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Raising Boys Without Men    by Peggy Drexler & Linden Gross order for
Raising Boys Without Men
by Peggy Drexler
Order:  USA  Can
Rodale, 2005 (2005)

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

According to Peggy Drexler, Ph.D., boys raised in a home without a father figure don't grow up self-centered mommy's boys with few obvious masculine traits. Nor do boys raised by lesbian partners become homosexuals. Curious about same sex households and the boys raised there, Dr. Drexler wrote her dissertation on that subject.

She found normal boys being raised by two women who were first and foremost concerned about their boys' opinion of themselves. For the most part, these kids were just like all the other boys on the block interested in hockey, skateboarding, baseball, basketball and the myriad other sports and masculine pursuits that boys seem to choose. The boys' personal relationships as they grew up were what anyone would expect of healthy, happy kids. Caring, concern, and respect for others coupled with a great gulp of love for the world. They were ready to do what needed to be done.

Drexler tells us that 'Children of gay parents were found to be more sexually tolerant than their peers, and they had more open-ended ideas about sexuality and same-sex experimentation, but statistically the same percentage of children of gay parents identify as homosexual adults as the children of straight parents.' Continuing in that vein, Dr. Drexler then turned to single mothers - single either through death, divorce or choice. Their boys were no more damaged by being raised by a single mom than their counterparts from lesbian homes.

This is not to denigrate the father's place in the home. Simply put, this book deals with women and their sons and the social view that a boy cannot be raised to be a man if he has only a single female parent or two mothers. Unbiased, articulate, intelligent, Raising Boys Without Men is a real boost to the women of today who are doing just that. It underlines that they should be respected for what they are and not for what the world expects them to be.

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