Adrian Peterson admits he still hits his son with a belt

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In 2014, Adrian Peterson was charged with felony child abuse, entered a plea deal to misdemeanor reckless assault, and was suspended from the NFL for beating his son. In a shocking new interview, Peterson has admitted that he still hits his son with a belt.

“I had to discipline my son and spank him the other day with a belt,” Peterson told Master Tesfatsion of Bleacher Report.

Peterson is no longer on probation for the previous abuse case, but his public admission could draw scrutiny from legal authorities. Different states have different laws about parents physically disciplining their children, and it is unclear from the Bleacher Report article where the incident with the belt took place.

Regardless of any legal issues, Peterson could also now face discipline from the NFL, which made clear when Peterson was suspended in 2014 that his reinstatement was dependent upon his agreeing to go through counseling and be a better father to his children.

“The timing of your potential reinstatement will be based on the results of the counseling and treatment program set forth in this decision,” the league told Peterson in a 2014 letter. “Under this two-step approach, the precise length of the suspension will depend on your actions. We are prepared to put in place a program that can help you to succeed, but no program can succeed without your genuine and continuing engagement. You must commit yourself to your counseling and rehabilitative effort, properly care for your children, and have no further violations of law or league policy.”

If the NFL views Peterson hitting his son with a belt as a failure to “properly care for your children,” he could be suspended regardless of whether he faces criminal charges. The NFL has made it clear with past incidents that players can be disciplined under the personal-conduct policy even if they are not criminally charged.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell also told Peterson in a letter that Goodell found it troubling that, “You have shown no meaningful remorse for your conduct.” That Peterson is now openly talking about hitting his son with a belt again suggests no meaningful remorse. Peterson may again find himself sanctioned for hitting his son.

UPDATE 8:52 p.m. ET: Peterson has responded to the story in a statement from his agent, Ron Slavin.

135 responses to “Adrian Peterson admits he still hits his son with a belt

  1. This guy is Psycho, I know he’s he’s having a good season but get rid of him or blame it on concussions when you apologize…

  2. If he “had” to discipline his son with a belt, I’d be interested in knowing exactly what his son did to get disciplined this way…not that anything would justify it, just curious what it is that is “making him have to” use a belt. Is he swearing? Robbing the liquor store? I guess Adrian is just okay with continuing his methods so that his son can eventually do it to his own kids.

  3. Both my wife and I were hit with belts as children. That was a different era. We also didn’t have fathers who were charged with felony child abuse. A really dumb decision on his part.

  4. I have no doubt AP disciplines his son the same way he was disciplined by his parents…How do you think AP got so tough…? I disagree with some of his methods, but I don’t disagree with using the belt… I too was disciplined by my father with a belt… And I’m glad I went through that…it prepared me for being physically and mentally tough while joining the military at age 17 (with mother’s signature) and going overseas to fight Bush’s war…as a matter of fact, I’ve never met one person who got the belt as a kid and weren’t grateful for it as adults…

  5. Well, he’s toast. Unless the league decides to do one of their goofy investigations that ends up with more holes than swiss cheese… Hmm..now I want a sammich..

  6. Get this dude out of the league & into a prison cell. An occasion spanking ‘may’ not be child abuse, but a foreign object IS. This guy is a joke, isn’t it like 6 kids with 5 different women. Where protection bro, AP is NOT a good parent. He whipped that kid with a switch till is a—- bled. Hope he does rhe same to AP when he’s an old man.

  7. Almost as disturbing? The thousands of people that cheer for him and wear his Jersey. Sickening excuse for a human being

  8. as a matter of fact, I’ve never met one person who got the belt as a kid and weren’t grateful for it as adults…
    ——————————-
    And most of us know people who have dealt with lifelong trauma thanks to abusive parents.
    Your “empirical evidence” is hardly a useful sample size to determine anything other than excusing violence against children.

  9. very sad story. AP needs help, but more so does his son. where do you go when the man that is supposed to protect you is a abusing you? who do you turn to for help? how do you cope with the abuse? what sort of person will the child become? someone has to help the kid.

  10. Remember: Just because YOU got hit with a belt when you were younger, doesn’t mean it’s alright. Learn, improve, and move on.

  11. His criminal behavior in still using unlawful corporal punishment on a child is only exceeded by his stupidity in admitting to it. Get him out of the league. Now.

  12. Lets not forget he used a switch on his then 4 yr old son’s scrotum leaving cuts and bruises.
    he is human trash.
    be done with him. it only takes a glance at his mug shot from 2014 to know he is whacko

  13. I agree with AP…. Being a black man in “This America” we have teach our children… Rather he get spanked with a belt than get killed by others, or the police….

