Father to Son, Revised Edition

Life Lessons on Raising a Boy


By Harry H. Harrison, Jr.

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This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around May 28, 2013. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

Warm and fuzzy, anchored in values, and filled with simple words of wisdom, this beloved, bestselling book for parents speaks to the important business of raising sons, and distills their timeless lessons into one nugget of wisdom per page—some lighthearted, some serious, some practical, and some intangible, and all supported by a strong moral backbone.

Freshly updated, the book begins with the Five Keys of Parenting, a guide to navigating the extraordinary, even if sometimes exasperating, journey of parenthood. It’s filled with the importance of nurturing responsibility: Teach him that the world will judge him by his actions, not his intentions. Fun stuff: Have tea with him in the afternoons. Serve cookies. And when he’s ready to go: Hug him fiercely.


Little Boys

Treasure your time with your son.

Teach him to keep a secret.

Show him how to eat an Oreo. This is a skill that will serve him for his entire life.

Set strict bedtimes for him as he grows up. Boys need their sleep.

Makes sure he knows his full name, address, and his parents' names and phone numbers. Many four-year-olds only know their father's name is "Daddy."

Take him for walks and introduce him to the world of bugs.

Read to him nightly. He'll love it.

Don't let him sleep in your bed, even if he's scared or sick. Sleep on the floor in his room.

Make an effort to give up drinking and smoking. If he never sees his dad doing those things, they will hold less mystery for him.

Teach him how to plant a flower. It involves three things boys love—dirt, digging, and garden hoses.

Teach him to ride a two-wheel bike. It means freedom. Jog alongside.

Accept the fact that he just might play with dolls. It's no big deal.

Ask him what he did today. Listen.

Show him how to clean his room. Little boys don't just absorb this through osmosis.

Encourage the joy of learning.

Teach him how to dial 911 and when and why.

Buy him something to hang from—a jungle gym or climbing bars. Something.

Show him how to throw a punch. Then raise him to never start a fight. And teach him to walk away from one.

Take him on hikes and show him how to ford a stream. Let him get wet and dirty.

Display his artwork in your office. Even that weird ashtray thing.

Let him hang out with you. Remember, he has a need to be around you, to learn what being a man is all about.

An unhappy boy is often one who is hungry or tired. Or both.

Turn off the TV, turn off the lights, give him a flashlight, and make up stories at night. He won't be able to get enough.

Meet him for lunch at his school. Talk to him about what he's learned.

Talk to him about drugs and alcohol early, from the time he's about five years old. Because if you don't, somebody else will.


On Sale
May 28, 2013
Page Count
324 pages

Harry H. Harrison, Jr.

Harry H. Harrison, Jr.

About the Author

Harry H. Harrison Jr. is a parenting expert and author of 1,001 Things It Means to Be a Dad and other 1,001 Things books from Thomas Nelson. For many years, he operated his own award-winning creative consultancy firm, Harrison Creative Directions. 

Learn more about this author