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Topic : 12/30 Extreme Discipline?

Number of Replies: 237
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Created on : Friday, October 24, 2008, 02:58:01 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
(Original Air Date: 10/31/08) Grounding for two months, withholding dinner, making a child stand at attention for hours or collect rocks in the hot sun … is this basic discipline, or is it too extreme? Trisha fears her husband, Rafael, is destroying their 13-year-old daughter with punishments that are too severe. Rafael says his wife forces him to be “the hammer” because she’s too lenient. Their opposing views on child discipline are putting a strain on their marriage, but what is it doing to their daughter? Hear her heartbreaking diary entries. Plus, what happened in this household that’s been swept under the carpet for far too long? Dr. Phil has a heart-to-heart chat with the teen. Have you ever wondered if your discipline tactics will have a lifelong effect on your child? Are you inadvertently crossing the line into abuse? Grade your own parenting skills with today’s show. Plus, learn discipline guidelines that will keep your children healthy and thriving. Talk about the show here.

Find out what happened on the show.

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October 31, 2008, 1:00 pm CDT


OMG!! How can that mother sit there and listen to this and stay totally EMOTIONLESS?? I am crying as my heart is breaking for this child!!! I pray just as much focus goes out to the mom as the girl...i am also praying that the dad will turn into a human being
October 31, 2008, 1:02 pm CDT

he is way to harsh, and this hurts for a lifetime, not just a few minutes.

She feel things are just fine for her. An abuser will hit children and not touch his wife. That was what my farther did. Being the oldest child and female, I caught the worst of it.. My brother because he was male could do little wrong, and my sister was his favorite. And it was ok for him to beat us black and blue with a belt.. at this girls age i was looking into meditations to place my self in another place to not feel the pain of the beatings. He would beat us untill we screamed. it would piss him off so badly when i would not scream in pain that he would beat me harder.. untill i got so tired of waisting the time being beaten. And my mother was a soical worker.. seeing kids being beaten with electric cords on a regular basis, she did not feel like he was being abuseive at all compaired to what happend to the worst of her cases.. And i do think he enjoyed it.. beating us so we would not be like the kids he was teaching.. he had a class room of the worst highschool kids. there was no soft place for me.. the beatings continued for my brother and myself untill we turned 18. And we had told him that if he ever touched us again or our sister, we would press charges. And we were on restriction so often that it did not matter. restriction is not effective if the only place you go once a week with mom to the grocery store or the library. And with my father it was one child one week and another the next. We would go ahead and misbehave to get the beating overwith so the house would be quiet and it would not escalate to an even worse beating.. I use to find out from the teachers when a teachers meeting would be, because that would be  the most likely time to get beaten, right after the teachers meeting. And we were isolated from other kids in the neighborhood. And my sister refuses to remember my father that way. I remember sticking up for her when he beat her for not helping unload the car after a trip.. she was so sick . And he took it as a form of defiance when she went into the house to go use the bathroom to be sick instead of helping unload the car. And when i told him she was sick he did not apologize to her at all, and i got restriction instead of a beating that time. And my brother and sister took it as permission for them to treat me like trash, ignore me , riducle me and incourage others at school to do so also.. And that it was ok for my brother to sexual harrass me. my brother found his b&d porno stories and took that as permission that it was ok for him to try and get sex from me or my sister. And my sister refuseses to acknowledge it went on. She wants to wipe the slate clean like it never happend.. And i hate to say it.. but i was happy when there was verification from a child that grew up in the neighborhood that we were isolated from the other kids. There was no place for refuge except for music or my books.  and the one thing dr phill did  mention likely  was that she would be looking for relationships with the wrong people. what he did not say was that she would be more likely to become involved in bondage and dicipline. i am now 51,all ways had a weight problem,  never married, got out of the bondage game. it affects you for the rest of your life..

And relationships are not good, you find it very hard to get involved with someone that would treat you like you are a real person that deserved to be treated right.


October 31, 2008, 1:26 pm CDT

How can a mother let her husband do this??

