Last night, I wanted something quick to eat so I decided to dine at Applebee’s with my nineteen-month-old son. It was our first date. I’m always trying to teach my son life lessons and I thought going on a date with him last night was a good time to teach him how to treat a woman. I know the idea of going out on a date with your child may seem strange, but as a mother, I think times like these are perfect opportunities to teach our sons how to treat women. Lately, I’ve been hearing radio personalities like Michael Baisden and Steve Harvey promote mentorship programs for young men due to the lack of positive male influences in their lives. I think these kinds of programs are great and very much needed, but I don’t think anyone should take a mother’s role in raising her son for granted.

I hear men say that only a man can teach a boy how to be a man, but I think this is an overstatement because there are things that mothers can teach their sons that fathers can not. For example, as a mother, you are the first woman your son will come into intimate contact with. That is major. Your son will learn how to treat women by watching how the men in your life treat you and most importantly how you treat yourself. I always try to be mindful of how I carry myself and how I act around my son because I know he’s observing although he’s barely two years old.

While on our date, I tried to instill some good values and best practices in him. Before I showed him how to open and hold the restaurant door open for me, I asked him if he had any money to pay for our meals. He looked up at me, shrugged his shoulders, and threw up his hands as if to say I don’t have any money. I laughed at his honest response, but thought about how many grown men give this same response and always depend on their woman to pay for their meals. I don’t want my son to be like that, I thought to myself. Once my baby mustered the strength to push the restaurant door open, we were quickly escorted to our seats. As we waited for our food, I marveled at the huge responsibility I had as a mother to train my son to be a decent man. Although my son has a while before he goes out on dates, I figured it’s never too soon to start teaching him.

I was proud of my son because he handled himself well in the restaurant except for when he tried to eat the kid’s menu and started yelling and laughing towards the end of dinner. I had to let him know that little boys don’t scream like park apes during dinner or eat the menus. Hopefully, next time he’ll remember to use his inside voice and not eat the menus. I’m glad my son and I went on our first date and I hope that I‘m able to teach him more life lessons through the life I lead.

My son and his father have a great relationship, but I still think I offer him some things that his father can not give him. For example, I love to read and always read around my son. As a result, my baby’s always trying to read a book and holds it up to his face as if he’s reading it. I’m always on the computer and guess what? My son is always trying to type on a computer. While I was pregnant, I used to listen to and sing all kinds of music to my unborn son all of the time. As a result, my son sings, dances and plays the piano. I bought him a Baby Grand piano for Christmas and he plays it everyday. He plays chords now and he places his hands in the correct position without anyone ever teaching him how to do so. I will give him formal lessons when he gets older.

Men, don’t minimize a mother’s role in raising her son to become a man. There are things that only a mother can teach her son. Mothers, let’s be mindful of this huge responsibility and make sure we lead lives of example for our sons.

Mothers, what do you do to instill good values in your son? I could use some pointers.

Be blessed!

ShalenaD.I.V.A
P.S.- Remember, everything as beauty including YOU. It just takes a true D.I.V.A to see it.

© 2011, Shalena D.I.V.A.- Author| Speaker| Life And Business Coach. All rights reserved.

77 comments on “Raising a Man by ShalenaD.I.V.A”

  1. Shalena! Kudos to you for being such a GREAT mom! I love that your teaching your son how to treat a woman. I think its important to instill good values in our children. Keep up the good work!

    -Anya Nicole

    • Hey, Anya! You’re a GREAT mom, too and I admire you for that. You’re right, it’s not easy being a parent, but it’s so worth it. I hope that I can instill good values and morals into my son to insure that he’ll be a good man. I know that kids make their own decisions, but I never want my son to look at me and say that I never taught him the right way. I want to encourage him and be there for him to make sure he makes those good decisions.

      TTYL!

