A brief note to all my friends Thursday, Aug 20 2009 

Dear Friends,

PorträtI have not been active on the internet for quite some time. Still, it seems, my thoughts and even more my stories are still quite popular. That is the reason for this Website, which features my personal blog entries (including those from my now defunct Yahoo360 site). With the help of a trusted friend, Miss Veronica Fletcher, i was able to put up a story blog as well. All my old stories can be found there, and new ones may well appear.

As for myself, rest assured that I am fine. Being a mother for me is fulfillment to the extreme. The girls are almost two years old and to me they are the sweetest children in the world. They, and my beloved husband, make each of my days a happy one.

Yours sincerely,


Happy Birthday! Monday, Oct 15 2007 

I am very proud to announce the birth of my twin daughters
Patrizia Marie *12.10.2007, 23:56
Kristina Sophie *13.10.2007, 0:01

So yes, they are twins, but have different birthdays. What a timing 🙂

Both are healthy and well, as am I. Thanks to everyone who cared!


Stefanie von Platen-Wilhelms

Well, my dear friends, it’s been a while… Monday, May 21 2007 

…and I must say, had I known how much would happen during the last months, I would have told you beforehand that I would not be writing new entries here for some time.

However, I am back now, and I do have time for writing here again.

I am happy to announce that I am in the fourth month of pregnancy. My husband and I are really happy about it. And guess what, it seems that I bear twins. I did not wish to be told what gender they are, so we will see in October, if all goes well.

In the meantime, I have decided, I am going to write a little more on the subject of traditional discipline. I have thought about writing a few texts regarding the use of corporal punishment in my family during the last 100 years, as I feel that I need to delve a little into the lives of my ancestors, now that I am about to begin a new generation of the von Platen family.

I will also try something more interactive later this week, but that will need your participation. You’ll see what I mean when I inform you later.

For now, I wish you all a nice day!


Stefanie von Platen-Wilhelms

Corporal punishment implements: The Ruler Tuesday, Jan 16 2007 

The ruler is a symbol of school discipline in many countries. It is also the first of the implements I am discussing here that is more commonly used on the hands of the culprit thatn on the bottom.

“Stefanie, stand up and hold out your hand”
That short sentence, uttered in french, is part of my own small experience with school corporal punishment. It would be followed by a near total silence in the classroom, my answer “Yes, Miss” in a low voice. And then a number of smacks, wood on a girls palm, and a few gasps after the strokes. “Sit down, let that be a lesson for you.”

I have talked to a lot of people from a variety of mostly european countries, and many of them have experienced something along these lines. The ruler, it seems, was a common implement for quick classroom punishments, mainly used on the pupils hands.

Applied there, the ruler does sting. Not like a hand caning does, but enough to get a point across. Also, the procedure of receiving ones punishment directly in front of your classmates adds up to its effectiveness.

It is interesting that there seem to be a few different traditions of ruler-on-the hands-discipline. Most people I talked with got it on their palms, like I did. But there were also those who remembered getting it over the back of their hands or even their knuckles and fingers.

In traditional school punishment, mostly wooden rulers were used. Plastic rulers produce a quite different, more intense sting, as they are more flexible. They, however, tend to break quite easily, which makes them ill-suited for more than light discipline, in my opinion.

The ruler, of course, also has been used by mothers and fathers on their unruly offspring. And while it has seen use on the hands in families, its main area of usage here was (and probably is) the bottom. A thorough dose of the ruler can be quite painful, though it would never be as effective as a slipper or spoon. A ruler is lightweight, so it does not bruise, it only stings. The only thing that can happen is that the sides of the ruler bite into the skin, which will leave nasty marks.

Overall, rulers seem to be a good tool for lighter forms of discipline, both at home and at schools. If corporal punishment were to return in european countries, I’d hope to see it in use there.

Corporal punishment implements: The Slipper Tuesday, Jan 9 2007 

The Slipper, which I will write about today, is an implement well known for its use in british schools as well as a classic tool for parents worldwide. For an implement with such widespread usage, it may not be surprising to find out that there is no such thing as “the slipper”. They come in different varieties.

The slipper used in schools normally wasn’t what you would call a slipper really, it was a plimsoll. With a sturdy rubber sole, it could make a thorough impression when used on some miscreants backside. A slippering does not leave long-lasting marks like a caning does, but it leaves the culprits bottom hot and sore. As the sole of the plimsoll strikes a wider area of the buttocks (for smaller backsides, it may even hit both buttocks in one stroke), the sting is not originating from a single point of impact, the whole bottom seems to be burning.
A slippering is widely regarded as a lighter punishment than a caning. While this is correct in general, a good dose of the slipper can be quite painful. If the whacks are carried out hard, any pupil will have trouble sitting down afterwards.

At homes, plimsolls are also used,
but more common here is the “real” slipper, the houseshoe. The variety goes from rubber- or plastic soles to slippers made of leather. The slipper is most often used because it – like the spoon we already talked about – is easily available. I know my mother sometimes took hers off while I was already over her lap. Sometimes she took mine as well, if other “helpers” were not easily available…
Most household slippers are not that harsh in effect as a real rubber-soled plimsoll, but they still deliver sound lessons. A misbehaving son or daughter will not quickly forget a thorough dose of the slipper delivered by an upset parent.
The slipper hurts most on a bare or knicker-clad posterior. Thicker clothing removes much of the effect from the whacks.

The slipper, a tool used for both formal and informal cp, will with no doubt remain a favourite of many parents.

