Wendy Mogel · 304 pages
Rating: (3.2K votes)
“The sages advise us to study Torah lishma-"for its own sake" rather than to impress others with our scholarship. A paradox of parenting is that if we love our children for their own sake rather than for their achievements, it's more likely that they will reach their true potential.”
“If we want to give our children what they need to thrive, we must honor their basic nature- boyish or girlish, introverted or extroverted, wild or mellow.”
“A Hasidic teaching says, "If your child has a talent to be a baker, don't tell him to be a doctor." Judaism holds that every child is made in the divine image. When we ignore a child's intrinsic strengths in an effort to push him toward our notion of extraordinary achievement, we are undermining God's plan.”
“No one is born feeling grateful; it’s an acquired skill. That’s why traditional Jewish law forbids spending money on the Sabbath. God commands us to stop shopping and count our blessings on that one day because he knows that left on our own, we wouldn’t be so inclined.”
“Unsure how to find grace and security in the complex world we’ve inherited, we try to fill up the spaces in our children’s lives with stuff: birthday entertainments, lessons, rooms full of toys and equipment, tutors and therapists. But material pleasures can’t buy peace of mind, and all the excess leads to more anxiety—parents fear that their children will not be able to sustain this rarefied lifestyle and will fall off the mountain the parents have built for them.”
“Real protection means teaching children to manage risks on their own, not shielding them from every hazard.”
“One of the most generous gifts you can give your child is to study her temperament, and once you've learned it, work to accept it.”
“Advice? You're too old to be given it and too young to take it.”
“I felt like shit, but it was happy shit.”
“I suppose we’ll behave like a bunch of holier-than-thou hypocrites. Because the alternative is to look at ourselves in the mirror and know that we are capable of dark and terrible things.”
“Text me when you want to see me again, he signed. I'm giving you your space, but know this: I will wait forever for you.”
“You don't want me here, I don't wanna be here, so why am I here?”
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