How many? Somewhere in the 20% range. How's that for scary?
The objective was not to resolve whether those approaches were morally okay, but simply to gather data to help scientists read how we really are with our kids. They do, however, conclusively prove that negative touch does not improve a situation. Well, duh. Taking a child who is upset and compounding the issue is like driving all the way around the world to get to a street you just passed.
Of the 106 episodes, 24 (or 23 percent) involved negative touch, while another 35 (or 33 percent) involved positive touch. Finally, in 38 percent of cases, the caregiver did not touch the child at all.Male caregivers used touch equally for both boys and girls, but female caregivers were more likely to use negative touch with boys and positive touch with girls. Contrary to stereotypes of harsh disciplinarian fathers, when male caregivers did correct their children by touch, it was more likely to be positive rather than negative.Negative touch was associated with a negative reaction from female children, and researchers saw no evidence that negative touch was more likely to get a child to obey than other methods. When kids were happier, they found, they were more likely to comply. And negative touch did not make kids happier. [10 Scientific Tips for Raising Happy Kids]"If your child is upset and not minding you and you want to discipline them, I would use a positive, gentle touch," Stansbury said. "Our data found that negative touch didn't work."