By Phil Foust
Personal experiences shared by Wayne have perhaps inadvertently brought to our attention the regrets we all have after decisions of a lifetime. It seems to me that those raised in Kansas during our era were possibly taught to have everlasting guilt.
Many farmers could never admit to having a good crop or making a profit on an animal. Instead, a discounting of the positive situation was forthcoming. Parents were not always anxious to praise a child. Discipline was administered (sometimes rather harshly) for less than serious misbehavior. Perhaps it was taught us to not brag and to have difficulty in accepting compliments or in being able to enjoy real achievement.
Some of this regretful feeling could come from a lack of physical (or even emotional) love. In an occasional visit with others, I have found that the lack of ever a kiss from Mother or a hug from Father or either of them making assurance of their love was not that unusual. Even the revelation of family matters of this ilk can still impact a certain amount of uncertainty and/or guilt.
Those of us who were parented in this way are most likely not aware of the consequences. Our parents were busy attempting to survive a devastating depression and perhaps constant worry about a very severe world political situation. It was difficult for them to give full attention to their children and likely they were parenting in the way experience had taught. The generation of our parents was indeed exceptional and I'm not positive that a more "modern" way of thinking is actually a betterment.
At the same time, it took some years for me to understand that I wanted to change my parenting style. I'm still learning and it is difficult for me to properly express my love for my children and grandchildren. In reality, it wasn't just parenting that I wanted to change but instead a rather basic makeover. To be the man I should be (and want to be) is still my goal.
"Only the wisest and stupidest of men never change." - Confucius