Back and married :-) Sunday, Jan 7 2007 

My dear friends,

i am back, just as announced. And I am quite proud to announce that on December 28, I was married to my long-time partner, Mr. Wilhelms.
He and I share our ideas about the importance of traditional discipline and the value corporal punishment still has today. We also both, as modern, open-minded people, embrace traditional and time-honoured values.
This blog, and the ongoing series about corporal punishment implements, will continue. I hope you all had a nice and merry christmas and a happy new year.


Stefanie von Platen-Wilhelms

Going away for christmas Thursday, Dec 21 2006 

My dear Friends,

as I am spending christmas and new years eve with my family, I will now leave for the next weeks. I wish you all a merry christmas and a happy new year.
I will be back the week starting on january 8th.
Stefanie von Platen

P.S.: The current series about c.p. implements is going to be continued then.

Corporal punishment implements: The Wooden Spoon Wednesday, Dec 20 2006 

Today, we come to an implement that unlike those mentioned before was not commonly used as tool for school discipline. It is strict, traditional mothers who have used (and quite probably still use) this tool to administer quite thorouh punishments (often on the spot) to unruly boys and girls: The wooden Spoon.

There is not a kitchen that I know of which has not at least one wooden spoon. They come in various sizes and, so it seems, are not always used for cooking food. As I am told by a lot of people it was and is also used to heat up bottoms.

I did not ever get it with a wooden spoon while growing up, my mother preferred other implements. However my good friend Christina did get the spoon on more than one occaission. Here is what she can say about it:

“My mothers wooden spoon was something to fear. I tell you, she broke quite a few of those on my bottom until quite some time into my teenage years. You were one well-chastised girl after a dose of the spoon, so much for sure.”

The spoon would see its use mainly in quick, on the spot punishments, delivered over the mothers lap, or maybe curbed under her arm.

Christina describes the spoon as a hard implement that, if applied with force, left the bottom well bruised. It hurts even through thicker layers of clothing and can be almost unbearable on a bared backside. “I feared the spoon more than the beltings my father dealt out.” Christina says. “If she gave it to you good, you were sore for days:”

It can be attributed to the quick availability of the wooden spoon that it has become an implement felt and feared by many. In this, it can probably be compared with the hairbrush. Both are also alike in that they are paddle-like implements. In any way, the wooden spoon is almost a symbol for maternal discipline, especially in european countries.

Wooden Spoons still are available at most homes. It can be taken as a fact that its use as a means of correction will not vanish either.

Corporal punishment implements: The Switch Tuesday, Dec 19 2006 

We have already discussed the cane, certainly a very common implement in the UK, europe and probably most of those parts of the world that were once or are still today part of the british commonwealth. What I am going to write about today is the switch. In many ways similiar to the cane, there are yet a few grave differences.

First, it must be said that there is no such thing as “the switch”. Switches come in a wide variety of sizes and material. What they have in common is that they are made out of (or simply are) a branch from a tree.

Willow, Hazel and birch branches seem to have been common in Europe, while I have heard of hickory being used in north america. As for the length and diameter, I’ve seen everything from small and thin switches to long and somewhat thicker branches which can genuinely be called sticks (As was done in my family, the hazel I received was called the Hazel Stick). However, in general switches are not as thick as a standard cane.

Switches are also even more flexible than a typical rattan cane, and the wood is more dense. This has several effects on its use: for example, a switch often is lacking the capacity to penetrate thicker layers of clothing (although one of those heavier switches could). As a switch of the same diameter would be heavier than a cane (rattan is less dense), it would bruise more. However, as most switches are thinner than canes, they are normally of comparable or lesser severity.

Part of the rituals that are associated with the switch is that sometimes the person about to receive it has to cut his or her own switch. Although the hazel stick I received was always already waiting on my fathers desk, i can easily see how this is an effective additional punishment.

The switch, not unlike the birch, was a predecessor of the rattan cane in many european schools. It has also been in use in families, especially in rural areas where trees were of course in abundance. It was (and is) an effective means of discipline.

Corporal punishment implements: The Cane Sunday, Dec 17 2006 

Corporal punishment always comes in various forms. Be it a motherly handspanking, administered knickers-down over her knees while she sits on the side of your bed, a primary-school slippering or ones father really teaching you a lesson with the hazel, knickers down and bent over his cherry-wood desk. This is part one of a series i want to write about the rituals and legends asscociated with some implements commonly used for corporal punishment. We will begin, of course, with the cane.

The cane, being a very traditional and once very common implement for correction, of course comes with a load of special punishment rituals attached. Standing at attention in front of the headmasters desk, being told to bend over or to “touch your toes”. Or holding out your palms for the stinging vicious rattan, while the whole class is watching. To recieve a genuine “six of the best” across a tightly streched pair of uniform knickers. Perhaps having to count out aloud the number of strokes, or having to thank the disciplinarian for your much deserved punishment.

The word “cane” alone (or “Rohrstock”, as it is called in my native german language) evokes a lot of pictures and fantasies. It is almost a synonym for “school corporal punishment”.

I did not get caned growing up, but my brother did. My sister had one taste of it, too, and some friends of mine also did, some even quite regularly.

When I use the cane today, and I only use it for the gravest offences, I relish in the thougt of using such a time-proven device of correction. Even those who have only one single time tasted the bite of the rattan will not ever forget it, nor will they forget the lessons taught with its help.

The cane, even with its current demise in most parts of europe and the UK, does still see widespread use in asia and africa, both in parental and school discipline.

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