Every little boy goes through those moments when he just doesn’t understand what it is that makes girls so special, or at the very least what makes them so different. I’m not talking about the physical differences exactly, but more why they must be treated differently. That is the position my father-in-law found himself in as a little boy when he disagreed with his big sister. When a boy is little, and gets into a disagreement with a girl, he does not consider her to be different than any other kid with whom he disagrees. And in that instance, hitting her doesn’t seem like it is any different than hitting any boy he knows. Of course, his mother quickly explained that boys don’t hit girls!
When that little boy, who was my father-in-law, tried to rebel against what he saw as the unfair rule of his older sister, his little boy solution was to…what else, hit her. Of course, his mom told him that hitting girls was not allowed. In what has to be one of the funniest disciplinary moments Grandma would remember, her little boy stated the obvious, “Why, is she made of glass?” I know that if he were my son, I would find it almost impossible not to laugh at that moment. I mean, what do you say to a little boy who has a big sister, who is obviously not fragile…in fact, she is always bossing him around. Then, he finally gets the courage to fight back, and you’re telling him not to hit girls! He is not going to be fooled into thinking that she is weaker than he is, so that option is out.
It is an age old problem, and one mothers have long struggled with. It is their responsibility to teach their little boys the proper way to treat girls, and yet, those girls don’t always make it easy…especially big sisters. I can picture my father-in-law, with his impish ways, being everything from a trial to a smile to his mother. Grandma always was a softy, and he always held a special place in her heart, just like he will for all of his friends and family, whom he left behind when he left us just 11 days ago. As to Grandma’s ability to train her little boy to be nice to the girls, well…you succeeded Grandma, because Dad was an incorrigible flirt who knew just how to make a girl feel like a beautiful lady…and, he did finally learn that boys don’t hit girls.