Dear Parents, Teach Your Sons to be Men



There is a popular commercial on television featuring two teenage boys standing idly beside the road with a flat tire in what appears to be a sketchy area.

The premise of the commercial is that you need that particular product so that your son can take advantage of their 24-hour roadside assistance and therefore not be left stranded the next time he gets a flat tire.

Prior to the end of the commercial, the son is overheard in the background asking, “What’s a lug wrench?”

Obviously this was a commercial meant to be funny; however, I’m afraid that in 2017 America, the 30-second ad is actually far more true than we’d care to imagine.

I grew up in a day long before 24-hour roadside assistance and myself and sisters were all required to not only know the proper steps of how to change a tire, but also be able to competently and safely do so prior to being allowed to even think about driving.

It just makes good sense.

Today, there is a shortage of real men.  And by “real men”, I do not mean individuals who eat bloody steaks, pass gas loudly or behave obnoxiously.  What I mean is that America is graduating a generation of young men who, largely, do not even know how to change a tire.

In less than a century’s time, we’ve gone from the “Greatest Generation” lying about their age at 16 to join the military in hopes of saving their nation from extinction to 30-year-old boys calling their fathers for help anytime the car makes a rattle or their tire gets low.

I do not fault these “boys” so much as I do their parents, who have enabled them to live lives that make them grossly incompetent at surviving on their own, much less leading a family.

I fully understand that such talk may come across as old fashioned and out of touch in this era of $6 coffee and skinny jeans, but maybe it’s time we reevaluate the types of kids we’re raising and instead of raising boys, take time to teach our kids to be men.

True men love and are faithful to one woman.

True men work whatever job is necessary in order to support their family – even if it means wrapping bread bags around their socks to keep their holey boots from allowing winters chilly sludge from making contact with their feet.

True men are strong, capable and affectionate.

True men can change a flat tire, are not afraid fire up a blow torch, but also know how to run a vacuum.

True men are a gem in this day and if you want your son to go far in life, raise him to to one.

Mothers, don’t let your boys grow up to not be men!

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  1. Well said! You would be surprised at the number of college students we get at work who do not even know which way to turn a screw to tighten it! Well, maybe you wouldn’t be surprised.

  2. The first time I encountered this was my junior year at Virginia Tech in the late 1980’s. A bunch of us were getting ready to go to a Sunday buffet at Catawba Virginia when I noticed that the rear tire on my buddy’s (from Northern Virginia) VW Rabbit had a bent rim and was going flat. The exchange went as follows:
    Me: “Jeff, you better change that tire.”
    Jeff: “I can’t.”
    Me: “Why not, don’t you have a spare?”
    Jeff: “No, I don’t know how.”
    Me: “You really don’t know have to change a tire?”
    Jeff: “No; never had to before.”
    Me: “Open your trunk and pay attention.”

    I just floored me that a 20 year old man did not know how to change a tire. I knew how to do it before I was 10 because I always helped my Dad. I think part of the the problem today is that our children do not spend enough time with their parents, especially their fathers.

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