  2. I believe a mother in a powerful influence in her sons life, but parenting styles have a lot to do with how well you teach. There is often more caught than taught. I can teach my son how to treat a woman but I can not immulate manhood. My son’s struggle with this today. They seek to know who to identify with because of the disconnect with their own father. They seek to understand what’s wrong with them that their own father didn’t take out the time and he lived with them for years. He was absent in his presence. That’s pretty frustrating for a young man to deal with, because you the mother have to convince him that he’s worthy of the love of both parents.That their is nothing wrong with them. But just like girls see a reflection of themselves in their mother so do boys seek the same refection in their fathers. I prayed with my children. I taught them the word of God. I prayed that God would be a father to them and send a tangible being that they can relate to , look up to and see themselves in, in a positive valuable way. You are right the process begins early in the mother’s womb. You have insight that 40 year olds still don’t have. God Bless your every endeavor and give you the grace to be an awesome teacher and mother to your son.
    Friendly Christian

  3. I couldn’t have said it better myself. I took my nine year old on a date and it was great. I’m showing him how to appreciate women when he gets older. Like the different tone of voice you would use with a lady versus how you would talk to your friends. I think we need to point out the little things. true it takes a man to show a boy how to be one but it takes a woman to show them how to be sensitive to our needs. Because who better knows what we want than us.

  4. I’m very mindful of how I carry myself around my son because I know that I will set the precedent of how he will perceive women and ultimately treat them. I also think that I encourage and nurture his creative side which he doesn’t egt from his father. A lot of the messed up men I’ve known usually suffered from a lack of or bad relationship with their mother.

    • I really have to watch how I carry myself. My boys are 19 and 14 but they watch me and critique me. I instilled in them not to follow the masses. To be unique just being YOU! I’ve instilled pride and confidence….that no matter the obstacl…e they can conquer it! My oldest is austic and just being around him is sooo humbling. He has a forgiving and loving spirit. He teaches me….that’s more of how I need to be! Neither of my boys have been in trouble, they are very mannerable and courteous. I am instilling in them that they don’t need many women to be happy….to value and respect our feelings. To have their own; good credit, home, job, house, career…never depend on a woman for that. I’ve raised them w/o their fathers help…and I’ve done a damn good job of it!!!!!!!!

    • My mother raised me. She taught me to respect all. My father came around several times a month. He taught me how to knock a fool down & mama taught me how to run em down before u knock em down. Mothers can do wonders raising a boy into a ma…n. Yall gotta stay strong & keep ur foot to his backside because as he approaches his teenage years he’s not the same sweet lil boy. But I’m living proof that a mother can properly raise a boy into a man. Most importantly, if pappy aint in the story, having male figures around the boy really helps (I don’t mean boyfriends only).

      “Now if while young u see ur lil boy trying to apply ur make up or nail polish….. Stop doing the girl things around the boy so much!!!!!”

      Yeah I said it!! So what?! : )

    • I salute all single mothers and I do agree that there are some things that only a mother can teach her son. I believe. Women hold it down when faced with the challenge of raising boys to be men however I do think that every boy needs a man …in their life I also believe that only a real man can teach a boy how to become a man. I myself have 2 boys and I instill respect, integrity, discipline, humility and a host of other vital characteristics. In them, my husband is their example of what A real man is, what one represents and he teaches them what the need to know about manhood. Though we women do wonders alone it would be in my opinion. Naive. To believe that a young man can be taught to be a man by anyone other than A man, truth is only a man can teach a boy how to become a man. Just my opinion

  5. I think it’s honorable what people like Michael Baisden and Steve Harvey are doing with mentoring young boys. However, I think there’s an underlying assumption that single mothers aren’t up to par. That may be true for some mothers, but not for me–not that I’m a single mom, but just in general. Growing up, almost every mom was a single mom and I’ll be darned if they didn’t do one heck of a job. If there’s no man what is a woman supposed to do? I don’t think the young men I grew up with who had no fathers were deficient in some way because there was no man around.They are men. I guess I don’t like the dumping on women raising men. Most of them are doing the best they can. Give them a break!

  6. I used to feel bad that my son didnt have his father around but now I see what a sensitive man he is and how he treats women and am proud of the way I raised him by myself….in some ways I think he is a better man for it.

