Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Raising Boys

I've just finished reading "Raising Boys" by Steve Biddulph. Its a thin book, only 203 pages, and very easy to read. The last 3 books I have read were all "instructional parenting" books so this one was refreshing. Instead of giving step by step instructions on how to deal with situations A, B and C, it focused more on the issues that boys faced growing. I was getting a bit tired of those books with various strategies to try out (and fail at). This book was a little more high level and I enjoyed it.

I bought off Amazon.com and the shipment here cost as much as the book itself but it was worth it. People always talk about how having a boy is different from having a girl and this book describes it all in detail. From the physical differences in the brain, to hearing (boys supposedly don't hear as well), and to how boys relate to women and each other.

The book broke down development into 3 stages:
Birth to Six - when they are learning to love. Mom is the major player here.
Six to Fourteen - when they start wanting to learn to be a man. Dads count most here.
Fourteen to adulthood - when mentors, in addition to parents, are needed.

I've always felt good about devoting my time to Aaron at home but now I feel even better. Supposedly, its best that a boy stays home with a parent or close relative until about age three. Thats good ammunition for me to answer the people that like to imply I'm wasting my time at home.

In certain ways, this book has given me the impression that little boys are 'fragile'. Y'know, all hard on the outside but soft on the inside. I've seen this in Aaron occasionally when he's outwardly defiant but I see his heart breaking on the inside because he knows I'm disappointed in him.

As a mother, obviously female, there are so many aspects of little boys that I didn't think to think about. There is an entire chapter devoted to testosterone and its role in each stage of a boys life. Lots of stuff I didn't know about there! Its not my intention to give a summary of the book here. I just wanted to let other parents know about this book.


egan said...

As one of six boys, feel free to throw any questions my way. Interestingly enough, what you said about boys in the post could easily be said about girls too... at least it seems to me.

Mike said...

(boys supposedly don't hear as well)

That depends on what the subject is.

Wv: everator - always going up.

Jean-Luc Picard said...

It sounds an useful book for parents.

Nap Warden said...

I hate to admit, it hadn't occurred to me how different Miss Peach and The Little Man are. I mean, there is the obvious, she is all princess while he is all trucks.
I might have to check out this book on parenting boys...

Elaine A. said...

I probably need to read this one. I have two boys myself. Thanks for the tip! : )

Amanda said...

Egan - There is also a book out called "Raising Girls". http://www.amazon.co.uk/Raising-Girls-Different-Happy-Confident/dp/000720485X

Mike - Yes, I think you're right. There were these two other terms that I think you might like : Kitchen Blindness and Dislaundria

JLP - Its definitely going to help me. I'm waiting for my husband to finish reading it and see how he feels...seeing that he might already know some of that stuff.

Nap Warden / Elaine - I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did.