  14. Remember: Just because YOU got hit with a belt when you were younger, doesn’t mean it’s alright. Learn, improve, and move on.

    who is downvoting this? I mean…what is wrong with this statement that it is split 50/50??

  15. children need love. they act the way they do because they don’t know any better. all you are doing is teaching fear. if you think a toddler needs to be “toughned up” you need your head checked. violence is the ultimate display of laziness when it comes to parenting.

  16. cardiovascularendurance says:
    November 21, 2018 at 4:34 pm

    This guy’s level of stupidity is mind-boggling.

    ____________________________________________________________________________________

    I totally agree…WOW! Not so much that he’s still spanking his son with a belt (In the U.S., parental discipline of children can vary by culture and geographic region), but that he actually admitted to still be doing it! Peterson, knowing that he was suspended regarding this in 2014 and the subsequent public backlash, shows that he’s not the brightest guy in the room…SMH!!!

  17. for me, the worst part of getting punished like that was not the actual pain. sure, it hurt, but the worst part at least for me, was the humiliation of the act. and it worked. you best bet i never swore in front of my mom again.

  18. What in the world is this man’s major malfunction? This is not the 1940’s when this was acceptable. We do not beat children into submission. Ever. Discipline is one thing. Beating your child with a belt is a whole different level.

    He should be suspended again. Permanently.

  19. Don’t know the circumstances that made Peterson use his belt on his child, but it makes you wonder what other things he has done that just haven’t surfaced.

  20. Nobody ever said you could fix stupid. Bad enough he still does so, but to admit it openly in an interview when he knows full well Roger could come after him? Just tatooed a big bullseye on his forehead

  21. I was hit as a kid by my single Mom. First yardsticks then broom handles when I got older.

    I turned out pretty good and I love my Mom and wouldn’t change a thing.

    Not being beat is what is wrong with some of these kids today.

  22. johnthorpe says:
    November 21, 2018 at 4:43 pm
    They ought to take his kids away until he can prove he’s not a danger to their physical well-being.

    ——–

    Unfortunately those running the system that would take his kids away would be worse. Falls under be careful what you wish for.

  23. bahzeal says:
    November 21, 2018 at 5:03 pm
    children need love. they act the way they do because they don’t know any better. all you are doing is teaching fear. if you think a toddler needs to be “toughned up” you need your head checked. violence is the ultimate display of laziness when it comes to parenting.
    ————————————————————

    you can easily say that NOT toughening up your kids is ‘the ultimate display of laziness when it comes to parenting.’

  24. robertgriffintheturd says:
    November 21, 2018 at 5:07 pm
    Wow a father that loves his son enough to discipline him. How horrible! Why can’t he be like other athletes and just shirk his parental responsibilities?

    ———

    Discipline and instilling fear by inflicting pain are not synonymous.

  25. Peterson should get whipped each time he doesn’t score a touchdown on a drive. That will motivate him.

  26. Maybe he should try another form of discipline. Obviously corporal punishment isn’t too effective if he has to keep doing it, unless that’s one really bad kid.

  27. It’s all about the time we live in. I was disciplined with a belt multiple times when I was a kid and don’t think it’s wrong at all. Sometimes a kid needs that type of discipline to understand.

  28. All these comments hating on Adrian for disciplining his child in a way that he see’s fit. It’s very unlikely he spanks the child with full force. I was physically disciplined by my parents as a child and i hated them for it. But when i aged, i realized that it made me a better person. i can guarentee that his kids one do one thing in their lives.. And that’s going to prison.

  29. The belt wasn’t the issue, the issue was he overdid it and the kid was bleeding, and bruised, and couldn’t sit down.

    You investigate him for discipling his child, you might as well do the whole league.

    Let the man be a father to his child. At least he’s there. Antonio Cromartie can’t even name his kids.

  30. biggs13 says:
    November 21, 2018 at 5:11 pm
    I was hit as a kid by my single Mom. First yardsticks then broom handles when I got older.
    I turned out pretty good and I love my Mom and wouldn’t change a thing.
    Not being beat is what is wrong with some of these kids today.
    ————————————————————————————————–

    AMEN!!! Same here! Spare the rod spoil the child!!

  31. You never have to lay a hand on a child to effectively discipline them.

    Apparently, Peterson didn’t learn that concept even after all the counseling and treatment he went through as a result of his child abuse criminal trial. Like a psychopath unable to feel empathy for their victim or grasp the concept of cruelty, I’m afraid that’s the situation that exists here with Peterson and his son.

