SoloMoms! Talk
Feb. 21, 2022

What Moms Raising Boys Without Their Dads Need to Know w/ Dr. Leslie Pledger

What Moms Raising Boys Without Their Dads Need to Know w/ Dr. Leslie Pledger

Dr. Leslie Pledger inspires moms raising sons to build better relationships with them. As a member of the school staff and having her own private school, Dr. Leslie saw firsthand the devastating effect of sons bearing the brunt of an absent father.

It's the reason she focuses her efforts on helping moms not only rebuild stronger mother-son relationships but also, her process forces moms to see the very important role they play in the lives of their sons.

Dr. Leslie is the host of Dr. Leslie Inspires podcast. See the link below for my interview on her show.

J. Rosemarie

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[00:00:00] J. Rosemarie: Today. I'm speaking with Dr. Leslie, um, Dr. Leslie empowers moms to take back control of their lives from their sons with a transformational God centered approach. I love it. Welcome Dr. Leslie. [00:00:15] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Thank you. Thank you for having me. [00:00:17] J. Rosemarie: Yes, for sure. Okay. So we're going to get into talking about mothers and their sons, but before we do, could you tell us about Dr. Leslie. [00:00:28] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Yes. So, uh, I am Dr. Leslie from Dr. Leslie inspires. And, uh, the platform that I have is about mothers really is very similar to yours actually. But, uh, it's about mothers who are struggling to raise their sons. And I've developed that platform from working in the school system and also, uh, owning my own private school, you know, [00:01:00] working with moms, uh, and, and primarily, um, over time it's been, I will say 90% young men, 90% voice. And having worked with so many boys in different environments or different young men, and then also watching them grow.I started to see, uh, really how mothers, uh, we're doing a disservice to their sons and not all mothers, but a lot enough for me to take notice and. Seeing that disservice and having to work with the young man catching the backlash of them not doing or not being able to do or not wanting to do or not doing, because there was a lack of accountability and many mothers were.[00:02:00] You know, doing this and they were doing the best that they can. So there's a plethora of mothers that I have come in contact with. And that's the mother who's in denial as the mother who just loves her son so much that she thinks the sun sets on everything that he does. There's also the mother who has spoiled her son so much that he is absolutely, uh, no good to anybody.Um, there's the wounded mother who she's done so many. Uh, she's had so many wounds, bad relationships, bad relationship with her mom, that relationship with her dad that she puts all of that into her son. And he's, he's still no good because now he's so dependent on her. I mean, I can go on in, so it's not just one thing. It's. Many things that form that caused me to form [00:03:00] my platform, Dr. Leslie inspires, and really tried to work with mothers to help them to potentially see the blind spot that they may not be able to see. But, um, you know, just like your platform, I noticed that I know that a lot of mothers, um, it's tough.Because they are doing it, uh, by themselves or they are doing it, uh, as a result of having to deal with the man with the type of son that they're raising, they ended up marrying somebody. Who's not really a much help to them. So it's, we, you see what I'm saying? So. Yeah, but the topic is mothers who are struggling in one form or another. All right. [00:03:49] J. Rosemarie: And, um, just leading into that. And so we could get into a better discussion of, um, you know, the experiences we have. [00:04:00] Um, what brought you to this topic? Like what got you concerned about this? Because it is a big concern as the mother of three sons. [00:04:10] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Yeah. Yeah. Um, working in the schools with young men who, again, don't have any accountability for who they are as a man. And just realizing that, you know, as I've had different conversations with their mother in most cases, because in the schools, I hate to say it, but most of the time. It's the mom who is at the school, who is working with the son, trying to get him to do certain things. There's a lot of absent fathers. And so I began to say, you know, I wish that fathers knew and understood the power that they have because the fathers that I [00:05:00] do get a chance to work. They usually know and understand who they are and they recognize that it is important for them to be, uh, in their son's life. And so just looking at the two different situations, I wanted one to help mothers to understand you are very influential. So, you know, you've got the mother who speaks down or who does it hold him accountable. And she may also take, uh, not allow her husband or the son's father to have really have a strong voice in that young man's life. And