What is a “Real Man” and How Do I Raise One? – Interview with Kathleen Henderson
Laurie Christine
Laurie Christine
May 21, 2021

What is a “real man” and how do I raise one?

A real man has integrity, unwavering faith, a strong work ethic, and compassion.

In today’s episode, my guest and I continue our discussion about how to raise our boys to become “real men”…  men who have integrity, a strong work ethic, compassion for others, and a love for Jesus!

Welcome to Episode 24 of Redeeming the Chaos with Laurie Christine.

We have a very special guest on our show today.  Kathleen Henderson is the natural living mentor behind the Roots & Boots blog and youtube channel, and the creator of Unprocessed Pantry and the Real Food Family Meal Plan.  She’s on a mission to help families see the joy in real food, while finding natural remedies and creating a nontoxic home.  Kathleen lives with her husband and three boys on a family farm in northern Virginia.  As a homeschooling boy-mom, Kathleen is passionate about raising capable kids who grow up to be real men!  

In the last episode of Redeeming the Chaos, Kathleen and I talked about how to maintain sanity as a mom of boys.  We also began a discussion about the qualities of a real man.


  • A real man has integrity. He does the right thing. He has self control and is able to master his emotions.
  • A real man has unwavering faith and love for the Lord.
  • A real man always does his best and has a strong work ethic.
  • A real man treats others with respect and dignity.

If you missed that episode, be sure to go back and listen to Episode 23

In today’s episode, Kathleen and I dive deeper into the topic of what a real man looks like and some practical things you can do to help your boys become real men. You can listen to our conversation here:


  1. Tell your son that he will be a man some day.
  • Give your boys a vision for the future.

2. Expect him to begin acting like a man.

  • Expect maturity from your children
  • “That behavior is unbecoming of a man.” 
  • “Is this the kind of man you want to be?” 
  • Give your boys a vision of growth and character.
  • “You have to decide what kind of person you want to become.”
  • “This is an opportunity to practice being strong and do the right thing.” 
  1. Give your boys responsibilities
  • Teach them how to do work that contributes to the responsibilities of the family.
  • Give your kids a sense of purpose  with actual responsibilities.
  • Develop habits that will benefit them into adulthood.
  1. Incorporate intentional milestones.
  • Ceremonies, rituals, rites of passage
  • 6 – campout with Dad
  • 10 – laying groundwork for puberty
  • 12 – “now you’re a man”
  • 16, 18, 21, marriage

5. Lay a foundation of Biblical truth

What role can moms play in raising real men?

  • Supporting your husband in his role as a leader in your family.
  • Have a conversation with your husband about a plan to raise real men.

What if my husband isn’t on board with raising real men?

  • Remember that this is God’s story for your child.
  • Don’t compare your family to other families.
  • God can work in any situation; he’s not surprised by your situation.
  • God sees you and your work.
  • Pray for your boys every day.
  • Pray for godly male role models.
  • Pray for your husband to step up into a role of spiritual leadership.


You can find Kathleen at and also on instagram @RootsandBootsHome.

While the focus of Kathleen’s blog is not parenting, she has written some posts recently on the topics of parenting and homeschooling.  While these posts are focused on homeschooling, they can also apply to any parent who wants to be intentional about raising great kids.

We talked today about the importance of praying for our children. I have a free resource for you that will help you pray scriptural prayers for your kids!  You can download it HERE.  It’s called “Confident Prayers.”  

confident prayers, using scripture to pray for your children

Also, I would love to invite you to join me in our Facebook group.  It’s called “Raising Courageous Boys,” and it’s a place for Christian boy moms to connect and encourage each other on this wild, wonderful, chaotic adventure of raising boys. 

Thank you so much for joining me for Episode 23 of Redeeming the Chaos with Laurie Christine. If you would like to download free resources that will help you raise courageous boys, check out my resource page HERE.


A New Devotional for Preteen Boys


Rise of the Enemy

Book One of the Dragon Slayer Bible Stories

Rise of the Enemy, a Dragon Slayer Bible Story, will inspire boys to join the armies of the Dragon Slayer in the epic battle of good vs evil.  Through action-packed stories, inspiring scripture, and challenging devotional readings, boys will be trained to stand firm against the invisible enemy, and to use weapons of warfare to deflect the lies of the Evil One.

“Be strong and courageous, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”