Yesterday, if you didn't see it, I was on Good Morning America. Talking about spanking, of all things, in a pre-taped interview.
The interview was with Amy Robach, who asked questions of both me (position: anti-spanking) and fellow Babble writer, Joanna Mazewski (position: pro-spanking).
In the clip aired, it looked like I had remarkably little to say about the topic.
Direct excerpt from piece:
AMY: Is there ever a situation in which you think spanking is appropriate?
ME: No……………………. no.
I swear, I put together a few fully formed sentences as well. I prefer to think I spoke so little on camera because Joanna's position was much more newsworthy, as opposed to me sounding like a bumbling idiot who needed to be kept off the air.
On Babble today, I am fully explaining my position on spanking— trying my best not to come off as completely self-righteous and more like someone who just follows whatever my sister (the one with the PHD in school psychology) tells me to do.
But I thought you all might like to know a few of the more interesting details from my first TV appearance— things that have absolutely nothing to do with the controversial topic at hand.
1. As you all know, I am five months pregnant. I will blame that for my bloated appearance. My friends all said I looked great, so either they are all lying or I look way worse in real life than I think.
2. Joanna's kids were there throughout the interview but Mazzy didn't come until later so they could film us playing in the park. The whole time we were doing the interview portion, I kept thinking— thank god Mazzy isn't here because there is no way she would sit as quietly and well-behaved as Joanna's children (aged 2 and 4) and then GMA could totally spin the story like— look how the spanked children are so polite and the non-spanked child is running around like a chicken on crack!
3. The park had outdoor fountains situated right next to the jungle gym, which made everything wet and slippery. Mazzy climbed up and went to walk across a linked wooden bridge, but got scared and asked for help. I climbed up five months pregnant, wearing platform shoes, and carrying both my purse and diaper bag. I held her hand, took one step onto the bridge and immediately wiped out flat on my back. Like I had stepped on a banana peel in a cartoon. Camera fully on me the entire time. I made the GMA producer swear the fall wouldn't appear on television but I can bet money it was played on slo-mo back in the editing room a few thousand times. I am now praying that it doesn't wind up on one of those news blooper reels on YouTube.
4. At the end of the park bit, Amy Robach's husband met us there with their kids. I recognized him from somewhere. Did I go to college with him? Did I work with him? NO!!!!!!!! It was Andrew Shue! Billy from Melrose Place!
Unless you read my post on Babble: "To Spank or Not to Spank, One Mom's Opinion".
On a totally separate note, my supposedly horrible view of the fireworks from my father's apartment was actually a ton better than I expected.
Here's a shot:
I hope everyone kept their fingers on the fourth.
Have a good weekend!
— Mommy Shorts
Billy from Melrose Place? NO WAAAY!
I can’t watch the video 🙁 But I’m sure you’re gorgeous!
I have the video of the piece in my cue to read. Can’t wait to see it, and I’ll be scouring youtube for the outtakes. 😉
Sorry, I cracked up a little when I saw and heard your first “no….no” response. It was pretty un-eventful response. However, I’d probably do worse. I’m so camera shy and have public speaking fears. Plus, interviewers should know better and never ask YES/NO questions. Anyways, awesome fireworks photo! Great capture of all 4 bursts! And seeing your “Mazzy’s library” widget on the side reminds me that I bought the “For a Day” book because of your rec, and my son LOVES it. And while on Amazon, that owl sleep book popped up, and it’s so beautiful!
I sometimes loathe living in another country. Good Morning America allowed me to watch a Citibank commercial but not your interview. I’m sure it was great though!
Thank you for admitting to laughing at me! I have no idea why they used the “No…no” thing. We spoke for over an hour and there was tons of stuff they could have used where I ACTUALLY SAID SOMETHING.
The fireworks are beautiful, I haven’t watched but sure you looked great (even ass over teakettle), and did you say something about Andrew Shue being into spanking?
Beautiful pic of the fireworks!
And I’m in oblivion, as I only just the other day saw you say something about being pregnant. So I either already said congrats and forgot – or I never knew, so Congrats!
Off to try to find that interview! 😉
Man, I thought I was gonna see a playground wipe out video! That being said, you don’t even look pregnant, or chubby. I’m disappointed. You look fantastic. And I agree with you, “no…no.” I thought the other mom came across a little harsh when she said kids should live in fear of their parents. And maybe it was edited out, but I didn’t hear you saying you wanted to be your kid’s friend, not her parent, so that kind of came out of nowhere, Other Mom Whose Name I’m Not Gonna Bother To Look Up.
At least you’re not a “closet spanker”. Nice attempt at a controversial term, ABC.
