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Mothers of sons.. Helping the next generation of mums!

(146 Posts)
Lala83 Wed 30-Jul-14 21:57:08

I sometimes feel my MIL inadvertently made a very long rod for my back housework/cooking wise. She's energetic, kind, an awesome cook and so clean and tidy. But she mainly passed the high standards to her son without backing it up with the attitude/skills to achieve it himself! I am determined not to do the same for my son. I have a few ideas. Please add your suggestions!

1) teach him to cook and make sure his dad cooks with him too.
2) teach him to bring his plate to wash after dinner
3) teach him to iron and clean, and make him do it once in a while/chores when old enough.
4) show him that I have hobbies and interests that I pursue independently outside of house and home
5) make play and education my priority with him over housework when possible
6) when grown up, never criticise his wife for having him do jobs in the house and childcare. This includes 'poor X having to do Y after a day at work'

More?!

rootypig Wed 30-Jul-14 21:59:12

He must, MUST know what a clean loo looks and smells like, and be able to achieve it.

I thought this was obvious to any sentient being, until I lived with my DH hmm

Apart from that, I think it's so important for DC to see both parents doing domestic work, and for the main jobs like cooking and food shopping to be shared to some degree.

Wolfiefan Wed 30-Jul-14 22:03:22

Teach him there's no such thing as a washing fairy.
Teach him to pack for holidays.
Include him in meal planning and shopping.
Make sure he keeps his own room tidy.
Teach him to remember birthdays etc!
Ensure he offers to help eg when getting shopping in.
Show him you are capable and deserve respect.

Same for girls too!

EatShitDerek Wed 30-Jul-14 22:05:10

Is there a list for how mums should bring up their daughters?

PenguinsHatchedAnEgg Wed 30-Jul-14 22:09:04

Most of this applies to either sex. The only thing I can think of that I will be stressing far more to my son is enthusiastic consent, not the absence of a no.

Sparklingbrook Wed 30-Jul-14 22:15:36

Are girls exempt from being taught any of this?

BlackeyedSusan Wed 30-Jul-14 22:21:53

I am teaching mine not to blame other people when he has done something wrong. This will be a difficult battle as ex does something then when pulled up on it complains it is to difficult to do/not to do it because I have not done/have done something. I have told ds that if he wants to live with hisbabies then he has to not do this, and be gentle to his dw.

abigamarone Wed 30-Jul-14 22:30:01

1) one of mine was a bit peckish after his tea, made himself some noodles seasoned with tomato ketchup - is that the kind of thing you're after? (he can bake cakes too)
2)same child does this. Don't know where he's picked that from 'cos I don't.
3)eldest got taught to do that at cadets.
4)...?
5)I genuinely dont understand what 4) and 5) are about
6)mine'll probably be quite happy to hoover/cook/scrub s-bends but will fully expect their wife to wield a hammer and drill when necessary.

callamia Wed 30-Jul-14 22:39:29

I think most if these things apply to both sexes. Our home already has some typical gender-role swaps, so I'm not in sole charge of housework. DS will also be attending nursery at my work, so he should end up with a fair idea about how equal partnerships work. I will be doing my utmost to quell anything that looks like casual misogyny, but them I'd do the same for a daughter too - just in a different way.

rootypig Wed 30-Jul-14 22:46:43

are girls exempt from being taught any of this?

Ah yes, the well known oversight of domestic education for girls.

hmm hmm hmm

WaffleWiffle Wed 30-Jul-14 22:51:46

My mum was the definition of a 'home maker'. I never did any housework, cleaning, tidying, washing etc at all as a child. She did it all and never asked anything of her children.

I am female.

CorporateRockWhore Wed 30-Jul-14 22:54:15

I know what you're saying OP but given that it's been a lot of years since your husband was a child in his mother's home, it's not fair to blame her. Blame him for being a lazy arse who could easily do these simple tasks but chooses not to.

rootypig Wed 30-Jul-14 22:57:38

Perfect, Waffle! the huge disproportion of domestic labour that falls to women is just a myth then.

