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15 Things Your Son Needs to Know Before He Turns 13

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As hard as it is to believe, every sweet little boy must grow up to become a teenager, for better or for worse. While we’re sure you still remember his first steps as if they happened yesterday, he’s not a little boy anymore. Before he reaches the big 1-3, here are a few crucial life lessons every young man needs to know.

Learn to Cook

<p>Before your son becomes a teen, he should know how to make at least a handful meals on his own. (No, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich doesn't count.) Not only that, he should already be used to cleaning up after himself (read: washing the dishes) and doing his own laundry. More importantly, he needs to understand that no chore is only "a woman's job." While his future girlfriend or wife may help out with these tasks one day, it should be because she wants to, not because he expects her to. </p>

Before your son becomes a teen, he should know how to make at least a handful meals on his own. (No, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich doesn’t count.) Not only that, he should already be used to cleaning up after himself (read: washing the dishes) and doing his own laundry. More importantly, he needs to understand that no chore is only “a woman’s job.” While his future girlfriend or wife may help out with these tasks one day, it should be because she wants to, not because he expects her to.

Stay Away From Drugs

<p>We're sure he's heard this one before, but 'just say no' is definitely a lesson worth repeating. Drugs, even prescription ones, shouldn't be considered a 'fun experience.' Along with binge drinking, drugs could potentially introduce him to the wrong crowd, waste his money, ruin his health and reputation, get him arrested, or worse. (While you're at it, let him know that cigarettes are no good either.)</p>

We’re sure he’s heard this one before, but ‘just say no’ is definitely a lesson worth repeating. Drugs, even prescription ones, shouldn’t be considered a ‘fun experience.’ Along with binge drinking, drugs could potentially introduce him to the wrong crowd, waste his money, ruin his health and reputation, get him arrested, or worse. (While you’re at it, let him know that cigarettes are no good either.)

Practice Empathy

<p>It's always a good reminder to put yourself in someone else's shoes. No one is better than him, and he shouldn't think he's any better than anyone else, either. Remind him that there is strength in empathy and kindness—being a man does not require him to be mean or hurtful to anyone. If there's one rule he should always abide by, no matter what, it's to treat others the way he wants to be treated. </p>

It’s always a good reminder to put yourself in someone else’s shoes. No one is better than him, and he shouldn’t think he’s any better than anyone else, either. Remind him that there is strength in empathy and kindness—being a man does not require him to be mean or hurtful to anyone. If there’s one rule he should always abide by, no matter what, it’s to treat others the way he wants to be treated.

“No” Always Means “No”

<p>Repeat this one again for good measure to your son: "No" always means "no." A woman's body is and will always be her own, and what she wants to do with it is her choice—not his. He should respect women, and treat them as equals. A woman can accomplish whatever she sets her mind to, just as any man can (and good luck to him if he ever tries to underestimate that!). </p>

Repeat this one again for good measure to your son: “No” always means “no.” A woman’s body is and will always be her own, and what she wants to do with it is her choice—not his. He should respect women, and treat them as equals. A woman can accomplish whatever she sets her mind to, just as any man can (and good luck to him if he ever tries to underestimate that!).

Don’t Let Failure Define You

<p>Failure is scary, but it shouldn't be. Let your son know that life will come with disappointments, both internal and external. But disappointment shouldn't stop him from moving forward and trying again. Remind him that a setback is simply an opportunity to learn.</p>

Failure is scary, but it shouldn’t be. Let your son know that life will come with disappointments, both internal and external. But disappointment shouldn’t stop him from moving forward and trying again. Remind him that a setback is simply an opportunity to learn.

You Are Not Your Job

<p>Whether he grows up to be a doctor or a train conductor, teach him that his career shouldn't define him. What he'll do for a living will, of course, be a big part of his life, but it's not the most important part. He should do the best job he can and choose a profession he's passionate about, but he should also never forget to enjoy his hobbies, his family, his friends, and life's simple pleasures.</p>

Whether he grows up to be a doctor or a train conductor, teach him that his career shouldn’t define him. What he’ll do for a living will, of course, be a big part of his life, but it’s not the most important part. He should do the best job he can and choose a profession he’s passionate about, but he should also never forget to enjoy his hobbies, his family, his friends, and life’s simple pleasures.

You Can Be Whatever You Want

<p>As his mother, you know your child can achieve anything, and you'll support whatever his passion is. But it's important he knows that for himself, too. So whether his dream is to be a musician or a chemist, he really can be whatever he wants. As long as he believes in himself, tries his best, and has his family's support, than the future is his to create. </p>

As his mother, you know your child can achieve anything, and you’ll support whatever his passion is. But it’s important he knows that for himself, too. So whether his dream is to be a musician or a chemist, he really can be whatever he wants. As long as he believes in himself, tries his best, and has his family’s support, than the future is his to create.

Call Your Parents

<p>This is a simple lesson, but it's so easy for kids to forget this one. (We can't imagine why!) Remind him that just one phone call a week goes a long way. Even if it's just to say hi, all you want to know is that he's okay. </p>

This is a simple lesson, but it’s so easy for kids to forget this one. (We can’t imagine why!) Remind him that just one phone call a week goes a long way. Even if it’s just to say hi, all you want to know is that he’s okay.

Always Stay Close to Your Family

<p>Whether your son is an only or part of a big brood, make sure he knows that family truly is everything. Friends will come and go, but his family will always be there. And if he has siblings and close cousins, remind him to cherish those bonds as well. </p>

Whether your son is an only or part of a big brood, make sure he knows that family truly is everything. Friends will come and go, but his family will always be there. And if he has siblings and close cousins, remind him to cherish those bonds as well.

