By Nardia Joy
I am raising sons, growing and shaping two boys into GOOD men. I take it very seriously, I have an intention for my sons. I am raising brave, conscious, connected, fearless men in how they live and love, who are unapologetic for who they are. Men that can bring their heart’s desires to life, who understand the true meaning of happiness and self-love.
Men who don’t need to abuse their power, who are resilient, who believe in themselves, who are self aware and know how to connect to themselves, who can acknowledge what they feel, validate it, meet their needs and that just keep evolving.
How can I fulfill such ambition? Mess, adversity, struggle, hard work, by not protecting them from the challenging and harsh experiences in their life. By using those experiences to expose them to their feelings, which will bring up any fears or insecurities they might have and then by teaching them the necessary tools to overcome such an fear or experience. They ultimately get to decide how their stories end, so they can stay in fear or overcome their fear, it’s up to them. We need to accept what they choose; we need to allow our boys to be who they are and where they are; to see them fully and love them unconditionally, irrespective of what they choose but they will always know it’s a choice, their choice. They need that, they deserve that, we all do.
I find being a single mum tough and although I find the love and experience of motherhood profound and magical, I also find it a brutal grind. It really does bring out both the best and the worst in me. So to my fellow mums out there, I really do admire and respect each and every one of you. We really do need to unite and stop comparing and pitting against each other. We just need to accept and allow each other to do the best we can under our unique circumstances, so please don’t feel I am judging you because I am a totally flawed, messy, imperfect mum.
However, I do think it’s important that we face the truth about how we are raising our boys and acknowledge what kind of men we are shaping, and we need to do this together. Let’s help each other, talk to each other, problem-solve together, tag each other out, cry and scream together. Our magnificent, boisterous, active, wild, sensitive, gentle, glorious boys give us a connection, a thread into each other’s lives. It’s a beautiful opportunity to use that thread to come together and help our boys become good men and we can’t do this alone, we need each other.
Mums, it starts with us. If you want your boys to grow up into GOOD men, then here’s a few things to contemplate.
Please stop pandering to your boys. Yes, we need to be their soft place to land, we need to show them tenderness, affection, love, and cuddle them profusely. We also need to teach our boys self-sufficiency and independence, so they grow confidence and don’t seek women to mother and control them because they are codependent on us – on women – to nurture them. Teach your boys to nurture themselves. Explore what healthy downtime might look like, how to be alone, self-soothe, how to take time out for themselves. How to do things for themselves that are gentle and caring.
We need to teach them how to communicate and process their feelings. We need to let them get angry, and show them healthy outlets for anger. We also need to give them permission to cry, not to shame them for their vulnerability. It’s important our boys become self-aware and learn how to manage all their feelings.
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