11 Things I Want My Sons to Know Before They Become Fathers

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About Marie Roker-Jones

Marie Roker-Jones is Editor of the Raising Boy section of The Good Men Project and the Founder of Raising Great Men™ -Real talk about raising boys to become men of character and What Kind of Man Do You Want to Be.


  1. Gint Aras says:

    “Be a Husband and a Father, Not a Baby Daddy.” Could I buy you a drink? Could I send you a home baked loaf of bread? I’ve been saying this to my students over and over and over. If you want a baby daddy, you’ll get one. If you want to be a baby daddy, you’ll be one. A baby daddy is not a damn father. (And please don’t ever call me a baby daddy.)

    • Thanks Gint! I hate the term “baby daddy”. Why would someone want to reduce themselves to a term devoid of any connection to your child? I agree that a baby daddy is not a father. Making a commitment to the well being of your child makes you a father.

    • Tom Brechlin says:

      Gint, I’m with you on this one. The FIRST thing I thought of was “be a husband” when I read the heading. I was cocked and loaded ….. Great relief when I read through the article. Marie Roker-Jones, you rock

  2. Gilbert M. Perez says:

    I want my sons to know “responsibility” before they become fathers. I want them to be righteous and responsible men. Thus, they will be aware of the possible consequences of their thoughts, words and actions.

  3. ogwriter says:

    I think you have some good stuff here…However, we in America give far too much credence to what children say. There is wisdom in the old adage,” children are better seen not heard.” I along with their mom, have raised three children, who by American standards are considered very successful. We accomplished this living in one of the worst killings fields for youth in America; Oakland, California.
    I have for the last ten years worked as a coach/mentor for at-risk youth. As I see it, one of the problems children have is the false believe in their own words and ideas, which are the ideas of a child.
    Children lack wisdom because they have no life experiences to draw upon, nor do they possess the requisite brain development to make sound judgments and decisions. Which is a scientific fact.
    Even for an adult, usually the first thoughts about anything amounts to a shitty rough draft of an essay.

    One cannot equate the thought processes of an child to an adult. They are not equal in any way shape or form. One of the first things I have to tell youth I work with is this,” You know little of nothing, but if you keep your eyes and ears open and THINK long and hard before you open your mouths, maybe in ten or twenty years you will be something. You are not my equal. I am 58 years old and have raised kids. I have more experiences than you, more wisdom and intelligence than you and I have accomplished more than you.” We don’t respect wisdom and age nearly enough in America.

    • You bring up some valid points. It’s important for children and young people to heed the advice and wisdom of those who are willing to share their experiences. Thank you for sharing and congratulations on raising three successful children despite the odds. That is commendable!


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