Occasionally, you’ll see and hear comments about parents indoctrinating their children or imposing their “values” upon them. The reality is that there is no neutral parenting.

Children are brought into a culture and home that they do not choose. They are taught a language that is not of their choice. They are at the mercy of parents who were also inculcated into a way of life. Such is the cycle of humanity.

More to the point, all parenting conveys value. Parents have limited resources, including time with their children. How do they choose to spend it? Will the parent read to the child or put the child in front of a TV? Will the parent sit in front of the TV and ignore the child? Time is limited, how the parent chooses shows the child what is valued most, and that may not be the child.

All of those biased decisions and subsequent actions by parents will shape a child, for better or worse. As parents, we must keep that in mind. If we want better children, we need to be better adults. After all, the apple generally doesn’t fall far from the tree.