Most French children are used to the odd spank from their parents, and many think there is nothing wrong with that, a new survey suggests. An Internet poll by the Paris-based Union of Families in Europe (UFE), an organisation which defends families' rights in France, shows that 65 per cent of children in France think la fessee — French for a smack on the bottom — is a normal part of their upbringing, with more than half thinking they de serve it.
Spanking is certainly central in a French education if the survey is anything to go by. More than 95 per cent of the 2,000 grandparents, parents, and children polled said they had been spanked at some point in their lives.
A nationwide poll carried out nearly 10 years ago revealed that more than 85 per cent of French parents spanked their children compared with 87 per cent in the new survey. While spanking may still be popular in France, other forms of punishment, such as a slap on the cheek or a kick are rarely used and are considered dangerous by many parents, the survey showed.