The feminization of boys is a real issue, as I discuss in my book, When Mama Is Daddy.
Most mothers do not set out to feminize their sons. Yet, the mistakes they make, as well as those made in the larger society, can actually undermine a boy’s discovery of his masculinity.
It is our major institutions of influence — school, home, and community — that help defines what is and is not masculine. In school, we find that a boy’s natural aggressive and rationalizing behavior is being defined by educators as a behavioral disorder. With the majority of teachers being female, many of their thoughts are that boys should be much more docile and refined in their behavior—like girls.
Newsflash…boys don’t want to be girls! In addition, being diagnosed as ADHD or behaviorally challenged doesn’t allow boys to feel good about themselves or being in school, for that matter.
On the home front with so many moms taking on the dual role of mother and father, many boys in their formative years miss out on that vital link to manhood due to the father’s absence. It is often said that many mothers raise their daughters, but love their sons.
This “love” often allows a mother to enable her sons out of guilt or some other misplaced emotion.
Many mothers begin to overcompensate for father absence by overprotecting their sons; not holding them accountable for negative behavior or always allowing them to be the victim; allowing them to sleep in the bed with them past a certain age or overindulging them in decidedly feminine matters.
Other ways mothers feminize their sons are: focusing too much on their looks, speaking ill of men in general among other women while the sons are present, making statements like “men ain’t worth ish” or that there aren’t any good men to be found, trying to eliminate typical boy behavior because they think it is too rough, and not providing their sons with access to credible positive male role models.
As for society’s role, we live in a unisex culture. Boys are encouraged to get their ears pierced, wear all kinds of “bling,” walk around half-naked or with sagging pants and talk on their cell phones all day about nothing. These boys become angry, sullen teens and eventually men whose warped reality surrounding true masculinity contributes to many societal ills.
God created men and women to be different, and those differences complement each other. However, the push for equality has erased many of these differences, creating boys and eventually men who are unsure of what their role really is.
Mothers must be careful not to over expose their sons to decidedly feminine matters or be intolerant of normal boy behavior. They also must hold their boys accountable for negative behavior and remind them of their capacity for greatness. They should also attempt to identify and expose their sons to healthy men. If they do this, they can greatly diminish the feminization of their sons, the trap of single mothers everywhere.
If you’ve not had a chance to download your copy of:
When Mama is Daddy: The Male Crisis and Challenge of Ending Father Absence, by Kenneth Osborne, PhD
If you would prefer an autographed copy of the print book, please drop me a request at:
Therapeutic Justice Institute
21037 Coventry Circle
Shorewood, Il 60404
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