anything or anyone.

Of course there are those angels, like my godkids, who always behave and listen to their elders...and never require punishment of any kind!   Wink



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« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2009, 01:11:41 PM »

I vaguely remember my mother washing my mouth out with soap and a dishrag, but I don't remember why.

Normally, we were just terrified of my father yelling (he rarely laid a hand on us because he didn't have to).  The classic, "Wait until your father gets home..." was enough to keep most of us in line.

Of course, I had my next oldest brother, the proverbial black sheep, to watch get punished over and over for acting a fool.  I learned more from him than anything Smiley
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« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2009, 01:22:21 PM »

The fact that they ended up taking her to the hospital tells you whether or not this was good idea.  Shocked
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« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2009, 02:34:00 PM »

^I had my mouth washed out and I wasn't taken to the hospital.  Perhaps it was an isolated incident. I'm going to assume you're the one who voted that parents who do this should go to jail.
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« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2009, 02:47:12 PM »

I heard a young child cuss his daddy the other day and all the daddy did was try to placate the child with gum.  Amazing!!  I think the child needed way more attention of a different kind while daddy is the one who needed to be taken out to the woodshed!!
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« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2009, 02:48:37 PM »

I had my mouth washed out with soap once, when I said that a woman in a movie was "a slut". Good times, good times...

Anyway, I don't have a problem with parents who use soap, though I don't know that I would use it.
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« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2009, 03:26:57 PM »

I never got it but I think I was threatened with it once. Maybe I would be better off if my mother had washed my mouth out with soap when I was younger since I have a problem with swearing these days but I am getting better at catching my self when they slip out. I think the government should just let parents raise their own kids unless if the parents are being abusive but I hardly see spanking or washing the mouth out with soap as something that would qualify as abuse.
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« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2009, 05:27:50 PM »

Don't ever, ever do anything to a child that causes them to be hospitalized. That's not discipline; it's not even human.
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« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2009, 05:49:38 PM »

There is a difference between washing the mouth for several seconds and carrying soap brick in mouth for 10 minutes.
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« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2009, 06:05:56 PM »

There is a difference between washing the mouth for several seconds and carrying soap brick in mouth for 10 minutes.
That's my objection as well.  To apply soap to the child's mouth just long enough to leave a bad taste--let's say a few seconds--may be acceptable discipline for cussing or lying.  To keep the soap in the child's mouth for 10 minutes until the child vomits and needs to be taken to the hospital is beyond abusive in its excess and should be prosecuted as criminal.

Therefore, I would say that the quoted article and the poll based upon it both miss the whole point of why the parents were arrested for child abuse.
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« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2009, 06:27:22 PM »

Well, I must admit that I just scanned the article and posts and missed the part about the child going to the hospital. I guess I just assumed that this was another regular "would you discipline your kids this way?" thread, and didn't think it had something as serious as it did Lips Sealed
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« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2009, 06:58:58 PM »

Don't ever, ever do anything to a child that causes them to be hospitalized. That's not discipline; it's not even human.

I agree. Strange that a child uttering obscenities would bring out such inhuman behaviour. And surely by 8 years old a child can be disciplined by means other than physical? I remember our son letting rip with the *F* word on the front steps of church one morning; something the "little darling" had picked up from school. He was only about 6 at the time, and though that word seems to enjoy common usage these days, back then it was quite shocking. So we had some fairly stern words with him about it, and told him it is a no-no. When he said it again, he was deprived of his favourite tv shows for some time. Of course, that probably only taught him not to say that word again within our hearing - or on the front steps of church. Wink
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« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2009, 08:44:16 PM »

Therefore, I would say that the quoted article and the poll based upon it both miss the whole point of why the parents were arrested for child abuse.
Exactly. This article, and the issue it covers, have nothing to do with discipline.
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« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2009, 09:21:43 PM »

^I had my mouth washed out and I wasn't taken to the hospital.  Perhaps it was an isolated incident. I'm going to assume you're the one who voted that parents who do this should go to jail.
You would be wrong. I haven't voted in this poll.
I guess if the child had vomited while she still had the bar of soap in her mouth and had choked on her vomit you would consider this succesful parenting since dead children can't swear anymore?
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« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2009, 09:35:46 PM »

A bar of soap for a few seconds is one thing, but TEN minutes! The state was correct in arresting the parents.