    League office intervene now!!!!

  32. “as a matter of fact, I’ve never met one person who got the belt as a kid and weren’t grateful for it as adults…”

    Come over to the mental health clinic where I work.

  33. No one here or working for the NFL knows to what extent Peterson used the belt. Maybe now Peterson uses the belt very lightly and the “I’m getting my belt” is more for effect than it is a physical punishment. The bottom line here is if there are marks (evidence) of what would be considered abuse being left on the child. Some people are quick to judge and point a finger without having the full knowledge to offer a valid viewpoint.

  34. When he admitted whipping= his kid the first time, he acted like nothing was wrong with it. Even smiled in his mug shot photo.

  35. This is what is wrong with America. Getting spanked is biblical, and it works. A child that is disciplined has a much a greater chance of being a successful adult that will make you proud. Not to be confused with beating your kids or child abuse. It may be popular to allow your kids to make their own choices and refuse to discipline them, but most of these children will grow up to despise you and have no respect!

  36. Also if I’m not mistaken Peterson avowed to never use a switch again on his son. And note a switch is much different than a belt in that it cuts very easily. I’ve seen large deadly snakes heads split wide open by someone breaking off a tiny switch (or a whip like mini tree branch) out in the woods. That couldn’t get the same results using a belt.

  37. If you MUST physically discipline a child, and cannot do it by hand, it’s on you as a parent. Anything that could cause bruising or other damage isn’t discipline, it’s abuse.

  38. We have better evidence now that says hitting your children is more harmful in the long run than the short term affect of then behaving like you want them to.

    Really says more about you as a person if you can’t get over on a child without physical force. Really sad for the kids involved here. AP has resources available to him that most do not and he still feels that the best way to send life lessons to children is to beat them up.

  39. Speaking from experience..what you got beat with somehow defines the severity. Belts were considered “lighter punishment” than ironing cords, extension cords, broom sticks or switches. Top-Shelf was boxing gloves. And all of that stopped when you slipped the punch and slapped the cigar out of his mouth…

    Saying a prayer for that boy, and his momma who lets it happen..

  40. I was spanked as a child by a belt & switch I now I now suffer from a psychological disorder called “Respect for Others.” which means even Now as a 50 yr old man ifI ‘m at there place & my mother or father says quiet down I shut my mouth & say yes sir or yes mama but I was never hit hard enough to leave a mark

  41. Taurus says:

    Not being beat is what is wrong with some of these kids today
    ___________

    No bad parenting is what is wrong with some.of these kids today. Regardless of the disicipline stylr. some parents just don’t care enough, like if their kid gets bad grades its the teachers fault and mot the kids.

  42. I’ve got zero problem with him spanking his child. I believe it’s an under used tool that also should be brought back into schools.

  43. Looks like a lot of righteous, judgmental folks on this board. I disagree with AP’s choice of discipline but certainly not going to pretend that I know best or my way is right. He grew up in the south where discipline was instrumental in raising children. Leave the man alone and quit acting like you’re a bunch of perfect, righteous parents. Literally everything is considered abusive by someone in todays day and age.

  44. Real big man beating a child. It has nothing to do with discipline. It’s just a power trip. The child pays the price. Let’s see how he would fare going up against a grown man.

  45. Suspend him now!!! And send CPS to his house (Child Protective Services). This guy can’t help himself. He abuses his son and has no remorse about it what so ever.

  46. Hahahaha after what happened last time, why on earth would you willingly reinsert yourself into that controversy.

  47. Saying “I got hit as a kid and still turned out okay” is like saying “My old man smoked 2 packs a a day and still lived to 95.” Each individual person’s going to have a different experience, but on the whole, the outcomes aren’t exactly favorable.

  48. There’s a distinction between discipline and causing injury. Spanking a kid and making them cry is one thing. But causing injuries that force a mother to take a kid to a doctor is child abuse. I have no idea how anyone can defend Adrian Peterson.

    Google Adrian Peterson Child Abuse pictures. He inflicted those injuries on a 4 year old!

  49. I didn’t see where he said he hit his child. He said that he spanked him. There’s a difference between the two that you should endeavor to understand.

  50. Love the head line “hit his child” here let me fix it for you “discipline” if you don’t use a belt once in a while your doing it wrong.

  51. All you people complaining are the same men that get scared of a bug and cry when you run over a possum and let your ladies do the mans work in the household. #FACTS

  52. I personally don’t agree with physical discipline of children that being said my parents did and kids today are sure disrespectful and entitled.

    There is a difference between discipline and abuse and only AP truly knows which one he is doing.

