Jul 26, 2013

East and West

Two views about parenting/chinuch and the results:

View #1: I am responsible for how my children turn out.  If they turn out well, I will take a lot of credit because I put so much into them.  Whatever flaws they have are my fault for not parenting them properly.  Siyata dishmaya plays a role, as it does in everything, as to what teachers they have, what friends are available, their temperament, etc. but the bottom line is, yogaata u'matzasa, taamin.

View #2: I am not responsible for how my children turn out.  If they turn out well, I do not take the credit.  If they don't turn out well, I am not to blame.  I put a lot into my children but I see all around me that parents who do their job seriously and have many fine children, sometimes have a child or children who are not fine.  I don't hold them responsible.  Children have bechira and things happen that are beyond our control.

I had a conversation with someone who has view #2, while I have view #1.  Boruch Hashem, they have fine children and I had complimented them.  But the compliment was deflected because "they're good kids" and they were given good sechora to work with.  That led to speculating about how their children would turn out in a different family. 

Although I understand View #2, it doesn't seem to be what the rabbis and teachers out there are saying.  If you look back to my chinuch posts of April of this year, they are clear that it's up to the parents to produce good children. 

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