Who needs “a lot of coffee and a good vacuum?” Boymoms do!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Do you remember why I started this blog? Because I’m a proud (and often flustered!) Mother of Boys (M.O.B.), and I know there’s a strong connection to be made with other M.O.B.s who share the adventure. In 2018, M.O.B. Truths conducted a survey with Mothers of Boys, with the goal of digging deeper into our experiences and finding what is relatable, shareable, and helps strengthen our “village.” Whether you parent boys or girls, there are certainly a zillion things we can ALL relate to — the exhaustion, the utter joy, how we never knew it was possible for our hearts to grow so full . . . but I had to know whether there were any nuggets that M.O.B.s seem to repeatedly report as universal truths about being boymoms.
After sifting through all the responses, here are some key “universal truths” the M.O.B. respondents shared. Honestly, they all ring true for me! Let me know what you think of these, and whether you have any to add! Enjoy the list, and some of my favorite write-in quotes. And if you’re expecting a boy now . . . listen up and get ready for the fun.
IF WE COULD HARNESS THEIR ENERGY…:
Super-high, seemingly constant, how-many-pixie-sticks-did-you-eat? kind of energy. I recently took my boys to a trampoline park, and looking around,, there were SO MANY BOYS there! A bunch of moms were talking, saying, “They NEED to get some energy out!” Whether it’s running through the house or in the yard, playing team sports or neighborhood games, bouncing on trampolines or bounce houses, or climbing and jumping off of anything in the house . . . the universal truth from our respondents is that BOYS HAVE boundless ENERGY!!!!!!!!!!! We often hear stories of little girls sitting calmly at restaurants or waiting in lines . . . but we rarely see it among our boys! One respondent even advised, “Run them like puppies!”
(click High Energy Boys link)
THEY ARE PHYSICAL:
Whether it’s a really strong bear hug, or a spontaneous playful wrestling match, these little guys are very physical. Along with getting that energy out, they can play rough, cuddle rough, and even board games or puzzles can become full-contact sports! So buy some padding, or brush up on your referee skills.
Mine often resolve their differences physically. While I’m standing over them encouraging them to use their words to work things out, sometimes they just need to wrestle until someone ends up crying or they all end up laughing. It usually happens quickly. I just hope it’s a habit they’ll break before a boardroom meeting or important presentation someday . . .
One M.O.B. said, “They are crrrrrrazy. They never stop. They use you as a human climbing frame and think they are invincible” (also noting that they sometimes do really dumb stuff! But we’ll save that topic for another day – LOL).
THINGS WILL BE BROKEN:
I suppose it follows logically that if these boys are high energy and they’re physical, things will be broken. Ideally, it’s just material things like a lamp or a ceramic mug, but sometimes it’s a bone. Knock on wood – no broken bones here yet . . . but it’s amazing to me how little fragile figurines have lasted DECADES in my grandma’s house, and the second I put them on what I think is a safe shelf here, they get knocked down and broken by a Nerf bullet or incoming paper airplane or flying stuffed animal. Have superglue on hand at all times. And patience, and tolerance. And then more superglue.
BOYS LOVE THEIR MOMS!
Don’t worry – so do girls. But I think sometimes there is a sense that moms — females — may be left out of some of that offspring-parent love if they have sons. I admit it took a while here for me to really, really feel that Mommy love. Don’t get me wrong — we’ve always snuggled, I’ve always been the boo-boo-fixer, the bedtime soother, the snack provider, the super-Mommy, and activity planner . . . but it wasn’t until the past few years that I really saw and heard and FELT the intense love my boys have for Mommy. They want Mommy snuggles, they want Mommy jokes and songs, they really miss Mommy when she’s away on a business trip or out with friends, and even though they can often give me a lot of attitude, the way they tackle me with hugs and cheek kisses says it all. Soak it all in.
