Raising Boys Documentary



CBSN recently released a new documentary, Raising Boys. Among those featured in the documentary: our very own Jennifer L.W. Fink.

The intent of the documentary, says producer Kayla Ruble, was to examine “what issues lead to the headlines” that so often announce stories of men behaving badly. The intent was to search for answers to the question that is on the mind of every parent of boys: How do we raise good men? 

The documentary features 6  families —

  • David French, a dad who discusses the difference between raising boys today vs. when he was growing up
  • Gemma Gaudette, the mom of a son who got in trouble for punching a kid who picked on him
  • Mike & Katy Anderson, parents of three active boys who love to wrestle and brawl
  • Roe Anderson, a single mom of a boy who prefers art to sports
  • Ruth Whippman, a mom of three boys who discusses the messages boys receive about masculinity from books and movies
  • Roberto and Tenysa Santiago, parents of three children including a boy who like to paint his nails and wear his hair in a pontail

— as well as expert commentary from

What did you think about the documentary? Are there topics you wish they would have covered? Something you think deserved a deeper dive? Let us know in the comments below!

In this episode, Jen, Janet & Kayla discuss:
  • Why CBS felt the time was right to focus on boys
  • What Kayla learned about boys while working on the documentary
  • Parents’ attitudes toward the #MeToo and girl empowerment movements
  • Response to the documentary (Spoiler: Many people love it. Others say the FBI and Child Protective Services should be called on the parents.)
  • The pressure and fears felt by parents of boys
  • Evolving gender norms and roles
  • How dads are coping with changing expectations for boys and men
  • Progress toward gender equality
Links we mentioned (or should have) in this episode:

Raising Boys — CBSN documentary

Raising Boys as Society Redefines Masculinity — CBS Morning Show segment about the documentary

Grown Men Are the Solution, Not the Problem — article by David French, one of the dads in the documentary

Masculinity in the Age of #MeToo — ON BOYS episode #105

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