“Speaking Your Mind” (Karla's Blog)

Hola Sola! Today I’m going to blog about something that hits close to home for me. I’m also asking for advice. I’m not very close to my father’s side of the family, but not by choice. We grew up without my father around because my mom wouldn’t let him see us. In the last few years my brother and I have reconnected with our dad and a lot of our cousins. I sent a letter for my dad (who lives in Mexico) to my younger cousin (16-years-old) to give to him for me. Right now my dad is staying in a part of Mexico that is not far from my cousins and they go visit him often. She told me that she would give him the letter if I sent it to her.

So I asked her the other day if she received the letter for my dad yet. She said she had but they hadn’t gone over there yet. So we started talking. I asked her how she was doing and she told me she was frustrated with her niece (2 ½-years-old), that she and her family were babysitting. I asked her what was going on, hoping I could help. She told me that her niece had been acting very badly lately. She broke a gift my cousin had gotten for Valentine’s Day, and tore up some other stuff of hers. So I asked her what she does to discipline her niece when she’s bad, hoping that I could give her some advice. She told me that she tells her what she’s doing is wrong and that she hits her when she gets mad. Then she kicks her out of the room and has her mother deal with her. I was speechless. I have a HUGE problem with people hitting kids, especially when they’re that little.

I tried to approach this in a nice way considering they’re family. I told her how I discipline my daughter (time outs) and that as long as you follow through, it’s effective. She responded by trying to justify her actions in saying that it’s okay to hit her niece because her sister (27-years-old, the child’s mother) “hits her with a ruler when she’s a brat”. I told her that does not make it okay for her to hit her and if she gets that mad then it’s better for her to just walk away. She told me that it’s not her kid so she doesn’t care. We stopped talking shortly after that. I don’t feel I was wrong in saying how I felt. I wasn’t rude or mean about anything. But no one is going to tell me they hit (not spank) a toddler out of anger and expect me not to say anything. Was I wrong to say what I did? I understand everyone raises their children in their own way, but hitting is a lot different than spanking and I consider it abuse. Anyways, your feedback is welcome.