A friend of my 14 year old son, just lost his dad last night from a heartattack. Cal was about 50, and a good guy. He wasn't over weight, and appeared to be in very good health. He cared for his family a great deal, was involved with his kids, and hopefully gave his kids the right tools to survive in this world without him. My son cried for their loss and was concerned about how the family is going to get along without their father/husband. My son's concern for the family makes me realize that he is turning into a young man and will be an adult befor long. These life lessons are tough, but a necessary part of life. If you beleive in God, please say a prayer for Cal and his family. Thanks
My Dad died right after I turned 15. There are some pitfalls to being raised by a widowed mother.
1. Too often, the surviving male child becomes the mother's surrogate husband (and not in a sexual way). He will find himself taking on the responsibility of providing much needed emotional support. The problem is a 14-year-old boy isn't emotionally equipped for the task. You run the risk of what some what some refer to as emotional incest. Rather than having a relationship as a mother and son, he ends up getting to involved in his mother's emotional issues and will try to make everything okay. She will expect a level of emotional support from a child way too young for the task.
2. At his age, he needs at least one man who will provide the fatherly direction he will need. Young men should not be raised exclusively by women. Boys need to learn how to be men by being with responsible men. Otherwise, they won't develop the life skills they need to have later on to deal with men and women in emotionally and socially beneficial ways.
3. Widows have a tendency to isolate their surviving loved ones in an attempt to keep them safe from imagined dangers. This kid doesn't need isolation. He needs healthy interaction with emotionally healthy adults.
If you can't be there for that boy, see if you can't find someone who will be. You can't ask a 14-year-old to turn into a man overnight. It isn't the right thing to do, he doesn't have the emotionally maturity for the task, and needs nurturing right now more than forced maturation.