How Parenting Teenage Boys Prepared Me for a Pandemic

None of us expected this pandemic, save maybe a few epidemiologists and public health experts who “expected” it in the same way we all “expect” to die, which is to say that we know it will happen, but we have no idea when or how or what it will feel like. Three months or so […]

Vaping, Living With & Talking to Boys

2 smiling blond brothers

In April, we talked about vaping, living with & talking to boys on On Boys podcast. We also talked about learning to trust yourself as a parent. And now that I think about, those seemingly diverse topics have more in common than we first realized… Hear me out. A solid base of reliable information and […]

Being a Non-Sporty Boy in a Sports-Driven Culture

On a spectacular spring day several years ago, my nine-year-old son, Jake, and I stepped into an elevator following a routine dentist’s appointment, headed for home. Jake, by the way, is one of those boys who doesn’t like sports, isn’t any good at them, and avoids them at every turn. Moments later, we were joined […]

How To Talk to Boys about Dating and Sexuality

It’s hard enough to talk body parts and their intricacies with a fellow adult; discussing them with a teenager who’d rather have his spleen removed by tiny gnawing rodents than hear you say “penis” is a feat like no other.  — Heidi Stevens It is not easy to discuss sex and dating with teen boys. […]

A Better Way to Talk to Boys About Rape Culture

Ask them, “What do you think about the words, ‘rape culture?’” Then listen. Listen to what they say and to what they express. Listen for the silences and hesitation. Listen past the defensiveness. Bite your own tongue, if you must, but instead of building a rebuttal, try to hear what’s behind your boys’ words. Paraphrase […]

Recap: Understanding How Boys Think – & What They Need

Boys and girls are different, biologically and socially. Yet despite the fact that most people know and accept that fact as, well, fact, one of the biggest mistakes we humans make is to assume that others are like us — and to assume, when we find out that they think and act differently than we […]

Talking to Boys about Sexually Aggressive Girls

I think I pressured a boy into having sex with me.  I was 16 at the time. So was he. It was our first date — and my first date, ever — after weeks and months of talking in study hall and passing notes. We went to see a movie (Twins, with Arnold Schwarzenegger). He […]

Video Games and Socialization

It used to drive me crazy to see a group of boys clustered around a screen. Before my boys got iPods (used, and purchased with their own money), I used to judge the boys who clustered in corners and played video games on their screens and devices at their older brothers’ basketball games. There they’d […]

Tips for Guiding Teens’ Use of Social Media

When it comes to teens, parents often regard social media as an initially invited, but now out-of-control houseguest that needs to get out! Firing off hundreds (and in some extreme cases, close to a thousand) of texts daily, obsessive FB posting  and tweeting, narcissistic levels of snapping and posting selfies on Instagram…it gets to be […]

Tips on Dealing with Anger — from a 7-yr-old Boy

If you have kids, you’ve gotten angry. Felt frustrated. And quite probably yelled at your kids. (More than once.) Photo by isforinsects via Flickr If you’re an enlightened parent, the kind who is always striving to do better, who is working hard to raise kids who are kind and compassionate, you’re probably felt guilty about […]