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Posted by on Apr 4, 2017 in From Boy to Man, Parenting Tips, Saving Our Sons, The Quest Project, Tips for Moms | 0 comments

Raising Sons? Signs He’s Becoming A Man

From a Boy To a Man

How will you know when your adolescent son begins to transition into a man?  It won’t happen overnight, and there will be times when you wish it would!

Signs of Change: Your Son’s Becoming a Man

  • At approximately 11-13 yrs. of age “on average” a boy produces a greater amount of testosterone.  The production of this hormone will become evident by him having more aggressive behavior.  He’ll want to rid himself of this conflictual feeling most commonly by punching something. 
  • The first testosterone rush will intensify his angst, it takes time to manage these feelings.  I recommend parents of young adolescent boys buy a punching bag and present it to him with this explanation.   It’s a great release when he needs to vent (show him how to use it appropriately), or sign him up for Karate!
  • During this time, he’ll begin to think about the man he will become, what he cares about and what he stands for – usually in silence. 
  • He needs a sense of mission, competition, group involvement as well.  I know I say this often, because it’s important!

“A Man Among Men”

Becoming a man means growing, being responsible, learning and understanding – not sitting on the couch playing video games. 

Teach him alternate things to do like:  

  1. how to fish
  2. how to cook
  3. how to plant and care for a garden
  4. change a tire on the car 

Believe it or not, he needs responsibility!  He may resist and want to go back to the couch where it’s comfortable.  Set up some natural consequences ahead of time.  For example: “Son when you’re finished with homework/chores you can play your video game.”  That gives him choices and choices allow him to feel a sense of power.  Keep this in mind, if he feels he is making the choice you are more likely to get his buy in! 

He needs to feel accomplishment; again think about why video games are addictive to boys, they get to higher levels which make them feel powerful.  He needs to do his own thing which gives him a sense of growing and looking more mature (the get).  He needs you to see him do well and wants you to not notice the mistakes.  This is active responsible parenting.

Mom-Leave Me Alone!

Unfortunately Mom, part of this transition is letting go, pushing you away – his way!  He doesn’t understand these feelings (it’s innate and irrational).  It becomes a push/pull time in your relationship.  He wants you but not all the time.  He wants you to be somewhere close, but not noticeable to him or his friends.  My expert opinion from years of experience and research is “let him go through it and stop trying to get ahead of his mistakes, and more importantly ahead of his feelings.” 

Need help with difficult conversations? 

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This process can be character building and empowering.  Are you confused by your son’s needs and wants?  Share your thoughts in the comments or on my Facebook page, I’ll give you my opinion.

Clayton Lessor
Clayton Lessor, PhD in education and counseling, is a Licensed Professional Counselor in private practice. He is author of “Saving Our Sons: A Parent's Guide to Preparing Boys for Success." Clay has seen over 2000 boys since 2000 and facilitated over 300 Quest Project groups. Boys attend a 10-week "boys to men program" where they and their parents will learn the tools needed to get through these turbulent teen years.
Clayton Lessor

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