Leading by Example
I had a conversation recently with a teenage boy about how it felt to be rejected by his father. It's not that his father consciously intended to hurt him. It's just that he was detached and out of touch with his son's life.
Sometimes as our sons become teenagers, we begin to treat them as other men. We may regard them as self-sufficient and therefore not in need of our attention or empathy. That is a mistake.
Young boys, especially teens, need a close relationship with their father. Even if you are divorced, make it a point to reestablish connection with your son in a closer way. If you get a brushoff, persist in your efforts. Research shows that teens listen even when they may appear to reject our concerns.
Of course all of this applies to daughters as well, but somehow as men we tend to discount our son's need for closeness.