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Are you a teacher, parent or community leader interested in moderating a discussion about raising and guiding boys on their journey to manhood? A screening of Boys Will Be Men can be the focus of discussion. This guide outlines topics raised by the program and asks 12 questions that encourage participants to consider the issues in the context of their own lives.

1. The Boy Code

In the program, clinical psychologist William Pollack comments that.. “around the ages of 3 and 4 to 5 and 6, boys are prematurely pushed into what I call the ‘boy code.’ Put most simply, that’s a code that tells boys that they should stand on their own two feet, cut Mama’s apron strings, and be an independent person way before it’s possible to really achieve that.” Boys are conditioned by the “boy code,” to be tough and not to show vulnerable emotions. This can limit their capacity for intimacy and relationships in later life.

? What specific examples of the “boy code” can you identify in your own experience or in that of your children?

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