The Biggest Secret to Raising Boys Who Are Kind

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Are you raising boys? If so, then welcome to the world of loud bodily noises, smells, and goofy jokes. Like me, you may wonder if they will ever grow up…and be kind.

Most of the time, you are just trying to keep them alive. Much less try and teach them manners.

I have one son and one daughter. They are both grown now, but I still remember what they were like when they were little.

From the moment they were born, I noticed a significant difference between the two of them. My son was always kicking his little legs around and moving constantly (even in the womb), whereas my daughter was lighter, less rambunctious, and seemed to be more fragile.

Boys are just different than girls. It is strange that statement may no longer be politically correct.

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Young boy playing on the sand. The Biggest Secret to Raising Boys Who Are Kind

Last week, I talked about raising strong daughters and used Psalms 144:12 as a reference. It is the prayer of a king for victory and blessing.

RELATED: Creative Ways to Raise a Strong Daughter

This week I want to focus on the first part of the verse which is about sons.

Let’s review the verse in case you didn’t read last week’s blog. It says, “May our sons in their youth be like plants full grown, our daughters like corner pillars cut for the structure of a palace” (CSB).

In this post, I am going to going to help you raise boys that are a blessing and act like full-grown plants in their youth. And I will show the most important thing you need to do as a parent when raising boys.

These tips are not quick, but they do work. Unfortunately, I can’t help you with the noises and smells. That’s still gonna be around for a while. Sorry.


Full-grown in Youth?

So how do we get our sons to be like plants full-grown in their youth? Plants full-grown produce fruit.

You might be thinking this is asking a bit much from my son right now. He still watches Sponge Bob. But God seems to think it is possible. Here is another scripture I found to help give a bit more explanation.

Titus 2:6 says, “In a similar way urge the young men to be sensible and self-controlled and to behave wisely [taking life seriously]” (AMP). I find it interesting there isn’t anything in the Bible with this directive towards women. It is a guy thing. 

If you have a boy in maybe fifth or sixth grade, you are probably laughing right now as he is not anywhere near being sensible or self-controlled. No boy is full-grown like a plant, producing fruit, or sensible and self-controlled at a young age.

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I remember my son and some of his funny antics while growing up. There were days I thought I might end up on the funny farm if I heard one more silly saying or gross noise. I tried not to laugh and encourage it!

It is a tall order to think we can get our boys to take life seriously. The average boy is anything but serious.

So how do we even start?

Let me tell you a story. I think it will help you to see my point more clearly. I am going to tell you what NOT to do first.

RELATED: 5 Most Effective Tactics When Dealing With a Moody Teenager

The Rogue Male

Many years ago, my husband and I worked through a series in our Sunday school class called Song of Solomon by Tommy Nelson.

This was over twenty years ago, but I have never forgotten Tommy’s words. He said, “Don’t let your daughters marry a rogue male. He will abuse her.”

What is a rogue male? Tommy Nelson described this kind of young man as someone who is not willing to submit to Christ.

He is not willing to submit to authority. Arrogant.

Do you know the type? The bad boy. A boy out of control or defiant. Wow. That describes many of our male youth today.

How do these boys become this way?

They all had mothers and fathers who struggled to guide them. Some parents don’t try while other parents have tried really hard but have not been able to get through to his heart.

Instead, their kids have become arrogant, proud, and defiant. I believe a boy left to himself will go back to his sinful, base nature. Rogue. (Sin does that to us all.)

RELATED: When You Feel Like You Have Failed as a Parent

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Two little boys playing in the water. The Biggest Secret to Raising Boys Who Are Kind

Raising Boys to Be Teachable

My advice to mothers (and fathers) who are raising boys is to train them to be teachable. I think many parents do not realize that in order for our young men to be full-grown, sensible, and self-controlled they have to first be willing to take instruction.

We have to help our boys get past pride and stubbornness. 

What I am saying is there is a step before the step. These verses are telling us to teach our young men to do certain things, but how can we teach them if they won’t listen?

They must first be teachable, then they can learn to do the other things God desires. 

I realize girls can act this way, too. But boys are different.

They tend to have a more violent nature when they don’t listen to instructions and go their own way. The statistics prove my point.

When you look at incarceration rates by gender, it shows there are many more males in prison than females.

RELATED: 4 Brilliant Tricks to Stop Teen Entitlement in Your Family

Raising Boys to Be Teachable

The best thing to do when raising boys is to train them to be teachable (good attitude).

Don’t let your boys be disrespectful to an authority figure (you included), have a bad attitude, or display a heart of pride and arrogance. These character traits are the foundation of a rogue male.

Make your boys (and girls) be accountable for bad behavior. Give consequences. But also praise.

It is good to praise your sons (and daughters) when they listen, act humbly, or have a good attitude. You can start these things when they are a toddler.

Require your boys (and girls) to obey without pushback. Encourage a happy heart even when they don’t like something.

Being teachable is the foundation for respecting authority, doing well in school, or applying anything else the Bible instructs our young men to do.

I know this because I am a teacher.

Kids who have a bad attitude learn nothing in my class. When they refuse to be taught, they typically start acting out and becoming a discipline problem.

RELATED: Parenting Tips: When Your Baby Leaves Home For Good

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Large tree in the middle of a grove. The Biggest Secret to Raising Boys Who Are Kind


Raising Boys Who Are Teachable Become Successful

Raising boys who are teachable will be good for their future. Let me explain.

A month ago my son left home for good. He landed a really great job in another area. The job he applied for took four months of waiting before he was “tapped on the shoulder.”

After he started working at his new place of employment, he found out they had interviewed many people for his position.

