The very qualities that cause men to be attracted to women can often become the very qualities that men come to hate later in life.
The reverse is true as well. Some women are attracted to men because they are hard-working and show great commitment to their work. Later on, those same women complain their husbands are workaholics and are never around.
This is true for men. Studies reveal that most women talk about twice as much as men during the course of the day. Women are expressive, and that expressiveness helps mothers become the emotional connector within their families.
Fathers are good at setting rules and finding solutions. Mothers are better at understanding.
At first a man is attracted to a woman because she is expressive — she talks about the relationship and its positives and negatives. Years later, he leaves home frequently because he is talked out.
The fact that women use more words, and are generally more openly expressive, serves sons very well. Mothers teach sons about their feelings and thoughts and help boys become comfortable with them. This lends itself to helping boys establish healthy connectedness with their mothers and, importantly, other people. Her words help him become a better man.
She can teach him to become comfortable putting words to his feelings and that he has a choice as to when and how he verbalizes his feelings. A mother can teach her son about girls, because a son respects his mother even when he finds it hard to tolerate the girls at school. She teaches him to tolerate girls at various ages, to excuse feminine behaviors of theirs that he finds ridiculous, and to appreciate that the differences between boys and girls are not good and bad, but two beneficial aspects of human nature.
Later, she can help him understand and, therefore more easily accept, how women think and why.
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Sometimes mothers pain their sons by explaining and talking too much. And women do need to understand that while they, as mothers, are responsible for helping sons to understand others, to love them and connect with them, boys may choose to do this in different ways. Grown men don’t always bond through verbal communication. They often bond with others through action, which can be anything from athletics to shared hobbies to work, rather than through sharing feelings and emotions.
A mother needs to remember that her goal is to help her son be comfortable enough with himself to form deep bonds and respect his way of doing it. Mothers earnestly teach lessons by talking more, but it is important to realize that as their son matures, so, too, does his thinking. As he ages, his cognitive skills help him think more pragmatically. This allows him to see what she is trying to say and absorb it quickly, if he can identify the lesson she is trying to teach.
All of these aspects of her femininity open a path for him to connect more soundly with others — both men and women.
Beyond words, her physical affection allows him to feel more comfortable being affectionate with others. Her open communication lets him understand his own thoughts and appreciate those of others. As she makes herself trustworthy, he learns to trust other women. All of these aspects of her femininity open a path for him to connect more soundly with others — both men and women.
Mothers ideally bring all of these qualities to their sons. They love adoringly, protect until death, guard their son’s dignity, extend grace when it is needed — and ensure healthy relationships for him in the future.
Dr. Meg Meeker has practiced pediatrics and adolescent medicine for 30 years. She is the author of the online course “The 12 Principles of Raising Great Kids,” which is part of The Strong Parent Project.