If you’re a mother of boys, there is one conversation that inevitably comes up along your journey as a parent. It’s a conversation that you won’t be prepared for, and when it first takes place, you will probably react to with shock.
It’s a conversation about your son’s future wife.
As you gaze at that soft downy head of your newborn, you might be surprised that such a long off prospect could be something that crops up in conversations so soon. I mean, surely you need to discuss toilet training and whether the tooth fairy brings a gold coin or a folded note first?
But nope, somewhere along the way, especially if you have multiple boys, you will encounter this phrase:
“A son is a son until he takes a wife; a daughter is a daughter all of her life.”
(That and “Oh, you must have your hands full” THAT phrase crops up a lot too.)
It’s a silly, overused cliché that makes massive assumptions (and surely undermines the intelligence of men.) But the truth is when this stereotype is relayed, it can make your skin crawl. It can make you look at the grown men you know, your husband, your brothers, your cousins and wonder could it happen?
No, surely not my boys. They wouldn’t do that to their Mama.
But would they? You see husbands who do. Brothers who do.
The idea that you will “lose” your son to a future partner is difficult for a new mum to get to grips with.
You watch your boys depend on you, adore you, seek you out when they get hurt, concerned or anxious. You are their world. But then many women look they way their husband's relationship with his own mother changed and they can see that perhaps there is a kernel of truth in this uncomfortable cliche.