How to Raise Your Kids

How easy was your childhood? For real?

Well, although I am in no position to know anything about your childhood, I can tell you for sure a few things about mine.

Before you say, what do I care about your childhood, please read a few more lines. You might be surprised of how common our childhood lives might have been.

I mostly grew up like a nice little "beta" boy.

Without a father and due to the fact that my mother had to work for long hours, the main weight was on my grandparents' shoulders.

Thank *God*, I cannot complain about the amount of love I got from these people. But, growing up in a such an "abnormal" family composition, it damn causes some issues.

Biology has chosen the classic parental model with two sexes for a reason. Although it is usual for many kids nowadays to grow up in one-parent families, it is far from optimal.

Now, I will admit I am not a parent myself, so I don't write from an expert (experienced person) point of view. I have studied quite a bit though on that matter and I have made a well-founded research in order to draw the conclusions you're gonna read in this post.

There are literally thousands of tricks, techniques and tips on how to raise a child, but today you are not going to read any of these. This post ain't about how to change the diaper or what songs to sing before your kid goes to sleep - I actually have no single clue of any lullabies.

The most important trick on how to raise your kids

Somewhere between the diapers and the lullabies, there comes the leadership skill. I'm not kidding. Leadership is among the most important skills (if not the most important one) a person, especially a man can possess.

If you don't believe me, make a research on the topic. Millions of lines, books and literature have been written on the subject. Moreover as a general rule of thumb, we people, tend to remember great leaders more than average Joes.

Back to my childhood again. I was not a leader by a long shot. I wasn't the last on pecking order as well, but still. Who cares if you are not the last of the pack? The point is how you can be the first one. The cub that eats more. Survives. And thrives.

Well at least for men there's a very powerful ingredient in forging the leadership skills we talk about.

This - not so simple - ingredient to find is the low-stress levels.

There you go. Now you know. You may very well close this web page and go meditate.

STOP. I am joking. Here comes the juicy part.

I blame stress

It is well proven that men with high-stress levels, tend to be followers. The lower the natural stress levels of someone, the more of a quality person he is. This fact holds true among all primates (man included).

Naturally high-stress levels on men can have many origins, but among the most common ones is the low testosterone levels the man developed, both as a fetus in pregnancy and during his childhood and low oxytocin levels thereafter.

Although none is absolutely sure how much each variable affects stress levels, we got pretty clear evidence of what we can do in order to improve a male's chances on that front.

Let's talk about testosterone and oxytocin

In this game there are two major hormones involved:

  • Testosterone
  • Oxytocin

There are many ways both natural and non-natural in order to raise your testosterone and oxytocin levels as an adult, but this is beyond the scope of this article. What we are looking for here, is what you can do as a parent in order to improve your kid's chances to become a skillful future leader. In other words, what can be done before your kid becomes an adult in order to have naturally elevated levels of testosterone and oxytocin.

Before we proceed, let's give a little bit of background about these two hormones, in order to have a better understanding of what we talk about here.

How to Raise Your Kids
Testosterone molecule

Taken from Wikipedia:

Testosterone is a steroid hormone from the androgen group and is found in humans and other vertebrates. In humans and other mammals, testosterone is secreted primarily by the testicles of males and, to a lesser extent, the ovaries of females. Small amounts are also secreted by the adrenal glands. It is the principal male sex hormone and an anabolic steroid.

As you can derive from this, testosterone is possibly the single most important hormone if you are a man. It's essentially responsible for a million factors, among those are:

  • chronic stress levels
  • self-confidence
  • leadership

Let's have a look at the other important hormone, oxytocin.

 

Pituitary gland secreted hormones and influenced organs in the body abstract blue technology background
Pituitary gland secreted hormones and influenced organs in the body abstract blue technology background

Again taken from Wikipedia:

Oxytocin (Oxt) is a hormone normally produced in the hypothalamus and stored in the posterior pituitary gland. It plays a role in intimacy, sexual reproduction of both sexes, and during and after childbirth as well as social bonding. It is released in large amounts after distension of the cervix and uterus during labor and with stimulation of the nipples following childbirth. This helps with birth, maternal bonding, and lactation. Studies have looked at oxytocin's role in various behaviors, including orgasm, social recognition, pair bonding, anxiety, and maternal behaviors.

