This article belongs to Psych In The City column.

…That is the question. A recent article released in Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, has recently released a study that suggest that spanking a child can lead to mental illness when that child reaches adulthood. The study went so far as to suggest the specific mental illnesses that might be attributed to spanking, depression, anxiety and drug and alcohol abuse just to name a few. I remember growing up and hearing people parents saying "I'll spank you so hard you won't be able to sit down for a week", so with this new study will parents now have to say "I'll spank you so hard you'll grow up to be a heroine addict?" Now I'm not going to say that this study should or shouldn't be taken seriously, with any study that comes out and is widely publicized by the media, the reader must be aware of any sensationalization or hype by the media and how they are exploiting the results of the study.

I'm a firm believer of not spanking children, I was raised in a household where I didn't receive spankings and I like to think I turned out just fine. But I will say this study needs to be examined a little closer before parent advocate groups start to use this as a basis for their no spanking stance. If you were to do a comparison study of children who were raised up in households were they weren't spanked as children, is that saying that these children were less likely to develop a mental illness. Who's actually to say that timeout or some form of punishment such as no television or not being able to hangout with friends will not lead to your child developing some form of depression as an adult. How about we allow parents to raise their children the best way they see fit but also provide parenting tools to help them make appropriate decisions. What is the best way discipline your child? Well being a person who does not have a child, I recognize that it's easy for me to say not to spank your child but I do believe that parents who are fully committed in the well-being of their children will choose the most appropriate way to raise their children, whether its through a slight spank on the hiney or taking away your child's iPad. Besides, parents might want to check their Smartphones, I'm sure there is a virtual app for spanking your child.