ANATOMY 101 NOT NEEDED, BECAUSE THEY’VE BEEN PLAYING WITH THEIR PARTS SINCE BIRTH:
One of my favorite responses to the universal truths about raising boys question is this: “Something about penises, I suppose.” It’s a good supposition, based on the number of anatomy-related responses we got! I could go on all day about this one, but rather than doing that, I’m going to let some of the respondents’ answers bring this to life for you:
“They are obsessed with their penises from the day they are born.”
“You will tell them to stop touching their penis many times a day! Every day.”
“They like to play with their penises and think butts are funny.”
“They will talk about bodily functions – ALL THE TIME. And be VERY happy to show off their various bits.”
“Get ready to see a lot of boy parts, usually without clothing!”
There will be pee. Seemingly everywhere.
Whenever I hear about this one, I think EEEEEEEWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW and HOW CAN THAT BE? Don’t you people clean your homes?
We do. We clean a lot. But the point here is that pee happens, and, as one respondent eloquently noted, “Aim and fire is not as easy as it sounds.” They may hold their thing and aim, but then get distracted . . . and just a slight turn or adjustment can mean pee on the floor or the wall or parts of the toilet you never knew existed until you hunted down where the smell of urine was coming from a day later.
And pee happens pretty much anywhere — in an empty bottle on a long car ride, in the tree behind the house when the neighbors (hopefully) aren’t looking . . .
So many respondents basically said “Boys will pee anywhere.” In many ways, that’s easier than with girls since you don’t really have to worry about clean toilet seats in public places!
When do the potty challenges start, and when do they end? Ha ha. One respondent said, “When they’re in diapers, point “it” down! Urine ends up everywhere. Actually it ends up everywhere after toilet training too.” while another advises, “It really never gets better.”
So, definitely brush up on how to clean a toilet, and have some cleanser and paper towels always at the ready.
Boys aren’t just all about their private parts. There seems to be fascination and enjoyment with the full body — from armpit farts to knee farts to belly button dances to butt jokes to head-butting to putting stinky feet on each other to putting whatever they can fit up their noses . . . . bodily awareness and amusement is another common theme. Bodily functions overall, too — “farts will always be funny,” and “be prepared for a lot of poop talk,” according to the survey respondents.
BUY MORE FOOD.
Just went grocery shopping? Not enough. Those three containers of strawberries and 2 bags of popcorn for snack for the next few days? Not enough. 2lb steak for dinner for the family? Not enough. BOYS ARE HUNGRY. Save up for groceries!!!!!
Also learn to be a short order cook. While cleaning up dinner, many M.O.B.s are already thinking ahead to five minutes afterwards when the boys will ask for snack. And then another snack. And then don’t forget the bedtime snack. I wish I had their metabolism!
EMBRACE THE MESS:
I’m guessing this one is true for girls, too, — at least leaving toys and socks and arts and crafts supplies where they don’t belong. But outdoors, I know for sure that my boys cannot avoid a muddy puddle (Peppa Pig, anyone?!), digging for worms, running outside with just socks on, getting scrapes and bruises and taking out so many toys that get tossed all over the yard . . . and then, even if they take their shoes off when they come in — the dirt ends up everywhere.
Moral of the story: Get a good vacuum, as one respondent wisely advised.
NOT ALL BOYS ARE ALIKE:
A really important one for us to not lose sight of: boys are not all alike. Some are sporty, others don’t play sports at all. Some are physically strong, some are emotionally strong, some are both, some are neither. Some may want their nails painted, while others may want to wear only sweatpants all the time. Some are super-sensitive, some are not. Some are open, others never let you know what they’re thinking. They are people — unique creatures unto themselves. And while there are a lot of universal truths that we boymoms / M.O.B.s are experiencing that tend to fuel stereotypes, there are plenty of unique stories, and plenty of differences, too. Just a reminder for us to keep that top of mind as we set our expectations for our boys.
These all ring true with me! And just for fun, one last bit of wisdom from the amazing M.O.B. respondents:
“Expect to completely lose your heart, lose your tidy home and lose your sanity. But what you get back in return is sooooo worth it!”
Love those boys!