Yes, I said it! Boys are better than girls. I say this from the viewpoint that I believe boys are easier to raise than girls and not that I think boys can do better or more things than girls. I have read a lot of articles about this echoing similar points to support each side respectively, but I continuously side with the boys.
What does the research say?
There are varying theories and studies to give evidence for both sides. An article, Who’s Easier: Boys or Girls by fellow mother and writer Renee Bacher in Parents Magazine, outlines the differences between the two genders. For example, she stated how girls are “emotionally high maintenance” and “talk back more” while boys are “aggressive and physical”. In Boys vs. Girls: Who’s Harder to Raise, an article by Paula Spencer in Parenting Magazine, it is said that boys are harder with respect to discipline, physical safety and school (education).
What are my thoughts on this?
When I found out I was having two boys I was ecstatic because I think girls are more work than boys and here are my reasons.
- I was not looking forward to combing their hair. As someone of African descent, I have very thick, curly hair that was difficult to contain as a child. I still remember the difficulties my mother had when shampooing and combing my hair. I did not want to deal with one girl’s hair much less two!
- I am not a girly-girl. I was and still am a tomboy. Don’t get me wrong, I have fabulous legs and love to show them off in skirts and heels, but that’s where the buck stops for my girly-ness. I could not see how I would muster up the little oestrogen in me to teach my daughter(s) to be a girl.
- I do think girls talk back more. I did it, so I’m sure my daughter would! I was not looking forward to a double dose of the feisty gene.
- Girls are harder to handle in their teens and pre-teens. For the simple fact that girls mature earlier than boys, it makes me have to deal with the pre-teen and teen drama earlier than I want to. The crushes, boyfriends, makeup, going out with friends, sex, drugs, etc., I just cannot deal. I want my babies to stay babies for as long as I possibly can.
- Boys like to climb, throw things and play rough. So did I as a child and I was looking forward to it! Playing with dolls and having tea parties is not my cup of tea. Give me a game system with fighting or car racing and I’m happy!
I cannot comment on what it is like to have girls but I can say that life with my boys these past 11+ years has been a breeze.
- Parents have often commented on how disciplined they are and how much they listen to and respect others. My sons have never and will never run amok in a store, my workplace or anywhere other than a play area. They have never and will never throw a tantrum in public and when I think back, they have never done it in private either.
- My boys were physically active.
- I don’t recall them being any more active than any regular, healthy boy child. That’s what children do when they discover their legs and start to discover the world. All we can do is to help them do it safely.
- School/ Education
- Matthew and Michael are brilliant boys. Maybe it was all the studying I did when they were in utero or the classical music I played for them, or maybe it was the breast milk. Whatever the reason, Michael and Matthew have always been at the top of their class.
- I taught my boys from early on to share their thoughts and feelings with us. If they don’t think they can share something with one parent, share it with the other. So far, its working and I will keep my fingers crossed that it continues as they are about to enter high school, which brings on a whole new world of emotions and experiences.
Many parents ask Gabriel and I what is the secret to having boys who are so different from the stereotype. The answer to that question – I don’t know. All I can say is, a child’s outcome depends a lot on the parent and the parenting. Nature will do part of the work to determine how your child will be and nurture will take care of the rest. I tell parents to nurture their child in the way they want them to be. I wanted brilliant, disciplined, well-mannered boys and I nurtured those behaviours. The how is different for all parents and is a great topic for a completely different blog post. Let’s leave that for another time; until then – take care!