Advice for parents raising boys

Michael Pritchard, Humanist & Child Advocate, shares his top tips for parents with boys on how to raise your sons to be kind, respectful and, loving men
Advice For Parents Raising Boys
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Advice for parents raising boys

I love my boys. And I've raised so many kids over the years, not just my own but the school's. And to teach them the most powerful gift is respect. Too often when I'm in the schools now, I hear the kids raise their hands. How many of you hear the word bitches and ho's in school, and they raise their hand, starting in 4th grade, which is incomprehensible to me. And then how many of you hear the word homo, faggot, queer, lesbo, dyke, it's so gay, that's so gay. All hands. So they're feminized everything. And they've become so hostile and aggressive. How many of you hear trash talk all the time? Yeah, there's trash talk. And they're raising their hands. And they're laughing at the same time. I intervene. I confront. I enlighten them. When my son was 16, I went to see him. I love him. He's a great kid. Big, yoked up kid. He was on the State National Football team. And he's a great rugby player. And I said, son, I just heard you get ready to call your mother the b-word. And I want you to hear it to me, right now, and listen to what I say to you. I was 32 years old the day your mother gave you your life. I watched your mother struggle in pain to give you your life. And I was ashamed of myself. I thought I knew a lot. Been on 100 homicide scenes. Been in the military. Knew a bunch. But when I saw your mother struggle to give you your life, I was sore afraid of myself that I had been missing something so powerful in life, and I was humiliated. I called my own mom. Then you got croup, it developed into pneumonia, and your mom climbed into the mist tub to help you keep your life. She gave you your life and helped you keep your life. And you're going to call her that name. No. No. That's your mother. And if you speak to her like that again, we'll have a magic act, and my foot will disappear, and you'll be uplifted. Now you can go upstairs and you may pack your clothes and move to somebody else's house, because people that live in homes do not speak to each other this way. And you can go. And in half an hour, he came down. He was crying. He was so emotional. He was so apologetic. If we do not intervene on these kids, they will continue these unaddressed rage from young boys. We know from the Rand Corporation that testosterone hits them 7 times a day in the amygdale section of the brain. All brain research proves this. If we do not address this, and help them, help themselves to self-regulate their rage, they go on becoming bullies and dictators and ruthlessly cruel, angry bitter disappointed emotionally vicious people. That's why we do it early. We teach them early compassion. We teach them love. We show them butterflies. We tell them about butterflies and caterpillars and we talk to them about poetry. You read them books. You make them be compassionate. Not by sermon, but by example.

Michael Pritchard, Humanist & Child Advocate, shares his top tips for parents with boys on how to raise your sons to be kind, respectful and, loving men


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Michael Pritchard

Humanist & Child Advocate

Michael Pritchard is a nationally acclaimed keynote speaker praised by the Wall Street Journal, CNN and Time for his ability to use humor to inspire and educate his audiences on communication skills. Michael Pritchard is a big guy with a warm heart who as one student described him, “truly walks as he talks.”

He began his career on both the comedy stage and as a juvenile counselor in San Francisco’s Youth Guidance Center. In 1980, Michael Pritchard won first place in the San Francisco International Stand Up Comedy Competition as well as winning the prestigious California Probation Officer of the Year.

Michael’s offers from Hollywood rolled in including a guest appearance on an Emmy Award winning episode of “Taxi”. His sensational standup comedy billed him with Robin Williams, Jerry Seinfeld, Dana Carvey and Whoopi Goldberg playing venues as Caesar’s, the Comedy Store, Universal Ampitheater and opening for such names as Diana Ross, the Grateful Dead, Kenny Rogers, Mike Mc Donald and Boz Scaggs. But Michael rejected offers from Hollywood to focus on using his comic talents for inspiring youth and adults.

Drawing from his counseling background, Michael Pritchard began using humor to inspire, teach communication skills, anger management, diversity, conflict resolution and overcoming burnout and stress.

His broad base of audience from corporate employees, healthcare workers, government and state officials have honored him with countless standing ovations and numerous awards including: President’s Volunteer Action Award, Commendation - Office of the Attorney General , Paul Harris Fellowship - Rotary International, Toastmaster’s International Speaker, Outstanding Performance - Federal Executive Board , Josephine Duveneck Humanitarian Award and the Key to the City of San Francisco.As a result of his work, Michael Pritchard has been featured on CNN, NBC’s “The Today Show”, “The Tonight Show”, CBS “Sunday Morning” with Charles Kuralt, “Time” magazine and “People” magazine.

His seven educational series for PBS and distribution has been seen by millions and focuses on youth guidance in the areas of violence prevention. “The Power of Choice” “You can Choose”, “Big Changes, Big Choices”.

Forming Heartland Media, he continued with “Red Ribbon Week” and “PeaceTalks” teaching students to make positive choices.“SOS: Saving Our Schools from Hate and Violence”, featured in both Time magazine and on CNN, filmed after the tragic Columbine disaster. His new series: “Lifesteps” builds the social and emotional intelligence in youth and has already received the Parents Choice Award

For his work in promoting nonviolence with youth, Dr. Michael Pritchard was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Hartwick University and winning, 2001 Lewis Hine’s Award for Service to Children & Youth Certificate of Appreciation and the 2002 Marin Community Foundations Beryl Buck Fund Award for achievement in Promoting Nonviolence.

As an extension of Heartland Media, he established Heartland Media Foundation building character and emotional intelligence, violence prevention, inciting motivation and leadership in both youth and adults to improve schools and communities. The foundation provides youth guidance programs, including video, print curriculum, and live presentations by Michael Pritchard to aid in schools and communities where the funding is limited.

In the fund raising capacity, Michael Pritchard has help raise millions of dollars by donating his time and talent to events and various charitable organizations including: Boys and Girls Club – Ronald McDonald House –Salvation Army - Jewish Family Services – SF Giants Community Fund – American Heart Association –Women’s Wellness Forum – Special Olympics - CASA Court Appointed Special Advocates - Bread & Roses – Recreation Center for the Handicapped –– DARE –– Texan’s War on Drugs –– Vietnam Vets of America - Guide Dogs for the Blind

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