Saturday, September 26, 2009

Teenage Boys: Part 1

Teenage boys are a thing of beauty. Not unlike teenage girls, they have a remarkable ability to be extremely irritating and charming all at once. However, their tendency to eschew the typical drama and mood swings that define teenage girldom is awesome, in the truest sense of the word. Recently, my older son got stood up by one of his buddies. He was ticked off and let his buddy know in no uncertain terms. I had to speak to his mother for other reasons and she was very apologetic for her son's behavior. I assured her that I felt no need for either of us to mediate the situation and that the two boys would figure it out. Half jokingly, I said, "If we were the mothers of two teenage girls, we would be fighting this out in court!" Perhaps a bit of hyperbole but we unquestionably would have been embroiled in the center of the dispute. A couple days later I asked my son how things were with his friend. He just shrugged his shoulders and said, "Whatever." I thought that maybe this was a big deal to him and would not easily resolve itself. However, by the next weekend they were together again. While I hesitate to say that all had been forgiven, it had at least been put behind them. I doubt they will ever discuss it in any way. There will be no dissection of the experience yet they will move forward. My son will not need to let his friend know how he felt and will never ask him about his motivations or his expected outcome. Beyond, "Sorry, dude", there will be no apologetic overtures. As a lifelong girl, I can unequivocally assert that I have never so quickly and easily resolved a dispute with someone, male or female. My husband has often stated that men and women are just different in this regard: one angry man might knock another down in a brawl but then pick him up, take him for a beer and give him a ride home. No need for soul searching, soul baring or closure. And, apparently, it begins in childhood. Beautiful!

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