November 26, 2008

Raising Our Boys.

As a mother, in general, I know I have the huge responsibility of bringing up our children in a good Islamic environment and do our best to instill good values and morals in our children, inshaAllah. Raising girls is another post, coming soon , but right now I want to talk about raising our boys.

These cute little rascals we have now will be new generation of Muslim men. It's so important to raise them to be compassionate respectful, and self sufficient. Our husbands need to be positive examples of a good Muslim man and a role model they can look up to. The way our men treat us will directly effect the way they think men should treat women. The same goes for how we allow ourselves to be treated.

I think it stems from people wanting boys more than girls. This is stuff from the jahiliya times This is still going on. Men and women preferring and hoping for boys over girls. Some will have 5-6 girls till they finally get a Y chromosome and whoop-dee-doo, a boy. When they get their boy, I suppose some act as if he can do no wrong and he's treated like a king.

I believe in treating kids with fairness and equality. I will not be one of those parents who lets the boy come and go as he pleases while his sisters sit at home all the time. I will not instill that double standard. He does things for himself and will continue to do so. I can't tell you how repulsive it is when I witness Egyptian family dynamics displaying such sexism. The sister will iron her brother's shirt or make him tea. He has 2 hands. Get up and make your own damn tea SON! Boys are not helpless in the kitchen unless we raise them to be. Why people coddle their sons this way is beyond me. It is certainly not beneath any boy or man to do things for himself. Why the Prophet himself (peace be upon him) mended his clothes and shoes and sweep the floor. Why don't some men look at the sunnah when it comes to this? Because it isn't self serving.

I want my son to not be afraid to cry when he is in pain, emotional or physical. I want him to treat his wife (one day) with respect and understanding. To pick up after himself and help out around the house. I have seen Egyptian mothers freak out if their son picks up a baby doll and plays with it. If little girls can play with dolls to mimic their moms, why can't little boys play daddy? Same with play kitchens or cooking toys. Is it so horrible to let your boy play house or push a doll in a stroller? Don't these mothers wish their husbands were more like that? The natural interest a boy may have in these activities is quickly squashed and a truck or toy gun (a whole nother post) is put into his hands instead.

Let us be the change our Ummah needs. Let's raise our sons to be really great guys as well as good Muslims. Our daughters in law will thank us one day.

21 comments:

  1. I agree :) But my hubbs likes girls, I dont know why. His girls and sisters can do no wrong! I think he will be too hard on them if he had boys and expect too much from them...of course thats why they have mothers to rally for them all the time lol.

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  2. Masha Allah very nice post and I agree with u in all that .... It's worst in India .... they think boys have come directly from heaven ..... they let the boys eat first and whatever is left is for the gils or the men eat first and whatever is left is for women .... Subhan Allah ! but they r a lot ignorant in India espacially people living in the villages and southeners ..... that's why it's the women who pay the dowry and so they hate daughters because of the burden .... and yes boys get to use their sisters in whatever way he wants and that's how the daughters-in-laws are treated and so there are many cases of suicide and bride burning ..... God forbid! It's sooo pathetic to even think of it ....

    Alhamdulillah my mum loves girls but I dunno abt my Pa coz he dosen't show his feelings .... but he was brought up that way too being the only son ... lol .... but Alhamdulillah he helps my mum alot though .....

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  3. Alhumdulillah! With two boys and no girls I think about this a lot. I review movies and tv to make sure women are well-portrayed--bc what my boys see will affect their view of women. No Disney princesses for bos or girls until they're old enough to understand that women can be self-sufficient---we don't lock them up or rescue them. We partner and support. And father's need not be ultimatum-doling tyrants, nor mother's. Don't wait until you've lost it all to show appreciation. Anyway, more thoughts another time. Thanks for this post.

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  4. Assalaamualykum
    MashaAllah what a wonderful post! My brother had to grow up with 2 big sisters, he played "barbie", was allowed to cry etc and grew up to a fantastic MAN and father. May Allah guide us all.

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  5. Umm Travis, girls are great, alhamdulillah!

    Ms Unique, I never knew all that about India, but lets not generalize. I'm sure your Pa loves you girls as well, and like you said, he was raised that way. Shame how many boys are taught they can't express their feelings.

    Shawna, really good points. Too often girls/women are portrayed as helpless damsels or play things.

    Ayesha, My brother had 2 older sisters too, and I like to think it was good training!

    Thanks for you comments everyone.

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  6. we are scared when they play with dolls because it implies homosexuality.

    I'd argue that implications associated with homosexuality constitute a bigger sin than sexism.

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  7. Nice post ;)!At first I thought I'll not read it :),because I don't have children,but I must say that I found it really good.I like the idea of letting small boys play also with "girly" stuff.Just to give them one idea!
    I think you're a very good mum,because your children on the pictures shown in here are so happy and relaxed.Bravo :)!

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  8. Abid, are you saying that boys playing with dolls will turn them gay? Or the opposite?

    Natasha, thanks!

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  9. Anonymous9:57 PM

    when my daughter was born, my son was 3. some family congratulated him and told him:
    your a big brother now and she is gonna iron your clothes, get your breakfast ready for you and make you sweets!
    i went nuts!
    dh still jokes about it and tells her (now 2) come on iron your brothers shirts.
    not funny.

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  10. Anonymous, I would really mad too! UGH! Were they serious!?

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  11. Anonymous12:01 AM

    Abid-That is just ridiculous. I have NEVER heard anyone actually try to validate a Pro-Sexism argument. We fear A (which does not happen due to playing with dolls) So We act out B which is pernicious behavior.

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  12. Anon, I'm not sure just yet if he meant that sarcastically or what.

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  13. I agree, wholeheartedly =) My mother in law has 3 sons and she raised all of them to do NOTHING for themselves. Even till this day my mother in law has to do something for her sons. If he has to even clean the car, she freaks. Its insane!! Inshallah i plan on raising my kids with equality, like you said.

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  14. Allah yazeek al khair. This is a big problem. I always wonder why women who have a husband who can do nothing for himself would instill that into her son?? I am fighting to make my son a more well-rounded male than many of the examples around him. It is a struggle but God willing it will work out. If it doesn't come from me, his two older sisters will pound it into him! ha.

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  15. Jannah, that's bad. Why do they think their sons are Kings or something?

    Nicole, InshaAllah, May Allah give us the strength and patience to do it.

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  16. What a great post mashallah! Too many men are big babies!!! Inshallah my boys won't be one of them!! :)

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  17. Thanks for the compliment Muslimahh!

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  18. Mona- this is one of the discussions I had with mu husband- it seems that most men are raised that way but in MY house, the boys will learn to cook, clean and pick for themselves as well as help their sister (and vice versa) no double standards here. I wany my sons to be like my Dad who didn't have to wait for my Mom to do anything- he could do it all- and talk about a slamming cook....

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  19. Anisa, that's great, you're dad sounds cool.

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  20. Asalamu Alaikum mona, i know this is an old post but this post is great, but i would like to know if u have a personal email i can contact u at?

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  21. BubbliMuslima, Thanks yea you can email me at Mom2dawood@yahoo.com :)

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Thanks for commenting!