BENGALURU: Child psychiatrists in the city are not in favour of corporal punishment. According to them, any child who is physically or verbally abused by parents or children may become insecure, threatened and have low self-esteem and self-confidence in future. Caning does more harm than good.
Children subjected to caning may isolate themselves from society and cannot express themselves freely, say psychiatrists. Becoming an introvert and having trust issues with people are the other common consequences, doctors feel.
“It makes children anxious, nervous and depressed; and it is best to avoid hitting them. Apart from combat in army no person should physically hurt others, least of all children. Good words and reinforcing good behaviour work better. Having a dialogue and discussion is better. While we are so quick to point out bad behaviour, we do not appreciate children enough when they are well dressed, have a good handwriting and show good manners. Putting in a good word is important when it comes to disciplining the child,” says Dr BN Gangadhar, director, NIMHANS.
Dr Satish Ramaiah, psychiatrist, People Tree Hospital, said, “From the teacher’s point of view, it is about their personality. It is a build up of frustration or lack of control over their lives. Their life circumstances also contribute. If the child has any impairment, the teacher needs to have special skill to deal with him/her. When the teacher is unable to do that, he/she may react aggressively.”
As adults, these children may not have stable relationships with anyone, Ramaiah said. With authority figures they will always be under the assumption that they will be abused if they raise their voice, he added.
“They will feel suppressed sometimes leading to psychosis and as a way of coping may get into substance abuse. They themselves may become abusers when they handle people less powerful. If this oppression goes on again and again, the child will have impaired cognitive development and behavioural problems,” Ramaiah said.