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Masterminds & Wingmen: Helping Our Boys Cope With Schoolyard Power, Locker-Room Tests, Girlfriends, And The New Rules Of Boy World (2013)

Masterminds & Wingmen: Helping Our Boys Cope with Schoolyard Power, Locker-Room Tests, Girlfriends, and the New Rules of Boy World (2013)

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3.9 of 5 Votes: 1
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0804128294 (ISBN13: 9780804128292)
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About book Masterminds & Wingmen: Helping Our Boys Cope With Schoolyard Power, Locker-Room Tests, Girlfriends, And The New Rules Of Boy World (2013)

3.5 stars. I don't usually read things that can be construed as parenting guides, because anxiety, but I'm glad I made an exception for this one. The parts that were most helpful for me were the sections that covered the dynamics of boy social groups, including the specific roles that individual boys play in them. She also includes her family's video game rules, which are hilarious and I am totally stealing them verbatim. The main reason I didn't rate this higher as a book is that it seemed poorly organized -- random bits stuck into chapters for no apparent reason, disproportionate amounts of space allotted to topics, and a really abrupt ending. The main points of interest in the book are:1) What the boys groups look like:10% fit the ALMB (Acts Like a Man Box with characteristics of having money, confident, funny, good at comebacks, tall, detached, tough, strong, good with girls, always relaxed, independent, good at the right sports, slacker attitude even if he does well in school.)75% make up the general population - different groups of about 5 to 10 kids each10% hang out at the bottom but have a strong group - know their social position, know they appear odd to others, and don't care as long as they have at least one strong friendship.5% are the outer perimeter - these are totally apart from the social system and consist of anarchists, pranksters, politicians, obsessed single-subject or single sport high-achievers, and those seriously lacking in social skills.2) The roles within the group:Mastermind - Charismatic and influences others' as to what and who is accepted and humiliated, argues well and yield's absolute power,Associate - looks like the Mastermind but more talkative and well liked, interested in others' business and what advantage he and Mastermind can gain from it.Bouncer - Big, tall and intimidating and will sacrifice himself as one of his responsibilities, can't verbally defend himself or read and understand others' motivations.Entertainer - diffuses tension in the group, good at making others feel comfortable, but has a hard time stopping the jokes when he gets going.Conscience - worries about getting caught and the consequences; because he's trustworthy, he used as the smokescreen when dealing with parents and authorities.Punching Bag - he is the one in the group who is relentlessly ridiculed, but if someone on the outside does this, the group will defend him.Fly - hovers outside the group and doesn't know how annoying he is, if his parents have money he will attempt to build friendships by bragging or buying. He will be tolerated for a while but at some point the group will lash out and there will be no guilt in excluding him because he's seen as bring it on himself.Champion - he is not controlled by any group and is comfortable with inside and outside the box, he doesn't make others choose friends and won't blow off someone for a better offer.3) Parenting styles:The Believer Parent - let their kids talk their way out of trouble, blame kid's problems on others and don't like to dig into problems too deeply.The Bear Parent - if their kid did someone wrong, he was justified and shouldn't be punished because he was wronged first, escalate conflicts by getting other people involved i.e. petitions, boycotts, alternative dances and parties.The Dictator Parent - automatically don't trust son's friends or parents if they have a difference background and may investigate them, trust those who share their background or look clean-cut, interrogate their son about what other people did or didn't do at social events with a judgmental tone may leave the child feeling he needs to lie.The Boys Will be Boy Parent - don't punish their son in a way he takes it seriously, tells his son's friends the dumb stuff the son did, will support a bullying coach as long as he wins, talks in sports metaphors, speaks in slogans, encourages their son to play the right sports i.e. football, hockey and lacrosse.The Pushover Parent - don't want to acknowledge their actions explains their son's lack of respect, feels guilty for working long hours, travel or aren't the primary parent, feels overwhelmed in the face of an angry son, thinks that if everyone is reasonably healthy that's good enough.The No-excuses Parent - believes problems should stay within the family, highly concerned about their place in the community and their reputation, surprised when their kid messes up or has serious issues, as a result from the above they can be the cause of more stress than the child already has.The No-privacy Parent - dismiss or laugh at child's response to stop talking about the subject, dismiss teen's anger by saying "Just kidding" or "Kids are so sensitive" in a way that does not take responsibility for their own hurtful behavior, refuse to talk about their behavior later or admit that what they did was wrong.The Don't Ask, don't tell Parent - don't see when their son is high, drunk or gay, don't check how their son is doing in school, make statements that reinforce their clueless image.The Glory Seeker Parent - justify behavior by pushing their son to be his best, can publicly humiliate their son when they lose their temper, usually has a spouse that doesn't confront their behavior or if pushed makes excuses for it, doesn't have the ability to reflect on how their actions push their son to hate what he excels at or to feel that he's nothing without it.The Bro Dad - uses slang terms that don't quite make sense or makes it look like he's trying too hard, tells his son to have others over all the time, urges son to have a party and be social, tries to tell his son what is cool and what isn't.The Girlfriend Mom - can't be differentiated from the back from the son's female peers, laughs when son's friend(s) makes a joke about how hot she is, looks the other way when son does something illegal, wants to be best friends with son's girlfriend, want's to go to son's events as a way to gossip with other parents about the kids and other parents.The Peace Vigilante - thinks that throwing rocks or using sticks as guns will result in violent behavior, not allowing any typical boy games, can be counterproductive as the Boys Will be Boys extreme.The Rock - good at hanging out with their son without any pressure to make it a bonding experience, take his son over the the other's house to apologize when he's done something wrong, good at coming up with effective punishments, don't gossip about their children while watching events, affectionate with their son and have no problem hugging him in public, not afraid to admit when they feel overwhelmed or unsure about how to handle a difficult situation with their kids, know and when to approach their son to talk, make certain that their sons' friends respect the rules of the house.

Do You like book Masterminds & Wingmen: Helping Our Boys Cope With Schoolyard Power, Locker-Room Tests, Girlfriends, And The New Rules Of Boy World (2013)?

If you have boys, you'll take something away from this book. Some more than others, I'm sure.

I thought I would surely like this book. I just didn't get it. I have no reason why.

Interesting, but not as engrossing as I was hoping.

Very interesting.

nothing stellar.

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