Boys are now among the most challenging groups with whom we work as psychotherapists. During the past two decades, boyhood has received special attention, and with good reason: boyhood is being radically redefined. As a result, the number of vulnerable boys who require our attention and care has increased significantly. Some of them are just entering kindergarten; others are graduating from high school or college and manoeuvering their way in a world of work that has increasingly fewer places for them; a decreasing number are in graduate school. Ever more are disconnected, disaffiliated and adrift.
The Boys Initiative is a groundbreaking national campaign to shed light on alarming trends in recent years pertaining to boys’ health and well-being. The spark for the initiative was the now well documented decline in boys’ educational performance over the past two decades. This is part of a disturbing trend of boys decline in other areas impacting physical and emotional health, performance, accomplishment and social adaptation. These trends are approaching crisis proportions.
A must for teachers to read and use. By Dr Peter West (former head of the Research Group on Men and Families at the University of Western Sydney). Dr West has many practical ideas about helping boys learn on his website about men's and boys' issues.
What kind of world are our boys to growing up in? Why are increasing numbers of boys suffering body image and self-esteem problems? Why do they feel worthless without the latest branded toy, game or item of clothing? What makes soft drinks, snacks and fast foods so attractive? Why are they drawn to countless acts of violence on TV, in movies and in computer games? What impact does our highly sexualised climate, our emphasis on success and money, have on them as they grow? And why are so many boys vulnerable to cyber bullying and to porn? Childhood and teenage life is changing rapidly, leaving parents exhausted and confused as to how best to tackle the many issues they face. How does this high pressure environment affect a boy's confidence, his values and aspirations, his wellbeing, his sense of community, his attitudes to girls and women?
In her follow-up book to What's Happening to Our Girls?, bestselling author Maggie Hamilton asks these and many other vital questions, as well as providing numerous tips for parents and educators on how to create a more promising future for our children. She draws upon interviews with over 70 experts including doctors, psychologists, police and teachers, as well as the 50 anonymous boys themselves to see into their secret lives and understand the challenges they face. What's Happening to Our Boys? is a meticulously researched book that confronts the problems boys and young men face, suggesting positive and constructive ways to help them grow into resilient, productive and happy individuals.
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