…Teenage boys are naturally fun, passionate, kind, creative, communicative & caring.
Having been on a bit of a media frenzy the last week with the launch of my book, The Making of Men, I’ve been really surprised to be challenged by a number of interviewers about my statement that teenage boys are naturally fun, passionate, kind, creative, communicative and caring.
They have said to me that they don’t know any teenage boys like that. Their experience is much more around them being uncommunicative, unfriendly and unhelpful.
… a number of times he warned me to be careful …
I had an experience that really confirmed my belief on Sunday. I went surfing at the Fairy Bower at Manly where I have never been before. It was reasonably big and I had been told to climb out around the rocks. I got there and didn’t know the way so I asked a young guy who was about to head out if he would show me the way. He looked about 15 and his name turned out to be Mitch. I followed him across the rocks and all the while he was chatting about his surfing experiences with his dad and asking me about mine. A number of times he warned me to be careful as a rock was slippery or unstable. He then explained the best way to paddle out to avoid the current and the rocks under the water.
During the surf I caught a few nice waves…
During the surf I caught a few nice waves from out the back and at the end of the wave there was Mitch paddling around with a big smile on his face and giving me the thumbs up for catching a nice ride.
Now if we’d gone with stereotypes and the beliefs of many he wouldn’t have talked to me and it would have been considered inappropriate for me to even have a conversation with a young man I had never met. What a shame that would have been.
…he was friendly, helpful and happy…
For me it was a great example of a young man who has found something that he loves to do, and even better he does it with his dad. He was friendly, helpful and happy to help a stranger who happened to be me.
I know that when we help our young men find what they are passionate about, when we speak to them as adults and when we give them an opportunity they step up and show us just how wonderful they really are. Thanks Mitch, hope you keep getting great waves, keep hanging out with your dad and keep helping old guys like me find their way out into the surf.