I grew up in the 1970s and early 1980s in northern England, in a predominantly working class city. My father worked on the docks and my mother essentially raised us.
I was the middle of three girls – my elder sister, Vanessa, is two years my senior, while Zoe is two years younger than me. Spanking was the normal form of punishment for children back then, and both my siblings and I were often punished in front of one another for various reasons.
It was always Mum who delivered the spankings – there was never any of this ‘wait ’till your father gets home’ nonsense. Even if Dad was home, he firmly believed that disciplining the children was mothers’ work. Most of these spankings were spontaneous, and usually just involved Mum’s hand.
The worst spanking I ever received was when I was about 13. A friend and I had been caught shoplifting make-up from a very well established store in the town centre. We were detained in the manager’s office and our parents were called.
My own mum arrived first. She was obviously livid and did something she had never done before – she slapped my face in front of both the manager and my friend. Mum also assured the manager that I would be getting a good hiding when I got home, and on that basis the manager agreed not to pursue the matter any further.
When we got home, I was told to go straight up to the bedroom I shared with my younger sister – Mum said she would be up in a few minutes to deal with me. I remember it was a Saturday, as my Dad was in and watching Grandstand [a sports round-up television programme on the BBC – Ed]. Dad didn’t say anything to me but his face registered extreme disappointment in my behaviour.
After a few minutes, Mum came in to see me. She told me to bare my bum and kneel over on the bed. I was mortified by this order and begged Mum to at least let me keep my knickers on – but she would have none of it.
Once I was in position, she began slapping my bum as hard as she could – the spanking really stung and seemed to last forever. It was certainly a prolonged punishment, and I remember gritting my teeth and squeezing a pillow whilst crying my eyes out.
When it was finally over, I was told I was grounded for a month with no pocket money. Furthermore, Mum told me, if I was ever caught stealing again, she would use a belt on my bare bottom.
This wasn’t the last time I was spanked, but it was certainly the most memorable.