That first “no……no” was painfully funny to watch… 🙂 But THANK GOODNESS they picked another clip where you had more to say and sounded articulate and intelligent at the end of the interview. Way to end on a good note! You and Mazzy both looked lovely, btw. 🙂
“Like a chicken on crack” Yup, that’s about how my kids are on a regular basis. And I TRY not to spank unless they do something epically dangerous like run in the street…I want them to remember to never ever ever do that again. Worked with the big one, not with the littler one…oh well…
And your fireworks were lovely….I toasted my thumb a little, but we still had fun (they are semi legal here in PA)
You did great. Despite the fact that they make you say “No…no” and then worsen things with the interviewer saying “To that point…”
But your soundbyte later was fantastic, and you have that gentle hair-out-of-face move down pat. I always try to do that and end up poking myself in the eye.
Very impressed (seriously). Also, I thought you said you had a big pregnancy chest. Obviously I need to send you some photos from this end. (Misconstrue that as you will.)
I have to confess to giggling when I watched the clip, and saw the “No…… no”. Totally not your fault though! I blame the editing. How frustrating for you that they used so little of what you actually said.
You looked lovely, by the way.
I think you did wonderfully! And, good for you for sticking to your beliefs (even with the “No…..no.”). You know they edited down the other amazingly awesome stuff you said because they were trying to stir up the spankers (closet spankers and all) with the statistics and stuff the nice soft-spoken doctor person shared….
I think a lot of us copy our own parents’ styles. That has certainly been my experience.
My mother RARELY spanked us. I say rarely because, as a rule she really never spanked. Spanking was the exception and she only ever did it when we were under 5, if we did something that put us in great danger.
As a mom myself, I always ask my own mom for advice. Her point on spanking is simply to make a child understand the difference between things they aren’t allowed to do for whatever reason, and things that are extremely dangerous. She wanted us to connect things like running in the street to pain, because getting hit by a car will put you in a world of pain.
Her point always came across loud and clear, and I can only remember a handful of times any of us ever got spanked, because if she spanked us, we KNEW not to ever do that again. I have spanked Caitlyn exactly twice, and both were times she ran into the street. Seeing her cry for 2 minutes because she had to suffer the indignity of a spanking was much easier to take than picturing her getting mowed down by a car because I didn’t make the punishment severe enough to make sure she never did that again (and I use the word severe not because I spanked her hard. Her feelings were hurt more than her butt. It’s just obviously more severe than time out, which is our usual go-to punishment).
I can totally respect that you never spank. I personally felt like the biggest asshole in the world those two times I spanked Caitlyn. But it’s how my mom always did it and it always made an impact. I never feared my mom, I simply came to understand that, for her to react that way, I had to have really done something wrong.
I’m laughing so hard at my desk right now! That is totally something I would do!! Never mind you navigated the park with purse diaper bag and rescued Mazy…nope, you slipped and fell…on camera…damn!
While a agree with Joanna, I am a spanker, I think you came across very intelligent in your position. I didn’t even notice the “No…no” the first time around and had to re-watch the video to see what you were referring to. Everyone has different views on how to do life! I respect when someone has a well thought plan of action that differs from mine. As long as we have our children’s best interest at heart, who can really say which way is better than any other?!?
I think you probably did MUCH better than I would have which when confronted with an “is it EVER OK to spank?” I would have probably responded (with a d’uh look): “Of course! When it is your spouse and after having read 50 Shades of Grey!!!” hahahahaha
And in all seriousness my take? (not that anyone cares but they should because CLEARLY I am the Best Mom Ever – at least that’s what my kids tell me … ha): I completely disagree with spanking especially as a chosen form of discipline. As it is just reinforcing that it is OK to hit when someone is clearly dominant the person they are hitting. And I say that having spanked both of my kids, the first one unplanned the second one deliberately. Not times I am proud of, not things I would advocate doing, no need for the full write up of what got me to that moment in both cases, but more importantly – I felt terrible, I tried hard to prevent it and to not repeat it, and I know I never hit hard enough to truly hurt, and I have an incredibly close bond with both my kids. We don’t always do things we are proud of, and we don’t always live our lives as “perfect” parents – actually none of us do. So do not advocate for violence or physical discipline but cut some slack to the people who really are not in the habit of beating their kids – or at least first educate yourself as to what TRUE child abuse is before judging spankers too harshly. And I say this NOT criticizing anyone who hasn’t spanked – in the face of toddlers, you have far more discipline and control than I clearly do and I bow to your self-control. I also am NOT criticizing those who made a clear judgement in resorting to spanking, thought it through, did not do it in anger but honestly thought was needed (e.g. for safety like street-darting children), and I am NOT criticizing those who spanked out of impulse because had reached “that point” in parenting as it takes a LOT of self-control to not reach that point and I am sure more of us can relate than not.
I am so sorry you fel..
I, too, am full on anti spanking. I was spanked as a kid and I remember the bad feelings that came from it.
NOT GOOD THOUGHTS toward my mother, that’s for sure.
I have never spanked, and I have 3 of the most polite children you’d meet.
if it makes you feel any better, my three year old walked by when you and Joanna were talking and I paused it because, seriously those spanking clips are freaky. He said, “you want to know who my favorite girl is? the red one, um, the one in the red.” He smiled his little, “I like her” smile. SO, you’re a hit with the preschool set!
he probably could sense your gentle, non spanking spirit. hehhe