Spanking is so passé... or at least that's what the experts will have you believe. Contrary to mom's lil saying, it turns out that a little paddling may hurt the kid more than it hurts the mom. A Duke study claims hitting a child will do more harm than good and applauds new philosophies of parenting where the focus is on positive reinforcement and offering options. While that all sounds warm and fuzzy, I was adamant that I would use spanking as a method of punishment in our home... before I became a mother.

The hand was no stranger to my bum though it was only used on rare occasions. When it came time for me to teach my daughter right from wrong, I popped her tush a couple of times and found it completely ineffective. She actually enjoyed the quick tap and giggled her way to more mischief. Eager to try a new plan, I gave her a time out in a not so fun part of the house — the dark guest room. In 60 seconds, I discovered that the new system was more compelling than making physical contact. At this point, I'll admit I am a reformed punisher but one should never say never. What works for my lass may not work for my son and I may be back to square one in the spanking debate.

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