Raising Feminist Boys: How to Talk with Your Child about Gender, Consent, and Empathy

Raising Feminist Boys: How to Talk with Your Child about Gender, Consent, and Empathy

Raising Feminist Boys: How to Talk with Your Child about Gender, Consent, and Empathy

Raising Feminist Boys: How to Talk with Your Child about Gender, Consent, and Empathy


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“It's difficult to raise feminist boys when they're constantly barraged by misogynistic messages. This timely manual will help parents understand what it takes to model good behavior and set a positive example.”
Booklist (starred review)

It's never too early to start talking to boys about gender, consent, and empathy. In a world still steeped in gender inequality and sexual violence, it’s become more and more clear that we can’t just teach girls to protect themselves. We must also teach boys not to do harm.

As parents, we all want to raise kind and loving kids who will grow up to be conscientious adults. But when you look closely at our society—especially at the statistics surrounding rape, domestic violence, and sexual assault—it’s clear that something needs to change. 

It’s time to teach our sons compassion and empathy. It’s time to show them that it’s okay to cry, to laugh, to be angry, to be silly. It’s time to teach them to respect girls, and not just the ones they think are pretty. It’s time to teach them that it’s not okay to pick on the queer kids, the little kids, and the fat kids. It’s time to teach boys that it’s not okay to treat kids of color like second-class citizens. It’s time to teach our boys how to be conscious citizens. But where do you begin?

Written by a clinical psychologist with expertise in modern families, Raising Feminist Boys is a parent’s guide to having age appropriate conversations with boys about sexual responsibility, consent, gender, empathy, and identity. You’ll find an accessible framework that includes developmental considerations, language, and clear tools for how to talk with your son about feminism without shame, fear, or judgment.

We need to have honest and informative conversations with our sons about sex and consent. We must show them how to recognize and question gender norms and bias, both within the culture and, most importantly, within ourselves. Raising Feminist Boys will give you the tools you need to get started.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781684036677
Publisher: New Harbinger Publications
Publication date: 06/01/2021
Pages: 216
Sales rank: 676,617
Product dimensions: 8.90(w) x 5.80(h) x 0.30(d)
Age Range: 5 Years

About the Author

Bobbi Wegner, PsyD, is a lecturer at Harvard Graduate School of Education, supervising clinical psychologist at Boston Behavioral Medicine, writer, speaker, and cofounder of a virtual platform that provides real support for real parents from real experts. She has given three TEDx Talks on raising boys in modern culture, frequently writes on the topic, and gets much of her research from raising three children of her own (two of which are boys).

Jessica Joelle Alexander is coauthor of The Danish Way of Parenting.

Table of Contents

Foreword v

Introduction 1

Chapter 1 Change Starts with You 7

Chapter 2 Understand Developmental Stages and Strategies 31

Chapter 3 Build Inner Resources to Raise Allies 55

Chapter 4 Talk Openly About Gender, Sex, and Identity 87

Chapter 5 Teach Physical Respect and Consent 105

Chapter 8 Use Media to Discuss Equality and Justice 123

Chapter 7 Expand His Worldview to Cultivate Empathy 145

Chapter 8 Repair Relationships When Harm Is Done 163

Moving Feminism Forward 175

Acknowledgments 177

Glossary 179

Sex Talk with Kids Cheat Sheet 183

Endnotes 191


Wegner resides in Milton, MA.

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