that impacts him as well. So seeing all of this at the school level brought me to the place where I'm saying. I've got to do something to kind of help enlighten mothers to help enlighten fathers and to help [00:06:00] enlighten son. Because my, even though I have a huge impact on mothers, I have the biggest impact on their sons because I'm with them and I have a voice in their life. And so. You know, many of them can look to me as a mother figure to where, you know, they're looking for. Some of them are looking for what they're not getting from their moms, you know, which is influence. They, they want to be encouraged. They want to be, um, lifted up. They want to be motivated. Um, in a lot of mothers are using their mouth and that's one of my podcasts. I prerecord. Uh, that'll be coming up, just mothers, understanding the words that come out of their mouth and speaking life into their sons, because we're doing a great job at tearing them down. So yeah, answer that. It's the schools [00:07:00] working with in schools. [00:07:03] J. Rosemarie: Thank you. Yeah. So, um, it is a big problem. Uh, I believe, and. I, I hear a lot of women. I mean, I'm in a lot of single mom Facebook group, because that's what the podcast is about. And you know, this, these 10, they tend to say, well, I don't need them because, you know, meaning that. That you know, they're this or they're that, and we fail to realize it's not about us. Right? It's not about you. Nobody cares about you in this situation. Your child is the number one. You take care of yourself. Yes. But your words shouldn't destroy your son. And you know, from what you're saying, that the daddy has a big influence on yes. And yes, it's true. Maybe if you know that person more than your son does, [00:08:00] but the relationship, the father between the father and the son should build or deteriorate based on that relationship, right? Not the mother influencing it [00:08:12] Dr. Leslie Pledger: negatively. Absolutely. Um, and that's a big, big problem, but if we look at the problem, which is one of the. That I want to tell mothers part of the relationship that they have with the significant other with the child's father. Um, like you said, it has nothing to do, even though it does, you know, they feel like he might be a deadbeat dad. He doesn't do anything. Or it may be a bonafide reason. Maybe he's a murderer or a killer. I don't know. Usually, what I have found is a lot of the anger issues that young men [00:09:00] have. It goes back to mom, even though they love mom and mom is getting all the love. She's also getting the backlash of. What he is not getting from this, that many times they can't articulate it. They articulated as he won't do this. He’s nothing, he ain't this. And he's not that, but what they're really saying is I want my dad and I want my dad to care enough about. To be in my life. And I have interviewed some, um, younger ones. I actually put together some videos, which I made a course on some young men who, uh, age 16 through, I think like 53. And they all articulated. They were old enough to articulate it. At that moment, they were angry at some words, [00:10:00] still somewhat angry, but they can now identify that anger as a mad at my dad. But mothers are the ones who actually took the brunt of it. You know? Yeah. [00:10:13] J. Rosemarie: Yeah. Oh, it's a, it's a complex situation. And, but one that needs to be addressed on the I'm glad you're, you know, you're at least doing your part. And it's funny that you said you work in the school system because the other day I was summarizing the amount of time I heard that [00:10:35] Dr. Leslie Pledger: a teacher [00:10:37] J. Rosemarie: spoke negatively into their students. And I'm thinking to myself, you know, that's where, and those, those thoughts, those words either sent the person the other way. You know, do better or just say, well, she don't believe why do I care? So I'm glad yes. You, in the school system is [00:11:00] as recognized the problem and that you're, you're addressing at least a part of the problem because you know this black family. [00:11:11] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's a lot because you know, children. To include a high school to include college students, you know, the environment that they are in plays such a huge part. So even, you know, having a bad teacher or a teacher that speaks negative, um, about a son, sometimes I have found that teachers do that because that's what they have found, gets their attention. And so it could be that's how mom or that's how the family members talk to their child. That's how they talk to them at home. And so in order for that child to understand, or at least show that they [00:12:00] understand or respect the teacher in some capacity, they go there, they speak negatively, or they sound like mom. You've got their attention. Yeah. [00:12:13] J. Rosemarie: Oh, wow. All right. I'm just breaking a little bit. Um, what is Dr. Leslie grateful for today? [00:12:21] Dr. Leslie Pledger: I, oh, I am grateful for so many things. I've been