Modern parenting is impossible, writes Jordan Shapiro in Forbes.
. . . the ideal parent is exhaustively selfless and giving, but also stern and principled. A good parent always puts the child first but somehow miraculously avoids creating a spoiled brat who thinks s/he is the center of the familial universe.
The father of two elementary-school-aged boys, he’s come up with 5 Ways To Be A Better Parent Next Year.
This year, I want to teach my kids about money. Not just financial literacy, but the socio-economic realities of the world. I want them to begin to think about how their own personal wealth (likely measured in their minds as quantity of video games and toys) impacts the world as a whole.
He also plans more family adventures — real life can be as exciting as a quality video game — and more exposure to art.
Educated in Quaker schools, Shapiro experienced the silent meditation of Quaker meetings. He worries that his boys can’t sit still — certainly not silently.
. . . the ability to intentionally disconnect for 40 minutes seems especially important in a world of smart phones and social networks. I have no objection to our modern virtual experience provided it becomes a supplement to, rather than a replacement for, tangible experience in physical space. Meeting for worship seems to be a good way to practice disconnection and presence.
He hopes to take his children “to the local Quaker meeting house in order to teach them the skills required for being present, quiet, and silent.”