Choose Your Friends Carefully

<p>Who your son chooses to spend his time with says a lot about who he is. So let him know he should surround himself with people that will make him a better person. If he's friends with jerks, it's only a matter of time before he becomes one, too. (Sorry, but it's true.)</p>

Who your son chooses to spend his time with says a lot about who he is. So let him know he should surround himself with people that will make him a better person. If he’s friends with jerks, it’s only a matter of time before he becomes one, too. (Sorry, but it’s true.)

Never Be a Bully

<p>There's never any excuse for bullying someone. Let him know that if he ever feels pressure from his friends to bully someone or make a classmate feel bad, he needs new friends. </p>

There’s never any excuse for bullying someone. Let him know that if he ever feels pressure from his friends to bully someone or make a classmate feel bad, he needs new friends.

But Don’t Let Bullies Get You Down, Either

<p>And on the other side of the coin, remind him that whatever a bully says or thinks about him doesn't mean anything. The only opinion that matters is the one your son has of himself. Even though it can be hard to see the big picture, let him know it will get better, and your son (and even that jerk bully) will grow up and move on. But most importantly, let him know that if the bullying becomes too much for him to handle, he needs to tell you, his teacher, or another authority figure about it. </p>

And on the other side of the coin, remind him that whatever a bully says or thinks about him doesn’t mean anything. The only opinion that matters is the one your son has of himself. Even though it can be hard to see the big picture, let him know it will get better, and your son (and even that jerk bully) will grow up and move on. But most importantly, let him know that if the bullying becomes too much for him to handle, he needs to tell you, his teacher, or another authority figure about it.

You’re Never Too Old to Hug Your Parents

<p>Life will get tough, but let him know that whenever he needs a hug or a gesture of support and love, you will always be there to give it...no matter what. He'll never be too old (or too cool) to need his parents. </p>

Life will get tough, but let him know that whenever he needs a hug or a gesture of support and love, you will always be there to give it…no matter what. He’ll never be too old (or too cool) to need his parents.

Technology Won’t Make You Happy

<p>It's easy to get caught up in the latest smartphone, computer, or video game. But, at the end of the day, it's all just stuff, and it won't make him happy. True happiness will come from his experiences in the real world (not the virtual one). </p>

It’s easy to get caught up in the latest smartphone, computer, or video game. But, at the end of the day, it’s all just stuff, and it won’t make him happy. True happiness will come from his experiences in the real world (not the virtual one).

Always Try Your Best

<p>Your son already has hopes and dreams, but remind him that they'll remain just that—unless he puts effort into making them a reality. So whether he dreams of being a chef or a journalist, tell him to figure out what he loves to do—and then do it better than anyone else. One more thing: Make sure he knows it's totally fine if he has no interest in sports, even if he feels like everyone around him is on a sports team. He should follow his own passion—not what someone else thinks his passion should be. </p>

Your son already has hopes and dreams, but remind him that they’ll remain just that—unless he puts effort into making them a reality. So whether he dreams of being a chef or a journalist, tell him to figure out what he loves to do—and then do it better than anyone else. One more thing: Make sure he knows it’s totally fine if he has no interest in sports, even if he feels like everyone around him is on a sports team. He should follow his own passion—not what someone else thinks his passion should be.

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24 Hours Across Africa

Zimbawe’s doctor goes missing after masterminding strike

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Fearless Zimbabwe’s minister of health has called on the government to address insecurity lapses that has lead to the disappearance Peter Magombeyi, the head of a doctor’s union, who disappeared on Saturday.

Fears are rising over the fate of Zimbabwe medical doctor Dr Peter Magombeyi after he sent a message to say he had been abducted in that country by unknown persons – apparently for demanding a “living wage”.

An AFP report earlier on Sunday quoted the Zimbabwe Hospital Doctor’s Association (ZHDA) as saying Magombeyi had not been heard from since he sent a WhatsApp message on Saturday night saying he had been “kidnapped by three men”.

Zimbabwe doctors, who earn a miserly equivalent of about R3 000 are on strike to press for better wages, equipment and medicines in state hospitals.

The ZHDA has reportedly accused state security forces of abducting the doctor because of his role in organising work stoppages.

This week some doctors said the death of deposed Robert Mugabe, 95, in a Singapore hospital on 6 September was an indication of how bad health services in Zimbabwe

“Dr Magombeyi’s crime is only to ask for a living wage for his profession. This is a reflection of the troubles born out of refusal to implement Political Reforms.”

The Zimbabwe government led by Emmerson Mnangagwa has not publicly commented on the doctor’s disappearance

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24 Hours Across Africa

Turkey: Group calls for immediate action against Femicide

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Emine Dirican, a beautician from Istanbul, tried to be a good wife. But her husband hated that she worked, that she socialized, even that she wanted to leave the house sometimes without him.

She tried to reason with him. He lashed out.

“One time, he tied me — my hands, my legs from the back, like you do to animals,” recalls Dirican, shuddering. “He beat me with a belt and said, ‘You’re going to listen to me, you’re going to obey whatever I say to you.’ “

She left him and moved in with her parents. In January, he showed up, full of remorse and insisting he had changed. She let him in.

In her mother’s kitchen, he grabbed her by the hair, threw her to the floor and pulled out a gun.

“He shot me,” she says. “Then he went back to my mom and he pulled the trigger again, but the gun was stuck. So he hit her head with the back of the gun.”

Her father, who was in another room in the house, heard the gunshots and ran over. Dirican almost bled to death after a bullet ripped through a main artery in one of her legs.

“I was telling my father, ‘Daddy, please, I don’t want to die.’ “

Femicide — killing women because of their gender — is a longstanding issue in Turkey. Nearly 300 women have been killed so far this year, according to the Istanbul-based advocacy group We Will Stop Femicide, which has been tracking gender-related deaths since Turkish authorities stopped doing so in 2009.

Source Npr news

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