Saving Our Sons
Saving Our Sons: A Parent's Guide to Preparing Boys for Success by Clayton Lessor with Lisa Canfield. St. Louis, Quest Project Press, 2016. 186 pages with index. *****
Targeted for mothers of teenage boys, Lessor has written a book that is relevant to all mothers and fathers. Lessor has worked with boys for 20 years and draws on that experience to explain and identify the problems faced by fatherless adolescent boys or those without an appropriate male role model. His historical perspective on how a father's influence has changed from working together on the farm to the absent, abusive, or distracted father and the impact of these societal changes on the maturity of young men. My favorite lines from the book, "Adolescent boys don't understand that becoming a man, at its core, means stepping up and accepting responsibility. They don't even know what that means."
Lessor explains The Quest Project, a once-a-week ten-week schedule of meetings to help a boy in a group/community setting to uncover his pain, face it and heal from it. The very first project included a group of eight troubled boys, who ranged in age from sixteen to eighteen years old. It grew to include activities for the Mom and son to work on outside of the sessions in an effort to better understand each other's perspective and point of view.
Eight boys and their families agreed to have their stories shared in the second half of the book. These stories of survival and success are inspiring and hopeful.
I highly recommend that this book be made available to single mothers, in high school guidance offices, and in doctor's offices. The guidelines for when to seek help are invaluable for a mother in the trenches.
Purchase a copy and gift it to a single mother of an adolescent boy, you will be doing both of them and society a huge favor.
I received a copy for review.
Clayton Lesser, MA, LPC is the founder of the Quest Project, an intensive, 10-week group program that helps troubled adolescent boys overcome their challenges and learn to be healthy, responsible young men. He lives and works in St. Louis, Missouri. More information at www.claytonlessor.com.