Author Topic: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?  (Read 6812 times)

cheapass

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Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« on: May 20, 2017, 11:25:02 AM »
I've got a daughter who's 7 months and we're planning on having one more kid. I'm terrified of having a boy because both of the toddlers/children i know who are male have been absolute nightmares... Biting, hitting, throwing shit, blatantly disobeying their parents, etc.

Is this normal or is it possible to raise a son who's not a total turd?

Both of the boys referenced above don't really get disciplined either. Their parents take more of a "coddling" approach and typically there's no follow through to any warnings about behavior. They also eat garbage "kids food" full of sugar and processed ingredients. Maybe these factors contribute?
« Last Edit: May 20, 2017, 11:26:37 AM by cheapass »
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wordnerd

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2017, 11:35:11 AM »
Um, yes. And, yes, it sounds like your anecdotal data are skewed.

I only have a boy (I also grew up with two brothers close in age, as a girl), but it seems very doable and that discipline shouldn't be different than for girls. We set consistent standards for our toddler boy, and while he certainly pushes boundaries (as is developmentally appropriate), he also obeys them and has a very sweet side.

Out of curiosity, were you this worried about having a boy before having your first child? If so, why were you willing to risk it then but not now? If not, maybe you just don't want a second child (which is totally fine), and this is a rationalization.
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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2017, 12:26:55 PM »
I've got a daughter who's 7 months and we're planning on having one more kid. I'm terrified of having a boy because both of the toddlers/children i know who are male have been absolute nightmares... Biting, hitting, throwing shit, blatantly disobeying their parents, etc.

Is this normal or is it possible to raise a son who's not a total turd?

Both of the boys referenced above don't really get disciplined either. Their parents take more of a "coddling" approach and typically there's no follow through to any warnings about behavior. They also eat garbage "kids food" full of sugar and processed ingredients. Maybe these factors contribute?
I think your last paragraph is the understatement of the year! It's not 'maybe' but 'hell yeah' they contribute.
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Milizard

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2017, 12:42:06 PM »
A lot of it has to do with their personalities, and girls can be little hellions as well.

bogart

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2017, 08:46:07 PM »
Yes.  I've got an elementary school-aged boy and am constantly (touch wood) told what a good kid he is, how well he listens, how good he is about following rules, what a good example he sets for other kids.

Every kid is different.  I don't take much credit for my kid behaving well -- sure, I've done some things right/well, but I also lucked out.  But I do (a) enforce rules; (b) not turn a "no" into a "yes" because the question gets asked repeatedly (I also don't necessarily allow the question to be asked repeatedly, though I am not inherently opposed to discussing the reasons for something.  But I'm also willing to tell my son that sometimes the reason is "Because I don't want to deal with that today," or (the reason for the no-screentime-before-noon rule) "Because I find the household runs more calmly and is a more pleasant place to be when that rule is in place"); (c) praise good behavior, both in the moment and after the fact; and (d) do stuff like ask other parents, when I pick my son up from their homes, "Did he behave himself?" and listen to the answer (and act, as required).  And sure, there have been times ... but mostly, he's well behaved and fun to be around.

cheapass

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2017, 01:12:44 PM »
Holy shit we're sitting here with one of the little shits and his family and they're negotiating his time-out time. The inmates are running the prison.
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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2017, 01:20:53 PM »
If those parents had girls it would be the same. It has nothing to do with sex and everything to do with bad parenting.

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2017, 02:44:20 PM »
If those parents had girls it would be the same. It has nothing to do with sex and everything to do with bad parenting.
+1
I saw this too many times by other parents when DS was growing up. They'd be very permissive when their kid was young, then try to apply more restrictions as the kid got older & more unruly, with the predictable pushback. We reversed the process, being very restrictive when DS was very young & gradually removing those restrictions as DS proved he could handle the increased freedom. We & his grade school practiced Love & Logic, which really helped him experience natural consequences of his choices rather than us micromanaging. (Helicopter parenting is as bad as permissive parenting, IMO.) We had a very pleasant childhood & teen years with him, & he's a delightful young adult now.

