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Domestic Discipline

Strapped in front of Everyone

My parents met while my father was in the army and stationed in Germany. I was born in the US but by the time I was in 5th grade, my parents separated. Things got hectic, and my mother and I moved back to Germany and moved in with her brother.

It was a big old house near Berlin and I hated it. I spoke no German and none of my mother’s family spoke English. My uncle Max and his wife Greta had three children, all older than me – two girls and a boy, who was the oldest.

It wasn’t long before I found out how harsh and mean these people were. I didn’t understand a word they said at the beginning but they would scream at their offspring and thrash them unmercifully. My Aunt Greta would spank them not only in front of each other but also in front of other family members, including me.

Aunt Greta used a strap that I later found out was a razor strop from my uncle’s barbershop. The first few times they were punished, mother made me leave the room and I only heard their cries. My uncle would strap them sometimes but it was mostly my aunt who beat them.

My mother worked most days and finally one day when she was out my aunt spanked her son in front of me and one of the girls. I had never witnessed corporal punishment before.

I don’t recall what my cousin was being punished for, but Aunt Greta made him bend over the kitchen table and beat him with a strap.

It wasn’t like this stuff happened all the time, but as time went on I not only saw my male cousin beaten again but also the two girls. Both my aunt and uncle would beat them and didn’t seem to care who witnessed it.

The girls were also forced to sit in the chair after their punishments.

My mother did spank me sometimes over the years but never subjected me to that type of humiliation. My aunt and uncle never beat me but had no qualms about me seeing them use the strap for chastisements

The strangest thing was how brutally they were beaten. It had to be embarrassing for them, knowing I was watching, as they were reduced to tears. Even my boy cousin, who was older was completely dominated by his parents.

My mother and I lived there for two years until we got our own apartment. During that time, other family members witnessed my cousins being beaten a number of times. It didn’t matter if other family members were there, male or female.

Of course, my mother also saw this happen. I gather she didn’t approve of it but there was little she could do. Actually, my mother and aunt didn’t get along very well and I think that is why we moved when we did.

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