This is a great read for mothers of sons:
25 Rules for Mothers of Sons
I was particularly alerted by these ones:
6. Make sure he has examples of good men who are powerful because of their brains, their determination, and their integrity.
Apart from letting have role play as dinosaur or superhero, I have not taken the time to tell him about real men doing real good things... except maybe his Dad. And I should, I really should. Because I do want him to know about perseverance and hard work from such men.
7. Make sure he has examples of women who are beautiful because of their brains, their determination, and their integrity.
I guess he's really such a boy because he hasn't really been interested in female cartoon characters or what-not... but I should also introduce him to strong female types, so he'd be attracted to those and learn to respect them for what they can do, offer and stand for. It does make me smile when I remember that he wanted to be a teacher at St. Michael, which suggests to me that his teachers have provided him with such loving and gentle and encouraging presence that he wanted to be like them.
8. Be an example of a beautiful woman with brains, determination, and integrity.
Oh sons... this is why we threw a candy-less birthday party with storytelling as entertainment. Heaven knows I struggle everyday to be a woman of integrity, but I really want to be one. Because someday, I want you both to marry a happy woman, accomplished in her own right, who will value family life, health, nature as much or more than I do.
But I guess also have to work on being a happy Mom... and a persevering Mom. I have to be a good example in the way your father already is.
18. Answer him when he asks, "Why?"
My son has started on his WHY pahse but not yet as much as I was hoping he'd be curious. He sometimes just ask why without really asking a question, or maybe I just don't get him. But I haven't taught him where to look for answers... I have always just answered him. And while that's nice, it never occurred to me to TRAIN him into looking for answers from the right places.
23. Take him to new places
Sigh. It's a struggle to even just take him regularly to the park. And I did yesterday, knowing he has some running to do. But we were turned away from Paco Park because of an event... which resulted in copious amounts of tears from him. I apologized and explained... later on, I got sort of angry because he was scaring me with all the running he was doing while we were on the road, as he was throwing a tantrum. I offered grapes instead, and a promise to try the entire weekend.
He did settle down in the end and would even caress my head to tell me "it's okay". But yes, I should take him out more. I have to push for wonder in his eyes.