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2017, 03:48:21 PM »
I've got a little boy who's just about four years old now.  Biting, hitting, throwing shit, have all been issues we had to work on with him, but it's pretty rare for him to do any of them any more.  As far as disobeying people, I don't anticipate that to be an issue.  We set guidelines about many things, and explain what will happen if they're not followed.  If your guidelines and reprimands are consistent and appropriate, a kid will choose to follow the rules over getting the reprimand.

Hargrove

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2017, 03:54:15 PM »
Did you imagine all boys were terrible and then... just... snapped out of it to become men at some point?

Rowellen

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2017, 05:48:13 PM »
My boy is an absolute sweetheart. He's very polite and well behaved. His sister on the other hand..... let's just say, it's a combination of parenting and personality.

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2017, 09:19:38 PM »
Did you imagine all boys were terrible and then... just... snapped out of it to become men at some point?

Hell no.

The little shits get older and became over-aged children.   Same as girls who aren't raised right.

You raise them to become quality adults and that's generally what you get.   Otherwise, not so much.




jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2017, 01:34:50 AM »
Except for a handful of days out of 13 years, my boy has been such a sweetie pie. When he was very young, he was throwing things at two people he knew. When I changed his food, he stopped.

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #13 on: May 22, 2017, 06:20:43 AM »
My boys are well mannered and well behaved - ages 11 and 14.   Trust me, it goes both ways.   I look at my friends with their pre-teen and teen daughters who are unappreciative, mouthy, sassy, etc.  and sometimes wonder the same thing about girls.   

I love having boys, and as a tom boy myself, I think it worked out well that I did not have daughters.  I work in the schools with hundreds of kids, so I get to witness a wide variety of kids.

Part of the trick with boys is understanding how they operate.  A younger boy will typically be more physical and active, less likely to sit for long periods of time.  They are sometimes more into fighting type games, don't freak out if they turn a stick into a pretend gun.  For things like long car rides - spending 20 minutes at a rest stops allowing them to run around in the grass helps.    Boys do things like argue and get over it, while girls are more likely to hold a grudge or get caddy.  Some girls can be downright mean in a way few boys are.

Laura33

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #14 on: May 22, 2017, 08:50:31 AM »
If those parents had girls it would be the same. It has nothing to do with sex and everything to do with bad parenting.

+2.

My DD was the hellion for whom none of the traditional parenting methods worked.  My boss called her "The Electron."  We spent the next 3.75 years debating whether we should even risk #2, because another one like her would have made my head explode.

My DS (who arrived 4.5 years later) is all sweetness and light and mellowness.

It has nothing to do with gender.  It has to do with the kids' personalities, the parents' parenting skills and personalities, and the "fit" between the two.

I think boys sometimes get the "soft bigotry of low expectations."  I.e., everyone expects them to be wild, and so no one bothers to step in and correct the bad behavior -- which, of course, becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. 
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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #15 on: May 22, 2017, 09:30:31 AM »
I know twins who have been brought up with exactly the same rules and boundaries and have entirely different attitudes towards authority.  I also know families with four kids under ten, again all brought up under the same structure, and some are terrors and others are committed rule-abiders.  So far I haven't seen any gender differences.

Not to discount parenting entirely, but A LOT of this is luck of the genetic draw.  No matter the effort you put in, there's nothing close to a guarantee regarding how your kid is going to act.  I have a 21 month old boy who is generally as easy as can be, but I know there's a decent chance that kid #2 or 3 could be a real challenge.   

Which is also to say that looking with contempt on other parents, especially if you aren't spending a significant amount of time in their shoes, is rarely a good look.     

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #16 on: May 22, 2017, 11:21:55 AM »
^ +1.

I go a touch further than genetics and say biochemical. That's where food and other physical variables can make a difference. I can barely stand when children are blamed for that, or their parents are before their parents know the scoop. When a child has tough bio-responses to environmental factors, it can reasonably take a while before a family determines that doing everything their next door neighbour does can result in an entirely different experience. That's neither the child's fault nor the parent's.

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #17 on: May 22, 2017, 12:06:23 PM »
I have two little boys. The oldest has difficulty regulating his emotions (over-dramatic) but has made HUGE progress in that over the last two years. He is also stubborn, loving, academically gifted, a master Lego builder, and has a thirst for knowledge that is amazing.

