Yes, as you are well aware, I have boys. Four of them. I joke that they’re the reason I dye my hair, but that has more to do with genetics than anything. So here are some of my thoughts on what it’s like to raise boys…and perhaps a tip or two on how to survive:
- I’d tell you to expect the unexpected, but that’s not true. Expect the impossible. Really. Want to hide the last Hershey kiss in the light fixture, in the middle of the kitchen, with no ladder? Go fold clothes. I dare you. You’ll find your son hanging from the light. Seriously.
- Do not teach them hide and go seek. I mean it. Unless you want to spend frantic minutes looking for them, only to find them in the dryer. Yeah. Not kidding on this one either.
- Throw out any book that tells you boys and girls aren’t different. I bought dolls for my boys and gave them a kitchen, thinking I wouldn’t introduce any biasness and would let them be “themselves.” The dolls became hostages and lost their heads, the kitchen was turned into a bunker and doll arms became guns. *sigh* I have to admit, I was never a Barbie fan myself.
- Do not tell your son to “act like a man.” Unless he’s older than 18. I do not want my child to leave his socks on the kitchen floor, expect his dishes to be picked up after him or expect the sock fairy to magically appear each night. (Kidding, just kidding.) Actually, my problem is that our children grow up too fast, and we always expect them to act older, not just act appropriately for the age they are…and there’s a difference. I’m afraid I may have done a little too much of this with my oldest. He has a very old soul, and I worked so hard to raise him to be a good child, I forgot to let him be a child. Lesson learned the hard way.
So how do you survive it all? I’m not sure I know quite yet, but I do know one thing. Let go. Don’t get so wrapped up in all the different aspects that you forget that you’re living a life. Make some memories. Have a water fight. Give your son a wedgie. Let them know that you’re not just Mom, and that you remember how to have fun.
It can’t be all rules, all the time. Stay up late. Tell scary stories. Play in a fort. Get dirty. When they ask what’s for supper, tell them it’s frog eyeballs and spider legs. Get creative.
The time will fly by, and before you know it, you’ll wonder why you didn’t do all these things sooner.
Four boys. Apparently God has a very good sense of humor. But that’s OK…so do I.
Thanks for sharing this Val. I have 5 boys and can relate! Love them all but definitely busy!
I always wonder what I did with my time before…I always thought I was busy, but…
Gotta love those permanent markers! I have five children – 1 son and 4 daughters. (I would like to point out my son was the second child LOL.) Oh, the stories I could tell! The are now all grown, the youngest is 23, and we have six grandchildren so far.
Markers. They were almost the death of me. I’m grateful that it doesn’t happen as often any more…it still happens, just not as often. 🙂
Great one Val!
Now you know how mom and dad felt all those years 🙂
1.) There are studies that show girls and boys play very differently. 2.) I used to hide in the dryer when I was little (and up any tree I could climb) 3.) It sounds like you have a pretty good grasp on raising boys haha. I imagine you have seen it all with four of them! Also, is that a picture of one covered in marker?! Haha. Love it. Too funny. Thanks for sharing!
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SO TRUE, Val! Thanks for sharing, from our house of three “busy” boys. (That’s the word we use too.) It is indeed really hard not to yell constantly and it takes an affirmative decision on my part to stop seeing/getting mad at toothpaste spit on the mirror, pirate/lion battles that poke holes in walls (don’t tell Dad that one), or unprovoked wapping on brothers. But once I do, their jokes are funnier, their intricate buildings and towers are more amazing, and the lion is just so darn cute. Plus, I heard toothpaste is a great way to shine up chrome faucets. Sigh. 🙂