Let’s wrap up our series of posts about raising good men. I like this quote: “Without a seasoned heart connection between parents and sons, the teenage years feel like wartime…..The balancing of limit-setting and parent-son relationships begins at a boy’s birth. The father who waits to become alive in the family until his son is a teenager and making trouble puts himself at a great disadvantage; he will have little effect with his son. If he starts “laying down the law” the son can just leave. A thirteen-year-old can live for days by going from one friend’s house to another.”
Discipline, as I have written about time and time again, begins with CONNECTION: http://theparentingpassageway.com/2010/02/22/the-number-one-way-to-discipline-a-child/
Here are some ideas for discipline and general parenting through age 12. Please do take what resonates with you and leave the rest behind.
Ideas For Birth- Age 7
- Closeness and connection through breastfeeding, baby-wearing, co-sleeping, warmth, and lots of time together lay a great foundation for this attachment and connection that becomes the foundation of discipline.
- Protection of the senses is very important. I have written so much about this on this blog that I am not going to go into all of that here; the other issue to consider is how we deal with a boy’s feeling/emotional life. It is important to not let your own baggage, your own sense of worry and anxiousness and inadequacies color how you present the world to your child. Work through your own stuff and you will be a much better parent.
- We always need to remember that small children view things much differently than an adult does. Small children under the age of 7 have an entirely different consciousness.
- How will you supervise and structure the day of your small son? A four and five year old little boy especially needs structure and a way to get physical energy out – they will most likely need to do this first thing in the morning and again in the afternoon. Life will not go smoothly without this!
- Boys need to know the rules of your family and they need you to be kind, fair and calm.
AGE 8- AGE 12: Suggestions for parenting:
- You must be involved, because “the boy is no longer satisfied with free play. He wants to go further, to master physical challenges, make things, and build with a goal in mind. He requires more parental involvement in planning, supervising, and providing opportunities at home and in the world that help him develop the skills he craves.” – from “Raising A Son” by Rick Johnson
- Positive role models are very important!
- Help your son experience success and the value of persistence in learning. Help boys sample lots of different kinds of skills so they can find their own talents and abilities. Music lessons, carpentry, drama are all important for this age.
- Boys of this age CRAVE time with their fathers and still need their mothers.
- Boys of this age are working on building up their self-esteem, and how they deal with relationships. Help them.
- Children of this age are still impulsive and don’t think things through, so they still need rules that are fair and boundaries to help them.
- Sexuality is now a topic of interest, so think how you would like to approach this. There was just a great discussion about this topic over on Melisa Nielsen’s Yahoo!Group at firstname.lastname@example.org . Please do join in!