I read the letter from Susan (http://nospank.net/susan.htm) with interest. One of my concerns with spanking is the sexual component. I give you permission to print what I am writing below on your Web site, only identifying me by my first name as you did with Susan.
I too believe there is a very strong sexual component to spanking. Susan wrote about how spanking affected her sexuality as an adult. I did not have the extreme problems that she did, though the ideas she brought up were worth merit, and I believe that she may be correct that many cases of sexual problems in adult women may be related to being spanked as children.
As a very young child I lived with my grandparents. It was a full house--when my father (their oldest child) brought my two older siblings and I there to live when he split up with our mother two of my aunts and one uncle still lived at home--9 people in a 4 bedroom house. I was occasionally spanked...but it was extremely rare. I can to this day remember being spanked during a diaper change by one of my aunts. Since I am told that I was 19 months old when I potty trained, this speaks to me very loudly about how deeply this act imprints on the mind of a child. She struck me once or twice because I was wiggling. This is my earliest memory. After that, my memories start when I was about 3, the "cute" things of childhood.
Shortly before I turned 5 my father moved my siblings and I into the home of his then girlfriend--she later became my stepmother (step monster). She preferred to spank with a wooden spoon, and started almost immediately when we moved in. Spankings became a regular event. By the time I was in 1st grade I could expect to be beaten with a wooden spoon or one of my father's belts by my step mother or my father at least twice a week--often more frequently. Often the beatings resulted in bruising (when I became old enough to need to change clothes in school for gym class the spankings were less frequent, but still occurring--many times I remember desperately trying to hide bruises as I changed clothes). About that same time--when I was barely 6 or 7 years old--I began to realize that I was fixated with my classmate's bottoms. I wanted to spank them. Somehow I thought the act would be pleasurable to me and to them. This troubled me a lot, and I could not imagine how a spanking could be pleasurable. But still, somewhere, somehow, I had this feeling that it was...I would have trouble not staring at the bottom of the student in front of me in line as we walked to various classes, lunch, or recess. I just longed to feel the curve of the buttocks in my hand--and I worried that something was dreadfully wrong with me that I wanted to spank my classmates. I believe that this desire was an awakening of sexual feelings in me that I had no knowledge to deal with. Reading in Susan's article about how spanking causes blood to rush to the genitals makes me believe that perhaps while the pain of the spankings was so intense that I was unaware of the pleasure with it, subconsciously I was aware of that pleasure, and that awareness manifest in a desire to spank other children.
At that time I was attending a small country school where the music teacher gave "birthday spankings" to students--a swat for each year of age, then "one to grow on." I attended that school through two birthdays, and somehow he never found out about my birthdays--I think because my step-monster certainly did not send cupcakes in as the other children's mothers did, and I did not tell my classmates about my birthday because of not wanting the teacher to find out. Most of the other students seemed to tolerate this behavior--none seemed to be hurt and some seemed to like being the center of attention--but some protested, and were brought up for the spanking none the less. SICK! I really dreaded that he might find out that it was my birthday and call me forward to be spanked. I was SO fearful that it would hurt as that was my only experience of spankings. I truly hope that such behaviors are no longer tolerated in schools.
As an adult I enjoy a healthy sex life with my husband. I orgasm easily...but generally in order to orgasm I have to fantasize that I am being spanked. I do not believe that this is healthy, and I do believe that it is connected to my being beaten as a child.
In an effort to allow my children to enjoy their childhood innocence, I have made a commitment to discipline them without spanking. It is hard sometimes not to repeat the patterns that I learned as a child--but I feel that it is my responsibility to do so.
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