Maybe the four daughters that “We” had were exceptional, but all in all the girls were less a problem. I have to qualify that. The oldest girl was 10 when I divorced, the youngest 7. Still for a while I was able to influence their growth. When the oldest was 15 they started to drift away, and I can not claim their growth except for the base I helped to provide.
The fourth was a dream till she entered Junior High School. Then she became a free born spirit but only became involved with cigarettes and some lite drinking. At 18 she fought for freedom. She got an apartment, a job and a girl room mate. She maintained this until she was approaching 21. Then she fell to peer pressure and started living with her boyfriends. She managed to survive this without children. Finally She found mr right and was married. She now has two girls and a son. All are coming along well.
So the girls were easy. After my wife and I had spent some time in China working for Philips Petroleum, we found ourselves retired in El Paso with nothing to do, and daughter number 4 out of the house. My wife came in and suggested we take state foster classes. I thought she was crazy, but went along with it. Foster is not like raising a kid. We graduated and received our first three kids. A sibling group of three boys, 5, 3 and eleven months. The oldest was very quite and the middle one very aggressive. The third was a bouncing baby boy that resembled a fire plug. They were fun. We both enjoyed their presence and had fun playing with and parenting. The first 5 years were normal and happened with little problems. We moved from El Paso, because we felt the boys would grow up better in the Hill Country of Texas. This was a blessing and a curse.
The middle boy was the real problem in parenting. From kindergarten on he was often in some small trouble. Finally in the 4th grade, he destroyed a teacher, because she had done something he did not like. Trashing her desk and files, was just part of it. The teacher was unable to handle it and quit. Our son was expelled until he was ready to come back to school. This happened in November and the son did not go back to school until January. It took counseling and medicine, but he was much better when he went back. In the process the third son was also found to be ADD and needed medicine and glasses. All was well for a while.
The boys were enrolled in Tae Kwan Doe and beginning to do Boy Scouts. They also did Little League Baseball and were really enjoying life, we thought. At a point that they were all almost to Black Belt, they quit. Seems the instructor was a little to strong, and they did not like his attitude. When the oldest would not go back the two others followed suite.
The oldest son did enjoy Little League and was an All Star till he was 13. Then they let another boy who was older be an All Star and said he would make it the next year. It took the wind out of his sails. He no longer had an interest on the level he had been playing. Only in his Senior year in Football did he start to get it back and then he broke his ankle. ]
Also about that time the older boys did a pact to no work at home. It was very evident that they had quit the family and chose to blame the parents and not themselves. This continued and only the older boy has tried to apologize. The middle boy will be an old man and I will be dead before he lets his mother know he was wrong. He will work for short spurts if you pay, but do not expect him to put in a day.
The middle boy quit the family. He said he wanted out. He assaulted me and his mother. Neither have been hurt bad, but we suffer from back and other springs. On several instances I have had to call the Sheriff. On two he was arrested. On the last he spent two months in Jail for terrorist attack on his family. We did not know of this charge, but it will keep him out of the Marines. Do when still work with him. Of course. Ours was a life long commitment when we adopted. Why do I call the Sheriff? At 77 I am no longer able to handle a teenager who is 6’3″ and weighs almost 200 pounds. If I do try, it will be very violent and I do not want to go there. I am even licensed to carry a gun, but I will not shoot him for an attack on me. I will shoot if he attacks his mother with intent to hurt. There is a line, he can not cross. Do I warn him? No. He has a tendency to take challenges.
What do you do? I pray and hope. He is very smart, but not smart enough. He is intelligent but often very dumb. He is a boy.
The third boy has remorse, but he copies his brother. Because of this we try to keep them apart. The third boy is at a local christian home for misguided boys and girls. He is trying to learn up, but I fear the people raising hiim do not have a clue. They try. When the middle son leaves High School and starts to work or leaves the area, then I may bring him back home. We will see. I would like to see him play football at home where his parents can watch. We have talked to his day and he has grown into a fine man. He would like to meet his son, but does not want to interfere. His mother is a meddler. We do not know how to deal with her.
Yes, raising girls is much easier than boys. With boys I used every known punishment and reward known to man. With girls a slight tap on the head with a ring reversed. Got their attention and served as a good warning. Very easy.