  7. @Debbie–I hear a lot of women say that. And to be honest, I think some kids are better served without thier fathers if the fathers don’t want to be involved anyway. I’m really starting to believe the old saying that if you want to see how a man will treat a womna, juts look at his relationship with his mother. I also find that men who good relationships with their mothers tend to be more sensitive and understanding. I also find that in men with a bunch of sisters. They understand womanly things and always remind you that they knwo because they have x number of sisters–LOL!

  8. i wouldnt change it for anything….he taught me how to fend for myself…he taught me how not to rely on “dudes” as he so nicely put it….to me it was normal… until i got into high school and he wouldnt let me shave my legs =( …i miss him dearly …God has called him home

  9. @Racquel– iw ould love for you to write a story about your relationship with your father for father’s day on my website. That would be a great perspective. Why wouldn’t he let you shave yuor legs–LOL! I’m sorry to hear of his passing. Sounds liek he left you with good memories and values.

  10. Girl my 14 year old once told me I didn’t feel that that was lady like. I dropped my jaw…I thought he really is watching me. They often tell me after dates….he’s not the one bc of this…..I find myself listening attentively. Giving them an ear in my life makes the feel connected.

  11. see there…I think as long as you have one good parent that loves you, you benefit in different ways and tha’ts all that matters, whether your a women raising a boy or a man raising a girl. Love, understanding, communication = a beautiful child.

  12. I’m not a single mother or a man but I still believe that I cannot teach my son how to be a man. I have no idea what is is to be one just as a man has no idea what it’s like being a woman. I believe there is a balance that both male & femal counterparts bring to a child boy or girl. I believe boys/mothers and girls/fathers have a special bond. Point blank we need each other. If you are not with your child(rens) mother/father it is important that they are still activve & present in thechild(rens) lives. None of us are better than the other. I say as long as it takes 2 to make a child it takes to (sometimes more) to raise a child.

    • ‎Aysha Edwards, Extremely well stated oh lovely, beautiful, and sexy wife of mine…I could not agree more. At times there is negative undertone when it’s stated, but overall all it’s true. There are certain things that a woman cannot teach… her son, that only a man can. It’s not to undervalue what what single mothers do. What my wife said, is exactly how I feel. Again, this is probably because we are born 2 days apart….lol!See More

  13. @Gene– you opened up a whole nother topic– the effeminate boy who is raised by a woman and brought up around all girls. I know of some men who grew up in this scenario, but they are all man and then I know the ones who turned out to be very effeminate.

    • @Van E. I vistied your site and I liek it. I would love to showcase your organizationon my website. Would you liek to write an article about your work or a certain topic. feel free. Just email me at shalenadiva@shalenadiva.com .

      • @Shalena The master mind of the organization is my husband Alex L Montgomery Sr I’ll pass along the compliment to him. Thanks

  14. @Gene–the other point you raised was good, making sure our sons have positive male role models. I’m not going to lie. I don’t trust my son around too many people, especially in light of molestation and stuff. In my childhood church, the women would let their sons live with the pastor so he could mentor them. They went to better schools and you could see the difference being aroudnthe pastor made in their lives. But a few years back, there were some sexual molestation allegations and it was a mess. The pastor went to jail and all, but he was later acquitted. However, that clou do f doubt still lingers in my mind… I know it’s unfiar that the popular sexual molestation scandals taints the good men who are trying to mentor young men, but a mother has to be careful no matter what.

  15. Ok MRS DIVA{ SURE THERE ARE THINGS A WOMEN CAN TEACH A BOY/MAN BUT ONE THING SHE CANT IS HOW TO BE A MAN. SOME FOLKS TRY TO MINIMIZE OUR ROLES,UNTIL THERE WITHOUT US.

    • @Walter– I’m not trying to minimize men’s roles at all. I’m just representing for the single mothers who don’t have the father around. Nowadays, let’s keep it real, fathers are like luxuries for some chidlren. I respect the fathers and mothers, I really do.

