Just finished reading a news article by Cheryl Rao with the same title. Essentially, she was having a debate with herself that all parents have at some point… how did we do as parents. If our parenting was judged by our children’s success, what grade would we receive. Like most things in life, we are our own best or worst critics. The parents of the axe-murderer or Bernie Madoff didn’t deliberately raise their children to go in those directions.
The problem is that if we say we are not responsible for the bad behavior of our children, because they had other influencers in their lives. Then we can’t take total responsibility for the good behavior of our children. This leaves us in a quandary. The other debate concerns the measure of success. Some parents will say “at least he didn’t end up in jail”. Some will say “at least she didn’t get pregnant”. While others are never satisfied, no matter what their children do… It is never enough.
At the end of the day, if we believe we did the best we could then we should give ourselves a break and enjoy our grandchildren. Because they are our second chance.