Boys. Are they really that different?

(90 Posts)
sedgieloo Mon 31-Dec-12 09:04:41

I have a two year old girl. I just had a baby boy a few weeks ago. We did not find out the gender and we are thrilled.

I've been on the advice boards quite a bit, as one does with a newborn and a challenging toddler.

I'm noticing quite a few threads suggesting boys are high energy destructive little brutes who take ages to learn to talk and difficult to tame. That is to say, far fewer such threads relating to girls.

Is there something I should know? Ought I be reading that raising boys book?

If I find a thread I will link, but they go like this; 'why is my toddler destructive and does he have ADHD?', and tons of replies like this; 'normal. All my boys are like this. My dd would sit doing crafts for hours, you need to take them for 3 mile walks x2 a day'

Just wondering hmm

hostelgirl74 Wed 02-Jan-13 21:31:41

My 13 month old boy loves teddies and his favourite thing of all is books. He is so affectionate - strokes the cat kindly,always kissing his teddy loves cuddles and sitting on my knee and has a really good concentration span. There is probably some generalisations in what boys usually do etc but certainly each child is an individual. Enjoy your boy.

skratta Wed 02-Jan-13 17:09:00

My DDS were very physical and high energy. DS was too, but nowhere near to the extent of DD3. Currently, he is still high energy and likes playing football and running around, and when he was a toddler we went to the playground or on a long walk or to somewhere like a soft play centre- anywhere to get rid of energy- for a long time once a day and he'd have to go outside and be active a lot otherwise he was very grumpy and dreadful and hyper etc;

DD3 walked and talked a lot earlier, read a tiny bit later, but appears, so far, to be a bit more advanced academically. However, apart from that, she is very active, more so than her brother (who is younger by a little bit, she's eight) and does a lot of high energy sports (she currently does basketball, football, hockey, ice hockey in winter, athletics, and swimming too) as well as being energetic and physical (and she's a lot more impulsive, loud etc; than most boys I knew or know who were the same age) although she also reads a lot, is gentle sometimes, and loves drawing and writing too, but mainly she is more high energy than her brother!

DD1 and 2 are a lot calmer than her, and less high energy, although being older, and maybe because they prefer doing quiet things together, they're twins if it makes a difference,s and so although not older by much, it probably makes a big difference I'm guessing, but even at that age, they were a lot calmer, quieter and more relaxing.

Individual personalities in both genders.

Zimbah Tue 01-Jan-13 22:32:26

My DD1 loves sticks and has done from a young age, she'll find a stick and go digging in the mud given any opportunity. She also likes pink, crafts, dolls etc. DD2 loves cars and balls. I once received the bizarre comment about how nice it was that DD1 could wear a skirt because if she was a boy her legs would be covered in bruises. DD1's legs were, as usual, covered in bruises but this was covered up by her ridiculously impractical for the park but I didn't want an argument long party dress and she was busy playing on the climbing frame at the time. But people see what they want to see.

MsElleTow Tue 01-Jan-13 20:49:45

I've got 2 boys who are now 16&18.

I didn't treat them as boys, I treated them as children. They were given toys to play with, books to read, crafts to do, activities to attend, we gave them time, we occupied them, we gave them rules and boundaries.

They didn't always get out to play every day. They learnt to play with each other, and other children, they both were early talkers, were potty trained by 2, could sit still and engage in activity and we not loud destructive brutes.

I think it is far more important to that your children as individuals rather than anything else.

bruffin Tue 01-Jan-13 20:45:22

The point i am making is that the girls were treated differently to the boys by mainly the dinner ladies. This was in reply to Grumpies observation that parentsxare much tougher on boys than girls. It was a problem. This is about girls getting away with behaviour and boys not. So girls played on it and boys got dispondant and felt they could do no right. I am not blaming the girls, i am blaming tbe culture that it was always the boys fault however much they were provoked.

Lots of parents did complain because boys who were well behaved and never in trouble before were coming home upset by it.
My own ds was scared to go out in the playground at lunchtime because as a boy in year 6 was not a good place to be. I knew the dl well as had sometimes helped out and saw them
Thankfully 2 years later when dd was in yr 6 and a new hm that culture had changed and they did not have the problems there were in ds year.

matana Tue 01-Jan-13 20:30:42

Boys are like dogs, feed them well and exercise them twice a day and they're really very easy and so much fun. I was secretly a little concerned when I gave birth to a boy, but wouldnt have it any other way now. He is 2. Yes, he's loud, bolshy, a little fire cracker and tiring, but he's doted on by my whole family (the first boy in our family) for being a real clown and a little cutie who loves his cuddles. He drives me insane without any exercise, but give him a run and some fresh air and he's as good as gold. Enjoy!

Pantomimedam Tue 01-Jan-13 20:12:45

Buffin, presumably the girls are on the cusp of puberty as well, what on earth does that have to do with anything?

Your argument is the start of the slippery slope to 'she was asking for it'. hmm Boys, and girls, are responsible for their own actions. Good grief, surely they've heard the old one about 'would you put your hand in the fire if X told you to?'

Kids who do something wrong then whine about somebody else making them do it are pathetic. People who make excuses for them are not doing them any favours.