      • Oh that was not directed at you, I WAS RAISED BY MY MOM, HAVE TWO DAUGHTERS,I TAUGHT THEM HOW A MAN SHOULD TREAT THEM, NO WAY DID I STEP INTO THERE MOMS SHOES TO TELL THEM HOW TO BE WOMEN. WOULDNT KNOW WHERE TO BEGIN. LOL

  16. Unfortunately in this day and age, we don’t always have the choice of having both parents around so all we can do is, do our best with what we know and pray that God helps where needed.

  17. kids nowadays are lucky to have two great parents and double lucky if they both still live under the same roof. To bad they can’t all have that….

  18. i have seen a lot of singles moms raising their sons on their own, & they have done a amazing job. which gives me hope that i can raise my two sons, by myself. even doe their dad is around,( he work & sleep alot.) i think, us woman has a ma…jor roll in raising our sons! we r the 1st female they see when they come into this world, we has to teach them how to love & respect women, we have to show them in order to make it in this world u have to give repect in order to receive it. teach them to treat women like a queen(if she deserve it, u have some out there that act worse than men). teach them u never hit a woman no matter what. its the dad’s job to teach the sons how to be a man. but the sons upbringing & personality depends on us women.See More

      • @shalenadiva, thank u, i don’t feel like im preaching, it just God has shown me alot of things in life. when i was pregnant w/ my 1st child i iused to say i didn’t want no boys unless the dad was around, but GOD had shown me different. so …i thank God 4 giving me 2 boys. and so far i had a lot of older woman tell me i’n doing a good job. when i need help in any thing my oldest son( who is only 9) comes right to my aide, quicker than his dad. he even had to his dad many times, & u wonder y mom stay mad w/u! when we go places, & he see women doing something by their selves, he offer his help & time to them. i think thats is so sweet & cute of him. (i couldn’t have done it with out the help og GOD!!! my son being helping women ever since he was 2. loving my boy! :)See More

  19. i was told i was makin my son a sissy…he was born n the middle of my daughters..he washd dishes..he made his bed…he vacummd the floor…he helpd sort clothes…he had to eat sleep..b clean..and wash clothes when he got older…who was s…upposed to teach him them those things other than me…hes 38 and he thanks me to this day…his wife was not a cook and wasnt all that clean…they divorced…today his lady friend had back surgery…guess whose helpn her out????..hahaha…no i didnt make him a sissy…i made him more worthy to b loved

    • @Rochelle–that’s right! You did a great job! He had to learn these things. That is why I think all children should do all kinds of chores to make sure they know hwo to fend for themselves.

    • Rochelle–men need to know how to take care of them selves too. You didnt make a sissy you made a self sufficient independant man. And not one that expects the woman to be the one doing all the damn house chores and the caring for kids and working. That’s the kind of man women today want. What a great man you raised!!

  20. @Shalena, I believe its how the boy is raised. See, my mother didn’t take any mess! She did what she had to do. Even chasing girls away from me when I was a teen (well, at least she tried to, lol) she didn’t put up with any whining or cryi…ng. Hence the term “shut up before I give u something to cry about”). My father was a good man, but outside of the basics we didn’t get to spend too much time together, but that too was ok. I formed a relationship with him 2 years before he passed away. Single mothers can do it whether the boy is raised around a bunch of girls or he’s the only child. I give lots of credit to single mothers. They understand that their child/ren didn’t ask to be brought into this world. It reminds me of one of my favorite records from Cheryl Pepsii Riley, Thanks for my child, circa 1988 I think. See More

      • Psst- I was a single father for many years! So we gotta give the men their props! Ijs. I aint trying to start nothing but we r out here too.

        • ‎@Gene– we’re celebrating mother’s this weekend. You’re always trying to start a war between the sexes.LOL! And of ocurse, I love the men and their roles. Y’all are the bomb!