really studying gratitude. Funny. You should ask that, Jen, but I am grateful. Just for life. I'm grateful for help. I'm grateful for the little things, because I think so many times. We don't really, uh, w we're always looking for the next big thing. We're always looking for that thing that is going to move us out of this position or that position, but it prevents us from being grateful for what we [00:13:00] have now for being grateful for where we are right now. So I'm grateful for the journey. I'm grateful for being on this show, talking to you today. Um, I'm just, I'm just operating with the spirit of gratitude. There's so many different things that we can be grateful [00:13:19] J. Rosemarie: for. Yeah. Thank you. All right. So, um, Oh, this, this is a really big topic and it's hard to deal with. And, and I think it's harder for me because, you know, I am a mother of sons, but, um, how, first of all, how can someone get in touch with you one? And then we'll move on. [00:13:44] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Okay. Well, they can, um, email, which is info at Dr. Leslie inspires.com. That's info at Dr. Leslie inspires.com. Uh, they can also [00:14:00] visit us on the website. Just kind of see some of the different things that we do, which is, um, www dot Dr. Leslie inspires.com. They could also become a part of our private Facebook group, which is, um, sun rescue method for moms, trying to get that group to be a little more active. Um, you know what I have found too, Jen is a lot of women in this situation. Um, you, you would be surprised when I do Facebook. When I put my, um, webinar out through Facebook ads, my Facebook might not my Facebook, my, but my, um, emails get loaded because people cannot believe that somebody is out here. Talking about this because they didn't realize it was a real problem. And they think that they're [00:15:00] the only ones actually dealing with the situation. So it's one thing when, you know, we're saying mothers who are trying to juggle everything, mothers who are trying to do, uh, so much by themselves as you speak of. Uh, and then there's something else to say a mother of three sons who has the same exact issues, but it's targeted at sons and you know, some women, they don't have any males. I spoke to a woman who she was ready. The father, he kind of did some things, you know, whenever he felt like it, but she was ready to say, take them and go to another. State so that she would not have to deal with them because they gave her a lot of problems, but she didn't want to, you know, have problems with the law and different things like that. So women go through so [00:16:00] much. Uh, with their sons and they're doing the best that they can. Um, some, but I think if we can help them to recognize that they're not alone, I mean, they truly are not alone. So when I give a free breakthrough call for a woman to just call and talk to them, They're just happy. Like they're relieved at that breakthrough call at the fact that they got to talk to somebody who did not judge them. And I think that's the thing. A lot of women, they don't want to be judged for what they're going through, but they want someone to tell them what to do in a way that they can actually do it and succeed at it. Many of them, they love their sons. Some of them don't know what. To do with him because he might be out of control maybe because she spoiled him so much when he was younger. You know that [00:17:00] now that little baby stage, it's not those, those actions are not cute anymore. And in some women they really don't know or understand the role that they've played.And I can usually hear it in a moment. I can hear. The role that they play and some women are open to it and some women are not, but when it comes to the coaching piece of what we do, I don't work with a mother who can't see her role because we're not going to get anywhere. It's usually a series of. Uh, actions, a series of incidents that she has to go through with her son in order to believe, like, what am I doing? What else can I do? And what have I done? And the son, he may be telling you. You know, you did this and you did that, or you don't do this and you don't do that. And sometimes it's true. And [00:18:00] sometimes it's not, sometimes it's manipulation that he is throwing on her to make her feel bad, to get his way, you know, because he's done it for so long. And I'm talking about in his fifties, he's done it. He mastered it at age five. It was never caught. So now he's 50 and he's still doing it. [00:18:21] J. Rosemarie: Yeah. And I guess, yeah, I guess too, is that [00:18:25] Dr. Leslie Pledger: the, [00:18:26] J. Rosemarie: the, even the, the words that are coming out, they might not be true. I kind of developed the art of reading between the lines. I listened to what you're not saying, and, and I've been able to, to deal with, um, people that way and that, you know, I hear you. More than the beyond the words. Um, I wanted to talk about, I know when I'm going to ask you to give, um, one piece of advice to solar moms or