Navigating The Very Confusing Road Of Raising Boys And Girls Today
Recently, my seven year-old son began insisting that he open the car door for me. A gentleman in the making, this display of chivalry was compelled by the actions of my partner, an old-fashioned guy who opens the car door for me all the time.
It’s a ritual this independent lady eventually became fond of but never expected of her own son at his young age. That especially held true following the mishap that led my head to be wedged between the car door and the actual car itself, leaving me nearly knocked unconscious with a bruise and lump that took a few weeks to heal! My son was mortified, and I, left wondering if his training should wait until he was just a tad bit older.
No doubt, had I truly been serious about polling for opinions on this, my initial instinct would be to query Nacia Walsh, founder of the blog Granolaville and mom to three sons and one daughter. I’m certain she would have a ton to say on the matter after reading her recent post in CafeMom, “Why I Make My Sons Ask Permission Before They Hug Their Sister” .
It’s a meaty piece, well worth reading and mulling over, just like her interview below. I suggest you do both. What she says will only help clarify your own position on how to raise boys and girls when it comes to gender “do’s” and “don’ts” and the world we live in.
What is your full name?
What is your personal mantra?
Our worst fear is not that we are inadequate; our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
Tell us about your life, including where you live, number of children and anything else you would like to share.
I live in a small town in the Hudson Valley of Upstate NY with my 3 sons (ages 6, 11, & 18), my daughter who is 2, my husband Brian, and our dog Bailey. I’m an Expert Parenting Contributor for CafeMom, where I get to share tips on shows like Good Morning America & The Today Show. Having an arsenal of experiences from my college bound senior, to my toddler who is currently potty-training (yes!), I’ve have been writing online about "parenting" since 2010. When I’m not running between kids games or attempting to DIY everything in my house, I can be found doing improv at UCB and writing a tv script worthy of Shonda Rhimes.
Do you believe you have a “life’s purpose?” If so, share it.
I do believe we all have a unique set of skills and circumstance that can allow us to lead fulfilling lives. In my case, I’ve always lived in a fantasy world, creating my own storylines and characters since I was a little girl. After having my own children, I thought my dreams of being on television had to be put on hold. Then I realized that my children were gifts that allowed me to expand my creativity. So now I truly believe my purpose is to inspire and entertain through creating worlds (real & imaginary).
Finish this sentence, “The best part about being a mom is _____.”
Seeing the pride on your kids faces when they finally accomplish something they’ve been trying to do over and over again.
What is the name of your blog? When was it launched?
Granolaville. After my 3rd son was born, I really began to change our lifestyle and embrace a more holistic approach. I became a super “crunchy” mom, hence the name. You can now read my work all over the internet as a guest blogger.
What is the primary focus of your blog and what do you hope to accomplish through it?
My primary focus was to provide practical information through personal stories to help families be happier and healthier.
List any awards you have won.
Does "worst cookie maker" (given by my teenage son) count?
Are you a Brand Ambassador and if so, for which companies?
No, but any product I align with would have to be ethically made (or made from cheese).
Do you blog for other blogs or sites?
Yes. My work can be seen on Babble, Wellrounded NY, FitBump, and CafeMom.
Which social media outlet (such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, etc) do you find most useful?
I find all SM invaluable, but finding the right one for your brand is important. Those visually inclined, Instagram should be your focus. If you have a blog with lots of tutorials, Pinterest is great. If you’re a wordsmith, Twitter can be your best friend. And since FB is the #2 site after Google, everyone should be utilizing it. Personally, Instagram and Twitter translate to the most fans and traffic to my site.
What is the one piece of advice you would give to those who may be interested in beginning a blog?
Know your voice. We are bombarded with SO many voices from the media. You might look at another popular blogger and try to emulate her tone, but in reality, you will only sound like a second rate version of her. Instead, really hone your own voice by writing like you speak. There is only one you; embrace that and your followers will come.
Share the 2-3 blogs that you follow.
Are you an entrepreneur or professional beyond your blog (and outside of being a mom)? Please share.
Yes. I’m a writer, actor, and trained Birth Doula.
Do you support – either formally or informally – a particular social cause?
I support Black Lives Matter, Women’s Equality, and preserving our planet through green initiatives.
When all is said and done, how do you want to be remembered?
As someone who’s creative endeavours inspire and entertain.
Needless-to-say, for all those concerned with my son’s ultimate “car door opening” fate, he’s still doing it under the watchful eye of my partner, who continues to suffer from the nightmare of seeing my head ping-pong between the car door and the car. Ouch!
You really had to be there to appreciate the entire mishap, fully. Thank God for ice, heat, and bacitracin that's all I have to say.