My youngest is the most strong willed child I have ever met. He's so stinking cute that lots of people don't want to hold him to standards because of that (yes, people have actually said that to us/him). He is also ridiculously creative, has a wonderful memory, and seriously needs to be hugged/held as he is a very tactile kid.

Both of these boys are very snuggly, love to read, and generally fun to be around. They are also loud, full of energy, and work hard to turn a "no" into a "yes" (which we don't do).

Honestly, I figure having a boy with high energy beats the heck out of my (girl) self as a teenager and I was a total rule follower. We have come to understand that we can set rules/boundaries and stick with punishment/rewards, but a LOT of how they act and how our day works is dependent on their personalities.

rockstache

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #18 on: May 22, 2017, 12:14:29 PM »
I would like to clarify that my comment on bad parenting was solely related to the post immediately above where the PP stated that the child and parent were negotiating time out time. Kids not having clear boundaries that they are aware of is bad parenting IMHO. It also makes for a tough childhood.

I am in no way stating that all kids are the same, or that one standard of 'good' (whatever that means) parenting could work for everyone, or overcome a child's personality or special needs.

Milizard

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #19 on: May 23, 2017, 09:55:15 AM »
I know twins who have been brought up with exactly the same rules and boundaries and have entirely different attitudes towards authority.  I also know families with four kids under ten, again all brought up under the same structure, and some are terrors and others are committed rule-abiders.  So far I haven't seen any gender differences.

Not to discount parenting entirely, but A LOT of this is luck of the genetic draw.  No matter the effort you put in, there's nothing close to a guarantee regarding how your kid is going to act.  I have a 21 month old boy who is generally as easy as can be, but I know there's a decent chance that kid #2 or 3 could be a real challenge.   

Which is also to say that looking with contempt on other parents, especially if you aren't spending a significant amount of time in their shoes, is rarely a good look.   

+1

I've been thinking about this topic a little bit.  My 1st boy is more of  a rule follower.  Also, kind of helpless/needs to be prompted to do things/shown the way.  Is that a quality you want in adulthood?  Not really.  Good thing he's got a lot of other great qualities!
My 2nd kid doesn't like to wait for permission--he tries things on his own.  Incredibly creative--can create games and toys out of any mundane thing.  This will kind of drive you nuts with this at this age, but it's a great quality to have in an adult!  I mean, think about Elon Musk forging his own way.

I can take either of these kids grocery shopping with me, or out in public, and they'll behave adequately.  Out together, they will take advantage of my divided attention.  Since I don't like being a stern bitch or bribing them all of the time, I leave them at home.  I guess you can call me a shitty parent for this.  I would get called a shitty parent if I were a stern bitch with them in order to make them behave as well.  Damned if you do, damned if you don't.  Might as well do your own damn thing! ;-)

sjc0816

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #20 on: May 23, 2017, 11:02:45 AM »
Two boys here - 11 and 8. My boys are delightful (not perfect, of course), respectful kids.

I do think parenting does have something to do with behavior. We have high behavioral standards for our boys and have been pretty strict when they do not follow our rules. We follow through with consequences and they are well aware of the consequences of their actions. Granted, they are older and you have to raise them this way....it doesn't happen overnight....but parenting matters.

My close friend's 5th grade son was just suspended for sucker punching a kid at recess (knocked him out). She was so upset....crying to me about it. She was understandably upset. But when I asked her what the consequences were at home....her answer was "I'm hoping that him seeing me cry is enough." She also said "I know this doesn't excuse him, but (son) said that XYZ deserved it and he probably did). Um, I don't think so. But they've always been "loose" with parenting...."boys will be boys"....be best friends with them instead of parents....and she's reaping the benefit now. She has three boys.

Anyway, I think this applies to girls as well...I just don't have any so can't speak to raising them.

cheapass

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #21 on: May 23, 2017, 11:18:05 AM »
^ +1.

I go a touch further than genetics and say biochemical. That's where food and other physical variables can make a difference. I can barely stand when children are blamed for that, or their parents are before their parents know the scoop. When a child has tough bio-responses to environmental factors, it can reasonably take a while before a family determines that doing everything their next door neighbour does can result in an entirely different experience. That's neither the child's fault nor the parent's.