There is a differance between discipline and abuse.

On a lighter note, don't we all know that soap poisoning leads to blindness? Wink

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNX9WOIDJV8
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« Reply #17 on: October 14, 2009, 11:10:32 PM »

Don't ever, ever do anything to a child that causes them to be hospitalized. That's not discipline; it's not even human.

Well, I guess contact sports are out of the question now.
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« Reply #18 on: October 14, 2009, 11:12:52 PM »

[I guess if the child had vomited while she still had the bar of soap in her mouth and had choked on her vomit you would consider this succesful parenting since dead children can't swear anymore?

Screw you, Tallitot.  I support spanking children, too.  Successful parenting must also involve successful correction but that does not mean inflicting harm resulting in death. How dare you suggest such is how I would handle children of my own. 
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« Reply #19 on: October 14, 2009, 11:15:39 PM »

Don't ever, ever do anything to a child that causes them to be hospitalized. That's not discipline; it's not even human.

Well, I guess contact sports are out of the question now.

When someone gets hurt playing sports it's usually an accident. When someone becomes ill by having a substance not meant for ingestion put in thier mouth, that's a reasonably forseable consequence.

^ gee looks like scamandrius needs go wash his own mouth out with soap...but i bet he won't
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« Reply #20 on: October 14, 2009, 11:38:36 PM »

The alcohol content of foaming and gel soaps is >40%.  Psych hospitals cannot stock this soap.  Patients swipe it to get drunk.
If you washed your child's mouth out with this, your child could end up in the ER with a BAC "over the legal limit" and very ill.  This would definitely be child abuse. It is mandatory to report it. Your child will go immediately to foster care and end up there for months.
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« Reply #21 on: October 14, 2009, 11:50:23 PM »

Don't ever, ever do anything to a child that causes them to be hospitalized. That's not discipline; it's not even human.

Well, I guess contact sports are out of the question now.

When someone gets hurt playing sports it's usually an accident. When someone becomes ill by having a substance not meant for ingestion put in thier mouth, that's a reasonably forseable consequence.

^ gee looks like scamandrius needs go wash his own mouth out with soap...but i bet he won't

You should wash out your own because of your slanderous comment towards me.  But, I bet you won't.
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« Reply #22 on: October 15, 2009, 09:05:35 AM »

I think 10 minutes is a little excessive for soap, but at the same time, I think they overreacted by taking the kid to the hospital.... Seriously, its soap..... Of course its going to cause the child to vomit.... I had my mouth washed out with soap once, it wasn't pleasant (I think it was lava soap, with pumice power). I vomited afterword, but that was that and I learned a lesson. No offense to other parents, but taking away the games or a stern talking to doesn't necessarily do anything to change behavior. Sometimes it takes a little more for the child to see and understand. Much like the child who doesn't learn that the stove has an open flame that will burn you no matter how many times you tell them... They need the experience before it finally gets into their head.

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« Reply #23 on: October 15, 2009, 09:22:30 AM »

^ I agree that children do need to see the consequences of their actions (and the younger the child, the more necessary it is that those consequences be immediate). There is a difference, however, between allowing the child to experience the natural consequences of their actions (e.g. the stove) and actually inflicting those consequences on the child. Even the latter, however, can be permissible if it is done with restraint and in the best interest of the child. In education, we have a rule that we follow in discipline, that we use the least amount of discipline necessary to correct the student's behaviour. It's really easy to go overboard with children, and we adults who care for children must practice proper restraint.
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« Reply #24 on: October 15, 2009, 03:37:20 PM »

Wash the profanity right out of that mouth!  police

It took about ten separate times for me to get the message (I was a stubborn kid) and after that I would get warned once and then no more disrespect from me.