I asked my son if he knew why they picked him out of all the other applicants. I was curious. He said they told him it was because he had a good attitude, and he was teachable.

That is what separated him from the rest of the applicants.

All the years we spent trying to make him competitive academically for a job, and it came down to his character. I am glad we focused a lot of time on character. It paid off in ways I never imagined.

RELATED: When Your Baby Leaves Home for Good

Your boys are a blessing. They are a gift from God to you and your spouse. Make sure they are a blessing to those around them at church, school, and in the community.

Help them learn to take instruction and be teachable young men so they will be like plants full-grown.

What advice do you have for raising boys?

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This book not only talks about my seven-year estrangement from my Christian family, but it also gives solid tips to help you with your own family problems. Break free from your pain. Allow God to heal you no matter what has happened in your family of origin. There is hope when your family falls apart.

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Get Creating Family Memories. This book will help you manage your family in a way that allows more time to be intentional with your kids.  It includes a schedule too. You can get it at your favorite bookstore.

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  1. ROsey on September 11, 2018 at 6:44 pm

    I have three boys and a girl. 2 boys are teachable, one is rogue-ish. It breaks me. I so want him to be a man of God, but I know that is a choice he has to make. All I can do is pray and believe and love them all fully.

    • Julie Plagens on September 30, 2018 at 10:13 pm

      Keep working on your son. And pray for him. God is bigger than his stubbornness. I hope these tips will help you to deal with some of your issues.

  2. Rose Ann Sales on September 10, 2018 at 7:22 pm

    This is such a nice post it leads me to the knowledge of how to raise my 2 years old son and thank you for raising this with us.

    • Julie Plagens on September 30, 2018 at 10:11 pm

      I hope these tips will help you. Boys are so cute, and i absolutely loved raising mine.

  3. Lindsay on September 10, 2018 at 6:15 pm

    As the mother of a 14 month old boy, this was a great read. I am determined to make him teachable and to be a young man of character and kindness. There are too few examples of confident humility in the world. This is a great reminder that as parents we can change that!

    • Julie Plagens on September 30, 2018 at 10:15 pm

      Yes, you have the opportunity to raise a godly young man. Keep praying for him and living out your faith. Children do more what you do than what you say.

  4. Faneshia on September 10, 2018 at 4:23 pm

    I love your story and this is such an important topic! I don’t have any kids but I will pass this on!

  5. Twinspirational on September 10, 2018 at 3:17 pm

    Our niece and nephew couldn’t be more different. We love them both, but he’s very smart and rambunctious and she’s so sweet and loving.

    • Julie Plagens on September 10, 2018 at 4:26 pm

      Yes! The genders are different for the most part. I never thought I would be a little hesitant to say that.

  6. Corina on September 10, 2018 at 1:57 pm

    Really loved this post and I guess you are right about boys and girls being different, though it is not politically correct to say that nowadays.

    • Julie Plagens on September 10, 2018 at 4:28 pm

      Yes, they are different but not inferior to each other. I think that is where people go wrong. Each gender have their gifts. We are wired differently. No shame in that.

  7. Megan on September 10, 2018 at 9:03 am

    This is a great post for parents to consider! I really think raising anyone to be teachable is super important — we HAVE to be open to be able to grow. x

    • Julie Plagens on September 10, 2018 at 4:29 pm

      Yes, I think it is important to learn to have a good attitude no matter the situation. I can’t tell you how hard it is to teach a child who is sassy and doesn’t want to learn.

  8. Preet on September 10, 2018 at 8:10 am

    It is really important for a mother to learn more about raising their kids. Soon they will grow and learn a lot from us.

    • Julie Plagens on September 10, 2018 at 4:30 pm

      Parents are definitely models. We teach our kids with our behavior more than our actions.

  9. Maartje van Sandwijk on September 10, 2018 at 4:35 am

    It’s so important that boys can learn new things as well and that they keep an open mind! I am an au pair and look after a boy and a girl. I always try to be as open as possible about everything so that he learns about girls…

    • Julie Plagens on September 10, 2018 at 4:31 pm

      I am so glad you are helping him to respect girls. That is not easy when it is a brother and sister relationship.

  10. Frank on September 9, 2018 at 9:59 pm

    Great lessons. I have two little boys. So far so good *knock on wood* but I hope my wife and I do right for them and help foster their growth into respectable and kind men.

    • Julie Plagens on September 10, 2018 at 4:31 pm

      I bet they are great kids. The teen years can get a bit challenging even with a great family!

  11. Kesha on September 9, 2018 at 7:50 pm

    “My advice to mothers (and fathers) who are raising boys is to train them to be teachable.” This is wonderful advice. My son is a strong-willed three year old and I’m sure he will become more and more independent as he gets older. I so desperately want to raise him to love God and we seek Him everyday in raising him. I will remember this statement and make sure I am teaching him to be teachable.

    • Julie Plagens on September 9, 2018 at 8:59 pm

      I am so glad to hear this. You won’t regret it. It will unlock the door to everything else.

  12. Carmela on September 9, 2018 at 4:16 pm

    Thanks for these tips! I am a boy mom of two toddler boys. My prayer for them is to grow up with a Christ-like character. 🙂

    • Julie Plagens on September 9, 2018 at 9:16 pm

      That is so great to hear. Don’t give up. Stay in there no matter what.

  13. Ashley on September 9, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    A very good post. I think it is important for anybody to learn to be teachable. Those with a closed mind, thinking there is nothing to be taught, will only go so far before hitting a roadblock.

    • Julie Plagens on September 9, 2018 at 9:19 pm

      So true! Being teachable is the best thing for any individual no matter what belief system you have. Thanks for your comment.

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