It worries me that boys are told that showing emotion is a weakness. And don't get me started on their notion of invincibility and willingness to jump off sheer cliff faces just for the hell of it. So, with all of this in mind, I've done a lot of thinking about how I can raise my boys to be good men.
When there is such an emphasis on achieving, regular assessments, bigger class sizes at school with lessons led by overworked teachers dealing with classes of children with increased varying educational needs and staff without adequate support or training, these statistics support my experience of children that are stressed and unable to articulate their feelings.
A chatterbox is quite happy to talk to anyone about anything. And by anyone I mean; strangers in the street, the ladies in the supermarket and the neighbour you don't know very well. And by anything I mean; what picture they have on their pants today, that Daddy parped really loud this morning, and that "Mummy said our neighbours are very noisy."
Recent weeks have given us a sobering reminder of the dreadful impact of child sexual exploitation. The further revelations regarding Rotherham coupled with the announcements of new investigations in Manchester, Halifax and Essex, reinforce the belief that we are only beginning to scratch the surface of this emerging national blight.