“A Proper Backsiding” – Child Abuse Or a Cure For Disobedience?

A “backsiding” is a term often used, especially in rural Jamaica, to¬†describe a spanking. This spanking is usually very thorough and is of an intensity proportional to the offense.
We Jamaicans are very angry people and a simple backsiding, where it involves the aluminum pot covers, barbed wires, chains, frying pans or ‘anyting di han can find’, may easily be classified as attempted murder.

“Aldeeeeam!”
“… Yes”
“Gwaan fi di belt an come”
“…. ”
” Mi seh gwaan fi di belt!”

A ‘sticky’ situation, a dilemma characterized by its complexity. Do I obey and accept my guaranteed, immediate reward or do I disobey and have my reward multiplied later? A tough decision I had to make as a child, a decision which became skewed in favor of immediate acceptance as time progressed.
I had a very interesting childhood, whenever I was sick with ‘disrespect’, Dr. Mommy would prescribe and administer ‘a propa backsiding’ or a ‘good buss ass’. It may sound violent, but I don’t believe I turned out too bad. Would the other techniques work? What if during my disrespect full phase my mother prescribed a time out? “Go to your room Aldeam” or “No TV” just to give me some time to think about what I’ve done. I laugh at the very thought. I personally don’t think that would work for a tough head like me, a very stubborn boy.
All the adults in my immediate and extended family turned out to be well disciplined persons, and all had been served a good dish of butt whooping.
Traditionally speaking a spanking was believed to cure the following childhood diseases:

  • Back talking
  • Teeth hissing
  • Disobeying
  • Unauthorized excursions
  • Child spoiling
  • Idling
  • Late home arrivals
  • Bad grades at school
  • Early pregnancy
  • Hard-a-hearing

And many more unpublished diseases.
Spanking ‘created’ the perfect child.

Modern society is moving towards a more passive approach to child corrections. Physically beating a child may result in a legal charge. Many, however, still hold the traditional beliefs that sparing the rod spoils the child.

What are your views? Share below.
Also share some of your experiences with physical corrections.

– Aldeam Facey 2015

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