By Jill Suttie
Has your once-chatty son suddenly become a quiet and distant teenager?
This is a common experience for parents of boys, writes pediatrician Cara Natterson in her new book, Decoding Boys: New Science Behind the Subtle Art of Raising Sons. When boys hit puberty, many retreat to their rooms and shut their parents out, refusing to discuss issues or share their feelings. And it’s a problem, she says, given how important parental influence is to growing teens and how tricky it can be for teens to navigate the challenges of our modern world.
Strangely, Natterson has found that this pattern doesn’t hold for girls as much: Parents often continue to have forthright and informative conversations about puberty with their daughters, while neglecting their sons. She believes this has to do with parents misunderstanding what’s going on with their boys and what they truly need.
“For the most part the experi…