  53. If you wouldn’t hit an adult to correct behavior, you have no business doing it to a child. It’s a pure exertion of dominance that has been repeatedly proven ineffective yet the response is always the same. “I was hit as a child and I turned out fine”. Well there were many that didn’t and many that still end up in prison after being spanked. It is a lazy form of parenting that people want to continue to justify because they want to be able to hit their children.

  54. All the people crying about the belts reminds me why this country’s young generation is so soft.
    Hugs, kisses, rainbows and butterflies only works if you’re raising your kid in fantasy land. Here in the real world kids need to be tough for a tough world and not coddled and babied. These poor kids will be hiding under the bed when sh*t gets real.

  55. I have never used the word “snowflake” but my god. A man disciplines his child in an attempt to make the child adhere to rules and we criticize him. Gimme a break.

  56. Not sure that his admission is the equivalent of abuse. It seems that most on here has jumped to the conclusion that it is. Casting stones via the internet is oh so not courageous. Go volunteer at a domestic abuse center and make real change in people’s lives.

  57. As a well-adjusted, successful adult with a somewhat checkered childhood, I just want to thank my dad for having never once hit me with a belt. Even when I deserved it.

  58. The amount of self-righteous attitudes on this board is staggering. If AP is literally abusing (beating) his children then he should most certainly be locked up for a VERY LONG time. But if he is spanking (belt or no belt) his children on their butts for disciplinary reasons then so be it. Not yours or my business how he raises and/or disciplines his children. I think it is quite obvious that parental discipline is severely lacking in society today.

  59. I’m happy he’s being a dad and caring enough to discipline him. My father provided some “leather guidance” as a child and I’m a better father, husband, and man for it.

    Many of the social issues that have everyone’s arms in the air can be directly attributed to a lack of a father figure. Why protest broken homes when you can jump on a father raising his own? Keep letting the government and schools coddle and raise your kids for you. You’re the ones missing out and your child will be the lesser for it.

  60. Just cut him for being dumb and opening his mouth. Cut him for continuing to do what he got in trouble for anyways. Doesn’t matter what side you take on it, sometimes you need to just suck it up and move on and leave it be.

  61. People raise their kids differently and that’s their choice as long as it doesn’t become abuse. I wish some of the mothers who ignore their screaming brats in the grocery store would give them a whack.

  62. “Spare the rod, spoil the child”. It’s in the Bible folks, leave this man alone.
    —–
    Yeah but the Bible is chock full of things that aren’t true.

  63. In several states today public schools still allow paddling students as punishment. You can rest assured Peterson was raised in these same school systems. His family obviously supported likewise. And Peterson has chosen to follow in this line. It’s legal and a readily accepted form of child punishment in the state he resides in.

  64. I wonder where and when did we as a certain people learn thrashing was accepted as a form of punishment? It started a loooong time ago and it was accepted. No need to call the kettle black now. Alot worse also happened to this certain group of people thats swept under the covers but now everyone has morals…don’t mind me though

  65. Lots of folks in here saying that this used to be the standard for disciplining kids, and that kids these days are soft…..the murder and violent crime rate are also at about half of where they were in the ’80s and ’90s. Go figure.

  66. Spanking or using a belt for discipline isn’t a problem if done for discipline reasons.
    The fact that he left bruises says that he went too far & doesn’t seem to understand that part.
    He was such a good player that I wanted him to be a good guy too. He isn’t.
    Think back to the stories about his handshake. he has some issues and he isn’t smart enough to figure out that people don’t agree with his level of discipline.

  67. I still don’t get all the macho punishing children thing. Oh..no!…America is soft!!! Does it feel that good to proclaim being in support of what you believe is a show of strength?

    How is INJURING a child good for the child. I’m not talking about spanking a kid. I’m talking about have to go to the doctor INJURIES.

    Someone please explain how INJURING a kid is good for them.

    Spank a kid, make them cry, leave a red mark that goes away in 10 minutes….fine.

    But black an blue marks, swelling, open wounds…on a 4 year old??? How can anyone defend that?

