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Parents can do their bit towards a society more respectful of women by joining hands to raise their sons well instead of just lamenting and restricting their daughters.
TW: There is some description of violence against women which could be triggering to a survivor.
When my son was born almost 18 years ago, I was very happy to have a healthy child. I had never seen him as a privilege. I had looked at that little bundle and questioned my abilities about raising him well, and today I can say that my husband and I have.
Is it really so difficult to raise boys who are compassionate, respectful, helpful? No, absolutely not. Then why is there a dearth of good men all around? Why is every third man indulging in domestic violence or verbal abuse? Why are young boys objectifying and disrespecting girls around? Who are those boys/men who ruthlessly rape a girl/woman, chop off her body parts, burn her, thrash her, paralyze her, and eventually leave her to die? Where is the society, the parents, the extended family going wrong?
Let’s face the bitter truth… ours is a son-crazy nation. Pregnant women are blessed by elders (mostly other women) that they may bear sons; there are grand celebrations in many families when a son is born.
Often boys are not disciplined like the girls. They are pampered. The father in families with such mindsets often humiliates and berates the mother and other women. These men and even many women never stop believing and saying that the male gender is superior than the female!
Thus, many boys grow up being abusive, violent, disrespectful towards female gender, and have that feeling of superiority.
My husband and I raised our son in a very simple manner. We inculcated discipline in him, taught him household chores and cooking, instilled the values of compassion, respecting every human irrespective of gender, caste, creed. We have never treated him and our daughter differently. My husband and I have a respectful relationship.
No, we didn’t make any extra efforts to raise a son. Just like we are raising our daughter, we are raising him. Trust me, it’s not difficult at all.
When I see my son inching towards being a good adult, a good citizen, and most importantly a good man, I feel good. I have tried to break the tradition of pampering male children by raising a good son with good values whom anyone would love. When my son shows courtesy to his female classmates, often dropping them off home before coming home himself, it reiterates the fact that girls will be safe with him and treated with respect. If ever he errs, I will be the first one to rectify him.
Instead of just lamenting about what’s happening, if every home raises their sons well, most of the crimes related to women will disappear. Raising an entitled brat will not just make the society unhappy; it will make you, as a parent, unhappy the most.
Raising sons well is not difficult… not at all!
Image source: a still from the film Pink
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