I think all the information needed about the importance of these two hormones, can be derived from these two paragraphs, but in case you want to know more, it would be more than helpful to make your research on the subject. It really goes very deep, and you will learn quite a few unbelievable things.

So, enough with the theory please! Let's have some action.

Natural born leader

Right. Well, the tricky part here is that all that can be done must be done during pregnancy and infancy. Even a little bit during childhood. After that period, only a very good nurturing environment can alter things, if so.

Period 1: Pregnancy

First things first. Before any child is raised into a leader, it has to have the best possible pregnancy conditions. This will increase the natural levels of testosterone if it's a boy, or the natural levels of estrogens if it's a girl.

In order to ensure that we give our child the best possible chances we need to make sure that both parents are in the best possible health state.

If you are a man you should know beforehand that your sperm although important in your offspring's quality it is less vital than your woman's ovum. Moreover, you are not the one who will feed it or carry it for nine months. Your kid will sure get half its genes from you, but think of your sperm quality (although not an accurate representation) more like an on-off switch. In other words, your sperm is good enough to reproduce or not. Of course, the better your gene the better the quality of your offspring.

You "only" have two main concerns here:

Concern #1

Be in the best possible health condition at all times. Besides your sperm, what you have to offer here is your protective shield and resources. It's not that hard to "donate" some sperm to some woman. What is hard, though, is to be super healthy and to ensure your kids will have all the resources necessary to grow and develop into skillful leaders.

How to Raise Your Kids

Contrary to women, your sperm quality deteriorates only a little with age, so don't get too eager to have kids early. Energy is not going anywhere as long as you stay in shape, you eat healthy and exercise regularly. Trust me, your kid will prefer a bit older father at the age of let's say 40 having all the resources necessary, rather than a feisty youngster, who can barely support himself.

Concern #2

Here is the tough part. This is the tough part because it's about you. This is about your other half. We are well aware by now that the better person you are the better person you're gonna find in your life.

But...

Although you can always search for the best possible mate, at some point you will have to settle for something. What will be the quality of this person is not entirely up to you, but you play a major role. Eventually, it all comes down to having a plan.

You need to make sure that your wife is young and in excellent health condition. If she smokes, is obese or her overall lifestyle is bad, don't even think about it. She might be a super cool and nice person, but she doesn't have to carry your child. You can always just fuck or be good friends.

There are many other women out there, that can fill the role of your woman perfectly. Again this can be a very tricky situation. You will need to put your emotions aside if the woman you love has a very bad potential to become a mother. No matter how caring she is, you will always have a hard time raising a child which is biologically inferior.

Apart from her health status and habits you will also need to make sure of her nurturing skills. How good and protective is with other babies. How eager is to learn how to raise a child in the best possible way etc. As a personal note, my woman's eagerness to learn new stuff is among my top priorities. She might not know a lot (like I didn't a few years before) but if she is willing to learn and improve, the knowledge is there. 100% free!

If all these conditions are met, there is little more you need to do. You just make sure, you both stay calm and continue live healthy during pregnancy. Nature will take care of the rest.

Period 2: Childhood

OK, my baby is born, now what?

Remember, this post is not a maternity guide. I am not going to talk about mundane stuff like who is gonna wake up if the baby cries in the middle of the night.

Tip: she should always do that, you need to work hard to bring home the meat 😉

What I am going to talk though is how loving and caring you should be with your child. Again studies have repeatedly proven that even a simple hug can raise the levels of oxytocin by a lot. These expressions of tenderness will help your kid, reduce stress by a lot and feel way more comfortable and confident around other people.