  68. after last time, why he still does this and gets away with it is simply amazing;

    saying it’s ‘justified’ by the tenets of one’s religion is frightening, when history is rife with instances of the worst crimes ever committed, from world wars (‘God wills it’) mass murders and genocide (Jonestown, Treblinka) and terrorism (Ethnic Cleansing, Apartheid, Jim Crow, Taliban);

    discipline is one thing, but professional football players are huge powerful people who have made a livelihood out of colliding with other like people in the most violent manner for decades at a time to resolve too many issues;

    their level of intensity is unprecedented and cannot help but be used in the other facets of their lives, which we have seen all too often irrespective of what position these people play on the field (Carruth, Hernandez, Rice, Lewis, Brown, Manziel, etc.);

    discipline fueled by these levels of intensity cannot help but be counterproductive, at best;;

    let us hope he doesn’t continue to beat his kids into people like him;

    because they will almost certainly pass it on, and everyone these days is weary of the results of using violence as a tool for conflict resolution;

    one would’ve thought Peterson learned that lesson the last time

  69. dmca12 says:
    November 21, 2018 at 4:47 pm
    If he hit his wife or girlfriend with a belt what would happen? Shouldn’t be viewed any differently. Abuse is abuse.
    ——————————-

    It’s view differently because you’re wife or girlfriend has grown up enough to know right from wrong. Children have to be taught that. They don’t come out of the womb automatically doing the right thing. On the contrary… They automatically learn how to lie, cheat, defy the rules, and be selfish. It’s the parents job to knock that out of them. If you actually cared about children you would understand that. You can have fun counting to 50 after the child hasn’t listened to a word you said. Or enjoying grounding the child repeatedly and getting no results. Some of us have jobs and a life to live. We don’t have time to screw around with parenting methods that waste time and yield no results.

  70. If you can not play punishing defense in the NFL. What makes you think you can punish a child? Even when a belt should be acceptable? Flag football. & a stand in the corner society.

  71. I’ve raised 2 kids to adulthood and never felt the NEED to physically hit either one of them. A couple few times I might have temporarily WANTED to hit them, but, being the adult, I suppressed those feelings when they arose. My kids turned out fine and hopefully I broke the cycle of violence. Hopefully they will continue the practice of talking it out and, at worst, punishing their kids when warranted.

    My dad was real quick to anger and just as quick to hit. I didn’t like it one bit. I told him one day I would give HIM a beating and a few years ago that day had come. Amazingly, this monster I grew up with who seemed 8 feet tall and spit flames CALLED 911 when I made my way toward him. I couldn’t believe it. I still can’t. THe monster I grew up with was really just a coward.

  72. “Spare the rod and spoil the child” may have been the rule in Biblical times, but this is the 21st century. A stud like AP should NOT be using a belt on a kid! Motivating by fear, which is what this is, never works as well as loving guidance. AP is a neanderthal! He needs to stop the child abuse!

  73. hang3xc says:
    November 22, 2018 at 5:35 am
    I’ve raised 2 kids to adulthood and never felt the NEED to physically hit either one of them. A couple few times I might have temporarily WANTED to hit them, but, being the adult, I suppressed those feelings when they arose. My kids turned out fine and hopefully I broke the cycle of violence. Hopefully they will continue the practice of talking it out and, at worst, punishing their kids when warranted.

    My dad was real quick to anger and just as quick to hit. I didn’t like it one bit. I told him one day I would give HIM a beating and a few years ago that day had come. Amazingly, this monster I grew up with who seemed 8 feet tall and spit flames CALLED 911 when I made my way toward him. I couldn’t believe it. I still can’t. THe monster I grew up with was really just a coward.

    ————————
    It’s more likely that your Dad didn’t want to go to jail. Once you stepped up to that level of aggression he was going to have to “do something” to you that would have cost him 25 to life. I brought you in this world and I’ll take you out.

  74. empathy and maturity are required from an adult.
    children lack full development and judgment.

    Adults model behavior for their offspring.
    Using physical violence to convey disapproval instills an unintended message: that it is ok to use of physical violence on others to express your disapproval.

    violence begets violence.

    Those that accept violence have great difficulty seeing what is wrong with this practice

  75. Oh no, these days you should just take away their cell phones and maybe make them pay a bill. Then you’ll hear weeping and whaling and gnashing of teeth!!! What horrible punishment!!! But then you’ll probably get turned in for child abuse for that as well.

  76. Like this is shocking news. That is what happened to AD and what he believes in. He has said it all along. Not really news here.

  77. Shame on that jury, the NFL and the Vikings for letting him get away with felony assault on a minor and shame on everyone who was so excited to see him come back to football. I’ve seen firsthand how traumatizing child abuse can be. I have a friend who was abused as a child and now has depression, anxiety, and sometimes suicidal thoughts.

    Again shame on everyone who brushed this off as if it wasn’t a big deal.

  78. So if his kid was bad, you’d say discipline him, but he’s an engaged father that spanks his kid so he’s bad?

    I got beat with a switch and a belt at times. It’s old school, but I can’t say automatically that it’s abuse and I think people are just out for AP’s blood honestly, because these same people like the old school and say everything is too PC now soooooo

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