What sort of environmental factors would cause behavioral issues? Curious to research more.
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Gin1984

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #22 on: May 23, 2017, 11:31:50 AM »
Two boys here - 11 and 8. My boys are delightful (not perfect, of course), respectful kids.

I do think parenting does have something to do with behavior. We have high behavioral standards for our boys and have been pretty strict when they do not follow our rules. We follow through with consequences and they are well aware of the consequences of their actions. Granted, they are older and you have to raise them this way....it doesn't happen overnight....but parenting matters.

My close friend's 5th grade son was just suspended for sucker punching a kid at recess (knocked him out). She was so upset....crying to me about it. She was understandably upset. But when I asked her what the consequences were at home....her answer was "I'm hoping that him seeing me cry is enough." She also said "I know this doesn't excuse him, but (son) said that XYZ deserved it and he probably did). Um, I don't think so. But they've always been "loose" with parenting...."boys will be boys"....be best friends with them instead of parents....and she's reaping the benefit now. She has three boys.

Anyway, I think this applies to girls as well...I just don't have any so can't speak to raising them.
I am curious what the boy did to get sucker punched.  Because I would not punish my child for self-defense but if my child started it, I would not be the one crying. 

sjc0816

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #23 on: May 23, 2017, 11:34:29 AM »
Two boys here - 11 and 8. My boys are delightful (not perfect, of course), respectful kids.

I do think parenting does have something to do with behavior. We have high behavioral standards for our boys and have been pretty strict when they do not follow our rules. We follow through with consequences and they are well aware of the consequences of their actions. Granted, they are older and you have to raise them this way....it doesn't happen overnight....but parenting matters.

My close friend's 5th grade son was just suspended for sucker punching a kid at recess (knocked him out). She was so upset....crying to me about it. She was understandably upset. But when I asked her what the consequences were at home....her answer was "I'm hoping that him seeing me cry is enough." She also said "I know this doesn't excuse him, but (son) said that XYZ deserved it and he probably did). Um, I don't think so. But they've always been "loose" with parenting...."boys will be boys"....be best friends with them instead of parents....and she's reaping the benefit now. She has three boys.

Anyway, I think this applies to girls as well...I just don't have any so can't speak to raising them.
I am curious what the boy did to get sucker punched.  Because I would not punish my child for self-defense but if my child started it, I would not be the one crying.


She told me what happened - and it's what my son told me as well (he saw it happen). Friend's son got mad when XYZ captured his flag....and pushed him. XYZ threw a handful of mulch at friend's son and walked away. Friend's son ran up and punched him in the side of the head.


Mr. Green

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #24 on: May 23, 2017, 11:39:44 AM »
Despite "gluten-free" and "natural" diets having become trendy, some kids really do have issues with certain foods. It's a mystery to me why we're suddenly noticing this in kids more now than just 10-20 years ago, if genetics are changing or if we're really putting shittier ingredients into our food, but it's happening. We have some friends with a 6 year old and when he eats gluten, too much sugar, or certain food dyes you can literally watch him morph into an asshole. Keep him away from those things and he's a pretty normal kid.
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Mr. Green

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #25 on: May 23, 2017, 11:43:07 AM »
Two boys here - 11 and 8. My boys are delightful (not perfect, of course), respectful kids.

I do think parenting does have something to do with behavior. We have high behavioral standards for our boys and have been pretty strict when they do not follow our rules. We follow through with consequences and they are well aware of the consequences of their actions. Granted, they are older and you have to raise them this way....it doesn't happen overnight....but parenting matters.

My close friend's 5th grade son was just suspended for sucker punching a kid at recess (knocked him out). She was so upset....crying to me about it. She was understandably upset. But when I asked her what the consequences were at home....her answer was "I'm hoping that him seeing me cry is enough." She also said "I know this doesn't excuse him, but (son) said that XYZ deserved it and he probably did). Um, I don't think so. But they've always been "loose" with parenting...."boys will be boys"....be best friends with them instead of parents....and she's reaping the benefit now. She has three boys.

Anyway, I think this applies to girls as well...I just don't have any so can't speak to raising them.
I am curious what the boy did to get sucker punched.  Because I would not punish my child for self-defense but if my child started it, I would not be the one crying.


