As a proud mother of both a girl and a boy, my children have taught me a lot in so many different ways. As a result, I can't help but think of what I'm teaching them. While my daughter is a whole other post, I think there's a few definitive things moms should teach their sons by the time they're 5. It's not an exhaustive list, by any means, but just a highlight of the key points boys — like my son — should know and understand, IMO.
It's funny when I think about the day we discovered the sex of our baby because, although the pregnancy was entirely different than the one I experienced while growing my daughter, I wanted to believe it was another girl. I'd somehow convinced myself I couldn't have a boy and I wouldn't know how to mother him or be interested in things he'd be interested in (sexist and unfair, I know). I thought in spending so much time with my daughter for years prior, and never being a huge fan of my own little brother growing up (sorry, bro), I didn't have it in me to raise a boy. Part of the problem? Raging hormones clouding my judgement. But the other part, I know now, was fear of messing up.
The day we left that ultrasound, I cried until my eyes puffed. Yes, I had gender disappointment and though totally normal, I felt awful. I refused to accept the truth of this amazing news because I didn't know then that this little boy would steal my heart the moment he took his first breath. Even now, I look at him and feel actual heart flutters. I don't know what I was thinking when disappointed from that visit and I'm ashamed I felt that way. Life knew what I needed before I did and I'm grateful for that. Plus, raising my girl has been 100 percent more challenging, by the way. Who knew?
Since my baby boy just turned 5 in October (and is exactly half his older sister's age), I've reflected a lot on what kind of person he's becoming. He's always been intuitive and compassionate but, lately, I'm noticing some of the things I've been teaching him have actually resonated. Like, maybe he's been listening all along and maybe I'm not so bad at mothering a boy after all. Here are some things, I think, moms should teach their sons early on so that one day you can look at them the way I've been looking at my little guy, knowing you're instilling the foundation for a future great man.