A timely and empowering book featuring “solid, practical advice for women on how to properly nurture their sons” (Kirkus Reviews).
From the moment a mother holds her newborn son, his eyes tell her that she is his world. But often, as he grows up, the boy who needs her simultaneously pushes her away. Calling upon thirty years of experience as a pediatrician, Meg Meeker, M.D., a highly sought after national speaker, assistant professor of clinical medicine, and mother of four, shares the secrets that every mother needs to know in order to strengthen—or rebuild—her relationship with her son.
Boys today face unique challenges and pressures, and the burden on mothers to guide their boys through them can feel overwhelming. This empowering book offers a road map to help mothers find the strength and confidence to raise extraordinary sons by providing encouragement, education, and practical advice about
• the need for mothers to exercise courage and be bolder and more confident about advising and directing their boys
• the crucial role mothers play in expressing love to sons in healthy ways so they learn to respect and appreciate women as they grow up
• the importance of teaching sons about the values of hard work, community service, and a well-developed inner life
• the natural traps mothers of boys often fall into—and how to avoid them
• the need for a mother to heal her own wounds with the men in her life so she can raise her son without baggage and limitations
• the best ways to survive the moments when the going gets tough and a mom’s natural ways of communicating—talking, analyzing, exploring—only fuel the fire
When a mother holds her baby boy for the first time, she also instinctively knows something else: If she does her job right and raises her son with self-esteem, support, and wisdom, he will become the man she knows he was meant to be.
Aimed at mothers of sons of all ages, Meeker's (Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters) latest self-help manual takes multiple, not always cohesive, approaches to navigating the parent-child gender divide. While some statistically founded male-female differences, such as general deviations in communication style, are included, the author makes unexplained assertions that men and women are basically positioned to misunderstand one another. Meeker's contentions that every boy will feel threatened by the emotional attachment he has to his mother and that nothing is more important to a son than a solid relationship with his father are to be accepted as absolutes with no mention of the underpinning of data. Even though the "boy code" that triggers many boys' emotional off-switch is credited largely to social factors, mothers are said to be naturally more in tune with a son's needs. When we are offered a glimpse of why it is mothers are "wired" for more sensitive communication, the reasoning is imprecise. Meeker's points about egocentricism precluding children from truly empathizing with adults' emotions are some of the most clearly delineated in the book. Whereas in other places her line of thinking is less clear with claims that either unsubstantiated or appear out of the blue, such as when Meeker firmly asserts that religious faith in God makes it "far easier" to instil hope in your son. While it contains notable anecdotes and nuggets of advice few would question such as to keep yourself emotionally healthy so you can nurture your kids the manual relies heavily on underdeveloped theories on the strict, troublesome gender differences between essentially all mothers and sons.