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Jennifer L. W. Fink - a journalist mom with 20+ years experience raising four boys.

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The Book

Building Boys: Raising Great Guys in a World that Misunderstand Males

Raising boys is important work.

We’ve all seen the horror a damaged boy can inflict upon society. So today’s parents are attempting to raise kind, compassionate, emotionally sensitive boys – in a society that misunderstands male development and proclaims The Future is Female.

Misconceptions about masculinity and male development hinder parents and harm boys.

Author Jennifer L.W. Fink, a mom of four sons, didn’t initially realize that parenting boys is very different than parenting girls or non-binary children. She thought you could parent a Child, irrespective of gender.

An image of the Building Boys book cover.

She eventually realized that overlooking a child’s gender is as unhelpful as ignoring a child’s race because gender, like race, impacts an individual’s experience of the world.

Building Boys: Raising Great Guys in a World that Misunderstand Males shows parents how to raise confident, secure boys in an era of evolving gender norms.

Drawing on her two-plus decades of experience as a “boy mom,” Fink points out possible pitfalls (like academic expectations that are wildly out-of-sync with male development) and teaches parents how to help boys thrive despite lingering sexism and a lack of societal support.

How Building Boys Can Help You

Parent /

When your son is a toddler, teen, or something in between, Jennifer can help with information, support, targeted tips.

Parent Resources →

School /

Want to increase test scores & decrease disciplinary problems? Connect with your boys! Jennifer shares insights, tips & tools that can transform educational environments.

School Resources →


Boys want (and need) to be part of the larger community. Jennifer shows churches, youth groups, clubs to how to tap into boys’ interests and effectively meet the needs of boys.

Community Resources →

Founder and Author

Jennifer L. W. Fink

Hi, I’m Jennifer L. W. Fink and I am Building Boys.

I’m a mom of four sons, co-host of the ON BOYS parenting podcast, and author of two books about raising boys. I’m also a freelance journalist (& Registered Nurse) who’s spent 20+ years researching and writing about boys’ issues. If I’ve learned anything in that time, it’s this: Most people misunderstand males. And that misunderstanding hurts (and hinders) our boys and harms our societies.

I learned most of that the hard way. I started Building Boys so you don’t have to do the same!

A bit more about me:

  • I’ve been a married mom; a divorced and co-parenting mom; and a married-again-at-midlife mom.
  • I’ve had kids in parochial school, homeschool, public school, college, and tech school.
  • I’ve come to accept the fact that most teenage boys will wear little more than a sweatshirt in the dead of winter.

Parenting boys changed my life. For the better. As much as you may be struggling right now, I want you to know that things can be better for you too. I’m here to help.

Here’s to building boys! 


Building Boys Manifesto

Why Boys and Not 'Kids'?

Boys face unique challenges due to gender stereotypes and widespread ignorance regarding male development. Sex and gender affect boys’ experience.

At Building Boys, we believe:

There’s no such thing as a “typical boy.” All boys are different. So while boys, generally speaking, are prone to movement and risk-taking, we know that’s not true of all boys. We steer away from stereotypes.

All boys can succeed. We define “success” as productive engagement with the world. All boys have something important to contribute to the world.

Understanding boys is the first step toward effectively parenting and educating boys. Boys are different than girls, and so is their experience of the world. In order to best help our boys, we need to learn all we can about them and their experiences.  


Most adults are well-meaning. The vast majority of teachers, coaches and parents genuinely want to help the kids in their charge. But they don’t all understand boys, and some haven’t confronted or resolved their own issues. Sharing information and working together is more productive in effecting change than blame and shaming. 

Building boys will improve the world. Healthy, confident boys grow into healthy, confident men. Together, we can expand our boys’ opportunities and make a difference for the next generation.

Building Boys is one of the few special and safe places on the internet for parents of boys to be open and real about the unique struggles and joys of raising these mini-men…The lack of judgement and collective wisdom from others at the front line makes it my go-to place for real world advice and to offer support to those coming behind me.

- Leah, Building Boys member

This community has been a lifesaver for me…I don’t know where I’d be without this group!

– Liesl, Building Boys member


If you're looking for a great community of like-minded people who want to build boys up -

Friendly Discussions

“I would like to know what you do for yourselves to ensure you stay sane for your family…”

Caring Community

“…there are times I feel I can’t stand my 14-year-old…I feel defeated and hopeless…it feels better knowing I am not alone.”

Ideas and Sharing

“My boys make SUCH A MESS when they pee…Does anyone have tips or tricks to help the situation?”

Common Interests

“We’re all doing the best we can as parents. We are going to make mistakes…And we’re going to do a lot right because we are intentionally doing our best.”

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Building Boys

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