How to Raise Your Kids

Chronic stress both in childhood and adulthood stops the natural production of oxytocin. There is strong evidence that the oxytocin receptors in rats tend to atrophy when maternal nurturing is inadequate. Moreover, female subjects who were abused during childhood tended not to release the same levels of oxytocin in laboratory trust "games."

As a general guideline, the more elevated levels of testosterone a man has, the more masculine he is. Besides that, more testosterone means the man is more abusive, aggressive and he will be less committed to a woman.

Conclusion and takeaways

Like I have said before, balance is everything. Your kid needs to take all the care and love they can get. You don't really have to go crazy with the hormone technicalities here. You just make sure, your child grows in a stable environment and that you will provide it with all the tools needed in order to survive and succeed.

There are two major concerns for you: nature and nurture.

Try to be as healthy as possible, both yourself and your other half. The woman's health especially is of paramount importance. Every woman should be in a position to understand that living healthy just for nine months is not enough. She will need to live an overall healthy lifestyle for two reasons:

  1. Prior living style accumulates and can have a major impact. I don't give a rat's ass if you quit smoking for nine months. You should never smoke anyway.
  2. Your child will carry many of your habits. If either of the parents has some bad habits, the child will most probably copy it. Always lead by example not by theory. I have seen countless times some stupid father yelling at his child for being a smoker, while, at the same time, he smokes a packet of cigarettes per day. If you want your child to be healthy, eat healthily and succeed in his life, just saying so won't be enough. The kid will need to see both its parents live the right way, always have a plan and never stop trying to achieve greatness.

Don't expect to raise a successful kid if you are a failure yourself. It's possible but not probable. Why not maximizing your chances?

Don't expect to raise a successful kid if you are a failure yourself. Click To Tweet

On a second thought here's a lullaby I like...not sure if it's kids approved though

  • Emmanuel

    Very good article!

    I could
    never imagine that all those factors, could affect the nature and the nurture
    of a child!

    You told that
    your mate’s lifestyle and habits must be good.

    If she
    change her Lifestyle when we decide to make a family, this doesn’t have the
    same good results?

    I can
    understand that the optimal is to not have a bad lifestyle but if she change it
    now, the results could have so tremendous difference?

    • Roberto Zanon

      Agree, that could work as well, the point is to see not only the current status/value, but the potential of your woman as well.

      That is why I said eagerness to learn and improve are of paramount importance for me.

      Thanks

  • Michael Adams

    At your previous articles you made mentions about Alpha and Beta males.

    If I understand well, when you wrote about your spouse’s lifestyle, habits nurturing
    skills etc. you made a separation at an Alpha and Beta female!

    I would like to answer at my comment and if your answer is positive please make a post about those characteristics!

    • Roberto Zanon

      Hey Michael, I will make a female oriented post at some point. Thanks for your suggestion

  • Pamela Iordanou

    I could never believe that you could post such an article at your blog.

    I am speechless!

    I couldn’t imagine that testosterone and oxytocin levels could affect us at this grade!

    I thought, some years before, that it is predetermined how you will end up at your life! Now I believe that YOU decide how you will end up!

    After this post I will absolutely change my bad habits!

    Could you suggest a book which have valuable information about the pregnancy?

    • Roberto Zanon

      Hey not really, I don’t have ONE specific book about it. What I right is mostly accumulated knowledge from various sources, mostly evolutionary biology/anthropology

  • Pan Soult

    It’s a great article! Thank you very much for the long-term approach of our lives!

    From time-to-time I am looking short-term and it does not fulfill my greater purposes. This was an awakening post that our actions do not only affect ourselves but for our offspring as well.

    I would like to strengthen your point:
    “Of course, the better your gene the better the quality of your offspring.”

    with a YouTube video for Epigenetics, with title:
    “The Ghost in your genes” which elaborates genes’ memory, like stress, which may be passed to your children.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mDi3VW8ekjw

    • Roberto Zanon

      Well to be honest I had not seen this video before, but I really appreciate your comment. Will check this out for sure.

      Thanks for the contribution and your kind words.

      Take care man 🙂

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