Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Moms raising sons

I caught an interesting interview with the co-author of a book about fathers raising daughters and mothers raising sons. I grew up with only sisters, and James grew up in a house of brothers, so it was a poignant conversation to catch. Neither of us have any experience of being in a house with siblings of the opposite sex.

The first gold nugget (and the one that hooked me into the program) was "God tailor-made our children for us." I have always believed that Colin was a part of our family before we came here, but I never considered that his complete make-up is exactly what I need to grow and learn as a woman and mother. These past few days I have viewed each challenge and each moment of joy in a new light. What is my little boy bringing to me? How am I growing for having interacted with him? Why is this a trial we need to go through together?

The second little jewel was "Boys are born to be challengers." Most often girls are content to sit and socialize, and even the active ones are hardwired with a need for communication. Boys are conquerors. They want to be strong. They need to go out and meet the world head on. They can't be saved from scraped knees and emotional topples. (Luckily, I myself also have a bit of the conqueror in me, and today I was even a little proud of Colin's first scraped knee.)

The advice given by the author was definitely food for thought. Boys innately love their mothers and are protective of them. However, they often don't see them as a 'woman'. She's just 'my mom'. This can often be why men will defend their mothers to the ground and in the next breath be so degrading to other women around them. Mothers need to teach their sons about respect for all women. Teach them table manners, and to open the door. Teach them to listen and to intelligently converse with women. Speaking as a woman, I can definitely report that chivalry is not dead, and there is nothing a woman appreciates more than being made to feel special.

It was an enlightening interview that cast a bright light on my hope of raising my children. I'm currently reading about the marketing traps set for children and teens, and amid the horror of it all, I needed to be reminded that I still can be the biggest influence in my children's lives. It was a bright ray of sunshine I truly needed.

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