The Pampered Prince: Tips and Techniques on Building a Great Relationship with your Son by C. Lynn Williams is a thoughtful and thought provoking book on the subject of bringing up boys. It’s specifically addressed to mothers, but it wouldn’t hurt dads to read it either.
The book starts with an interesting foreword by Reverend Dr Jeremiah A Wright Jr which mentions other books about parenting that are worth knowing about and explains how he, as a pastor encountering many young men and their mothers, has seen the truth and value in C. Lynn Williams’ book. He sees how this book can help the reader in “avoiding the pitfalls of modernity while establishing core values” whilst raising a son.
Faith is very important to this author, and Christian values are often referred to, but even if you don’t consider yourself a religious person, this is still a book for you. The element of faith in the background simply makes this book all the more comprehensive. It is written very much from the author’s own experiences, but there are plenty of general truths in it. You can see your own mothering being talked about at various times, and recognize things your own kids have been up to.
From the word go, C. Lynn Williams is encouraging. And pushy! And thank goodness she is. We do need to be building a solid, lifelong relationship with our sons, and we do need to operate with integrity, and we do need to be their hero.
The first chapter warns us not to be smothering as mothers. If we try and make out they belong solely to us, and not to their fathers too, then we’re setting the scene for disaster. We mustn’t spoil them. It won’t do them any good in the long run. Do we really want a pampered prince on our hands?
Subsequent chapters take a long hard look at the Oedipus complex some boys experience, at single parenting a son (where there’s a look at how we shield our sons from responsibility to their detriment), at how we try to keep our boys dependent on us. Peter Pan, male role models and the need to push our boys come under scrutiny too. Can you really marry tough love with wise parenting? You can after you’ve read this book. Discipline and letting go are discussed to, as is that all to common attitude of mothers that no girl is ever going to be good enough for their son. Truth be told, aren’t we all guilty of harbouring that belief? Finally, we take a look at the good old fashioned values of respect and honour and see how incorporating them into the upbringing of our sons will be to everyone’s benefit.
There are study guide questions at the end of each chapter, an inspiring epilogue at the end and a valuable list of resources.
This is a very thorough, genuinely intended and very well written book. It’s a fresh dose of common sense delivered in a manner that’s easy to digest and act upon. You benefit as the parent reading this, and your son will benefit from the new perspective you’ll gain on your relationship with him.