A man loves his sweetheart the most, his wife the best, but his mother the longest. - Irish Proverb
A man shares a special bond with his mother. She is the first woman he loved and the one all other women are measured against.
My mother was the biggest influence in my life. She taught me many lessons about perseverance, hard work, leadership, faith, and serving others. I would not be the man I am today without the lessons that my mother instilled in me. More importantly, I wouldn’t be the dedicated dad that I strive to be. I learned how to be a parent by watching my mother. She wasn’t always perfect, but she did the best that she could to keep me out of trouble and teach me right from wrong. Although things weren’t always easy for our family, my mother managed to shepherd my sister and me into adulthood.
Throughout my life, I always knew I could count on my mother. She listened to me when I needed to talk, nurtured me when I was hurting, and encouraged me with uplifting words. In addition, she taught me the importance of patience, compassion, and making your family a priority by spending time with them.
But my mom wasn’t the only one who taught her son valuable parenting lessons. I talked to a group of fathers who shared some parenting lessons they learned from their mothers.
Dads Share Parenting Lessons From Their Moms 1 of 9
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The Importance of Humor and Affection 2 of 9
"My mom was always a joker and loved to make us laugh. It's not the kind of humor that's there to cover up the tough times or to mitigate any negative feelings we may be having. Rather, it's the kind of humor that just makes you want to be around her. Laughter is so critical in a child's life. It teaches them to be self-expressive. It reminds them that they are silly, too! It allows them to know they are connected, and ultimately they feel loved. My mom was very affectionate with my sister and me. We never questioned whether or not Mom loved us because she demonstrated it physically and verbally every day. Being affectionate is something I have definitely passed on to my children."
- Josh Becker writes the blog I Simply Am.
Appreciate the Little Things 3 of 9
"The one moment that always sticks in my mind about my mom's approach to parenting was a night when I was doing dishes as a teenager. Cleaning the kitchen was my chore and I usually stayed up late so no one would disturb me while I was cleaning. One evening my mom came behind me, gave me a loving rub on the back and said quietly, "You're going to make a good husband one day." Those words have resonated with me ever since. My mom's simple words taught me that being faithful to the little things is how we show big devotion. Because of my mom's example, I try to show my children how much I appreciate every little thing they do."
- Allen Paul is a jazz musician, music director at a large Miami church, and member of the band Unclazzified
Love Your Children Unconditionally 4 of 9
"Where would my children be today without the lessons my mom taught me as a child? Living in a pigsty, no doubt. I learned most of my at-home dad domestic skills from her and that's prevented my kids from ever being referred to as "The Squalor Siblings." But most of all, Mom taught me that your children are the most special ones in the world. You love them no matter how they try your patience. She'd agree that the effort sometimes requires far more work than dusting the highest, most crammed shelf in the pantry, but the result is always more satisfying. Not to mention easier for the world to see and appreciate."
- Kevin McKeever writes the blog Always Home and Uncool.
The Value of Being Self-sufficient 5 of 9
"When I was younger, I thought my mom was being tough on me, but as I got older I realized that she was teaching me valuable life skills. When I left for college, I saw lots of men who couldn't cook for themselves or do their own laundry. I was shocked. Because of my mom, I was able to care for myself. Also, she taught me that entertainment and real life are not the same. She emphasized that the roles entertainers played and lives they portrayed weren't real, and I should pay it no attention past the entertainment value."
- Tyrone Mitchell writes the blog That Friendly Black Guy.
Be Faithful 6 of 9
"My grandma raised me. In her own way she taught me to value faithfulness to others. She instilled this value in me with a rather relentless focus. Now I share this same value with my children."
- Manny Ruiz write the blog Papi Blogger.
The Importance of Perspective 7 of 9
"I remember standing in the public library when I was six years old, about the same age that my daughter is now. I was upset about something inconsequential — I was probably asking to go somewhere and buy something — but my mother's response has stayed with me. â€˜People are more important than things.' Thirty years later I still remember this. And though I didn't appreciate it at the time, her lesson has become my mantra. On mornings when the kids aren't feeling well, and I have been puked on, pooped on, and slept on — she gives me a verbal hand on the shoulder and reassures me that it will be alright."
- Creed Anthony writes the blog The Captain's Log...Tales From the Poop Deck
Don’t Let the Past Define You 8 of 9
"Growing up, my mom was the victim of abuse and vowed that she would never raise her family that way. She was committed to raising us on a firm foundation of faith, love, and caring for others. Those three lessons are staples in my home now, too. She taught me you don't have to be defined by your past. You can change history — one lesson at a time. In dealing with teasing and criticism, I will never forget my mom's saying: â€˜If someone criticizes you, take what you think applies and throw the rest away.' I have carried that simple wisdom with me my entire life. I am also a guy who has struggled with worry. Another one of my mom's lessons was: 'The thing you fear the most never happens.' While that may seem to paint things with a pretty broad brush, it is remarkable how often she was right. My mom passed away in March of 2010. While we miss her dearly, she continues to cast a shadow on our lives."
- Aaron Conrad shares his thoughts on faith, family, and other random things on his blog at aaronconrad.com.
The Importance of Patience and Support 9 of 9
"I was having a conversation with my mom a year ago about my siblings, during which I proceeded to tell her what I will and won't do when my kids get older. She reminded me: â€˜No matter how 'grown' your kids get, they will still be your kids ... and you will still be their father.' So I guess my momma was teaching me about patience, and more importantly, about ever-lasting love and support."- Terrance Gaines writes the blog Brotha Tech.