State laws vary on what is discipline and what constitutes abuse.
Discipline is excessive if:
As a parent, ask yourself…
Abusive adults may share some general characteristics, such as:
Victims of physical abuse may show:
Repeated, or frequent, unexplained bruises:
On the face, nose, throat, upper arms, buttocks, thighs or lower back
In unusual shapes or patterns, or clusters, suggesting use of some instrument (lashes, loops, lines or bites)
Cigarette burns (circular in shape on palms, hands, feet, genitalia or stomach)
Immersion burns (from being forced into hot water; “glove” effect or could be doughnut-shaped)
Burns in shape of common household appliances or utensils
Skeletal injuries to the face, skull, or bones around joints; or fractures or dislocations
Lacerations; missing, chipped or loose teeth; lost hair or bald patches; broken eardrums
Victims of any abuse may show:
The information above was obtained from Hamilton County Job and Family Services Website in Ohio
Am I Abusing or Disciplining My Child?...A Preview
If a parent is punishing his/her child to instill fear rather than educate…
If a parent calls his/her child a brat, a monster, “you’re stupid, fat, ugly”…
If a child is afraid to be alone with the parent…Then, Yes, you are abusing your child.
Discipline helps children learn and grow; Abuse harms children and their well-being
Parents can and should discipline their children. It is a parent's job to teach their children about expectations, rules, morals and values. Children need to be given consistent discipline to be taught right from wrong, to be kept safe and to learn what they can and cannot do. "The goal of discipline is to create an orderly, predictable, stable, and fun world to enjoy and grow healthy," according to Prevent Child Abuse North Dakota's website. Discipline helps children to learn and change their behavior.
Child abuse can result when discipline or attempts to control a child become excessive and injures the child.
If parents choose to spank their child, it should not be done in a way that causes injury to the child, violates the child or causes humiliation to the child.
The information above was directly taken from Livestrong.com Website by Sarah Smenyak. She has a Master of Science degree in counseling and human services from Indiana University. She has been a contributor to gnmparents.com and uses her experiences as an educator, a parent, a long-time runner and coach to encourage others in their mental and physical health goals.