parenting 

I despise the mindset that parents are giving a "gift" to their children by bearing and raising them, or that children owe *anything* to their parents in the general case.

Having a child is something that you do as a gift to *yourself*. It fulfills your emotional need to feel useful & needed. The child didn't ask for this; it deserves the best possible upbringing, not because that makes you look like a good person, but because *they didn't consent to be your life's meaning*.

parenting 

Your child never owes you anything. *Never.* You gave them the "gift" of life in the same way that Homer gave Marge the "gift" of a bowling ball in that one episode of The Simpsons: it was really a gift to *yourself*.

If you find yourself not liking your gift, well, tough. The child is a living, feeling being and not a piece of property that you can treat as you see fit. Giving them a healthy childhood and raising them to be upstanding adults is the *minimum* you owe them.

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parenting 

I'm reminded of my (dreadful) treatment of captured animals as a kid. Mostly frogs and turtles. A lot of them died at my hands because I wanted to "take care of them".

It took me decades to realize that me wanting to take care of them was a *me* problem, not a *them* problem. I had a responsibility to take care of them *properly* -- to ask my parents to help me research the right food, housing, and other needs -- or to not capture them at all.

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