What’s the definition of successful parenthood?

April 24, 2017

I often wonder how I should educate my child and in which direction I should push her. More specifically, how can I help her become a happy person? But then, an inevitable question follows: what is happiness and how can it be measured?

Is it to be well off? Is it to have a nuclear family? Will she be happy if she’s well-read and well-spoken? Finally, what should I do, which goal am I supposed to pursue so that one day I could say that I was a good parent? And what does it actually mean to be a good parent?

In our material world, parents are often considered to have succeeded in their mission if their children have a university degree and live comfortably. If they also manage to start their own family, their parents can reasonably expect to be worthy of the highest praise. But, what about those people who cannot afford to put their children through university? And what if my or your child simply doesn’t develop an affinity for studying and resents pursuing a career that requires university training? Would that make us bad parents?

Don’t get me wrong. I do want my daughter to be educated, and I sincerely hope she has a big, happy family one day. However, despite all my good wishes and best efforts, I cannot guarantee that that’s how it’s going to be. So, apart from teaching her, the best I can, how to conquer the world, I also want to teach her:

to be hard-working. Whatever she does in life, I hope she gives it all she’s got. I want her to be able to understand the value of her and other people’s work;

to be honest to herself and others. To be loyal to her friends and family;

to be decent and polite;

to be moral;

to be open-minded, tolerant to others and full of understanding;

to be a noble soul.

I will be happy and will consider myself a successful parent if my child becomes a well educated, hard-working and highly moral human being. For now, I can only do my best to make it so one day, and time will tell if I have done it right.



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