Stop Saying “Boys Will Be Boys”

I hate that saying. “Boys will be boys”. What does it even mean?! I have two beautiful boys, they are 13 months apart in age, and lets face it, they can be a handful sometimes. Especially when they were toddlers. When they have acted out people have said to me “Boys will be boys”, as if to explain their behaviour, to make it ok, to excuse it. I don’t know. I haven’t had anyone say it to me in years, maybe because I have kicked up such a stink about it. Just because I have boys, just because these sweet humans happened to be born with a penis is not an excuse for bad behaviour, for throwing things, for being rude, or for what ever other activity would warrant a “boys will be boys” comment from someone.

Yes I have boys, boy who are growing into men, gentlemen! Boys who will grow to be adults one day and God willing will be polite, kind, generous, gentle, compassionate men. Men who will be responsible for their actions.

Two things happened last week that has brought this “boys will be boys” nonsense back to my attention.

1. I was out with my three kids. We were walking up the stairs instead of taking the elevator. My boys were playing, no big deal, one of my sons decided to race up the stairs. Just so happens that a lady was coming down. I stopped my son, told him to wait, and get behind me to leave enough space for the lady to pass. My son said sorry for almost running into her. What was her response “Don’t worry, boys will be boys. Thats just how boys are”.   Um, excuse me? What?! No! My child’s gender is not an excuse to act like a fool, be rude, run up the stairs and almost knock a person over. Boys, men, will never have an excuse to behave in that way. So please don’t tell my son is it ok to be rude and push past people on the stairs simply because he is a boy.

2. We had teacher / parent interviews last week. I asked my oldest sons teacher how he was in class, if he was organized. My son used to be very organized. I admit it has been slipping lately. We have had a lot going on and figured that maybe that had something to do with it. His teachers response “Boys will be boys”. When I asked him to explain he said “Boys just do this at this age. They don’t care. They become disorganized, its not something boys care about.” My son’s sarcastic response “See Mom, it is because I’m a boy, I’m allowed to be disorganized” Um?! No! I’m pretty sure my sons brain can handle writing in his agenda every day and it won’t hurt him. Boy or not, he can and will be organized and take care of his things!

I have been blessed with 3 beautiful boys. 3 beautiful boys that will one day grow into men. I am trying my damnedest to teach them that they are accountable for their actions, all their actions, big and small. I am teaching them to be polite, to be caring, to be kind. To be aware of their surroundings, and the people around them.

Just because 3 of my children were born with a penis does not give them green light to disrespect people, to not take pride in their work, and to not be organized.

So please stop saying “Boys will be boys”, by saying this you remove my child’s responsibility for his actions, you excuse his bad behaviour! My son’s are very much responsible for their actions, and they need to learn this now, so they know damn well when they are adults that they are responsible and that nothing will be written off as “boys will be boys”.

Boy or girl, my child is responsible for his/her actions. Don’t excuse and take away responsibility, just because someone has a penis!

~ Michelle


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