Although with the article, ten minutes is a bit excessive.  That's either abuse or just stupid parenting or both. Thirty seconds is sufficient.  One minute if excessive.  Two minutes is the absolute most for things like F-bombs.  Either way, it'd better be some nasty tasting bar soap like Dial or something like that and none of those fruit smelling soaps.
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« Reply #25 on: October 15, 2009, 05:13:51 PM »

^ I agree that children do need to see the consequences of their actions (and the younger the child, the more necessary it is that those consequences be immediate). There is a difference, however, between allowing the child to experience the natural consequences of their actions (e.g. the stove) and actually inflicting those consequences on the child. Even the latter, however, can be permissible if it is done with restraint and in the best interest of the child. In education, we have a rule that we follow in discipline, that we use the least amount of discipline necessary to correct the student's behaviour. It's really easy to go overboard with children, and we adults who care for children must practice proper restraint.

And the problem with going overboard with a minor offence like swearing (and that's how I see it), is that one leaves oneself little room for ratchetting up the levels of punishment when really important offenses are committed. No offence to other parents, but I, personally, consider such a punishment invasive, abusive and puritanical. And by 8 years old I would imagine that a child can be reasoned with, not bullied. The offensive nature of their speech can be explained; how it offends other people and is unacceptable behaviour. That's what my parents did, when I picked up a naughty word at school. I felt shame, rather than pain. So going for the jugular, so to speak, seems excessive. Still, I suppose it does depend on the maturity of both parent and child and if one chooses to take easy options rather than the time to develop a child who will consider the feelings of others as more important than the discomfort of some archaic punishment. 
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« Reply #26 on: October 15, 2009, 05:33:04 PM »

^ I agree that children do need to see the consequences of their actions (and the younger the child, the more necessary it is that those consequences be immediate). There is a difference, however, between allowing the child to experience the natural consequences of their actions (e.g. the stove) and actually inflicting those consequences on the child. Even the latter, however, can be permissible if it is done with restraint and in the best interest of the child. In education, we have a rule that we follow in discipline, that we use the least amount of discipline necessary to correct the student's behaviour. It's really easy to go overboard with children, and we adults who care for children must practice proper restraint.

How strange. I lost the first post, so I thought and had to rewrite..... Then both posts appear...... Huh Huh Sorry about that, but I have no idea what happened.
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« Reply #27 on: October 16, 2009, 09:17:14 AM »

And the problem with going overboard with a minor offence like swearing (and that's how I see it), is that one leaves oneself little room for ratchetting up the levels of punishment when really important offenses are committed.
Exactly. Kids will push the limits, and if you've already reached yours, they will push to see what's next.

Quote
The offensive nature of their speech can be explained; how it offends other people and is unacceptable behaviour. That's what my parents did, when I picked up a naughty word at school. I felt shame, rather than pain.
I remember picking up an offensive word in third grade, and because I thought it was cool, started using it all the time. My dad solved this problem by simply telling me what it meant. I was so embarrassed that I didn't use it again.

For me, when I choose to discipline children for language depends largely on their intentions. If the child intended to provoke, I will punish the offence. If, however, they were simply frustrated and careless, I may send them to the counselor to blow off steam or another appropriate punishment. Attitude makes a big difference with me.

How strange. I lost the first post, so I thought and had to rewrite..... Then both posts appear...... Huh Huh Sorry about that, but I have no idea what happened.
That's happened to me before too. I'm not sure what causes it.
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« Reply #28 on: October 16, 2009, 09:23:38 AM »

We used Listerine Mouthwash, the old brown or golden type with a little water to weaken it.  It works better than soap and is of course a true mouthwash and not a misuse of an item. it had the same effect  as soap for our 5  kids  (now adults aged 25-33). We found that they  at least watched their words around us and other adults, even to this day my kids will not use language  around their mother and myself that they have not heard us use. The use of a mouthwash is a form of "aversion therapy" and still utilized by both psychologists and psychiatrist as well as in schools as an option to heavier discipline in order to change anti-social or improper behavior.

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« Reply #29 on: October 16, 2009, 01:22:38 PM »

We used Listerine Mouthwash, the old brown or golden type with a little water to weaken it.  It works better than soap and is of course a true mouthwash and not a misuse of an item. it had the same effect  as soap for our 5  kids  (now adults aged 25-33). We found that they  at least watched their words around us and other adults, even to this day my kids will not use language  around their mother and myself that they have not heard us use. The use of a mouthwash is a form of "aversion therapy" and still utilized by both psychologists and psychiatrist as well as in schools as an option to heavier discipline in order to change anti-social or improper behavior.

