I am on holidays in Italy. One more week till we return and already I had to endure comments and sighs from my mother on our educative methods with Oliver (having him to do 3 minutes time out if he misbehaves). On the other side my father is getting on my nerves as he takes the liberty of correcting Oliver on hideous things (which way you are supposed to roll up the spaghetti on the fork, pretending we don't throw the ball him while he tries to hit it with a racked because "that way he will never learn" etc).
This evening was one of those evening that Oliver was throwing a tantrum as he didn't want to do time out which was given to him after he had pushed his cousin (same age as Martina) for no reason whatsoever. Imagine one of those tantrums you can hear from two streets down. Mike was standing his ground and kept pausing the timer every time he wasn't sitting in the chair. My mother was behaving like we were torturing him. To which I said "what do you think we should be doing? Give in any time he says no?" and she answered "Certainly you have never been given such punishments, he doesn't even know why he is punished." I said "because when I was misbehaving I was getting a slap from dad, without that much talking". She looked bewildered and said in all my life I only got a slap on the bum and one on the face.
Now, yes I agree, I have not been beaten with a belt or anything like it, it's not like I was getting slapped every day, but I certainly got my fair share of slaps which I lived as a true violence as I wrote about a while back. I apparently pointed out the one slap she remembered when I was about 16 at friends' house and let her sit a bit on the fact that such a thing would not be normal if someone doesn't do it on other occasions too. She went so far to ask my sister who was sitting at the table (my father was out) if she remembered me being physically punished, and she just didn't answer. She always hated being put in the middle and so took no side. My mother said "we'll ask dad when he comes back". To which I said "whatever". She didn't say anything to him when he returned but they are out now, I'm sure for a chat. Oh how much I hate this. I know he will also not remember, I know he will want to convince me that nothing like I remember ever happened. What can I tell you, I know what matters is how I perceived my childhood, at least this is what I have been told by more than one psychologist.