Sunday, April 15, 2012


 It's a sad moment, really, when parents first become a bit frightened of their children.
 This is the reason why mothers are more devoted to their children than fathers: it is that they suffer more in giving them birth and are more certain that they are their own.
 The joys of parents are secret, and so are their grieves and fears.
 It's frightening to think that you mark your children merely by being yourself. It seems unfair. You can't assume the responsibility for everything you do --or don't do.
 Let me go to hell, that's all I ask, and go on cursing them there, and them look down and hear me, that might take some of the shine off their bliss.
 We never know the love of the parent till we become parents ourselves.
 He that corsets his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death.
 I don't know any parents that look into the eyes of a newborn baby and say, How can we screw this kid up.
 Fathers and mothers have lost the idea that the highest aspiration they might have for their children is for them to be wise... specialized competence and success are all that they can imagine.
 I take a very practical view of raising children. I put a sign in each of their rooms: Checkout Time is 18 years.
 Live so that when your children think of fairness and integrity, they think of you.
 You have to love your children unselfishly. That is hard. But it is the only way.
 Parents are the last people on earth who ought to have children.
 No fathers or mothers think their own children ugly.
 The most important thing that parents can teach their children is how to get along without them.
 A child, like your stomach, doesn't need all you can afford to give it.
 Parenthood is not an object of appetite or even desire. It is an object of will. There is no appetite for parenthood; there is only a purpose or intention of parenthood.
 Parents are not quite interested injustice, they are interested in quiet.
 No matter how calmly you try to referee, parenting will eventually produce bizarre behavior, and I'm not talking about the kids. Their behavior is always normal.
 My mother protected me from the world and my father threatened me with it.
 The first half of our life is ruined by our parents and the second half by our children.
 If you have never been hated by your child, you have never been a parent.
 How selfhood begins with a walking away, and love is proved in the letting go.
 I wish all the mothers, fathers and children out there realize how much I need them and how much I value their support.
 The sooner you treat your son as a man, the sooner he will be one.
 Is the parent better than the child into whom he has cast his ripened being? Whence, then, this worship of the past?
 A mother is not a person to lean on but person to make leaning unnecessary.
 Let your children go if you want to keep them.
 Love well, whip well.
 To nourish and raise children against odds is in any time, any place, more valuable than to fix bolts in cars or design nuclear weapons.
 You don't have to deserve your mother's love. You have to deserve your father s. He's more particular. The father is always a Republican towards his son, and his mother's always a Democrat.
 There are two great injustices that can befall a child. One is to punish him for something he didn't do. The other is to let him get away with doing something he knows is wrong.
 A wise parent humors the desire for independent action, so as to become the friend and advisor when his absolute rule shall cease.
 How many hopes and fears, how many ardent wishes and anxious apprehensions are twisted together in the threads that connect the parent with the child!
 Parents send their children to college either because they went to college, or because they didn't.
 Stop trying to perfect your child, but keep trying to perfect your relationship with him.
 Parents, they're strict on you when you're little, and you don't understand why. But as you get older, you understand and you appreciate it.
 Where parents do too much for their children, the children will not do much for themselves.
 Do they know they're old, these two who are my father and my mother whose fire from which I came, has now grown cold?
 Having children makes one no more a parent than having a piano makes you a pianist.

 Parents wonder why the streams are bitter, when they themselves have poisoned the fountain.
 Parents can plant magic in a child's mind through certain words spoken with some thrilling quality of voice, some uplift of the heart and spirit.
 In order to influence a child, one must be careful not to be that child's parent or grandparent.
 The word no Carries a lot more meaning when spoken by a parent who also knows how to say yes.
 Oh, high is the price of parenthood, and daughters may cost you double. You dare not forget, as you thought you could, that youth is a plague and a trouble.
 I wish you would moderate that fondness you have for your children. I do not mean you should abate any part of your care, or not do your duty to them in its utmost extent, but I would have you early prepare yourself for disappointments, which are heavy in proportion to their being surprising.
 The most loving parents and relatives commit murder with smiles on their faces. They force us to destroy the person we really are: a subtle kind of murder.
 Every generation revolts against its fathers and makes friends with its grandfathers.
 Parents were invented to make children happy by giving them something to ignore.
 If you bungle raising your children, I don't think whatever else you do well matters very much.
 The parent is low, who having children, truly feels bored.
 Let parents bequeath to their children not riches, but the spirit of reverence.
 Parents are sometimes a bit of a disappointment to their children. They don't fulfill the promise of their early years.
 To show a child what once delighted you, to find the child's delight added to your own -- this is happiness.
 Maternity is a matter of fact, paternity is a matter of opinion.
 To understand your parents' love you must raise children yourself.
 You must not expect old heads upon young shoulders.
 He that does not bring up his son to some honest calling and employment, brings him up to be a thief.
 I am the slave of my baptism. Parents, you have caused my misfortune, and you have caused your own.
 Parents giving the keys to the car act as if they are giving the keys to the kingdom.
 Parents lend children their experience and a vicarious memory; children endow their parents with a vicarious immortality.
 The question that is so clearly in many potential parents minds: Why should we stunt our ambitions and impoverish our lives in order to be insulted and looked down upon in our old age?
 Parents learn a lot from their children about coping with life.
 Perhaps the best function of parenthood is to teach the young creature to love with safety, so that it may be able to venture unafraid when later emotion comes; the thwarting of the instinct to love is the root of all sorrow and not sex only but divinity itself is insulted when it is repressed. To disapprove, to condemn --the human soul shrivels under barren righteousness. Most American children suffer too much mother and too little father. I wish either my father or my mother, or indeed both of them, as they were in duty both equally bound to it, had minded what they were about when they begot me.
 Children need guidance and sympathy far more than instruction.
 Don't set your wit against a child.
 When you teach your son, you teach your son's son.
 Parenthood remains the greatest single preserve of the amateur.
 My parents were neither very poor nor conspicuously honest.
 Parents are traffic signs that are always in our blind spots.
 From where can your authority and license as a parent come from, when you who are old, do worse things?
 Selective ignorance, a cornerstone of child rearing. You don't put kids under surveillance: it might frighten you. Parents should sit tall in the saddle and look upon their troops with a noble and benevolent and extremely nearsighted gaze.
 Life affords no greater responsibility, no greater privilege, than the raising of the next generation.
 Your responsibility as a parent is not as great as you might imagine. You need not supply the world with the next conqueror of disease or major motion-picture star. If your child simply grows up to be someone who does not use the word collectible as a noun, you can consider yourself an unqualified success.
 The pressures of being a parent are equal to any pressure on earth. To be a conscious parent, and really look to that little being's mental and physical health, is a responsibility which most of us, including me, avoid most of the time because it's too hard.
 If your children look up to you, you've made a success of life's biggest job.
 Don't be discouraged if your children reject your advice. Years later they will offer it to their own offspring.
 The trouble with parents is that by the time they are experienced, they are unemployed.
 Parents are the bones on which children sharpen their teeth.
 There are times when parenthood seems nothing but feeding the mouth that bites you.
 The greatest gifts you can give your children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence.
 If you want a baby, have a new one. Don't baby the old one.
 To lose one parent may be regarded as a misfortune... to lose both seems like carelessness.
 No test tube can breed love and affection. No frozen packet of semen ever read a story to a sleepy child.
 The thing that impresses me most about America is the way parents obey their children.
 There are no illegitimate children, only illegitimate parents.

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