I just bought this book, “Raising Real Men” by Hal and Melanie Young. Boy oh boy, is this book ever a gooder. Seriously. I think all mothers of boys should read this book. I am trying to read this book and really soak it in. I have decided to read one chapter a week, and blog about. This week I read the introduction and Part 1. The book is divided up into two parts, Part One is called “Virtues In the Rough” and Part Two is called “Civilization for the Tough”.
This book speaks to me on so many levels. I seriously could quote this entire book. It is THAT good. Part One felt like it was describing A to a “t”. This book is helping me understand who my boy’s are, who God made them to be. I am going to quote the author’s once, because they describe the book perfectly.
“What this book offers is a biblical perspective- note “a”, not “the” – on understanding how boys think, and why that is, and what can and should be done about it….We’ve found that many of the troubles and concerns we had were clarified when we looked to what God intended them to be. The situation looked different when we truly valued manly virtues and masculinity and when we understood that we had to rebuke sin but should not change our boys into something they were not.”
Our culture, myself included, wants our boy to behave like girls. We want them to play like girls, sit still like girls, be quiet like girls. We want them to be girls, basically. This is such an insult, not only to our boys, but to God. God created both man and woman in his image and what we are telling him and his creation is that they are wrong, they we should all be made to be like woman. They need to do things our way. How messed up is that? I even find myself doing this with my husband – wanting him to do things my way.
I need to throw another quote in here. “Women are praised to the extent they act like men, and men are praised for how womanly they become.” Ouch. That one stings me.
I am not saying that boys are to run wild and be disobedient. I am learning that boys need to be boys, and we need to stop pushing them to be girls.
The book explains how boys are born with the virtues of men, but they are just untaught. We need to teach them, and allow them to be boys. The virtues that we love in a man are the very virtues that drive us the most crazy in our boys.
One more quote. “:What are the manly virtues?...competitiveness, aggression, a desire for adventure…heroism, courage, endurance, fortitude…protectors, persistent, honorable, intrepid...Those virtues are present in seed form in our boys. Will we cultivate them and help bring them to fruition? Or will we trade the opportunity for a little more peace and quiet, and hope their future will take care of itself?”
Mothers of boys, you NEED this book. Seriously. Hal and Melanie Young have six sons, and two daughters, so they have had a lot of experience raising boys. I have never underlines to many things in my life. I cannot recommend this book enough.
For more information on this book and where to purhase, visit the Young's website.