Whether your a single mom or have a partner in crime there are some things moms can and should teach their rough and tough little boys that will help them in life. Of course eating right and bathing periodically are good things to teach them, there are a couple things that may not necessarily cross our minds right away.
As a mom of a boy and someone who grew up with four younger brothers I have seen and learned a few things that boys should learn from their moms that they can carry with them their whole life. So I have created a short list of some basic things to teach your sons, with love from mom.
Please and Thank You can really take some one far. It is important to remind them that begging or throwing a fit will get you nowhere. However, “please” and “thank you” will open doors they never knew existed. When both the child and the parent respect each other with manners, things can flow smoothly. Start them young, initiate it yourself, start with saying thank you for all the little things they do like kisses and hugs or sitting still while they get changed. They will notice your body language, facial expressions and understand your act of kindness. The same goes for please. Ask ever so nicely even for little things. I notice a huge difference in children who are asked by a grown up with a tone of respect and manners, than those who may demand or use authority. Respect is given when respect is received, and that starts with manners.
2. The Word “No”
I cannot stress the importance of teaching your son the word “no.” It is our duty to teach our sons to know their limits, especially with other people. Of course my biggest concern for this word is when it is used in instances when a girl may be saying “no,” or that your son should be saying “no” (like in dangerous situations). Make sure you teach your son the importance of listening to that word and using it to protect himself or announce what he does not want or like.
This word can still be used with manners such as “no thank you.” Too many people today feel pressure to avoid this word but it is necessary to protect ourselves and others. Of course we all would like to think we have taught our children the importance of listening when we say no: simple examples like a candy bar at the store and if they like to eat a food or not. But, it is especially important for times of danger like getting in a car with a stranger, or perhaps their teenage years filled with temptations. Make sure they know what it is to be told no, and to accept that answer.
3. Helping Hand
There used to be a time when it was thought that only women did the cleaning and that men ought to find a women who will do all the cooking and cleaning. This is becoming less and less of an accepted idea. Moms, teach your son how to clean, how to cook, how to mend their clothes and take care of themselves. Simple things like letting them help you cook dinner, or playing in the sink while your doing dishes so they can see how your doing it. Take the time to help them and direct them in chores. Create a chart that allows them to do chores geared toward their age. Reward them for helping without being asked and show them that their efforts mean a happy home and a happy family.
4. Be Creative
Some of us have husbands or loved ones we admire for being handy and creative. Learning how to solve problems with critical thinking and minor engineering can really come in handy. How many of us have tried to fix something with duct tape or a rubber band? Probably almost all of us. So when your trying to fix something around the house or use a tool to do something that it was not necessarily designed for, let your son watch. Show him how you did it or why you chose to do it that way. You never know, he might have an outsider’s perspective and help you with it. Some people might think this is dad’s job but I know quite a few moms who could have been engineers.
5. Be An Individual
Each kid has their own personality, likes, dislikes and passions. Encourage that! Let your sons pick out their own clothes, tell you their ideas, express interest in things they really like doing or want to talk about. Boys can be into anything: sports, music, arts, dancing, cooking and the list goes on. Help nurture them to find the person they want to be. Moms are great at encouraging their children and supporting them through their triumphs and failures, boys need their moms to be their safety net that lets them bounce back. They also need their moms to give them the freedom to truly flourish.