Eva Mendes' Stance on Spanking Sparks a Parenting Debate

Eva Mendes sparked a discussion on parenting after she shared her view on spanking children with her fans. In a new Instagram post on Monday, the actress shared her view on spanking, opening up on why she chooses not to spank her two daughters – Esmeralda Amada, 6, and Amada Lee, 4 – that she shares with Ryan Gosling.

While at first glance her Monday post looked like a reflection on one of her walks down the red carpet, with Mendes beginning the caption with, "I'm often asked what my favorite red carpet dress is. This [Versace] is definitely up there," the post turned out to be one about a controversial topic in parenting: spanking. Rounding out her caption, the actress added, "I'm not often asked what my favorite parenting quote is, but I'll post it anyway." Along with the photo of her in the stunning Versace dress, the mom of two shared a quote on the second slide that read, "Spanking does for a child's development what hitting a spouse does for a marriage."

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A post shared by Eva Mendes (@evamendes)

The post immediately sparked a civil discussion on the topic of spanking, with followers weighing in with their own opinions. One person chimed in with, "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." Mendes continued the discussion, responding, "Thank you for your comment. So happy to agree to disagree. Want this page to offer that in a loving way. We all parent our own way and I have no idea what I'm doing most of the time." She added, "This didn't come with a manual… so when there's something that resonates with me, I pass it on. Lotsa love." Another person said they "completely disagree," writing that their "goal in raising kids is not to have to spank, but it's correcting before they can reason behavior out with you." Mendes said, "I totally respect you" and thanked the commenter "for a respectful comment. So nice to disagree with respect. I found the quote powerful and wanted to pass it on."

This was not the first time Mendes has opened up about parenting. Speaking with Access Daily in 2019 about raising children, Mendes said "it's so fun and beautiful and maddening," admitting, "It's so hard, of course. But it's like that feeling of… you end your day, you put them to bed and Ryan and I kind of look at each other like, 'We did it, we did it. We came out relatively unscathed.'"

More recently, Mendes opened up about working moms. While she has taken a step back from acting recently, she told The Sunday Morning Herald in 2020 she was considering getting back to work and went on to praise working moms. She told the outlet, "I applaud and look up to those women who can do it all." Noting that she was "not one" of those moms, she acknowledged, "I realize how fortunate I am that it's even a choice."