Raising Boys to Be Good Men: A Parent's Guide to Bringing up Happy Sons in a World Filled with Toxic Masculinity (Hardcover)
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"If you are the parent of a boy . . . this is the book you need . . . insightful, enlightened, practical." —Peggy Orenstein, New York Times bestselling author of Boys & Sex
From the dad who created the viral tweet supporting his son wearing nail polish, this essential parenting guide shares 36 parenting tips for battling gender norms, bringing down "man up" culture, and helping sons realize their potential.
Our boys are in a crisis. Toxic masculinity and tough guy-ism are on display daily from our leaders, and we see anger, dysfunction, violence, and depression in young men who are suffocated by harmful social codes. Our young sons are told to stop throwing like a girl. They hear phrases like “man up” when they cry. They are told “boys will be boys” when they behave badly. The “Girl Power” movement has encouraged women to be whoever and do whatever they want, but that sentiment is not often extended to boys. Just watch the bullying when boys try ballet, paint their fingernails, or play with a doll.
But we can treat this problem—and the power lies in the hands of parents. It's not only possible to raise boys who aren't emotionally stifled and shoved into stereotypical gender boxes; it's vital if we want a generation of men who can express their emotions, respect women, and help nurse society back to a halfway healthy place. We can reframe manhood. From Aaron Gouveia, who gained viral fame after tweeting his support for his son’s painted fingernails (and who knows toxic masculinity very well), learn practical and actionable tips such as:
- Don’t accept different standards for moms and dads
- Teach boys that “girl” is not an insult and retire phrases like “boys will be boys”
- Show boys that expressing their emotions and being physical is a good thing
- Let boys pursue nontraditional interests and hobbies
- Talk to boys about consent and privilege
- Model healthy and respectful relationships for boys to emulate
Penned with equal parts humor, biting snark, and lived advice, Raising Boys to Be Good Men is the essential parenting guide for raising sons to realize their potential outside the box.
About the Author
Aaron Gouveia is a former award-winning journalist who has appeared in TIME, the TODAY Show, Good Morning America, People, Mashable,and USA Today to discuss topics on parenting young boys in the age of toxic masculinity. He started the website The Daddy Files in 2008 to promote involved fatherhood, has contributed to Parents, American Baby, and the Huffington Post, and is a regular speaker at parenting conferences. His content on topics like gun control and abortion have been seen by millions around the world. He resides in Franklin, Massachusetts, with his wife and three sons.
"In his new book, [Raising Boys to Be Good Men] Gouveia offers parents a handbook to guide parents along the rocky journey to bringing up boys, better."
"He’s an engaging guide whose writing is informed by honest mistakes, solid research, and social media flare-ups . . . Gouveia approaches his subject with honesty and concern for the dad as much as the son."
"If you are the parent of a boy—especially a dad—this is the book you have been waiting for, the book you need. Gouveia, who has three sons, has thought deeply and sometimes uncomfortably about his own masculine identity and how it informs his fatherhood. His insightful, enlightened, practical guidance will help you raise not only ‘good' but in fact the very best of men!"
—Peggy Orenstein, New York Times bestselling author of Boys & Sex
"Whether we admit it or not, every guy struggles with the question of what it means to be a man. With good humor and practical advice, Aaron Gouveia tackles the question head-on in this unflinching but tender account of his own journey through the minefield of masculinity to become a better husband, dad, and human. The perfect read for any father or father-to-be." —Michael Ian Black, New York Times bestselling author, actor, and comedian
“This book is gold! Not only is this a great parenting book, but it’s a great book about life in general. Raising Boys to be Good Men is a fun, hard-hitting, enjoyable read that will make people rethink how they’re raising their tiny humans in today’s world.” —Doyin Richards, bestselling author of What’s the Difference and Daddy Doin’ Work
"How refreshing to see a man, and dad of three sons, take on the 'restrictive bullshit that's been choking boys forever' and teaching them a different way." —Upworthy
"Aaron has been an important voice in the online parenting community for years, and he delivers this important message with his characteristic bluntness, passion, and erudition. He'll call out anyone's behavior—including his own—to make sure his three sons inhabit a world with a healthier appreciation for what men can and should be. And we'll all be better for it." —Doug French, co-founder of Dad 2.0