If one group of kids are doing something wrong and getting away with it, then that's tough but doesn't justify another group of kids doing something wrong. If you are bothered by it, take it up with the lunch-time supervisors.

bruffin Tue 01-Jan-13 19:38:19

They can only take so much winding up. They were boys on the edge of puberty not saints. Girls knew they could get away wjth anything so they would push in queues, boys protest girls shouts miss, girls get away with it y

WidowWadman Tue 01-Jan-13 19:23:31

silvery "Am sure I read that in a number of places and am not making it up "

I'm sure too that you've read it in a number of places, but that doesn't mean that it's good science or not nonsense.

Pantomimedam Tue 01-Jan-13 18:15:29

bruffin, that sounds uncomfortably like blaming girls for boys' bad behaviour. 'Oh those poor boys being naughty, it was the girls that made them do it...' hmm The boys need to take responsibility for themselves and their own actions and reactions.

bruffin Tue 01-Jan-13 16:25:37

Its not just parents Grumpy, in year 6 the boys could do no right, girls wind them up, then when the react the girls shout miss,and boys got in trouble. Dinner ladues were the worst for taking girls side over boys.

GrumpySod Tue 01-Jan-13 15:33:27

That's funny, so often I see people being very very harsh on their boys; much firmer than they seem to need to ever be with their girls; it reeks of unrealistic expectations. "Don't get dirty!" "Don't Push!" "Don't shout!" "Don't climb that!" "Don't run off!" Very very firm. Much much harder than they are on girls who give sly pinches to each other or make hurtful remarks. Just look at MN attitudes: "Violence is never excusable!" rather prevalent; but child saying very mean cutting things to each other, deliberate goading, meh, complete gray area.

Aggression will out, whichever the gender.

moonstorm Tue 01-Jan-13 15:01:09

I've so often observed boy parented in a way that encourages 'roughness'/ boisterousness, whereas girls are rewarded for other behaviours... The children respond accordingly.

moonstorm Tue 01-Jan-13 14:56:09

Yes, but you are saying that is down to gender. My dses did things differently and there are things that ds1 does/ did that ds2 doesn't.

ChildoftheMonkeyBasket Tue 01-Jan-13 14:52:58

I have a 5YO DD and a 16mth old DS.

My DS is way more advanced than my DD was at the same age with regard to talking, he is forever babbling from the minute he gets up right up to the second he falls asleep. He is gentle, cuddly, happy, a delight, just like my DD.

They both need to be out and about running off energy, but they can both happily sit down and play with crayons. He also loves dancing, loves dollies, but LOVES cars and balls, which I was never so acutely aware with my DD but I believe that is because he is given the cars and balls to broom around everywhere, and had my DD had the same toys she would have been similar.

The only difference between the two is that my DS is very, very quick, open a door and he is out, up stairs, climbing things, pulling books off shelves, turning DVD on/off/on/off etc.....DD was not like that. Oh, he loves to sit on my head too, I don't remember DD doing that! I

Pantomimedam Tue 01-Jan-13 14:51:35

Even the wheels on the sodding bus if you get to the verse that says 'the Mummies on the bus' - doesn't it go 'chatter chatter chatter'?

moonstorm Tue 01-Jan-13 14:50:30

Yes, exactly. Pantomimedan.

Pantomimedam Tue 01-Jan-13 14:47:53

Grumpy, how does your description of your different children with their different characters support your assertion that boys and girls are 'hardwired differently'? They sound like individuals to me.

Moon, indeed, but it's not just parents, it's everyone else as well. And books, films, TV, music, advertising...

moonstorm Tue 01-Jan-13 14:44:16

And I think it's hard to say whether boys' brains develop differently or have been caused to develop differently...

moonstorm Tue 01-Jan-13 14:43:03

I think parents' attitude subtly influence and mold children from a very early age.

GrumpySod Tue 01-Jan-13 11:56:47

There's no doubt in my mind that boys & girls are hardwired differently, although personality sometimes trumps the hardwiring. And parents can influence how personality develops, although often not in ways they intended.

I have mature careful but emotional boy, emotional brutish immature unpopular boy and thoughtful very self-controlled careful boy. I didn't raise them all that different. Plus sporty confident clever girl right in the middle.

I reckon bigger difference is introvert vs. extrovert, but you can't tell that from baby physique.

Pantomimedam Tue 01-Jan-13 11:37:48

ds does have a thing about sticks. I'd thought he might be growing out of it by now (he's 9) but no sign...

SilveryMoon Tue 01-Jan-13 10:16:28

I have 2 boys. They are not destructive crazed beasts but do seem to cope better if we get out of the house.
I'm sure I read somewhere that the brain is wired differently in boys than in girls, that messages don't travel to the other side of the brain in the same way as a female brain and that's one of the reasons boys are more likely to have conditions such as asd.
So it's a scientific thing. Boys and Girls are programmed differently and that's just how it is.
Am sure I read that in a number of places and am not making it up

Onezerozero Tue 01-Jan-13 10:06:09

I must say, DD still always wants to bring home sticks too! They are usually swords to fight imaginary monsters on our walks, or lions. Or she pesters me to help make them into a bow and arrow in the woods. I don't know how to make sticks into a bloody bow and arrow! I thought this was something only she did!

yousmell Tue 01-Jan-13 09:22:07

My friends families with two or more boys tend to be more livelier. It's all subject to parental influence though.

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