We are busy with paying the bills, making meals, cleaning house, talking to family and friends, and running from this event to the next. But do we have those bed time and dinner table discussions with our boys? Do we interview them while sharing some knowledge of our own? We didn't go through so many trials in life to keep lessons learned to ourselves. We are parents, but we are also teachers. Our responsibility to our sons is to show and tell, so that one day they can be the solution to life's problems. So where do we begin and what to do we do? Well for those who are believers in a power much greater than themselves, you pray for guidance and read this and other articles like it. As for those, who don't pray, the resources are available for you to teach your son, your choice.
One. Teach the boys why their body is special as oppose to why they should keep away from girls sexually until they are responsible young men. Remind them about STDs and pregnancy.
Two. Explain to boys the differences between girls and women. Make them aware of the menstrual cycle and hormonal changes so that they aren't shocked, confused, or even angry when a girl or woman isn't herself.
Three. Tell boys why it's not wise to make promises then not keep them. Instruct them on the power of words.
Four. Provide boys with examples of why killing, stealing, lying and doing other negative behavior only leads to unnecessary problems.
Five. Speak to boys about family history and ask how they feel about relatives without giving your personal opinions and experiences unless you can be honest without evil intentions. This will help them in future relationships with others.
Six. Share the wise words of great teachers, both saints and sinners. Ask questions to stimulate thought.
Seven. Use daily situations as teaching tools. For instance, point out a celebrity with much wealth, but provide good reason as to why we shouldn't desire their wealth. Remind the child of his giftings and why it is important for a man to create his own wealth.
Eight. Discipline children when they do wrong. Use negative behavior such as: belittling, ridiculing, and stealing to teach why it is important to respect others.
Nine. Be mindful of everything you say and do. Notice your own hypocritical ways. Make corrections and do apologize for the times you were in error. When they call you out on your wrongs, be humble and provide honest answers, “You know you are right, I shouldn't be doing that. My behavior is unacceptable. I have to work hard to change years of doing the wrong thing. Please forgive me, don't do what I do.”
Ten. Explain to boys why they should stand for personal beliefs and be consistent with their actions. Choose peace first in every situation before war.
This is a short list of the many things that we can teach our sons, but it's a start. Take advantage of those school breaks and teach them. They'll thank you later.
By Nicholl McGuire