The next tip for single mothers is probably the hardest to do.
I said it before, it’s hard for any well intended mother to not nurture, support and guide. As a man, I cannot measure exactly how incredibly hard it would be for a mother to resist when you have the best intentions for your son…especially when trying to resist doing what comes natural.
You must let him fail.
By letting him experience his failures, he begins to problem solve. This is hard…trying not to save him from failure. If you allow him to fail, he develops the skills to get back up. He begins to make his own corrections. More importantly he doesn’t operate with a sense of a “net” is going to save him. If the hypothetical “safety net” isn’t there…then maybe he would be more careful about his decisions.
It’s almost like a toddler learning to walk, if he starts to fall and you catch him…every time, he never develops balancing skills or reflexes or, more importantly, the ability to get back up. He learns to pay attention where he walks, to identify the unleveled pavers in the walkway to slow down his pace whatever the cognitive development necessary to not fall. Even if he’s too young to let fall…when do you trust him to walk on his own?…if not now when?
Your son has to learn to survive and get back up without you. He will still be waiting for you to catch him from falling or…laying there waiting for you to pick him up.
DISCLAIMER: I’m not a psychiatrist or even a parent. This blog is my supportive opinion, which is based on dating single mothers, mentoring young boys from the age of 7 to 18 for almost 3 decades and other various life experiences. While mentoring, I have also received formal and informal guidance from older black men/volunteers from the DC Chapter of Concerned Black Men, Inc. I received formal training as a volunteer with Mentors Inc. Lastly, my personal development and growth from the 7th – 12th grade includes my attendance of an all male boarding high school called Girard College. While my opinion can be applied to young women, I believe most times I have an inherent bias towards masculine issues. My lens, for good or bad, is aligned to young males becoming men.