What to expect when you’re expecting-a boy!

I’m pregnant with our first baby and we just learned it’s a boy. I never had brothers and from what I see of other people’s boys, they look like a handful. Is there a simple piece of advice (so I can remember it when the going gets tough!) for raising a son to be a good man?

First of all, congratulations! You are in for an adventure, a learning experience and a lot of fun. All you need is a loving heart and an open mind. As for boys being a handful, all children are a handful! I have a friend who says, "All human beings are more or less impossible." I think that is true (it certainly describes me). That’s why we all need families who love us.

You already have one important key to parenting a boy: your vision of him growing up to be a good man. In the years ahead, think of what you’ve liked or loved about the good men in your life your husband, your father, a favorite uncle or grandfather or friend-and speak openly of those qualities with your son. Be attentive to your son’s own attributes, too, and let him know that you see him growing into a fine young man. Love the boy you got.

Please don’t think about boys as a problem: don’t brace yourself for their energy or their competitiveness. Embrace it all. Play with your son. Read to him. Sing to him. Laugh with him. Listen to him.

For a mother, raising a son means you’ll get as close as one can get to crossing the lines of gender. You’ll get to see the world through your son’s eyes, and the world won’t look the same. Mothers get to be adored by their sons, and that is really fun. You son will open your eyes, broaden your knowledge, and help your sense of humor. I guarantee it.