If you are ever short on entertainment, perhaps you could drop into our house for some live World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE on Pay TV for those who are fans!). Yes, on any given night (normally when our 6-year-old daughter is trying to go to sleep) you will hear the sounds of two testosterone pumped boys doing their best impression of world wrestling right in their own lounge room.
Whilst we try to avoid it most nights, sometimes it’s just impossible to ignore the screams of Teen-Child – he’s mastered the art of bellowing so much, that we now recognise it as simply a case of good acting, not actual injury, except maybe to his pride. Coupled with the bellowing is a regular case of crocodile tears – just to extract maximum sympathy from any onlookers. Meanwhile Man-Child – not one for tears – just channels all his energy into physical strength to ensure he doesn’t lose. He is highly competitive.
To be honest, I have no idea who wins on any given night. Occasionally we will watch with amusement, although I can’t really do this for very long. I don’t like violence, even if it is healthy “play fighting” – and I use that term very loosely in the case of our boys. Again, as very different boys I guess their differences are bound to boil over occasionally, and to result in physical attacks against each other. I don’t imagine it’s any different in other houses with males of a close age. I distinctly recall as a youngster watching a friends teenage brothers chase each other around the kitchen table, and I was sure they were going to kill each other! But then I was one of four girls, so my exposure to this sort of behaviour had been fairly limited – although trust me girls have their own unique version of fighting.
When our boys were little we always said they were like puppy dogs – always better after a good run in the park to burn off some energy. Now as adolescent males, my view (and those of many others) is that they just can’t do enough sport. It keeps them busy before and after school and on weekends, expends massive amounts of energy, and is a healthy alternative to some other activities they might otherwise choose.