<relief>

Love the people suggesting this is unfair to men. Meanwhile, back in the real world...

morethanpotatoprints Wed 30-Jul-14 23:03:04

My dd has been taught building, plumbing, decorating, DIY and will definitely know the way around a car when she is older, just the same as her older brothers.
Our older ds were taught how to cook, clean, iron, shop, garden, clean paths, clean cars, general admin, how to unblock a sink etc.
We see these things as important to general living and ensuring you don't spend hard earned money having to get somebody else to do it for you.

Hiphopopotamus Wed 30-Jul-14 23:07:26

I think the biggest thing is making sure they see equal distribution of jobs in their household. Then it becomes normal. No going from seeing your mum doing everything, to seeing your wife doing everything!

And yes - we'll start a thread about daughters when they start doing a disproportionately tiny amount of housework in their own homes!

cuddybridge Wed 30-Jul-14 23:08:30

My MIL did teach my DH to do all those things and he does them without fail, however if he does any of them when she is here, I get the cats bum face and p/A comments about "womens work" sigh

Esmum07 Wed 30-Jul-14 23:09:51

My exMIL gave her kids (2 boys and 1 girl) a few lessons in how the washing machine worked a few days after each of their sixteenth birthday and then told them they were responsible for washing their own clothes from then on. If the clothes weren't done they went to school, college or work slightly smelly for a day! That was about the only thing my exH was good at!

Voodoobooboo Wed 30-Jul-14 23:15:21

I'm trying to teach DS that all of us are equal and love is everything. It's toe curlingly trite but covers most issues at a macro level.

Plus he is learning to cook, clean, wash, iron, take out bins, do his bank statements, look after the car and generally manage like a human. I want him to blow the mind of the girl he falls in love with.

steppemum Wed 30-Jul-14 23:30:16

for those saying we should teach girls this too,

Of course we should, but there are not very many men complaining about how their wives don't know how to cook/clean/tidy/do the washing etc, and who struggle to get an equal division of chores in their house.

And there are many women out there who are so good at doing all that, that they do it for their dcs until the dcs leave home and therefore have never taught their kids how to survive in the real world. For some reason this seems to be worse with boys than girls

I am with you op. Teach your kids the life skills they need

IfNotNowThenWhen Thu 31-Jul-14 00:02:25

I have been thinking about this lately, especially as ds has become a total sexist pig (he's 8).
Guuurls only like princesses and OneD, apparently. Guuurls are not allowed in his room, in case they decide to start tidying up...
I asked him why he thinks a girl, any girl, would be dying to pick up his sweet wrappers, since he lives with a girl who clearly doesn't enjoy housework and tidying up after him. He couldn't answer this.
When I ask him to, for example, put away his clean washing, he huffs and moans and says indignantly "why can't you do it" at which I belt him say "your stuff, your job"
It's an uphill struggle!
Maybe 8 year old girls are the same, I dunno, bit where on earth is he getting all this guff about girls=tidying?
So, yes, I am all for making a conscious effort to instill awareness that a home creates work for everyone living in it.

steppemum Thu 31-Jul-14 00:18:46

I would add to your list:

budgeting in general
meal planning and shopping
basic DIY
how to turn off the water/electricity etc
basic first aid

Happy36 Thu 31-Jul-14 00:23:07

I live in Spain. The government has a huge ad campaign at the moment about unequal balances of donestic chores in the workload and basically encourages men to share duties at home evenly with their wives.

I think as long as we raise our children not to think of women's work or men's work and to assume that domestic chores are to be shared equally, we've done the right thing.

MrsMikeDelfino Thu 31-Jul-14 00:41:19

I'm with you. I'm mum to two small boys and conscious of getting them to do things as I don't want them to have it all done for them and it become taken for granted and the 'woman' will do it all for them! hmm
10 year old knows how to sort washing into colours and whites, and put the washing machine on.
Peg stuff on line.
I'm still working on getting them to tidy up though. Grrr.

Fairenuff Thu 31-Jul-14 01:11:39

Just live your life without gender bias and it will become a natural way for your children to live theirs.

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