It's funny that the word SMACK has been used instead of SPANK. I think spanking sounds somewhat more painful than smacking!
Anyway, I am reading a book concerning this issue now - The New Dare to Discipline written by Dr. James Dobson (from Focus on the Family).
And he is in opinion that smacking (in fact, spanking) is acceptable means of disciplining children.
Of course there are boundaries to when a child should be smacked! Basically they should only be smacked when there is willful disobedience. For example when a child yells at you "Shut up!" or "Go to hell!" or when you tell the child not to go out and he does so the THIRD time in succession!
And after a smack, most children would cry and want to be comforted. This is the opportunity to talk heart to heart with the child - tell him what he did wrong and what he can do in future to avoid this again! I guess this is when the reasoning with the child comes in!
If we do this while the child is young, we could have less trouble when they are teenagers!
I have yet to finish this book. I don't know if reasoning alone without the smacking will actually work!
Children always test the boundaries we set for them. Will reason alone without "pain" keep them within the boundaries? Especially at the young age?
So, I think I will smack my lil one. Hopefully I would have learnt how to make him feel that it is done out of love. And I will ONLY do it under willful disobedience circumstances. And of course, not to the degree of causing scaring (less I be hauled to jail)!
I don't think you can have ONE rule of the thumb of disciplining for ALL occasions! Apart from willful disobedience, I presume that reasoning is the best course of action.
I will not tag anyone .... but please let me know if you write about it!