When I first started this blog, I kept hearing, “oh that sounds great, I need all the help I can get with my boys.” While I do plan to periodically offer advice and tips, (which may seem a bit unorthodox), I realized that right off the bat, I should be sharing my very own coping skills for being a mom to three boys. Here are my top 5:
- Pretend you don’t hear them fighting. It’s much easier to ignore the screaming than to try to referee. And, it truly is better for them to try to work out their differences themselves. Once someone starts bleeding or needs to be rushed to the ER, only then should you intervene.
- Shop for food – often. There really is no way around this. After I gave birth to Dude #3, my mother-in-law (who raised 5 boys, 1 girl) warned me that I’d have to learn to cook for all these boys. That did not make me happy, but she was partially right. I can get around the cooking drudgery on many days (take-out is a-okay in my book!) but you will need to buy groceries ALL the time. Even after you think your kitchen is fully stocked, the food will be depleted within hours, if not mere minutes.
- Get used to gross talk. Boys can be gross. They love to discuss poop, burps, vomit and farts. If you have a weak stomach, time to toughen up. Just yesterday, one of my boys decided to discuss bowel movements at the dinner table, thinking it was perfectly acceptable dinner conversation.
- Accept that things in your house will break. Boys are not always careful. And boys are very, very active. When I see that they are wound up, I direct them to go outside and literally run laps around the house. The neighbors may think it looks a little strange, but hey, it works. However, if the weather is bad or it’s nighttime and they still need to burn off steam, the boys will use our house as an indoor gymnasium. They play regular games of baseball in our basement along with scary, aggressive ping pong tournaments. I’m still amazed our television down there is in one piece. Still, I have plenty of broken dishes, chairs, lamps, and assorted furniture thanks to my boys. Pretty much anything not bolted down is fair game for them to damage.
- You will need an infinite amount of patience. I know that coping skill applies to any parent, but a mom to all-boys seems to require just a wee bit more in the patience department, because our houses seem noisier, our toilet seats are dirtier, our laundry is smellier, our hospital trips are more frequent, and our desire for participating in girly-girl activities with our kids will have to be fulfilled elsewhere. Years ago, I used to take my boys to the manicure place with me and in their eyes, it was one giant science experiment as they fiddled with the polish jars and played with the nail dryers. Needless to say, no one in that salon was feeling relaxed by the time we left.
So, those are my top coping skills that I need to call upon regularly. I’d love to hear if any of you have coping skills you frequently need to raise both your sons AND/OR daughters.
Please share them below!