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Raising my boys. "You can't beat them so join them"

Updated on May 22, 2015

My lovely Family

This is my lovely little family. My Husband and two boys.
This is my lovely little family. My Husband and two boys.

My boys

I like to think that we are a pretty normal family. "Yes I lie to myself" That's okay everyone likes to put blinders on and tell themselves little white lies occasionally. You see we have two beautiful boys and all that comes with having boys. Boys are loud and proud little monsters sometimes. They pull pranks and misbehave. Boys also love unconditionally and show it in weird ways.

I wouldn't change a thing about my family. I have grown to accept all these things that come with raising my boys. Heck I even try to out do them sometimes. You see I have learned with my boys the more I trick and act childish with them the better they listen to me when I am serious with them. I know your thinking I act like a fool all the time rite? Actually nope I don't. I am a very responsible adult. I run my own buisness, raise my children and I'm also taking care of a parent. I have just found that taking time to be childish here and there has strengthened my relationship with my boys and makes life less stressful.

My boys have learned to listen to me better when I am giving them advice because I have bonded with them by being a playful and responsible mom. They have fun in public yet they also show others respect while out in public. They know you give out what you want back. You see when they disrespect me I disrespect them in return. Then ask them how they liked it. If they are respectful to me they get respect rite back. My boys need examples they don't do well with worded advice.

My oldest son has never been able to see someone do another wrong. He has always wore his heart on his sleeve and his temper on his tongue. He got in trouble so many times in school for standing up for others and trying to right wrongs. He didn't care if they were an adult or other student. I have had to tell him many times his heart was in the right spot, but it could have been handled better. He is also the biggest goof ball around at times. Pulling pranks and telling jokes. He will be your ear to talk to in a heartbeat as well.

My youngest son has never been a people person at all. I have had to work with him on this his whole life. Every Time someone would let him down or do someone wrong we would have to start all over. I guess that's the one thing he got from me. I have never gave my trust away easily. He is the type to take everyones crap and hold it in. He will finally explode at me. I know I am his comfort zone and he can release on me better than anyone else, but it is hard to keep cool when he does. I just sit and listen to his rant and let him go to his room to cool off. He will come back to me after he has calmed down and apologize. I just always reply by telling him he can always talk to me about anything. In reality though boys don't like talking about their problems. Their brain are wired to be MEN. Work it out on their own and don't show hurt or fear. He is the first to jump into action if someone is sick or hurt and always gives great advice.

My boys always show me plenty of love though. They bring me little gifts and do things for me all the time. I wouldn't change a thing. They are turning out to be wonderful little men. All I had to do was give them love,support,advice and fun memories. In return I got kids I am so proud of. We may be a family of nuts, but it has worked out great.

Going out in public with my boys

Sometimes you just have to join in the fun in the toy aisle.
Sometimes you just have to join in the fun in the toy aisle.
Keep a eye on your boys they will hide anywhere.
Keep a eye on your boys they will hide anywhere.
Boys don't have the best fashion sense. they sometimes need help when shopping.
Boys don't have the best fashion sense. they sometimes need help when shopping.

The pranks

Always check your supply before hand with boys in the house.
Always check your supply before hand with boys in the house.
My mothers day present from my boys last year.
My mothers day present from my boys last year.
They will embarrass you every chance they get.
They will embarrass you every chance they get.

Sweet sweet revenge

Children are gonna get on your nerves so so bad! Keep this one thing in mind. They are gonna have kids one day. Yap, that's rite you as the Grandparent gets to sit back and laugh your butt off. You can think back at when they done it and listen to them whine. You will have the best laugh at imagining the karma bus smacking them rite in the rear. This will help you out on those horrible days you just want to scream on.

The pranks

Oh boy where to start on this one. They have pulled so many pranks on me.I'm not just talking prank phone calls,hiding thing or what ever little pranks you would think. I am talking my Boys are great at pranks. I have had blue dye put in my shower head (which was bad, because I had my white chiwawa in the shower with me).Doorknobs tied together with fishing string so I couldn't get out of the room I was in. Them jumping out of bushes at me in full ghillie suits. The steal all the toilet paper and replace it with tape trick was my favorite.

My oldest son borrowed a really mean dog from someone and placed him in my shed. He rigged the door with a trap board that fell down when you opened the door. Boy was I surprised when I went to get the lawn mower out! He also talked a police officer into putting him in the back of his car when I came to pick him up at a football game.


My oldest son's video my youngest made him for his 18th.

The video

My oldest son turned 18 in February. My youngest son thought it was a great idea to make him a video to show everyone at his party. He searched for his most embarrassing pictures. After finding more then plenty he made his video. My oldest son was embarrassed, yet proud of his younger brothers prank on him. I was just glad it was pulled on him and not me. I have some really bad picks. I'm not photogenic at all.

The cold hard facts

I had a Southern Baptist hypocritical father growing up. He was verbally and physically abusive.I always knew I would be different then him. I was gonna raise my kids with love and respect. I wouldn't spank them unless it was a major thing they done. If they run out in the road smack that bottom then explain why it was a big no no. The rest of the time I think a firm grounding from the things they love (xbox, t.v. or phone) would work best. For the small things a dreaded lecture would work. I knew I would support and back them no matter what. If they were wrong I would still be there, but let them know I wasn't that happy with the situation. Yap, I was gonna be the best mom ever. I became that mom and I still believe what I did then. I hated my childhood, but it made me who I am. I guess I am a little grateful for getting served the hand I got as a child.

