Life in the boy zone involves dealing with Everest-sized piles of laundry, accepting that a fair proportion of your treasured belongings will be trashed, learning to tune out of the 24 hour toilet humour and dealing with the aftermath of testosterone-fuelled games which result in cuts, bruises, skinned knees and worse. Mothers of boys can sometimes feel that they are being viewed suspiciously if they have to turn up at the hospital more than a couple of times in a month. And there's another more serious side to this. Boys are more at risk of developing conditions such as ADHD and there's also a higher risk to boys of teenage suicide. Do some of these problems for boys stem from a risk-averse society, which has seen the decline of free-range play and a dearth of real-life role models as men withdraw from contact with children and young people?
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