Friday, November 19, 2010

Single Moms Raising Boys

Someone once asked me, “How do you do it?  How do you raise two little boys with no dad?”  I just shrugged and said the only logical thing that came to me.  “I just do it.”  What else is there to do?  Not do it?  That wasn’t an option to me and I wouldn’t want to Not do it anyway.  I’m their mother and even if I can’t be the World’s Best Mom or World’s Better Than Married Mom, I’m gonna be the best mom I can be.  And like all single moms of boys, I find myself wondering, “Can I, as a woman, raise my boys to be good men?”

About a week ago, I put a poll up asking people what they thought regarding boys and fathers.  Here’s the question:

All boys….
a)    … need THEIR dad.
b)    … need a good male role model.
c)    … need a DAD.
d)    … just need their mom.

Only a few people answered and that’s totally cool.  Super glad anyone answered, really.  All voters chose (B).  I found it really interesting because I’ve come across so many opinions about this.  While waiting for my poll to end, I verbally asked various people of different backgrounds. 

One single mom told me, “Oh I’d rather have my boys’ father in their lives than not at all.  He drinks a lot, isn’t reliable, and pretty irresponsible.  But at least they have their father.”

Another said, “I’d rather have his father completely out of his life, than to see his father ruin my son’s life.”

I also asked married moms, single dads, and married dads.  Some people say boys don’t need dads and some say they need A dad.  And probably the best thing I’ve heard is this from a man, “Boys will become men.  They do need male role models.  Not that women can’t raise good men on their own, I’ve known quite a few who have.  But just like girls need a woman role model, boys need men too.  But it’s important that they have good, healthy, and responsible men in their lives.  Not just any men.”

One of my good male friends, Dennis, has three daughters and one son.  His son, six years old, is his youngest and his daughters are eleven, thirteen, and fifteen.  He and his son hold the doors open for his wife and daughters whether they are going in and out of a building or in and out of a car.  He told me, “I want my son to know how to treat women right.  And I want my daughters to find men who treat them right.  The best I can do is lead my son in his journey to manhood and show my daughters what to look for.”

I guess the best thing I can do is… my best.  In my Do Boys Need Men blog, I said that it’s my responsibility to make sure that the men in our lives represent the men I want my boys to grow up into.  And no, I’m not going to point and say “That one!  I want Caden to be like him!”  But I will feel more confident that a male friend, relative, etc. whose presence in our lives is something that is healthy, responsible, kind and just over all just what makes a good man.

Stay tuned for my next Momming topic:  What Makes A Good Man?

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