raising sons, and just, just tell us what, you know, [00:19:00] pretend you're coaching someone and just give one piece of advice. [00:19:08] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Um, it would definitely depend on the mother and her situation. Um, but I would say the biggest piece, if it was a mom who, who, you know, I actually thought about this because the one message that I want to give mothers is to look at your. Look at the part that you've played in, where your son is like, that's the biggest thing I want them to see because this, the condition of your son, he didn't get here overnight. He didn't, he just, he didn't just turn into this person over night. And so when women hear our podcasts where they, like you said, get the coaching. [00:20:00] They begin to see. Okay. Okay. Okay. So I did do this, maybe it's because of me doing that, it's not going to be just one thing, but if overall moms can look at the role that they've played in getting this son to where he is today, and then begin to look at what they can now under. 'cause some of it, they feel like, okay, I I'm seeing what I've done and I cannot undo. Oh yes, you can. And you, yes, you will. If you want to salvage the relationship with your son, if you want to help him into his destiny. Yes, you will. And it is quite painful, but you have to be able to look at where you are now. And where you want to be, where he is now and where you want him to be. [00:21:00] And in some cases he's so far gone, she can't change him. And we have to look at it like that. Anyway, you can't change him, but you can change. Yourself. Thank you. So, part of what we do is we go through those, uh, roles we've listened to, you know what they're saying? In my course, I developed a course that addresses very specific things that they can do to begin that process of soul searching in terms of what was my role, what can I do? You know, this is something that we said at the beginning. Which is the words that you speak. Some of us are talking too much and some of us are not talking. Okay. All [00:21:50] J. Rosemarie: right. Thank you. Uh, and I guess it goes without saying that we have to get through a place where we, we need to [00:22:00] apologize. Um, even if, even if it wasn't a big thing that w because whether we like to admit it or not, If we are the only parent they know, and they've developed character characteristics and, or traits because they don't have to be, you know, a troubled teen or went to jail or anything, they could be other things, you know, like not, not, not being able to handle responsible. Uh, and so I think if we, if we, as mothers could get to a point where we could apologize, I'm sorry, I didn't do it well, cause none of us got a playbook saying, here's a baby and this is how you do it. Right. But if we can humble ourselves and say, you know what I realize now, looking back that maybe I didn't do the best job I could. and, and just talk to your son as, you know, [00:23:00] Person to person. I think that would help, you know? [00:23:05] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Yeah. Jen, you hit it on the nail on the hand. And that is one of the strategies that I use in my course. One of the things I'm like I have two daughters and a son and my daughter, she would, uh, the oldest one, who's like 25, 26. She would just say, well, you know, when you did this, or you did that talking to me and I always tell parents, oh, it's coming back. No matter what good a job you think you did, they are going to tell you about your shortcomings at some point. And so, you know, I realized that she was making some bad decisions. and some of it was displaced anger. So even though. Uh, this happens to male and female. We just choose to use the [00:24:00] platform for sons, but a lot of mothers will call me or send me an email and say, well, what about daughters? I'm struggling with my daughter. Well, I mean, you can use the same exact principles, you know, but we're just choosing sons. But one day I just heard the Lord say. Just apologize to her because she would like to say it over and over, like over the years. And then I would go back, well, you still and so on. So, you know, you need to do this, that, and that. And one day I realized she needed to be heard. She needed to know that I understood her plight and she wanted me to understand. And here. Yeah. And when I started telling mothers about that strategy, it works, it works, but sometimes Jen, it can be so difficult for mothers to [00:25:00] do because there could be so much damage that has been done. That they don't feel justified. Mothers don't feel justified in apologizing to their son or this mess that he has made of her life. And he is because now the things that he's doing, he's making a mess. You know, and the thing is she's ready to get her life back. So why should I apologize to him for messing up my life? I'm almost lost my job. I can't even keep a decent relationship because of this boy or I can, you know, I can go on and on about the things, uh, that she is experiencing or the challenges