Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Raising Boys

From reading a book about caring for chooks to a book about caring for sons – two subjects about which I knew zilch before I moved to the country.

It still makes me LOL when I think about the things that define me now compared to those that defined me in the city. Wanting to read a book called Raising Boys, for starters.

Some interesting things I learnt: 
  • The opposite-sex parent often holds the key to self-esteem for a growing child.
  • A young man driving a car on his own is relatively safe, but when he has a young male passenger, the chances of a fatal crash increase by 50%. If the passenger is a young female, the young male driver is more careful and is actually safer than he is on his own. If this driver is accompanied by two young males, the death rate of the driver increases by over 400%!!
  • Young boys need positive mentors as well as adults who care, in addition to their parents.
Although Steve Biddulph doesn't specifically mention the relationship between stepmothers and their sons, I got an enormous amount from reading this book. Some parts I found too simplistic, but for the most part it provides good common sense informed by practical research and hours and hours of time spent with boys of all ages, their families, teachers and community.

I loved best the parts where Biddulph writes about the spirits of boys and ways to nurture and provide space for their personal evolution from boyhood to manhood. 

I also liked reading that from their mothers, boys learn how to relate to females. I like to think that because Z has two different kinds of mums, he has a winning chance of growing into a well balanced, broad minded, positive young dude.

2 comments:

cat collier said...

see the documentary 'raising cain', very interesting i believe. i'm actually amazed in some respects to how we have learned to raise children.

Meg Ulman said...

Hi Cat,

I just looked up Raising Cain in our library's database and they only have "Raising Cain : protecting the emotional life of boys" - is that anything to do with that documentary?

Cheers, Meg