Thursday, October 23, 2014

Oh Boy

Our new baby is a boy. 

We got the NIPT test, which is a new prenatal blood test available at 10 weeks that can tell the sex and any chromosomal abnormalities with a much higher degree of accuracy than previous tests and cut the need for amniocentesis (which carries a miscarriage rate). Word to the wise: because it's a new test, most insurance doesn't see it as necessary and will not cover it totally - although Medicare will.  -_-

But! Despite this, at least it's good for me to know, so I can stop planning on having sisters close in age and instead focus on my impending doom, i.e., raising a boy. 

I'm kidding! Mostly.

Yet I have had my mental struggles with raising a male child. Girls come naturally to me - because I am one? Because I am close to my mother? Who knows, but I feel like I know how to raise girls: I know the behavior to nip in the bud, how to recognize different girl personality types and not squash developing interests, how to encourage modesty but not induce body-shaming, etc. I think I have the map for dealing with Girl-land and even if that (ok it definitely will) proves false, at least it's a comforting illusion. 

This wasn't ever my experience, but I hear it's quite common

What I am worried about with boys is that I will confuse natural 'boyness' with misbehavior, poor character development, etc. I don't want to force my expectations of behavior on a child if they're inappropriate or unrealistic, either developmentally or otherwise. And while I agree that little boys and girls often develop the same for the first little bit, my friends of both assure me that there is something to the idea that boys are just...different. What I don't ever want to do is squash that differentness, or punish it, because it is unfamiliar to me. 

As a mother, I hold myself to very high standards. I did a ton of reading, researching, and praying before we had Zuzu to make sure I was making strong informed decisions about parenting. Obviously, two years later, I am reforming some of those decisions based on what works practically on the ground. Now I'm trying to research how to raise a boy without being completely...sexist? Crazy? Overthinking too much? 

Gorgeous 1950s mom says "yes, you are overthinking"

Anybody out there in blogland have any thoughts or resources? If you want to tell me I'm crazy, don't worry, I already agree with you. 


  1. Congrats! I know there are many moms out there more experienced than I--with my one kid, who's a whole 16 months old--but he's a boy, so I'll chime in with what wisdom I've accumulated.

    It isn't much.

    That's the good news: you don't need much! :)

    I'm sure you'll do great. Broadly speaking, boys are loud and active and energetic, so as small children with low impulse-control, their misbehavior may be messier and seem bigger. But from what I've seen/heard, the bigger danger for boys is the danger of quashing their emotional side from the idea that they are supposed to "be a man" and not cry, not ask for hugs, etc. Boys need lots of cuddles, and just as much emotional support as girls. The book "Raising Cain" has been recommended to me--although I haven't actually read it yet!

    2 keys for boys: lots of cuddles, and lots of time/opportunity to run around and get the wiggles out. Pent up energy is asking for trouble.

  2. Congratulations! As a mom with 3 girls and 1 boy, I guess I can answer this. Yes, boys are "different". They have different energy levels. Girls are more even keeled. Boys (or at least my boy) tends to alternate between running around the house like a crazy person and just chilling out. I think the most important thing with boys is to teach them to channel their natural boyishness and "aggressive" tendencies in a constructive way. Teach them to use their "agression" to "defend" their siblings. Teach them to use their energy to "work", to "build things", etc. This is way so many of the most popular toys with boys are things like legos. .

    Boys need just as much cuddles and love and snuggles as girls do. Never worry about coddling a boy too much, but on the same token don't stifle their boyishness. .

  3. Aw, yay!!! And congrats! I'm sure once the little guy is out in the world, you'll find you're a complete natural. :)


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