Thomas
Well, I guess you could say that foul language is, in a way, another form of bad breath. Wink
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« Reply #30 on: October 16, 2009, 07:05:26 PM »

I remember picking up an offensive word in third grade, and because I thought it was cool, started using it all the time. My dad solved this problem by simply telling me what it meant. I was so embarrassed that I didn't use it again.

Yes, that can do it!  laugh

Quote
For me, when I choose to discipline children for language depends largely on their intentions. If the child intended to provoke, I will punish the offence. If, however, they were simply frustrated and careless, I may send them to the counselor to blow off steam or another appropriate punishment. Attitude makes a big difference with me.

I agree.

Quote
How strange. I lost the first post, so I thought and had to rewrite..... Then both posts appear...... Huh Huh Sorry about that, but I have no idea what happened.
That's happened to me before too. I'm not sure what causes it.

Glad to know it happens to others. I thought it was due to my technological inadequacies.  Embarrassed
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« Reply #31 on: October 16, 2009, 07:06:29 PM »

We used Listerine Mouthwash, the old brown or golden type with a little water to weaken it.  It works better than soap and is of course a true mouthwash and not a misuse of an item. it had the same effect  as soap for our 5  kids  (now adults aged 25-33). We found that they  at least watched their words around us and other adults, even to this day my kids will not use language  around their mother and myself that they have not heard us use. The use of a mouthwash is a form of "aversion therapy" and still utilized by both psychologists and psychiatrist as well as in schools as an option to heavier discipline in order to change anti-social or improper behavior.

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« Reply #32 on: January 14, 2010, 04:19:36 AM »

My mum tried that once with me, and I ate the whole bar, told her it was delicious, and asked her for more (all with a smirk on my face). Then dad came home, got the strap, and I lost the smirk real quick!!!!!
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« Reply #33 on: January 14, 2010, 05:24:39 AM »

"Never and parents who do should go to to jail"
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« Reply #34 on: January 14, 2010, 07:33:11 AM »

We used Listerine Mouthwash, the old brown or golden type with a little water to weaken it.  It works better than soap and is of course a true mouthwash and not a misuse of an item. it had the same effect  as soap for our 5  kids  (now adults aged 25-33). We found that they  at least watched their words around us and other adults, even to this day my kids will not use language  around their mother and myself that they have not heard us use. The use of a mouthwash is a form of "aversion therapy" and still utilized by both psychologists and psychiatrist as well as in schools as an option to heavier discipline in order to change anti-social or improper behavior.

Thomas

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« Reply #35 on: January 14, 2010, 10:16:54 AM »

"Never and parents who do should go to to jail"
I retired from elementary school teaching a couple of years early in part because I was tired of dealing with kids whose parents were scared to death of disciplining their own kids, or allowing anyone else to do the job. I will say, of course, that it was always a delight to work with kids and their parents who had an effective parent-child relationship in which the lines of authority were clear. I saw too many examples of parents who were afraid that they would go to jail, or lose their kids at the least, because of a strong element of "do-gooder" social work that seems to believe that any and all parents are vicious monsters who can't be trusted with their own children. It's really very sad to see how homes have been disrupted by well-meaning parents who feel threatened like that.

Parents need to be given the proper tools to raise their children. And no, I don't mean anything abusive or harmful.
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« Reply #36 on: January 14, 2010, 11:16:36 AM »

"Never and parents who do should go to to jail"
I retired from elementary school teaching a couple of years early in part because I was tired of dealing with kids whose parents were scared to death of disciplining their own kids, or allowing anyone else to do the job. I will say, of course, that it was always a delight to work with kids and their parents who had an effective parent-child relationship in which the lines of authority were clear. I saw too many examples of parents who were afraid that they would go to jail, or lose their kids at the least, because of a strong element of "do-gooder" social work that seems to believe that any and all parents are vicious monsters who can't be trusted with their own children. It's really very sad to see how homes have been disrupted by well-meaning parents who feel threatened like that.

