I had a different upbringing. I'm of the school of thought that we all get bruises, we all get hurt and that one of the most important lessons to pass on to the next generation is that pain is temporary and often necessary.
We all did, but it isn't usually the adult inflicting them. Falling off your bike and finding that it hurts is not the same thing as the child's guardian pushing them off the bike and saying "see how much that hurt? Don't fall off".
Like I said, I've raised several kids. 6 total. Day and night. Diapers and bottles. Schoolwork and play. Judge me if you like. I sincerely doubt you have the experience with as many children living in your home, under your care.
I generally don't think spanking is that effective, but I recognize that it's common practice for most parents. And if it didn't leave a bruise, it wasn't much of a spanking, was it?
Wow. Just wow. I can't even respond to that as I'd get banned.
But there are different degrees of "bruising" as well. Which is what I keep going back to. If it appeared abusive, I don't think the OP would have used the term "detectable". It would have been "terrible" or "big" or "dark" or "nasty" or any other of a thousand words that would describe something as being abusive. Maybe I'm wrong, I've certainly left it open for me to be so. The OP knows this situation better than I do, I'm just reading his story as he writes it on the interwebs.
I will say I find it pitiable that so many would classify a "detectable bruise" as abuse. It makes light of something very grave. I've been abused, and I'll tell you from experience this is a complete overstatement of the term. What entitled, effortless, fragile lives you must have lived to jump to such conclusions.
The fact that one person gets punched and the other beaten by a baseball bat doesn't make the punch irrelevant, they are both assault.
This is a 4yo girl we're talking about, she doesn't need to be told at this age to tough it out, she needs to be protected from an adult with a proven
history of violence and lack of control.