She told me what happened - and it's what my son told me as well (he saw it happen). Friend's son got mad when XYZ captured his flag....and pushed him. XYZ threw a handful of mulch at friend's son and walked away. Friend's son ran up and punched him in the side of the head.
I can totally see that kid sitting in a jail cell 8 years from now if they don't figure out how to change how that kid handles anger.
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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #26 on: May 23, 2017, 11:52:39 AM »
Holy shit we're sitting here with one of the little shits and his family and they're negotiating his time-out time. The inmates are running the prison.

Yes well behaved kids are not only possible, they are preferable. Treating them as equals is not the way to do it. Structure, discipline, consistency.

Poorly behaved children are indicative of poor parenting. Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. Cause/effect.

My 2yr old had a meltdown in Church last Sunday and I was pretty POd at him. He'd not had an episode like that since he was 14months. He knows better but noticed his shoelaces were different lengths, and it really bothered him.

Good luck! Kids are GREAT.
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jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #27 on: May 23, 2017, 01:17:48 PM »
What sort of environmental factors would cause behavioral issues? Curious to research more.

I see that Mr. Green responded to this, and I would basically just +1 what he said.

My kid had bouts of nightmare "behavioural" stuff, but I could tell he was actually completely "good", and was terribly frightened by his own symptoms (i.e., didn't want to be doing them), so I was all WTF? In our case, his gut bacteria was screwing him over, so I changed that and he became all mellow and happy, with zero behavioural issues. His pediatrician witnessed the before and after, asked me what the heck I'd changed, then sent other patients to me :)

For other kids, it can be allergies (e.g., pollen), exposure to certain chemicals (e.g., in laundry detergent), overexposure to fragrances, etc.

Finding the culprit takes time and work, but once you do, voila! A child with no behavioural stuff, at which point normal teaching, discipline, sleep, etc, are completely effective.

cheapass

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #28 on: May 23, 2017, 01:43:26 PM »
I see that Mr. Green responded to this, and I would basically just +1 what he said.

My kid had bouts of nightmare "behavioural" stuff, but I could tell he was actually completely "good", and was terribly frightened by his own symptoms (i.e., didn't want to be doing them), so I was all WTF? In our case, his gut bacteria was screwing him over, so I changed that and he became all mellow and happy, with zero behavioural issues. His pediatrician witnessed the before and after, asked me what the heck I'd changed, then sent other patients to me :)

For other kids, it can be allergies (e.g., pollen), exposure to certain chemicals (e.g., in laundry detergent), overexposure to fragrances, etc.

Finding the culprit takes time and work, but once you do, voila! A child with no behavioural stuff, at which point normal teaching, discipline, sleep, etc, are completely effective.

Thanks for the info. Did you remedy with a probiotic or something else?
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jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #29 on: May 23, 2017, 04:59:14 PM »
No, a total 180 in diet, so the body could sort out its own balance.

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #30 on: May 23, 2017, 05:41:54 PM »
I was terrified when pregnant with my first.  My main terror was that I might have to go to monster truck shows if he was a boy.  The notion was beyond horrifying.  Then my son was born and I realized that I won't have to go to truck show for a while.  He is 16 and I haven't had to go yet.  Then my daughter came along and mostly I was relieved because we had no boy names left.

Both my kids are wonderful people.  Completely unique but very little is gender specific.

We did have moments where correcting behaviour was required for both daughter and son.  They were different for each (daughter did the most biting, son had the most temper tantrums) but no single phase lasted terribly long. 

I would like to believe it was my brilliant parenting techniques while my husband believes it is his calm disposition.  I did a lot of reading about parenting styles, spent a lot of time at my kid's preschool mainly watching the child carers technique.  I was an anxious parent struggling with postpartum depression so desperately wanted to see how those with early childhood education degrees kept calm all day long.  So I observed and copied a lot of their techniques. 

And my mom is excellent with babies.  Her advice was anticipate the behaviour you want.  That is what you will get. 

