A couple of years ago, Josh and I made an agreement. He was in Cub Scouts, learning "manly" things. I wanted him to stay in scouts, so I struck up a deal. He would stay in Cub Scouts all the way through to Webelos, then I would let HIM decide if he wanted to continue on into Boy Scouts. (For those of you who like me know zip about boy scouting, Cub Scouts is the elementary level, Boy Scouts is the middle and high school level. They are totally different groups!) Well when he entered Webelos, we started talking about whether he was going to go on, and he was very reticent to continue. I decided I needed to stick to my agreement and let him make his own decision. But I hoped he would choose to continue in the end.
Every now and then, I'd point out some benefit to him. He'd be with lots of his friends. He'd be with men he really enjoys being around. He'd get to camp and get away from mom. He'd have a measure of independence. Still, he wasn't sold, after all, it meant camping, and camping means no TV, no home, no CD player, etc. But I LEFT HIM ALONE!!! I stressed over and over that it was HIS decision. I would point out the benefits as I saw them, but he got to choose.
He now has one month until he "crosses over." So I asked him tonight if he was at least thinking about going through the crossing over. The response? "I think I'll try it for a while. . . . But I'm not gonna make an agreement about how long!" That's OK with me. I'm thrilled that he's going to try it. And I didn't make him! Hmmmmm . . . now how to not pursuade him to attempt Eagle Scout!