My grandma was a mean old lady. She'd make us go get our own stick and then she'd whip us with it. She beat the crap out of me once, for no good reason. It was absolutely abuse and I'll never forgive her for it.
On the other hand, she and Grandpa provided me with the only real home I had as a child. Most of the time, she was a pretty good grandma, not a perfect person, but she was overburdened. Long story.
I spanked Rowan yesterday. She keeps getting in all the mailboxes in my neighborhood. She opened a neighbor's mail one day and I found it in the yard. She opens my mail.
Yesterday I was out talking to a neighbor and I saw her head toward the mail boxes. Again! I yelled, "Rowan, you stay out of those mailboxes."
She ignored me and kept going.
I yelled again, "Don't you touch those mailboxes."
"Rowan, do NOT open that mailbox."
She did it. She opened the mailbox.
I lost it. I grabbed her arm, turned her around, and I smacked her a good one on her bottom. Just once, but I made sure it stung.
She didn't cry, she didn't seem upset, she got back on her bike and I said, "now you trade off with Janey in a minute" and she said, "okay, Grams."
I've spanked her once before, when she was three and wouldn't stay out of the wood stove. I hit her on her diaper then, softly, she was insulted, but she didn't cry. She never got in the stove again.
Last night, Bill and I were watching CSI and one of the stars made the comment (after a bunch of teenagers had gotten picked up for murders and beatings) "they need a Grandma to whup their butts." And Bill and I laughed and said, "Rowan's covered with that."
I'm all for corporal punishment in cases like this. A swat works for Rowan. Max is a different story. He takes it personal and acts out worse. We have to reason with him, but I also have to be consistent and follow up. I've never spanked any of my other grandchildren and I hope I never have to.
Of course, I cuddle them constantly. I think it balances out.