With the news blowing up recently with cases where men have abused their power and hurt, assaulted or harassed women … I feel it is my obligation and duty as a mother of two young boys to say my vows to the world. These vows are the core values I have been, currently am and will be teaching and instilling into my little men on a daily basis. There are GOOD and honorable men in this world. We have such a unique opportunity as Moms of Boys to raise the next generation of men who VALUE and respect women. Who stand up for equal rights. Who aren’t scared of feminism. Who know the meaning of the word NO. Who will stand together as one with the women of the world. The future is in our hands Mothers of Little Boys. Let’s raise a generation of Good and Honorable Warrior Men.
- My boys will be taught chivalry is not dead. They will open doors. They will pull out chairs. They will be taught to show this “old fashioned” respect to the women that they are with whether it is their grandmother, lover or friend. It doesn’t belittle the woman they are with by these small acts of service, it should empower them by knowing they are respected and honored.
- My boys will be taught that vulnerability is sexy, even on and especially with men. You don’t always have to be brave. Showing emotion creates bonds and empathy. It is ok to get angry and we will learn healthy ways to control our anger. Sadness is ok and we will talk about it, instead of holding it in. They are not a “pussy” or weak for having emotion and in fact, the men who show vulnerability are usually the strongest ones. Yes, I know my boys will be pushed to be their best in the sports and activities they play in. But as their Mother and a Woman raising boys, I will vow that I won’t tolerate another man bullying or name calling my boys or any other boys. There is a VERY clear line between coaching and harassment.
- My boys will be taught that NO means NO. If a woman says NO when they are together it doesn’t fucking mean try again in 5 minutes. And NO doesn’t mean YES or MAYBE under ANY circumstances. It means NO. Back off and respect the woman. I have personally lost so much respect for men who think that NO means the longer we go…no turns to yes. NO means NO. Period. They will learn this for physical and emotional relationships and interactions. Respect somebody’s power to say NO.
- My boys will learn to control their words. We do not call women whores, sluts, bitches, cunts, fat, ugly, ect. EVER. Under NO circumstance are these words ok to use towards women. Commenting on a woman’s body, what she is wearing or how she looks is not ok unless it is complimentary and invited.
- My boys will learn to not harass women on the internet behind the screen. It is NOT ok to send creepy as fuck messages to woman. It is not ok to comment on their body. It is not ok to sexualize them. I do not care what they put out into the world, there is never a right to comment. Especially from behind a screen. If you wouldn’t say it to their face, you sure as hell shouldn’t be saying online.
- My kids will learn bullying is never ok. As a child, as a teenager, as an adult, as a parent or at work. Awareness is the first step. A call to action is the second step. We speak up to prevent it. We are kind not mean.
- My kids will learn that we ACCEPT everyone. We may not agree with their politics, religion, sexual orientation or lifestyle BUT we accept that we all have a right to live our own lives and have our own beliefs as long as we aren’t hurting anyone in the process. We will stand up for what we believe with honor and respect for the opposing side or beliefs. Violence is never the answer and anger will never make anyone change their mind. Love, respect and acceptance is the only way to create a world where we can listen, understand and create solutions.
These are the core values I will teach my boys through example each day. They will learn how to treat women because I demand respect and correct treatment from them as their mother. We will have the open and hard conversations because it is my job to TEACH them and not avoid it because it is embarrassing, difficult or uncomfortable for them or me. We will be honest. Through positive male and female role models, children can learn these values on a daily basis. If you want to change the world, start in your home. It may take a village … it really does … BUT it takes WAY more than that. It takes a strong mother (and father) to teach and guide our babies through this new world we live in. It is our opportunity and responsibility all mixed into one. We will mess up and it will be hard but you are exactly what YOUR child needs. You will feel like you failing but you are thriving when you put forth the effort daily. You are not perfect but you are PERFECT for your child. Flaws and all.
We don’t have to perfect … we need to be a #GoodEnoughMom.
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