Aimee Hazard, a New Hampshire mother of fraternal two-year-old twins (one male and one female), notes that she works to connect with both children daily. "I make it a point to hug and kiss Catherine and Hunter both everyday. However, I feel like I connect with Catherine easily and always have but I have to work at it and make it a point to be close to Hunter."
Aimee said that it might have something to do with her past relationships with men, including an emotionally distant father.
However, Dr. Stone Fish noted that if a woman has had a poor relationship with her father (or parents in general), she could still take steps to create a warm and loving relationship with good communication with her son.
"We have a great deal of control over how we parent," she said. "We are not destined to repeat relationships if we consciously choose to do things differently."
He's Got Personality
Personality is one element of the mother-son relationship not to be overlooked.
"The contrasts between raising my sons and daughter mostly stem from personality differences among them, and they are all quite distinct personalities," said Judy Gruen, the mother of three sons and one daughter (ages 9-15).
In parenting, she often takes a step back to consider the individual child, and not necessarily the gender. "I don't even deal with all my sons the same way because they have different strengths, weaknesses, maturity levels, and will respond differently to different motivations and forms of discipline," said Gruen, author of Carpool Tunnel Syndrome: Motherhood as Shuttle Diplomacy.
Sign of the Times
In today's turbulent political climate, mothers now more than ever are considering the possibility of their sons having to go into the military one day, according to Dr. Stone Fish.
Judy Gruen agreed. "As the mother of three sons, an American and an orthodox Jew, the prospect of my sons perhaps one day serving in the military (either here or in Israel) becomes more real as they grow older," she said.
However, she is raising her sons to be individuals who go on to pursue their beliefs. "On one hand it's a terrifying thought, yet the strength and bravery that I believe are very particular to men means that I could not hold them back from serving. I would be proud, although all my hairs would probably turn gray overnight!" she said.
The Father Factor
The role of fathers helps balance out the parenting worries and responsibilities as well as the influences.
"The role of mothers in sons' lives is essential for them to grow up in a psychologically healthy way. However, both boys and girls need the special role modeling and traits that men offer as fathers and women as mothers," Gruen added.