I learned that often times you can just avoid meltdowns by paying attention.  Don't let hunger, tiredness, loneliness or boredom determine a situation.  A bored kid gets into stuff.  A lonely kid does stuff to get attention, hungry kids get hangry and tired kids lose self regulation or get hurt.  Parent proactively and reduce the opportunities that invite bad behaviour.  Hell I will not sit patiently in a restaurant if I haven't gotten enough running around done, or needed to eat 20 minutes ago or should be in bed.  Why would a three year old?

I also have three younger brothers.  All very energetic boys 2 to 16 years younger than me so I grew up surrounded by boys and their friends.  Thoughtfulness was required.  But yeah, stuff happened.  We all learned to repair drywall and wallpaper after two of the boys fell through the wall piggyback wrestling in the dining room.  Or put out fires after my youngest brother accidentally left a ember on a couch in the garage. 

But we weren't really bad at any age, including, to the marvel of many of my parents friend, as teenagers.  My kids and the kids of the four families on our street are delightful kids according to all the older neighbours who get to meet them at parties or when they need help with jobs.  The one thing us mom's have in common is zero acceptance of hurting other people.  Everyone is required to be kind.
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Rowellen

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #31 on: May 23, 2017, 05:56:16 PM »
No, a total 180 in diet, so the body could sort out its own balance.

I have a friend with a son with similar issues. She followed the fail safe diet and gradually added in other foods to test what sets him off. His teachers can notice if he's had one of his trigger foods.

bridget

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #32 on: May 23, 2017, 06:14:28 PM »
I know twins who have been brought up with exactly the same rules and boundaries and have entirely different attitudes towards authority.  I also know families with four kids under ten, again all brought up under the same structure, and some are terrors and others are committed rule-abiders.  So far I haven't seen any gender differences.

Not to discount parenting entirely, but A LOT of this is luck of the genetic draw.  No matter the effort you put in, there's nothing close to a guarantee regarding how your kid is going to act.  I have a 21 month old boy who is generally as easy as can be, but I know there's a decent chance that kid #2 or 3 could be a real challenge.   

Which is also to say that looking with contempt on other parents, especially if you aren't spending a significant amount of time in their shoes, is rarely a good look.   

Agreed.  I'm sure good and bad parenting make a difference, but my nephews are night and day in terms of behavior and were raised with the same set of parents.  The one having more trouble has a variety of issues like ADD and learning disorders (which make him feel extremely frustrated in a way that he's not really developmentally equipped to handle).  I've known more than one set of parents whose first kid was by virtue of innate personality or other factors is pretty chill, and they get all holier than thou about how they must just be really capable parents.  And then kid number two is a hellion, and they are doling out sincere apologies all around for judging other parents.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #33 on: May 23, 2017, 10:05:08 PM »
I've known more than one set of parents whose first kid was by virtue of innate personality or other factors is pretty chill, and they get all holier than thou about how they must just be really capable parents.  And then kid number two is a hellion, and they are doling out sincere apologies all around for judging other parents.

lol, yes :)     Or sometimes after the first four angelic kids! I think it's that Dr Sears (?) family that had multiple angelic kids then had a "high needs" one and that experience turned everything they "knew" about parenting on its head. But they became extremely helpful to those of us facing those kinds of issues, so well done, Team Sears!

I feel like my kid humbled me from about three weeks in utero, ha!

JustTrying

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #34 on: May 23, 2017, 10:50:39 PM »
It seems we have a pretty clear consensus here. Yes, boys can be wonderful. Yes, parenting matters. Yes, personality and temperament matter too.

I agree.

Laura33

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #35 on: May 24, 2017, 06:50:52 AM »
I've known more than one set of parents whose first kid was by virtue of innate personality or other factors is pretty chill, and they get all holier than thou about how they must just be really capable parents.  And then kid number two is a hellion, and they are doling out sincere apologies all around for judging other parents.

I grew up with my mom practically throwing out her shoulder patting herself on the back for how she raised me and how I was such a good kid and slept all night and entertained myself, etc., as compared to her friends who devoted sooooo much time to their kids who were spoiled brats and who didn't know how to behave in company and expected to be entertained at all times, etc.  [Subtext:  my mom was a divorcee/single mom at a time when that meant Bride of Satan, so she took great pride in having turned out a "good" kid, especially as compared to others who did everything "right" and still ended up with demon spawn.]