I don't understand how this poor girls mother hasn't stopped the abuse long before now.  I feel she is guilty too, just to a lesser degree.of the abuse this poor girl has endured.  How could they have not gone to the police to report the sexual abuse?? it's almost like this poor girl is reliving it all over again, hasn't she been thru enough?

I don't care if Raphael was raised at a boarding school, he's a 40 plus year old man now and he knows how to treat people.  I wonder if he treats his co workers and friends like this too???  He demands respect from his children, well, he should realize that you only get respect when you give respect.

I hope this family can heal and that this poor girl will be able to get the help she needs.  All men are not like this but until she heals this is all she will know.

October 31, 2008, 1:48 pm CDT

We're making it popular to be weak parents

I don't know about any of you, but I remember being an angry teenager. I feel that what Rafael is doing is not hurting a thing. Children should listen to their parents and do as they say. There should be a standard that they have to live up to. When the child does not meet that standard, they should have to face consequences. I would rather either of my children to stand at attention for 2 hours or be grounded for 6 weeks than have them smacked around. Obviously, Rafael is a strict father, but he IS NOT abusive in any way shape or form. OF COURSE his daughter does not like it!!!! She is a teenager and she'll say anything to get her father into trouble! When she is an adult, she will appreciate how her father taught her respect and discipline without the use of his open or closed fist. Picking up rocks and putting them into a pail for 4 hours is not a harsh discipline. Now, if the children were outside in the bitter cold with no shoes on, this would be abuse, but they weren't. His form of discipline is obviously working somehow, because his children respect him enough to follow through with the punishments he dishes out. He might not get ALL of the results he was looking for, but his children DO have respect for him without the threat of physical punishment. I support what Rafael is doing and I think all of us as parents need to take this show as a sign that our society is becoming weak, undisciplined, and dangerous. If we can't discipline our children the way we want--without physically hurting them--then when we get older and leave the country to them to run, what is going to happen? The United States will no longer be a strong country.
October 31, 2008, 1:51 pm CDT

speaking from experience

Yes, it is impossible to live a normal life when you come from a home like that.  I have done fairly well, outwardly.  The pain that is inside never completely disappears.  The abuse that I suffered affected every relationship I had with men.  It left me with constant questions about my own self worth.  BUT, I got off much easier than my brother.  The anger that filled him exploded once my parents were gone, causing him to lose every relationship he had, to lose his profession, to bring him up on charges... in short, to destroy his life. 


This child is 13.  Many of her feelings about herself are already formed.  I pray that she will get enough help to give her a good direction in her life.  I remember the age of 13 in my own life.  I know how much she suffers.  It is hard to believe that parents can do this to their children and to think that they are being good parents.  I can tell you this:  The first time that I truly realized how horrible it all had been was when I held my own baby in my arms and said out loud, "How could they do that to me.. to their own child?"  I made up my mind at that moment that if I did nothing else in my life, this child of mine would know for sure that he was/is very loved... and that he would always feel good about himself.


And I suceeded.

October 31, 2008, 2:08 pm CDT

Extreme Discipline


This couple is so typical of child abusers.  They really do not see that what they are doing is CHILD ABUSE. When one is doing it they other is watching. I think that is why the mother did not want him labeled a monster or that a label of child abuse be attributed to them.


I worked with abusive families for about 30 years and 99% reported that they had wonderful childhoods. After getting some information they realized they had been abused as children themselves. Unfortunately most people think of child abuse that is reported in the media: child death, baby shaking, burns, beating that caused hospitalization etc. 


Emotional abuse is much worse it goes from name calling to all kinds of other things. And with neglect and psychical.sexual abuse. emotional abuse is always there  It the results last for a lifetime, even if you think that it just normal.


The one thing this fellow did not do was hit, he found much more creative ways to "discipline".  When I worked with parents that insisted on spanking, they called it discipline.  When I suggested that if they had to spank, they did not do it when they were angry.  They would almost always come back with "then it doesn't do any good". I would reply " good, for who".  The first hit may be for the child, all the rest are for you.


Some of the other creative things would be putting hot pepper sauce on thumbs to stop thumb sucking.