Parents need to be given the proper tools to raise their children. And no, I don't mean anything abusive or harmful.
A little know secret is that none other than the Supreme Court of the U.S. condemned the doctrine of "Pater Patriae" (the legal basis of the state acting as a parent) as of murky origin and promoting "kangaroo courts' (that's a quote from a decision: In in re Gault, 387 U.S. 1).
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« Reply #37 on: January 14, 2010, 12:47:34 PM »

This sort of punshment was unheard of in my country. It is also a country far more tolerant of swearing even with kids. Yet beating was common, and I and my siblings had a fair share of it, both from parents and grandparents. T o that end special sticks were cut from the woods and always kept at hand inside the house. St. Nicholas would always provide a few sticks  like these. Once grandfather used a broomstick.
Here I am still, and I don't hate any of them for having given us a beating every now and then, as kids.
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« Reply #38 on: January 14, 2010, 05:15:37 PM »

As a teacher, I have to agree that it gets really old having to raise peoples' kids for them. They don't discipline at home and have no structure in their lives at all. So this leaves the burden on myself and other teachers to discipline kids and help keep them from anti-social beahaviors. That being said, because the parents are afraid to discipline I am as strict as nails in my class. I some times say that my ninth graders are not allowed to breath unless I say so. It makes for a very ordered classroom with few, if any behavior problems. I wasn't always like this. When I first started teaching I governed by hippie nonsense that we learned in our education courses. I learned quickly that such silliness does not work. Each year that I have taught, I have become stricter and stricter. The result: My students are very well behaved in class, are becoming more independent learners (not relying on copying the paper of the student in the next desk) and my students grades and scores have improved.

So, I say, "Yes, wash their mouths out with soap when they are disrespectful, curse, or say unkind things to or about others."
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« Reply #39 on: January 14, 2010, 05:27:14 PM »

My parents, instead of using soap, had me eat a spoonful of Vietnamese chili sauce (the Sriracha brand in the big bottle with the rooster).
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« Reply #40 on: January 14, 2010, 05:28:33 PM »

My parents, instead of using soap, had me eat a spoonful of Vietnamese chili sauce (the Sriracha brand in the big bottle with the rooster).
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« Reply #41 on: January 14, 2010, 05:52:08 PM »

"Never and parents who do should go to to jail"
I retired from elementary school teaching a couple of years early in part because I was tired of dealing with kids whose parents were scared to death of disciplining their own kids, or allowing anyone else to do the job. I will say, of course, that it was always a delight to work with kids and their parents who had an effective parent-child relationship in which the lines of authority were clear. I saw too many examples of parents who were afraid that they would go to jail, or lose their kids at the least, because of a strong element of "do-gooder" social work that seems to believe that any and all parents are vicious monsters who can't be trusted with their own children. It's really very sad to see how homes have been disrupted by well-meaning parents who feel threatened like that.

Parents need to be given the proper tools to raise their children. And no, I don't mean anything abusive or harmful.

I agree that parents do not provide enough discipline for their children these days. But I also think that washing a kid's mouth out with soap is an abusive form of discipline. It's not like there aren't possibilities in between these two.
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« Reply #42 on: January 14, 2010, 05:57:41 PM »

My parents, instead of using soap, had me eat a spoonful of Vietnamese chili sauce (the Sriracha brand in the big bottle with the rooster).

My sister-in-law's mother used to do this with the brood of grandchildren (nine at its height) she used to watch during the day.  It worked on most of them, but backfired on my niece and nephew: they now can't get enough of Sriracha and other hot sauces. Smiley
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« Reply #43 on: January 14, 2010, 06:09:07 PM »

10 minutes?  And what kind of soap were they using?  Since the hospital called child protective services about this, I suspect that something more, and worse, happened than a simple punishment with a bad-tasting but harmless substance.  Some soaps are poisonous if ingested in quantity, after all.  (And others you could eat or drink and only get a mild stomachache.) 

I don't condemn the general practice of "washing mouth out with soap" for certain offensives in certain cases.  But I think that there is more to this story than we've learned yet.
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« Reply #44 on: January 14, 2010, 06:57:18 PM »

"Never and parents who do should go to to jail"
Parents need to be given the proper tools to raise their children. And no, I don't mean anything abusive or harmful.

I agree that parents do not provide enough discipline for their children these days. But I also think that washing a kid's mouth out with soap is an abusive form of discipline. It's not like there aren't possibilities in between these two.
Which was my point exactly. I hope you don't think I meant anything else.
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