      • Yes! I think it spoke for the work my mother did with my sister, my brother (RIP) & myself. She is one of the strongest women I know. & lord knows she didn’t hold back on the discipline! My ass is still sore from that last one back in the early eighties!! Love u Mom, I wasn’t complaining!!! LOL

  21. Ive raised two boy by myself. While my xhusband was out drinking chasing women. I raised two sons that made something out of them self.ones a emt the other still in collage geting a dr degree.i was the mom & dad in my boys life.i did a good job rasing them without a man.it dont take a man 2 raise great kids

  22. I have to say that I was raised by both my parents until the age of 8years old. My parents got a devorced, so lived with my mother until I was 15years. During that time my mother taught me all about life and women. She made sure that I didn…’t become depended on a women and learn to become independent. I also learned alot about women from my mother. At 15 I went to live with my father. It was time for me to live with him. I had gotten to the pointwhere I needed my father to finish teaching about manhood. What I learned about parenten. It take mother and father to teach me. There was a balance in what each one taught me.See More

  23. i sat him down and askd him…u and ur wife work…u get off at 2…she may have to work until 6…r u really gonna sit there and wait for her to come home to cook for u…or do u want to know how to have something ready for her….that did that….he decided 4 himself

    • I did the same thing…..women need partners nowadays not another child to take care of. My son’s girlfriend tells me all the time what a great son I raised. That makes me proud. Besides–when there’s help around the house and the chores and such are done, that leaves more time and more willingness for the fun stuff–if you catch my hint…..men need to catch on to that lol.

  24. MY DAD STEPPED N WITH ME WITH MY KIDS…THEIR DAD WAS N THE ARMY….ooppss…caps…anyway….he helpd a lot…LORD knows my son wud b sitn down usin the bathroom…if it was left up to me…hahaha…yup…somethings a mom cant teach her son……smh

  25. I dont think my son will be a sissy. He’s very rough with his sister and when she see’s my friends (females) he holds thier hands and gives them a hug. Thats not gay thats sayin your my friend and im a baby pick me up. He knows not to hit anybody or i will check him he knows not to be mean to other kids. And when somebody cries he gives them a toy in his way of sayin here maybe this will make his tears go away. #Maninthemaking. MY SON will be a man raised by his mother “ME”.. Have a blessed day.

  26. Yep and i have alot of it. And so many patients. I’ve been working and raising my two little ones by myself. So i check in and out on fb and go back to sleep on my day off and go to work and get on here untill my battery dies. I always carry my charger everywhere i go.

  27. Having to raise my daughter and son without much support from their father was my choice. Yes, I get frustrated at times because I feel as if I’m pulling his weight; however, I knew that going in. I know that I am raising both my children to be respectable and honorable and that they both are missing something that only their father can give. Acknowledging this in no way takes away from the work that I am doing.

    I think men fear that women will turn their son into a sissy because inherently speaking, women are not men. I think we have learned and taken on certain characteristics/traits in order to raise “real” men and again there is an aspect that we simply can’t provide.

  28. Its a challenge, but it can be done. One key factor, boys must not be over nurtured and under developed. We have to be careful how we raise all children, “sometimes” it can determine how they will be as an adult and what type person they might choose to date or marry. A little of topic, but I have dates with my boys. We go bowling, movies, dinners and trips. When they are men, they will know the importance of quality time, respect, trust, and communication. But most of all,4 things I push : a firm handshake, the words : please, thank you, and your welcome. They will open any door.

  29. She can raise him to b a man but she can NEVER teach him to b a man every boy needs a male figure in their life no if ands or buts no matter how much a good job she thinks she has done with him jus like if a father that has a daughter that lil girl is gonna need a woman figure in her life (drops mic & walks away)

  30. Reggie Vanner– why you always dropping the mic??? You come back here to pick it up and sweep up the confetti–LOL! I hear you, Reggie! I agree with you, but the truth is having a father in some children’s lives is a luxury these days.. that’s sad…

  31. @Reggie, it takes a village to raise a child. It also depends what type of woman or man you are raising them to be. I see mother’s raising daughters the wrong way as well. Not all women know how to raise a girl into a woman. So men raise their boys to men that will be thugs, dope dealers, and killers. We teach them buy what they see us do.

  32. well i can only speak from proof my she-hero, raised 5 men in the south bronx me being the youngest never been arrestted or finger printed (got to find some wood) all five hard working men my hat goes off to the strong women. but its a shame that it has to be done…..

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