Having two sons, raising boys is all I’ve known of motherhood. After seven years I feel like I’m finally getting the hang of it, but as my boys get older, I realise I have a duty to pass on things I hold as important lessons for young men. These are the things I want my sons to know.
1. Boys do cry
And it’s perfectly fine.
2. Manners never go out of style
Ever since my boys uttered their first words, I made a point of always getting them to say please and thank you. Manners make such a great impression, and it never hurts to let someone know you appreciate them.
3. And while we’re on the subject, being a gentleman is always in fashion
I don’t expect my sons to open doors for their little lady friends, but I do expect them to be respectful to all of their mates, be they girls or boys, and anyone else they encounter.
4. You reap what you sow
Put out into the world what you would like to get back. You may be small, but your actions are powerful – just ask any child who has been bullied.
5. Your happiness is my happiness
I want for nothing more than to see a smile on your face, and a light in your eyes.
6. Kindness costs nothing
But it’s priceless.
7. Always hug your mother
Even in front of your friends. You don’t look silly, or like a baby. You look loved.
8. Cooking is for everyone
Because the chef always gets the best bits!
9. Strength has nothing to do with being a superhero
And everything to do with your character. Be strong-minded, be an enduring friend and have mighty morals.
10. True friendships are like gems
Rare and beautiful. They are worth more than a footy premiership, all the Lego in the world and every jelly bean that was ever made. True friends will give you the sweetest moments in your life.
And here’s one thing I’d love mums of boys to know: you are so incredibly lucky to have such amazing souls in your life. Little boys are beautiful creatures – and they will love you like you’ve never been loved. All they ask is that you love them just as fiercely.