We’ve all (or at least those of us with daughters) heard about how girls growing up today are starting puberty younger than girls who came of age just a few generations ago. And we’ve all (whether we have boys or girls) heard about how boys are lagging behind girls in every measurable academic milestone, whether it’s grades, test scores, high-school graduation rates, college degrees, or professional degrees. But when it comes to puberty, it looks like boys may be closing the gap. And that may not be a good thing.
Be the Go-to Person about Sex + Preventing and Treating Concussion + Winning Your Son’s Heart + Getting to 3rd Base
[amazon asin=0738215082&template=thumbnail1&chan=default]Guest 1: Deborah Roffman, author of Talk to Me First.
Topic: Everything you need to know to become your kids’ “go-to” person about sex.
Issues: Teach kids to view sexually-saturated media critically; how to become an approachable, askable resource for your children; how to foster ongoing conversations about difficult topics; put meaningful context around the topic of sexuality in a world where most messages are misguided and uninformed.
[amazon asin=161168224X&template=thumbnail1&chan=default]Guest 2: Rosemarie Scolaro Moser, author of Ahead of the Game.
Topic: Understanding youth sports concussions.
Issues: What exactly is a concussion? When can a child who’s had a concussion get back on the field? How concussions negatively affect children’s GPA, school performance, and emotional behavior; helmets and mouthguards—even when properly fitted—can’t prevent concussion; why girls are more vulnerable to concussion that boys; why state concussion laws may not be enough to keep kids safe.
[amazon asin=1600061001&template=thumbnail1&chan=default]Guest 3: John Davis, author of Extreme Pursuit.
Topic: Winning the race for the heart of your son.
Issues: Teen boys are driven by design to be extraordinary, to build and make an impact on their world. But left unchecked, this intensity can fuel destructive behavior. When our teens are slipping away, how do we get them back?
[amazon asin=B007W8MKQ0&template=thumbnail1&chan=default]Guest 4: Logan Levkoff, author of Third Base Ain’t What It Used to Be.
Topic: What your kids are learning about sex today, and how to teach them to become sexually healthy adults.
Issues: Ending the hysteria about sex ed by clarifying the difference between the facts of puberty and the values every parent holds; sex is good, and sex education equals life education; when parents ignore kids’ questions about sexuality, those kids turn to their peers for information—and information from kids on the school bus can be dreadfully wrong.
Okay, this one is just plain odd. Researchers in Australia just discovered that 3-10-year old boys whose mothers used fertility drugs to conceive, were an average of an inch shorter than boys conceived naturally. Girls were also a bit shorter but there wasn’t as strong a connection between the drugs and their height.
Anyone who’s ever played a sport has heard the expression, “It’s not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game.” A lovely sentiment, but not one that every young athlete truly takes to heart.
But this movie, The Home Run, (don’t worry, it’s only 7 minutes long) depicts an amazing, true story of sportsmanship and courage that beautifully illustrates how it really is how you play the game that matters most.
If you’ve got a child who’s competing in sports, you played yourself, or you just want a great story, don’t miss this. And if you’re a coach, send it to everyone on your team–and to the other coaches as well.
A warning: this is a real tear-jerker, so grab some Kleenex before you settle in. And be sure to watch all the way to the end.
In case you missed it, here’s the link again.
Several people took issue (some in an unfortunately hostile way) with my post that mentioned research showing that girls with involved biological fathers start puberty later than those with a non-biological father or no father at all. So to satisfy the critics, here are several citations that should satisfy your inner (and not-so-inner) skeptic.
More and more girls are starting puberty early. Some as early as six! If you’ve got daughters–and I’ve got three of ‘em–there are a few things you really, really need to know. Let’s start with the good news, some of which I’ve written about extensively.
For example, girls who have actively involved dads start puberty later than those with less involved dads. In fact, girls who grow up without a biological dad are twice as likely to start puberty young than girls in families where mom and dad are there.
The rest of this article is on the Talking About Men’s Health blog, here.