Raising Boys: 10 Tips for Single Moms

7. Teach him your values, but let him express them uniquely. He's a male and will respond to emotional situations somewhat differently than you might.

8. If your boy is really active, get a chinning bar for his room for rainy days. Exercise is critical for all children, but in cases where boys can't seem to center themselves as comfortably as girls, they might need other means of releasing excessive energy. Check out your local Target store for an expandable closet bar, the kind that has suction cups on the ends. Install between the door jambs of his room, and when he gets rowdy, have him "do ten." Make sure you tighten the bar so it safely stays in place and show your son the correct way to grip so he doesn't loosen it from the doorway. Start low, but raise the bar as your son grows.

9. Role models are important and will be found in every aspect of your son's life. Boys need men, but not necessarily fathers. Just because a father lives at home does not mean a boy is being "fathered."

10. Enjoy your time with your baby or toddler by not worrying about whether they are missing out on anything by not having "dad" around. At the same time, try not to avoid "daddy stuff" totally. Even though many children's books feature animal families raised only by mom, it's okay to read stories about all kinds of families to your child. Place a high value on male and female relationships in order to give your child a realistic perspective.

And remember, try not to have negative attitudes toward men, even if you became a single mother out of the most excruciating circumstances.

This article was reprinted with permission from Single Mother, , Issue #19 Copyright 1995 by Single Mother. All rights reserved. This article may be printed out for personal use but may not be reproduced in any other manner, including electronic, without prior written consent from Single Mother.

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