that she is facing because of him. So apologize. Maybe not right now, but as she continues through the course, uh, she's a little more ready to say, okay, if this is what I have to do to get some [00:26:00] peace, then I'll go ahead and do it. And sometimes forgiveness is not immediate. We do it for the sake of keeping the peace. Yeah. And then we learn to truly forgive over a period of time. We speak forgiveness out of our mouth. But then over time, we really start to believe that we forgive this person. Some people never really forgive, but at least you can say that you've done it and you can move on because you're not forgiving for that person. You're forgiving for yourself. And if you want your son to walk in his destiny, apologize, apologize, and move. On and whether he accepts it or not, whether he understands that it's still your fault. Yeah. [00:26:53] J. Rosemarie: Yeah. True. True. Yeah. Thank you. And would you agree that [00:27:00] if the mother can, can find a way to get help for only, or her own issues? [00:27:09] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Um, [00:27:11] J. Rosemarie: Well, you, would you agree that it would make it [00:27:14] Dr. Leslie Pledger: easier [00:27:15] J. Rosemarie: to mend, reconnect and reestablish some kind of, um, parent or relationship with a young man? [00:27:27] Dr. Leslie Pledger: Yes, Jen, I will tell you a secret. That's what Dr. Leslie inspires is all about. Okay. We talk about sons. But you can't do anything with him until you start with you, but you cannot tell a mother that when we start, there's nothing wrong with her. Everything is held until you, until we really start going through this process [00:28:00] and dealing with ourselves, then the focus comes off of. But you cannot say it. And I know there's some things that I'm saying that are reciprocal for what you're doing, but that, I mean, that's the meat of it. That's why I said initially I had to say, I've got to really deal with these mothers to help them. Yeah. Childhood issues that have not been dealt with, which is why she's so overprotective of him, which is why maybe she can't stand his guts, her son, which is, I mean, it's so many different things, but, and it takes the moment. Some women are more open, you know, to talking about that. Um, I have had most women tell me that I'm easy to talk to. So it helps to bring those issues out to where they can deal with them. [00:29:00] But yeah, that is, that's the problem. That is the problem. No matter what issues he has. I know that there is an issue that she has, that she has not dealt with. And until she can be honest with herself and stop pointing the fingers at him. Yes, he does have those issues. Yes, he is doing what you said he did, and you really have to be strategic when you are dealing with hurt and wounded. Girls, because it's the girl that's on the inside. Maybe still wants love. Cause you have mothers whose some of their sons are taking the place of their husbands, their husbands. And what kind of relationship is he going to have with mother in the middle of everything? [00:30:00] So, yes, she's got some dealt with issues. As part of our course, as part of our process, when we get to that point, she has to deal with those issues. So then kids are not so magnified. Yeah. Yeah. That was an excellent question. People usually don't ask that question. The focus is so much on the sun. [00:30:26] J. Rosemarie: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Well, thank you very much. And thank you for coming and talking to me today, Dr. Leslie, I really enjoyed this conversation as serious as it is, but, uh, [00:30:37] Dr. Leslie Pledger: yeah, yeah. Talking to you. Cause I've got some questions from women who, you know, I tried to like, not ask a question back part of my nature. Uh, I'm sure you have a lot to share three. You, you, you can't raise three sons and not [00:31:00] have some, uh, testimonies, not have some scars, not have some wisdom to share, you know, with other women.

I have some stuff. How old are your son? [00:31:15] J. Rosemarie: So one is 36, almost 37 and oh, oh man. 37 going on 38. He's given me my first two granddaughters. And then, and then I have a 28 year old and I have a 26 year-old [00:31:34] Dr. Leslie Pledger: okay. Yeah. I can't wait to talk to you [00:31:44] J. Rosemarie: tough, but I can do it. [00:31:48] Dr. Leslie Pledger: You do it every day, but this is, I mean, you know what, the best way that I think even when I'm talking to males, we have to think of it as who we are helping, [00:32:00] because there's something that you can say to really. Open up another mother's mind. She might be going through almost the exact same thing or something very similar. And the one thing that you say could change the whole trajectory of her life and how she deals with her son, just because, you know, you made it through, I mean, your sons are adults, you know? And so I look forward to hearing your story as well. Okay. Thank you.

Dr. Leslie PledgerProfile Photo

Dr. Leslie Pledger

Host, Dr. Leslie Inspires Podcast