Then I had DD.  Oh.  After one particularly difficult visit, she said, "or, you know, maybe you were just a really easy kid, and I had no idea how lucky I was."
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TrMama

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #36 on: May 25, 2017, 12:27:45 PM »
I've got a daughter who's 7 months . . .

With all due respect, at 7 months you have no idea yet if your daughter is going to be a handful or not ;-)

My more challenging child was fairly angelic at that age. It took until she was 9 for us to figure out something wasn't quite working and that lack of discipline or boundaries wasn't the problem.

I also agree with Joon and others that other inputs can have a huge effect. Turns out my daughter is really sensitive to noise. This isn't a big deal at home (since I'm also pretty noise sensitive), but it causes major issues at school.

StarBright

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #37 on: May 25, 2017, 12:48:09 PM »

I can take either of these kids grocery shopping with me, or out in public, and they'll behave adequately.  Out together, they will take advantage of my divided attention.  Since I don't like being a stern bitch or bribing them all of the time, I leave them at home.  I guess you can call me a shitty parent for this.  I would get called a shitty parent if I were a stern bitch with them in order to make them behave as well.  Damned if you do, damned if you don't.  Might as well do your own damn thing! ;-)

If you're a shitty parent - then me too! This is exactly what happens with my kids. Solidarity!

thesvenster

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #38 on: May 25, 2017, 12:55:20 PM »
I believe that children at times need spankings to behave, administered without anger on the parents' part. And some strong willed boys probably need a few more spankings than other children might.

And a general parenting thought, I think the more responsibility kids get, the less likely they are to act up.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2017, 12:59:06 PM by thesvenster »

FireHiker

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #39 on: May 26, 2017, 11:54:18 AM »
Ha ha ha, my daughter was an angel at 7 months. Now, at 5, she is a hellion compared to my two boys. Good grief her strong will and determination are terrifying. The boys were rule followers, and she couldn't care less. So, yes, it is definitely possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself, to answer the original question. How much of it is nature vs. nurture though, ??? I have cousins who had wonderful, stable, firm but loving, consistent parents, and all three of them (my cousins, 1 boy and 2 girls, about my age) were total shits when they were kids. They are all stable, productive, fantastic adults now who look back with some shame and remorse on how they were as kids. Looking back I don't see any obvious parenting fails on the part of their parents.

Some of it is definitely just a matter of luck I think, although I would certainly not disregard the food/environment relationship to behavior. I've not seen it personally myself, but I've heard enough anecdotally, in enough different circles, to believe there's something to it. As for my daughter, she does eat differently from the boys because she's at a preschool where the food is provided. I'll be curious to observe if there's any change in behavior in a couple weeks when she moves to the public school and we control most of her food again. We don't do any food dyes at all, or a lot of the other crappy additives. I cut most of them out a few years ago trying to get my migraines under control, and since I went from having 30+ per year, to 4, I haven't seen a need to add any of that crap back into our diets.

zoltani

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #40 on: May 26, 2017, 01:19:19 PM »
Does anyone practice teaching mindfulness techniques to their children? It seems like it could help with anger issues. I watched a documentary about how some schools in the UK are teaching mindfulness meditation techniques and they saw a complete 180 in some of the problem children.
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Rowellen

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #41 on: May 26, 2017, 04:24:29 PM »
I have cousins who had wonderful, stable, firm but loving, consistent parents, and all three of them (my cousins, 1 boy and 2 girls, about my age) were total shits when they were kids. They are all stable, productive, fantastic adults now who look back with some shame and remorse on how they were as kids. Looking back I don't see any obvious parenting fails on the part of their parents.

I would say that's a testament to their parenting. They were clearly able to set firm boundaries and set good examples of how to be a good adult. It could easily have gone the other way. I know a family with three kids, 2 boys and one girl. All three have had problems with drug addiction and have been in and out of jail for drug and other petty offenses. Parents split.  Mostly absent father and when he was around he was abusive. Mother was not good at enforcing boundaries. The number of times I heard her say to her daughter, "why can't you be more like Rowellen?", makes me feel sick. I was a rule follower. Mostly A student. Known as the good, quiet one. It can't have helped that girl's mental state.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #42 on: May 27, 2017, 01:08:42 AM »
Does anyone practice teaching mindfulness techniques to their children? It seems like it could help with anger issues. I watched a documentary about how some schools in the UK are teaching mindfulness meditation techniques and they saw a complete 180 in some of the problem children.

