Eva Mendes sparks debate after comparing spanking children to domestic violence

Chelsea Ritschel
·3-min read
Eva Mendes sparks debate about spanking as a punishment for children (Getty Images)
Eva Mendes sparks debate about spanking as a punishment for children (Getty Images)

Eva Mendes has sparked a debate on social media after revealing her thoughts on parents spanking children as punishment.

The actress shared her opinion on the topic of spanking, which she likened to domestic violence in a marriage, on Instagram, where she shared a photo of herself along with the parenting quote.

In the first photo, Mendes, who shares daughters Esmeralda Amada, six, and Amada Lee, four, with Ryan Gosling, can be seen posing in a Versace dress, while the second photo shows a quote that reads: “Spanking does for a child’s development what hitting a spouse does for a marriage.”

In the caption, the mother-of-two wrote: “I’m often asked what my favourite red carpet dress is. This @Versace is definitely up there. I’m not often asked what my favourite parenting quote is, but I’ll post it anyway.”

While many of Mendes’s followers agreed with her in the comments, the statement also prompted some to share their support for spanking, with one person writing: “I don’t know. I was spanked and now I’m a respectful adult. And believe me, I deserved those whoopings. I was a brat.”

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The comment prompted a response from the Hitch star, who replied: “Thank you for your comment. So happy to agree to disagree. Want this page to offer that in a loving way.”

In the comment, the actress also acknowledged that each parent has their own parenting style and that she has “no idea what I’m doing most of the time”.

“This didn’t come with a manual,” she continued, adding: “So, when there’s something that resonates with me, I pass it on. Lotsa love.”

Instagram / Eva Mendes
Instagram / Eva Mendes

Another of Mendes’s followers also shared their support for the other side of the argument, adding that they “completely disagree” with the star’s comparison on the basis that they raised “five respectful loving kind kids that were a joy to be around”.

“The goal in raising kids is not to have to spank, but it’s correcting before they can reason behaviour out with you,” they wrote. “Completely different than hitting someone. That’s not correcting behaviour.”

In response to the comment, Mendes said that she “totally respects” the parent before thanking them for the “respectful comment”.

“So nice to disagree with respect,” she continued. “I found the quote powerful and wanted to pass it on. Lotsa love to you and yours.”

Instagram / Eva Mendes
Instagram / Eva Mendes

In the comments, the 47-year-old also took the opportunity to express her happiness at being “able to talk about alternative disciplines now,” as she told one of her followers that that was “not an option” when she was a child.

Mendes previously opened up about parenting her two daughters in an interview with People last year, during which she revealed that she takes on a more laid-back approach to motherhood.

Explaining that the children have already “their own women already” and it’s “so beautiful to watch,” Mendes said she feels like her job is to watch as the couple’s daughters become who they were meant to be.

“To protect them, of course, but to just let them be what they want to be,” she said, adding: “I try not to give my opinion too much on what they like.”

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