HomeTop NewsMama’s boys make good husbands?

Mama’s boys make good husbands?

Researchers say that men who have close relationships with their mothers are more likely to have longer and more fulfilling marriages than men who don’t have affectionate relationships with their mothers.

In Summary

Single women imagine an interfering mother-in-law who will pitch tent in her home right after the honeymoon, and dictate what her son will eat, before inspecting his clothes to see whether they are well-ironed.

Well, contrary to popular belief, research says that mama’s boys actually make good husbands. According to research published in 2015 in the American journal, Psychological Science, boys who have close relationships with their mothers tend to make good husbands later in life.

Mama’s boy: A man who is excessively influenced by, or attached to his mother. Synonyms for this phrase include wimp, sissy, weakling and coward.

If young single Malawian women were asked if they would date, leave alone get married to a self-confessed mama’s boy, or one who shows these tendencies, they are likely to give a resounding ‘No”.

Our society does not view men who are overly attached to their mothers kindly – they are dismissed as spoilt and irresponsible, the spoon-fed kind that is most likely to be still living and eating at home in their late thirties.

Single women imagine an interfering mother-in-law who will pitch tent in her home right after the honeymoon, and dictate what her son will eat, before inspecting his clothes to see whether they are well-ironed.

Well, contrary to popular belief, research says that mama’s boys actually make good husbands. According to research published in 2015 in the American journal, Psychological Science, boys who have close relationships with their mothers tend to make good husbands later in life.

Drawing from this study, a marriage where the man had an extremely close and good relationship with his mother had 75 per cent chance of survival and prosperity, while a marriage where the man had a distant relationship with his mother showed just a 22 per cent chance of survival.

REMARKABLE, ISN’T IT?

Kate Stone Lombardi, an award-winning American columnist and author of The Mama’s Boy Myth: Why Keeping Our Sons Close Makes Them Stronger, echoes these research findings – not only does she believe that that mama’s boys make good boyfriends and husbands, she also believes that they have strong and grounded personalities.

And yet the perception has often been that mothers who nurture deep emotional bonds with their sons end up preventing them from growing up to be strong, independent men. But this isn’t the case, at least according to this author, who has a very close relationship with her son.

She says, “Contrary to stereotype, boys who can express a broader range of emotions (from observing and spending time with their mothers) will not become wimps, who forever cling to their mommies. Instead, they will become independent men who make strong, empathetic spouses and partners.”

“Additionally, these young men will be better equipped to navigate today’s economy, in which communication skills and teamwork are more important for success than brute physical strength or dominance,” she adds.

American researcher and professor of psychiatry, Dr William Pollack, does not believe for one minute that boys who cleave to their mothers develop sissy-like behaviour.

Doctor Pollack, the author of Real Boys – Rescuing Our Boys from the Myths of Boyhood, says in an article titled, What Boys Need from Mom,

“Far from making boys weaker, the love of a mother can, and does actually make boys stronger, emotionally, and psychologically.

COURAGE TO EXPLORE

“Additionally, rather than make boys dependent, the base of safety a loving mother can create provides a boy with the courage to explore the outside world. But most important, far from making a boy act in ‘girl-like’ ways, a loving mother actually plays an integral role in helping the boy develop his masculinity.”

To achieve this though, the mother should be careful not to put a lid on her son’s natural urge for independence and adventure, says research psychologist Peggy Drexler, the author of Raising Boys Without Men: How Maverick Moms Are Creating the Next Generation of Exceptional Men.

“All boys regardless of whether they are mamas boys or not, will have an innate and astonishing ability to establish a strong and resilient sense of their own masculinity,” she says, adding that a mother can only help to develop her son’s full potential as long as she values his manliness and encourages his growth independence and sense of adventure.

While Dr Chris Hart, the Nairobi-based psychologist acknowledges that there is nothing wrong with boys being close to their mothers, he points out that when that closeness crosses a certain boundary, it might spell doom for their present or future relationships.

These boundaries include a situation where the man tells his mother everything there is to know about his relationship, where the mother becomes the confidante, a role that essentially belongs to his wife, if he is married, or where he cannot make any decision before consulting his mother.

“This kind of closeness is unhealthy for this man’s relationship or marriage, and is bound to cause conflict,” he warns.

A married man, Hart says, should place his wife above his mother, otherwise a destructive contest between these two women will inevitably arise.

***

I AM A MAMA’S BOY

Dave Inglis, from Mulanje, says that he enjoyed a close relationship with his mother, Mercy Ngotho.

“When she passed away in 2007, I was broken, because she was the first person whose opinion I sought before I made an important decision.”

Being the last born in a family of three children, his mother kept him close, even babied him.

“Although she was considered a disciplinarian at the school where she taught, I do not remember her spanking me or raising her voice at me.”

Ngotho adds that while he was in high school, she would sometimes drop by unannounced to see if he was okay and whether he needed anything. He fondly recalls how his mother made his bed when he joined Form One. No other parent did that for their child, a gesture that earned him ridicule for a long time.

“I should have been embarrassed, but I wasn’t, because it was a gesture of her love for me. I find myself smiling gratefully when I recall those moments.”

He points out that his closeness to his mother did not spoil or smoother him, on the contrary, it encouraged him to aim for excellence, partly to make his mother proud of him, and to justify the confidence she had in him, as well as the sacrifices she made for the sake of him and his siblings.

“I performed well, right from primary school to high school –

This closeness to his mother, he says, has greatly influenced the man he is today.

“I try very hard to live within her ideals. Before I do something, I always pause and ask myself whether she would have approved. If she were alive, would she clap and cheer me on or would she bow her head in shame? This is what keeps me in check,” he says.

Subscribe to our Youtube Channel:

Must Read
Related News