Putting a child in "time out" for hours. Making them stand in "time out" with their toes and noses on the wall for an hour.  Making children sit in a freezing cold bath water or scalding hot water. For children not eating supper, the child sat at the table until bedtime or a couple of hours or until they ate the food. If they did not eat the food they had it sitting before them for breakfast. Most people reporting these "disciplines" had convinced themselves that it was OK.


T hope that some parents will watch this program and realize that perhaps some of the things they are doing for good reasons are not the best thing to do  All of these parents love their kids and most are not bad people.


 Time out should be 1 minute for each year of age.  I would ask parents to sit facing a wall with nothing to do for 3 minutes.  They always reported that they did not realize how long 3 minutes is. Try it! It is an eye opener



October 31, 2008, 2:15 pm CDT

No Problem

I have no issue with the manner that he disciplined. If you had read my diary

when I was a child it would be very similar to hers. My parents spanked twice

with a slipper and time out. If they had been that strict things would have been a

lot better. I graduated from high school with honors and have just a little more to go on

my college degree. My sibling has been in and out of jail and is very abusive to

me and my parents. I mean he put his second grade teacher in the hospital. My Mom

was desperate she went to doctors, teacher, and everyone and they told her that he was

being a kid ( of course at one point the schools just kicked him out.)

we finally found someone that would give us an idea of what is wrong ADHD

of course I will be giving my age but this was when it was first discovered. I mean one of the

physiologists recommended we tie him up. You wont believe how many times my mother

cried herself to sleep over this she went to so many different people asking for help.

my brother just ended up falling through the cracks I think that if my parents had employed this type

Of discipline we would have had a more peaceful life and my brother would be in a different place. And

please do not think at all I am blaming my parents because I am not I am blaming the system that resticts our parents and gives to many rights to our children.  The parents are blamed to much in my opinon.

Have a great day

October 31, 2008, 2:15 pm CDT

I was her

I was this child when I was younger. I am 38 years of age and was raised by my grandmother. My Grandmother was very abusive to me and her own children with constant beatings. Days of bruises, nightmares, always in fear and never wanting to go home. I did everything I could to be at school as much as possible. She allowed her son to sexually abuse me and I felt like the lowest person. When I told her she did nothing and allowed him to continue to be around me alone. I am glad that there is a Dr. Phil today, someone who will speak out and let people know that this type of treatment of children is not acceptable. I remember writing letters and diaries wishing to die and feeling so alone. Because my aunts and uncles were much older than me,  many times I felt that there was no one to go to.  When I finally told my Aunt, it was she that spoke up for me and made sure everyone know when he was doing to me and made it stop. Many times my Aunt saved me from pain and torture from my grandmother. Later as a teen, a friend of the family reached out to me and helped  me to heal and to realize that education was my ticket to get away. I did just that and I have never returned to that house to live again.

What is important to note is that children remember. When abusive parents get older, their children  will not be there for them. My Grandmother is close to 80 years old and I and her other children rarely visit her. No one really wants to be around her, and she doesn't understand why we don't want to visit. I visit rarely but, for short periods only. Children may be smaller but they will remember. I have decided to  better myself, and to never be the person that raised me. I am better than that, and I hope that when this child grows up, I hope that she can heal and be better than the man that raised her. Chances are unless he really changes, he will end up a lonely old man.
October 31, 2008, 2:24 pm CDT

The dad was awfully suspicious to me....

I was amazed at how calm and nonchillant he was after Dr. Phil read him the letter from his daughter, and even at that he showed no emotion after the conversation of the possibility of her being raped, he still showed no emotion until Dr. Phil went back to talk to his daughter, which left me wondering if he had been the one who molested her due to the lack of intervention on his part and his wifes????
October 31, 2008, 2:24 pm CDT

Child Protection

Everyone needs to know:  Through the Child Protection Act, anyone who knows that a child has been molested, must report it to the authorities.  The school is not the authority.  They can help but the police are the final authorities. The parents, the school or lawyers told in private, all must report any type of child molestion to the police department.   The child comes first. It is the law. I feel this child was let down by everyone around her.
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