Stop telling little boys they are invalid because they display ‘feminine’ qualities. Like softness is not a quality shown by men at all. Like sensitivity is a thing to be regarded with disgust and unkindness.
Stop telling them that they become less when they express emotion. Do not them that it doesn’t matter when boys show emotion, that they deserve to be ignored when they do. Do not dismiss their tears to toughen them up and turn their feelings into a joke because that is how you create sociopaths.
Stop saying, ‘You punch like a girl’ or ‘Yeah, that was all right…for a girl’. And stop telling your sons their tears make them girls – as though being a girl is the worst thing in the world. When the truth is being a girl is no different from being a boy when they are both just human beings.
Stop demeaning them by making the word ‘woman’ or ‘girl’ a method to control their behavior, a reason to bottle their emotions and instead be volatile and display violent behavior. Stop teaching them to bully each other until they are macho and man up. And the ones of them who do not fit into this ideal are effeminate as if that is a curse.
I wish society would stop telling little boys that showing emotion is the same thing as being a girl. And being a girl is the same thing as being weak.
Instead, never let your sons forget where their essence was just formed, when their bodies were most vulnerable, they were protected by the womb of a woman. If they ever call all women weak, remind them of the strength of their mother who pulled her whole body apart to give theirs a home.
Instead, teach them how to be kind regardless of their gender. Teach them how women and men are strong in their own ways. Teach them to respect respect the attributes they admire as one human to another.
Instead, raise boys who accept people as they are and are strong because of their belief in themselves. Raise boys who are strong enough to display emotion and softness, and not hide their feelings when they display their hopes and dreams. Raise boys who can appreciate the softness of a moonlit night as much as they appreciate the stormy anger of the sea.
After all, how are they supposed know how to respect women as much as men, if they are taught from a young age that women are lesser human beings.