My boys are fortunate to have an amazing dad. I can’t begin to imagine how tough it would be to be a mom who is raising boys by herself.  If there’s one thing a mom wants for her boy, it is to have a decent male role model in his life. However, one may be tough to find if dad isn’t around. Today we are sharing tips for raising boys when dad isn’t around much.  If you are raising your boy(s) alone, I’d love to hear your tips in the comments.

Raising Boys When Dad Isn't around

Tips for Raising Boys When Dad Isn’t Around Much

My only experience with my husband being gone, was a 1 year work assignment in another state.  And it was HARD! But I know that it was not nearly as hard as what some moms face every day.  I asked the Moms of Boys Facebook Community to tell me their best tips for raising boys when dad isn’t around much. A few moms shared some awesome advice that everyone can learn from. I also threw in a few extra tips at the end from experience I gained while my husband was away. Remember that some dads are away due to work and others have made the choice, I think it’s important to separate the two. The challenges that come from both are definitely different.

Here’s what moms had to say on tips for raising boys when dad isn’t around much:

“Have other men step in. I’m all for parenting my own child, but I just don’t enjoy the rough and tumble play, early hockey practices, and tinkering boys love and need. I call in my village- his Grandpa takes him to church and hockey, my brother does hockey when he can and they wrestle and watch pro sports together, my father-in-law occasionally shows up and takes him fishing and hiking. It both gives me a break and them that man time they seem to need so that Dad’s hole isn’t so felt.”- Allana R

“I am divorced from my 7yr old’s dad, and there was a period for about 2 years where he didn’t spend much time with dad (due to finances/living situation, logistical stuff). I explained the boy things as best as I could and then also tried to make sure we were spending quality time with his uncles/my brothers. That helped a lot. My son was able to get in his physical play time (I so don’t wrestle lol), and relate to trustworthy folks of the same gender.” Sarah K

“Fully intend to look into the Big Brothers program when he’s older.” – Kate Carr

“My husband is gone about 75% of the time due to deployments and/or training. I always make it a priority to talk about “Daddy” to our 3 yr old, and tell him how much daddy misses him, and always speak respectfully about my husband. At my son’s young age, it’s important to me that he knows his dad, and knows that we respect each other.” – Joyce A

Here are some other tips for raising boys when dad is away:

  • Let them talk to dad: If it’s possible and dad is just away working, let your kiddos talk to dad as much as they want or as much as his schedule allows. Talking to them, even FaceTiming him can make your kid feel close to him.  When my husband was working out-of-town, we talked to him on FaceTime every night. It gave my boys a chance to tell him about their day and get some advice or encouragment from him.
  • Get them involved in a sport or extracurricular activity: Sometimes there are really hard questions associated with why dad isn’t around. If you don’t have answers, try your best to answer the questions, but also direct that frustration into something positive for you both.  Many times, coaches can make great male role models for boys.
  • Be there for your boys: Even if your husband or their dad isn’t around all of the time, you can be. There will be many times in life where you wish your child had their dad to be there, but the best you can do is be there of them yourself. I know you’re exhausted, but they maybe going through some difficult emotions and they need you.
  • Take time for yourself: You can’t give your kids all they need from you if you don’t take care of yourself first.  I think this is can be a really hard thing to do, but if your bucket is empty, you won’t have anything else to give.  Make sure to fill your own bucket first! Take time for yourself doing something you enjoy.
  • Count on other family members: One of the best ways to help your boys if dad can’t be there full-time, is to count on other family members if possible. You may need to expect a lot out of grandpa or an uncle to help you out. Your boys need to know they have a whole group of people rooting for them and supporting them. They may have “manly” questions that they aren’t comfortable asking you.  If they have a close male family member, it can really help them open up with their questions.

Raising Boys when Dad isn't around

What is one tip you could give moms who are raising boys pretty much alone? Whether it’s temporary or permanent, leave your comments below!

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