Boys need to remember one thing most of all when it comes to their feelings (especially anger): they always have a choice for how to respond. So says author and pediatrician Meg Meeker. I hear her loud and clear on this because I have a boy on the cusp of puberty (hello, testosterone)—the entry point to manhood.

Dr. Meeker explains that, when boys are still young, as part of their emotional development, they need to learn that while their feelings can be intense, they do not need to be ruled by them. In fact, she says that moms can put it this way to their sons, “Are you going to allow your feelings to dominate your decisions, or are you going to take charge of them?” Here’s how to teach your son to handle his emotions in a constructive way.


Receive daily parenting and marriage inspiration from one of the newsletters below.