The new research is highlighting another reason why spanking can be damaging to children.
The debate around corporal punishment still lingers today, despite mounting proof that it has a negative impact on children’s mental health.
However, new research suggests that some effects might not be noticed until years later.
The study conducted by University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston found that children who were spanked by their parents as children were more likely to have violent tendencies towards their future partners.
The research questioned 700 people in their late teens and early twenties who had been a part of the study since they were in secondary school.
The results found that 19 percent of those asked admitted to perpetrating some form of dating violence.
Of those, 69 percent said that they had experienced corporal punishment as a child.
“The current study adds to the knowledge by showing that being physically punished as a child is linked to perpetrating dating violence as a teen and young adult,” senior study author Dr Jeff Temple said of the findings.
“While we can’t say that spanking causes later violence, it follows that if a kid learns that physical punishment is a way to solve a conflict, he/she may carry that over into conflicts with later intimate partners.”
Addressing the argument that many use, Dr Temple said that the lack of benefits to spanking should be enough reason not to do it.
“Many people will say, ‘I was spanked, and I turned out just fine.’
“That may be true, but some people were spanked and did not turn out fine (just as some people choose to not wear seat belts and are fine).
“We should not take the risk, especially when there are zero benefits to spanking.”