YES! :)      Love love love. I offer models I learned in adult CBT therapy etc. (Though I still found that adjusting challenged biology was a critical foundation beneath that.)

Some schools in our area do Mind Up.

Anatidae V

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #43 on: May 27, 2017, 03:05:54 AM »
Does anyone practice teaching mindfulness techniques to their children? It seems like it could help with anger issues. I watched a documentary about how some schools in the UK are teaching mindfulness meditation techniques and they saw a complete 180 in some of the problem children.

YES! :)      Love love love. I offer models I learned in adult CBT therapy etc. (Though I still found that adjusting challenged biology was a critical foundation beneath that.)

Some schools in our area do Mind Up.
A primary school (Kindy to year 7) that my mum teaches at uses a "Values" approach. The teachers ask the kids if they're using "patience", "helpfulness" etc and treat it as a set of skills for the children to learn instead of innate attributes. Mum said by Year 7 (12 years old) she can easily pick which kids were at the school for years and which kids only started at the school recently.

Milizard

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #44 on: May 27, 2017, 08:53:56 AM »

I can take either of these kids grocery shopping with me, or out in public, and they'll behave adequately.  Out together, they will take advantage of my divided attention.  Since I don't like being a stern bitch or bribing them all of the time, I leave them at home.  I guess you can call me a shitty parent for this.  I would get called a shitty parent if I were a stern bitch with them in order to make them behave as well.  Damned if you do, damned if you don't.  Might as well do your own damn thing! ;-)

If you're a shitty parent - then me too! This is exactly what happens with my kids. Solidarity!

+1  ;-)

lemonde

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #45 on: May 27, 2017, 10:35:10 PM »
Yes! We're 99% cultural / environmental believers, though.

zoltani

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #46 on: May 30, 2017, 12:52:36 PM »
Does anyone practice teaching mindfulness techniques to their children? It seems like it could help with anger issues. I watched a documentary about how some schools in the UK are teaching mindfulness meditation techniques and they saw a complete 180 in some of the problem children.

YES! :)      Love love love. I offer models I learned in adult CBT therapy etc. (Though I still found that adjusting challenged biology was a critical foundation beneath that.)

Some schools in our area do Mind Up.

Oh yeah! In the documentary that's what they were calling it, mind up.
“The hardest thing in the world is to simplify your life. It’s so easy to make it complex. What’s important is leading an examined life.”

Yvon Chouinard

Meggslynn

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #47 on: May 31, 2017, 05:37:07 PM »
Funny, I have a 5 year old boy and when I found out we were expecting a girl I was terrified as it seems like the girl emotions (right from toddlerhood) are so much bigger. At least that's what I see in my parenting social circle.

moof

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #48 on: June 01, 2017, 12:22:53 PM »
Yes.  Our 4.5 year old boy is a good little guy.  He has been an easy going soul from day 1 (literally).  Of his group of friends there is a wide variation with no obvious correlation to gender.

One kid is probably Asperger's or mildly autistic, he is a major headache to be kept track off.  Think of someone who sees humanity as a novelty to be experimented with and prodded for entertainment (his father is Autistic, so this is not a huge surprise).

One girl is full on Mean Girls material, manipulating the group like a champ at times at only 4 years old.

Several just seem like run of the mill kids with ups and downs.  Call it pot luck as to what you will get.  I am in the 50/50 environment vs inherited.

jezebel

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Re: Is it possible to raise a little boy who behaves himself?
« Reply #49 on: June 02, 2017, 08:46:24 AM »
Funny, I have a 5 year old boy and when I found out we were expecting a girl I was terrified as it seems like the girl emotions (right from toddlerhood) are so much bigger. At least that's what I see in my parenting social circle.

We've had the opposite experience with a girl then a boy.  The boy is by FAR much more emotional, since birth.  I think every child has a unique personality that isn't related to gender.  Most people stereotype based on their own personal circumstances, but for every one person's experience, there are others that have the opposite experience.