Stinky Boys

The coach told my tween to buy deodorant if he wanted to play on the basketball team. “You do not smell yet!” I answered, “It doesn’t matter, coach said we have to have it!”

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Graffiti in the Old Port of Jaffa, Israel

I was not prepared to accept this turning point in my son’s life. He was my baby, still sweet and not stinky! But I had to follow his coaches orders.

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I had not purchased tween deodorant in a long time, so I went and googled ”Best Deodorants for Boys” and within in .27 seconds, 2,640,000 responses appeared. After a careful review, I was prepared to buy an organic deodorant, but tween laid down the law,  “You have to buy AXE deodorant!” My young friend Jessie concurred, “All teenage boys use AXE!”

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Like the good mom, I bought my tween AXE Essence Roll On. And like a good tween, he rolled it on and on and on. For 12 years, I have reminded him to brush his teeth, but over night at the urging of his coach, AXE easily became part of his daily hygiene.

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Our home’s scent changed and within days a new tween emerged in my son’s pubescent body.

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“The king is naked.”

Astonishingly, my tween developed the swagger of a hip hop NBA star. He made it clear to me that others, especially girls in school, noticed his new scent; he proudly offered them a close up whiff. Oh, those lucky girls!


Jaffa Port, Israel

All of a sudden when I reminded him to practice the trumpet or I simply asked him how his day was, he impatiently snapped at me. Perhaps AXE had seeped into his pores and brought down the barriers (the name does not escape me) that were holding back his burgeoning hormones?

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And then, he started lifting his arms to show me the sprouting underarm hairs. With the aid of my drug store reading glasses I carefully searched for hairs. I had to break the disappointing news to him – all I found was peach fuzz. Of course, he was not convinced that I had looked carefully enough.

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Jaffa Port, Israel

By week’s end, a flood of tween questions poured out. As we talked, I realized I was not prepared to answer as accurately as he desired: I pulled out the best book, Changing Bodies, Changing Lives. Together, we read up on the areas of interest and then discussed them. We laughed like crazy, but gathered enough composure to dispel some of the myths he had been hearing on the playground.

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AXE’s advertisement should read, “Masks your tween’s terrible scents while unleashing a litany of hormones”. I am convinced I should have gone organic.

Ninja Mom

3 thoughts on “Stinky Boys

  1. I am cracking up laughing at this!! I could almost hear his voice…It’s so adorable. I just love that tween of yours ❌⭕ Tiffany

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