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How my Husband is Teaching our Son to be a Man

Each year as various holidays roll around, my husband, Michael, has this thing he says: "Every day is _______ (insert holiday here). This day is no more special than the next." This is his saying for every. single. holiday. "Every day is Valentine's Day. Every day is Christmas. Every day is my birthday."

Of course, this past Father's Day was no different. You would think we'd be used to it by now but in spite of his pleas to not get him anything on these special days, we do it anyway.

In a way, he's right: every day is a gift. In regard to Father's Day, I know that he feels every day is special because each new day gives him an opportunity to impart knowledge and wisdom to our children, especially to our soon-to-be-19-year-old son. In today's climate, simply allowing our son to use the car can create a tinge of anxiety.

Creating a roadmap for our son surely isn't easy, but my husband has done -- and is doing -- an awesome job. His constant reminders to him include:

  • Know what you bring to the table: Michael tells him repeatedly to already know his worth so no one else can define it. As a budding musician, this advice goes a long way.
  • Play chess, not checkers: The kids have been playing chess with their father forever so he uses this saying a lot when talking to them about navigating life. He insists that our son look two moves ahead for major decisions.
  • Don't stop learning: When we lived in Miami, our walls were filled with books. Many times, Michael would read a book and our son would grab it as soon as he finished. His love of learning and reading has been transferred to this impressionable young man who we hope will now take that knowledge and make the best of it.
  • You’re either helping or hurting: Truly self-explanatory but he’s constantly pushing our son to see which side he’s on in every situation.
  • You are my child but I will still crush you in basketball: My husband believes in no free passes when it comes to sports competition with our son — or any of our children!

It’s not easy being a father of a young adult, especially an African-American male who’s trying to find his own way in this confusing — and sometimes cruel — world. I want my husband to know that he has done a wonderful job with the task at hand.

Wondering if we still got him something for Father's Day this year? Yes, yes we did. And he loved it.

I would be thrilled to hear how your husbands teach your sons to be a man. Share with us in the comments! 

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