Everyone tells you how wonderful being a parent is. Listen up good! In between all these proud mom moments comes a lot of crap. they will drive you nuts! Kids are nasty, clingy, tiresome, embarrassing, glue fingered little jerks. You will even catch yourself saying in your head "have kids they said" "it will be fun they said" as you clean poop off your walls. It is hard work. It never ends. You are gonna want to cry. Hang in there and stand your ground. Don't show weakness or fear. "They sense that stuff!"

Even though you are tired, look homeless, have a headache, and have chewed all your nails off. You will love that child more than life itself. When your child goes somewhere you will catch yourself checking on an empty room and hearing him say mom. you will get the feeling part of your heart is missing and start worrying about them. Every new thing they learn will fill you with so much pride. You will have the smartest child on earth even if they are a little bit dim.

You will never be the perfect parent. You will mess up. Heck they may even hate you at times. It is okay. That is just the way it is. Remember you are learning just like them. you are not gonna screw them up so bad they will need therapy. Either they are screwed up or their not. They kinda come that way in the beginning. Just try to work with what you got one day at a time.

Your child is unique everyone of them are different. That's okay. One of my boys is an outdoor loving, car fixing, mud fighting, gun shooting little redneck. My other boy is a gaming, book loving, computer geek. I just find something each one likes that I like aswell and we do that thing together. It is the time and interest you pay toward them that counts. I have mud fights and target practice with one and help my other son with his youtube uploads and discuss books.

I believe they need to sow wild oats before they become teenagers. I have always let them blow things up if they are willing to do it safely and by the rules. I let them ride tractor tires down hills. Heck I rode that tire myself. I was the coolest mom ever. I blast music with the top down on the car or in the kitchen. I listen to their song of choice then they listen to mine. I have mud fights and jump off bridges. We ride choppers, 4 wheelers and build riding mowers for racing. They always go by my rules and have a blast. A little leniency goes a long way in bonding with your kids and getting them to be more willing to listen to you. This is my way of having calmer teenagers. They done been there and tried that under your supervision and safety. So when they do anything alone it will come natural to them to be cautious.

I don't talk to my kids unless it is something major they have done. I try to talk with them instead. When I listen to their side and reason they actually listen to mine. They have a legit reason for everything they do. It may sound stupid to you, but not to them. Remember they haven't been here as long as you have. You have been put through the same situations as them and reacted stupid as well. You learned from that and reacted better the next time just as they will. Try hearing their reason and then explaining to them how to handle it better and why it is best. Letting them hear about your life lessons will not only help them understand, but makes you look normal to them and helps them see you as a human instead of just a parent. Remember to be honest though don't try to change your story to fit the lesson. Let them know how dumb you were. They will relate to your screwups and feel closer to you.

I have also never told my kids not to do drugs or have sex. Do you remember that annoying D.A.R.E officer and that whacky sex ed teacher? I thought they were lame as crap. Well you are starting to sound like them. Ha Ha, I know rite that's as bad as "you'll put your eye out". I just sat my boys down and told them I know at some point they are gonna try it and here is how to be safe. I told them some of my stories and some about friends that turned out bad due to not being safe.Then I explained how it could have been done the safe and responsible way. I made them promise to go by my rules if they did. I told them I didn't want them throwing away their life or losing it over not knowing the facts. They were more then happy to, because there wasn't a NO attached. Always try to think back to yourself at their age. You was trying new things and rebelling as well. Someone telling you NO made you want to do it even more. That's how I was anyways.

I like to watch movies with the boys and talk about the things that happen in them. I pick a movie that is related to the talk I want to give them and pop some popcorn. I then make examples out of the characters. If they mess up why and what they should have done. We even laugh about things like someone getting ran over by a car and walking away. We talk about how in real life it would be all guts and gore. We also talk about people we know who has done the same thing we are watching and how bad it turned out for them (jail, death or whatever). I even sneak in survival and stranger safety in. You can sneak a talk and lesson into almost anything. This has helped us bond and learn together without the dreaded sit down talks all kids hate and them trying the stuff they see on T.V. Just try to pick a movie that gets their attention (not an old fogie one) new action or horror works well.

I have my kids passwords to all their internet sites. I do check here and there. They are fine with that, because they know I'm not checking on them. They know I am checking on everyone else on their site to make sure they are safe. I will start a conversation with them when I get an odd message or a pervert. I'm like "look at this freak boy they are everywhere". When they start talking I work in what to do when this stuff happens. Like don't ever give out to much information, if they are acting weird what to do and when to get a adult involved. I can also work into the conversation that even adults get bullied online. That this kind of stuff is everywhere online. I even let them know which sites I avoid. *HINT* ;) Getting this conversation going when needed is easy to do with making a account and messaging yourself.

I guess all I'm saying is show your child that you are interested in them as an individual. You want to know all about them and their likes. You want to let them know yours as well. You don't want to be their friend, but not just a parent either. You want a special relationship with them by mixing parent,sibling,and friend. Let them know you can be all these things. It is hard and they will still rebell on you,but you will know they are rebelling due to human nature and not out of hatred toward you. That deep down they are there and still listening to you and will mutate back to human soon. Like I said kids are little jerks, but the love you have for them is so amazing. With a little patients and spontaneous acts here and there you will be just fine. Life is to short not to bond and have fun with your kids.



How do you react to embarrassing boys?

How do you react when your boys try to embarrass you?

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© 2015 Stephanie Michele Lankford

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