Truthful Tuesday: 7 March 2023

Di is our acting host for PCGuyIV’s Truthful Tuesday prompt. Here is what she has to say this week.

Some people believe they have been starved of love and affection as children and are compensating by smothering their own.
I believe discipline and being taught a sense of values and respect is vital as children grow up. I cannot abide spoiled brats who get everything they want when they want it or whinge and whine when they don’t get it.

So my question this week is:
What are your thoughts on the saying  Spare the Rod, Spoil the Child.

I’m going to start off by saying that I have never had children and during my life I’ve rarely had close contacts with children so my opinions are based on my own upbringing.

I completely agree with Di’s comments about spoiled children who expect to get what they want or else. I also get very annoyed by parents who don’t teach their children how to behave in public. Let me give you some examples of things that particularly annoy me.

  • When Naomi and I went on our first cruise there was a family we’d see every night in the dining room at an adjacent table. There were two little girls, I think both were under 8 years old. Most nights one of the adults, usually the father, would take them to the children’s area to play while the adults ate but on a couple of occasions they were at the table. At least they were supposed to be. They were up and down fidgeting the whole time. The staff were very friendly and attentive to their needs but they hardly ate a thing, not even the fancy sundaes they were brought. I can recall Naomi and I at similar ages on the ship coming to Australia. When we were in the public rooms we were expected to eat our food properly and stay at the table. In fact we were taught to ask permission to leave the table even at home.
  • We were at the tulip farm admiring the flowers and there was a little kid there, maybe three or four, who was destroying the flowers near him. His father told him “You are making poor choices.” but made no real effort to stop him. We thought a firm “Don’t touch the flowers.” would have been simpler for a child that age to understand.
  • At the Op Shop where I used to volunteer we had a whole aisle of toys on shelves. Often the young children, pre-schoolers, would play with them while their mothers shopped. I didn’t really like this because things got messed up and sometimes broken. A lot of the mothers would make the child pick the toys up afterwards or would tidy it up themselves but sometimes they wouldn’t and the whole floor would be strewn with toys that we had to pick up and put back on the shelves. Look, I know it was an Op Shop but shouldn’t they have been taught not to touch things that didn’t belong to them? Would they have been allowed to do that in a department store? This was personally annoying to me because I used to clean up the dolls we sold and spend time de-tangling their hair, getting stains off them and finding them something decent to wear. Often after these visits I’d find dolls with messy hair and no clothes.

I am not really blaming the kids so much for this behaviour as the parents who sometimes seem almost afraid to discipline them in case they make a scene.

I think “Spare the rod and spoil the child” is a little harsh though. People my age have spoken about getting hit with belts, sticks or whatever was handy by their parents and I disagree with that. If Naomi or I were naughty as children and didn’t respond to being told off we might get a smack, not a very hard one. In extreme cases a spanking but mum only used her hand and not on bare skin as far as I can remember. She says she only did it to me once, I was very young and I think it was over throwing a tantrum in a shop. I can’t recall the incident myself only what mum told me later. Generally she made it clear to us, as small children, what she expected and taught us to have good manners. We knew that if we wanted a toy we would not get it by whining and carrying on but that if we were good, ate our vegetables, put our toys away etc there was a good chance that the wanted item would one day be ours.

Our Family circa 1964

At school caning, was being phased out by the time I was in primary school. Boys still got the cane, girls didn’t but anyone might get a whack on the hand with a ruler. I disagree with corporal punishment at school. There were some teachers around when I was a child who clearly should not have been teachers as they did not have the patience to deal with kids or maybe they just didn’t like them very much. Remember that in the early 60s we Baby Boomers were still in school. Classes were big. I thought it was normal to have 40 kids in your class. Some teachers loved to teach but some older teachers were still from the “Spare the Rod” school of thought and some younger ones were there because they didn’t do well enough in school to go to university so ended up at Teacher’s College.

I’ll end my little rant by saying that I do believe children should be taught how to behave and to have respect for others and good values. It doesn’t make sense to let them do just as they like when they are little and cute and then blame them for bad behaviour when they get bigger. Entitled children end up as entitled adults and nobody thinks they are cute.



I was born in England in 1957 and lived there until our family came to Australia in 1966. I grew up in Adelaide, South Australia, where I met and married my husband, David. We came together over a mutual love of trains. Both of us worked for the railways for many years, his job was with Australian National Railways, while I spent 12 years working for the STA, later TransAdelaide the Adelaide city transit system. After leaving that job I worked in hospitality until 2008. We moved to Tasmania in 2002 to live in the beautiful Huon Valley. In 2015 David became ill and passed away in October of that year. I currently co-write two blogs on with my sister Naomi. Our doll blog "Dolls, Dolls, Dolls", and "Our Other Blog" which is about everything else but with a focus on photographs and places in Tasmania. In November 2019 I began a new life in the house that Naomi and I intend to make our retirement home at Sisters Beach in Tasmania's northwest. Currently we have five pets between us. Naomi's two dogs Toby and Teddy and cats, Tigerwoods and Panther and my cat Polly. My dog Cindy passed away aged 16 in April 2022.


  1. Great response Vanda. My dad said we were never too old for a clip round the ear if we deserved it, but I cannot remember ever being spanked. I was the one who slapped my sister in a tantrum and scared myself when I realised just how much of a temper I had to lash out like I did.
    My brother was caned at school for knocking a bully to the ground who was picking on younger kids. He didn’t know this bully was a haemophiliac and hence the cane. My grandfather stormed up to the school and told the head that he should be looking at the bully, who thought he was bullet proof because of his condition.
    My discipline for the kids in my care was withdrawal of privileges, being grounded and a loss of pocket money. Trust had to be earned, but they were expected to respect each other, our home, and other people. I always told Partner’s two boys that I would take them anywhere with me, but they only had to let me down once, and that would be it. The youngest pushed his luck, and I kept my word, not taking them anywhere other than school or shopping again. The eldest understood why I had to extend this to them both and didn’t hold it against me.

    Liked by 1 person

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