“Children are not raised to be grateful”: Parents testify

► “We don’t raise children to be thankful”

Christine, 50 years oldMother of two daughters aged 16 and 22

“Like many parents, I hope that my children will be a little grateful, but I don’t see it as a duty. I believe that giving your children an education that brings them positive things shows appreciation. It’s not about lineage because some parents are abusive, it’s about reciprocity, even if we don’t raise children to be grateful.

→ ANALYSIS. Should we expect recognition from our children?

During puberty, we can regret that they make choices that don’t always correspond to what we envisioned for them. So we say to ourselves: “We’ve done everything for them to have a good life, for them to be successful, and they’re not following the best path to get there.” But we do know that at this age they are moving towards independence and don’t want to follow the path their parents took. Old age is the time when we need recognition the most. And I confess that I think about it. I tell myself that it would be important to be able to count on my children like my own parents count on me, but they also have to live their lives. »

► “When we need our children, we know they are there”

Éliane and Joseph, 80 and 84 years oldparents of seven children

Éliane: “I don’t expect any recognition from my three daughters. Also, they never thanked us explicitly for the education or financial support we gave them because they find it normal for parents to do their best and for them to do the same with their own children. But I know they will be there when we need them. Helping each other used to be a bit taken for granted because parents and children lived together, but today everyone lives their own life. And we don’t want to need our children. »

→ MAINTENANCE. “In Asia and Africa, gratitude to parents is a moral imperative”

Joseph: “I don’t know if I want recognition, but I expect affection from my four boys. I’m not demanding it, of course, but it would be appreciated if they manifested it in some way. They call and worry when we are sick and I think if we needed a bigger presence they would be there, but they are more distant and less demonstrative than Eliane’s daughters who are closer to their mother as they are also in Paris Life. »

► “In my culture, we expect a little recognition”

Elizabeth, 55 years oldmother of two

“I’m Portuguese and in my culture you expect a little recognition and attention from children, but like Fati (found here), I don’t want to choke mine. I would be happy if they would come and call me of course, like I do with my family, but I don’t want to be a burden to them in old age. If I can afford it, I go to a retirement home because they have their life, their job and they can’t waste time with me. »

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