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I keep telling myself I'm being criticized by a bunch of people who have obviously never raised children. :)

As someone much earlier than you in the process of raising children, I appreciate your insight and thoughtfulness. And as a human who was raised by people with similar insights and thoughtfulness, I appreciate you understanding and standing up for your kids.

My own parents were pretty horrible. I've been determined to do better. Part of that is respecting them for who they are, not resenting them for who I wish they were. As I've said elsewhere, I really admire my son's ability to focus on what actually matters to him, even if I also worry that it may cost him in the future.

You sound like a solid parent and a patient person. IMO it’s a meaningful achievement that your kids want to maintain a close relationship with you.

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