Boys' Rites of Passage

Our Sons' Futures

Has the Rites of Passage Ended?

Posted by Thomas on January 20, 2011

Before you continue:

This post has 375 words.

On average, it will take you less than 4 minutes to read.

Life Shifts

My son has turned 18 and will graduate from high school in a few months. During the holidays I had a conversation with a cousin of mine. He talked about shifts—how, when we move from one stage or phase of our lives into another. I had not framed it that way but my son moving into the next part of his life is a shift for us as parents. So, what do parents do when the rites of passage ends?

Stop Living in Denial

I thought a good deal about this question, prompted by the conversation with my cousin in December. To some degree I was in denial—thinking that my son moving on would not affect me. Now, I know otherwise.

So much energy is bound up in seeing after our children that it is inevitable a hole forms once they are no longer under roof. Though I am excited for my son, I know I will miss him. In fact, many in our circle of friends and family will miss him incredibly. So what’s next for us as parents, for me as a father?

Parenting Never Ends

Well, parenting never stops. I always think of myself at my son’s age. I vividly recall how much support and guidance I still required in my late teens and early twenties from the caring adults around me. Though I feel my son is better positioned than I was by eighteen he will still need wise counsel. The formalized rites of passage may be over, but continued guidance remains constant. He may need us less but he will still need us.

Manhood Training Continues

I have been open with my son, letting him know there is a great deal of information I cannot teach him due to my ignorance. I have encouraged him to continue seeking out mentors—older, wiser men that are willing to continue his responsible manhood training by example or through friendships. In that vein his rites of passage program will last a long time. To all other dads out there take comfort in the parenting you have done; because the proper foundation has been set, all else will be as it should. No need to fear the shift ahead.

Peace!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: