This is a brief overview of my life as mom, raising sons. Just because they are boys doesn’t mean they can be rude and disgusting!
Many people will think just because you have sons, you will constantly be living a life of smelly socks, dirty shoes, and lots of potty humor. Well, that doesn’t have to be the case!
It certainly isn’t for me!
And in my family, I am the only female (human anyways). I have 4 sons and a husband.
So how does this happen? I have people that when talking to me assume my boys fart at the dinner table, wreck things, are constantly in dirty clothes, talk in constant potty humor… but that just does not happen here.
Since day one of knowing I had a son (the day I actually birthed him), I knew I didn’t want a rude, stinky, dirty child. I wanted a happy, healthy, RESPECTFUL son. I wanted a son that someday would make a great husband, and that is how I have raised my sons.
To be husbands. And to be RESPECTFUL.
So they aren’t allowed to PURPOSELY release gasses (from either end) at the dinner table, in the car, or anywhere! They aren’t allowed to come into the house with their dirty shoes or clothes (and they do get dirty!). They aren’t allowed to just throw their stuff around the house so I pick up after them…
What We Do
What are some major components that have helped my sons not be the typical disgusting boys?
1. They have chores.
WITHOUT PAYMENT OR REWARD. Yep. Since the day they could hold a rag in their hands or use a broom, they have been helping. They do dishes (washing and putting away). They clear the counters and table. They clean their bathrooms, and rooms. They feed our animals. And more! EVERY. DAY.
And because they help, this helps keep their habits in check. They aren’t going to make a big mess somewhere because they know eventually they will have to clean it up themselves. They also know how to make food, and wash their own clothes (though I typically do those things).
2. A Place for everything.
For years, I haven’t allowed toys in my kitchen or living room area. When I had babies, I would keep a small box of baby toys for a baby to chew on while in the living room, but nerf guns, truck and tractors, and weapons of all sorts would have to be left in their rooms or play areas. This kept the chaos out of my main living areas. And less area to pick up!
3. They have had animals.
Yep, animals are sometimes worse than having children because they can be tough… especially if they live outside and you have cold winter weather like we do! BUT having animals have taught my boys how to care for something that is dependent upon them for life. They have seen animals die. They have seen them mate (and it was called mating. Nothing ‘dirty’, but that they would be having babies.). They have gathered eggs. They have shoveled poop. They have also loved them since they were born, and spent time nurturing them.
4. Their father teaches them how to be a man.
My husband has always been very helpful to me. He helps with things when needed, and he is a hard worker. He and I have also learned that our sons aren’t afraid to model the things they see being done. They help him with outside chores, construction projects, etc but also help him as he serves others who need a helping hand. They have helped do lots of things from raking leaves to roofing a house.
Will they be exactly like their dad someday? Maybe not. But the point is to show them what pride can come out of working hard, and how to care for your family. He has also taught them how to treat women. They are so good at making sure they do things for me. I don’t have to lift heavy things, or do anything too hard because they jump in and help or take over for whatever I might be doing. My youngest opens doors for me. And they all make sure I am taken care of. I still get to do plenty, I’m not living in the lap of luxury over here but my boys do know how to and do help me out in so many ways.
5. We tuck them in bed every night.
Yes, this has looked a little different as they have gotten older. But we go in each night, talk to them about their day, my husband prays with them, and we just talk about what they rest of the week will look like, upcoming events/ projects, etc.
They often bring up things that worry them, or things that happened to them. And we are able to have open conversation about these things. They are also more likely to talk to me, because of my personality. But will often talk to their dad about things. This has been important to me since day one, so I have made sure to push it. Even as they get old and a little more resistant to opening up, I just make sure I ask them open ended questions. This usually helps them open up and gets them talking.
But there is a ‘most important’ thing on here with raising sons, I’d say keep that conversation open ALWAYS. Don’t let a day go by that you don’t have a conversation with each child, showing an interest in their day/ life.
In short, raising sons is work, but when you raise them to be good humans and raise them to be good husbands, it is so rewarding.
Do you have sons? What tips do you have for the rest of us? What works for you and your family? Share in the comments!