How to raise gentlemen who listen to their hearts
I was raised in a woman’s kingdom. When I had my son I was a bit insecure and had no idea how to raise a boy and I’m still learning or to be more precise our son is teaching me.I admire his wild energy and curiosity. According to some, maybe my husband and I are a little old-fashioned, but we desire to raise him and raise him to be a gentleman, confident, listening to his heart.
These are the 7 simple, everyday values my husband and I are teaching him.
1) To hold the door in front of children, ladies, and the elderly.
This sounds like something ordinary and usual, but unfortunately, it is no longer the case. In this fast-paced world, I feel this common courtesy is slowly dying. I can’t believe how many times the man in front of me slides through the door, letting it crash into my face because he’s either in a hurry or too focused on his phone to notice me.
When we’re out and about, we always encourage our now 8-year-old son to keep the door open for his family and other people. I smile fondly as I see him roll his eyes as a parade of 10 people walk through the door as he holds it. Sometimes it’s a little forced, but he lights up when people thank him. I hope he keeps this skill and passes it on to the generation after him.
2) To congratulate his opponents
Our son plays several sports because he is still in the process of choosing. What is his sport or are they all his?:-)We’ll find out soon, but they all require him to shake hands with the other team or opponent before and after the game or match – especially judo. After a match, the referee asks the two contestants to shake hands and then they do. This is very educational for
- My husband took this to another level. He asks our son to personally approach his opponents after a game to tell them “good job”. When our son wins a game or is on the winning side, it’s easy for him, but when he loses and congratulates his opponent/s, it builds character. Whether it’s a board game or a sporting event, it’s important to encourage our son to be a good sportsman.
3) Dinner with the family
We’ve all heard that sitting down to dinner with the family is a very important part of the day. For us, it’s time to turn off our distracting electronics and making time for interaction and sharing and connection. For us, this time of day is less about eating and more about a symbolic reminder that family comes first. Often our son plays outside with friends, but when dinner time approaches, he knows it’s a time when we’re all together. After dinner, we all have fun and organize the evening in a way that everyone likes, but dinner reminds us of the importance of family. In my opinion, putting family first is the most important part of raising a Gentleman.
4) Attention to the smaller and weaker
I want our son to be the type to reasonably stand up to a bully when someone tries to bully him and/or sees someone trapped or being bullied. We talk and encourage our son to speak up, to share if he sees something wrong happening. It is important for us that he does not remain uninvolved, as he has increasingly impressed us lately. This is how one is brought up in civil society and responsibility. Do not get me wrong. We are far from thinking that he will go and compare muscles and dispense justice. No, it is important for us that he has a position and knows how to act properly and correctly.
5) Let the girls go first
We are trying to teach our son to give way to girls. Our wish is that he grows up to be respectful of girls and women, and I think this should start from early childhood and through the example set by his father, and his grandfather. My father still, when he sees a lady, gives way to her, takes off his hat, kisses her hand…
6) Sorry, I was wrong
Let’s face it, kids fight and argue. After an argument, disagreement, or fight, we in most cases impose an apology. The kids think they’re right, and none of them want to admit it or apologize. And if I have to be honest, I wouldn’t either…
I am all for allowing children to learn to solve their own problems and conflicts on their own, and we as parents to guide them, encourage them to take responsibility for their actions, choices, and actions.
7) Don’t be afraid to be yourself
This is one of the most important lessons we do well to teach our children. They can sometimes be ruthless, making fun of other children. We try to encourage our children to be who they are – truly authentic and learn to love their personalities. A loved, accepted, and confident child is not a bully.
It is up to us, the parents, what kind of adults our children will become. I want to look back in time, knowing that I did everything possible, or at least I tried, I consulted when I hesitated and I did not know, to raise my child into a respectable and respectful gentleman.
Sometimes boys can seem like destructive little Tasmanian devils, but if you start teaching them the values you believe in and want them to be solid at an early age, they will shine as they grow up. Give them the tools to be kind but also confident – and to listen to their hearts. This happens when we are also honest and truthful with them and with ourselves.
If you love, accept and teach them to be strong, you will undoubtedly raise respectful, confident, and courageous men.