I have two boymen (‘BM’). I can’t show you any pictures of them, because they won’t let me take any. But they’re gorgeous. Not that they think they are. Sure they’re lazy and totally uninterested in homework and housework. But they are tall and slim and handsome. They are bright and charming. Much more importantly, they are tolerant and sensitive and kind. But they truly believe themselves to be too skinny and worth not a lot. Or maybe they don’t? I’m having one of those days when I really wonder about the mars -v- venus thing. Am I so foolish that I can’t see that even my own sons come from a different planet?
Its difficult to play both mum and dad. I’m not pretending to be dad of course. I can’t. But I listen to my male friends’ advice about how to best console when an important football match is lost (don’t ever allude to doing better next time, just nod and make non-specific but firm sounding noises) and I try not to get disappointed that they dont (ever) want to go for a coffee with me or for a walk, unless there is a defined end-point, that cannot be reached by car.
I do the discipline thing when required (which is not very often anymore). But I do it in my way, of course, which involves lots of discussion and reflection. Not very masculine, in the traditional sense, but its me and I’ve always worked on the principle that violence, including aggressive talk, just attracts the same back and doesn’t often help in getting your point across.
But here I am, on leave, with a house full of BM who are polite and charming but do bugger all. I may have drafted the CVs but I haven’t gone out and found them a summer job. Ergo its my fault that they aren’t earning and therefore I should take them sales shopping….this hasn’t actually been said, but would be if I raised the point….They’re delightful to spend time with, fun even. But I still have to ask them to take their dishes into the kitchen (the kitchen is actually in the lounge….which is also the dining room….so not exactly a long way from the table….).
I reflect that the men in my life (employing artistic license here to boost numbers and thereby effect) are similarly charming and caring, whilst avoiding initiative and responsibility. So I ask you, dear (perhaps more objective – its late and I’ve had a glass of wine) reader., is this really the difference between mars men and venus women? Am I barking at dead wood, or is there hope that my BM will one day (soon) develop the joy of honest accountability that I cherish and try to instill? Or should I just go and have a cocktail and forget about all that 🙂 ?