We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
It starts at conception, and your job after that is mostly just to show up, don't drop them on their heads, aand don't let them eat lead paint.
We spent countless hours hundreds of thousands of dollars providing specials and extras for five sons. We were fanatic parents. I'm not sure much of it changed them much.
My advice to young couples is to have more children and pay less attention to them.
Assistant Village Idiot
I think you're not giving yourself enough credit.
I was in the oil business drilling wells for over 40 years. Bean counters used to drive me crazy, not the practical well cost accountants (who are stars) but the budget pencil-lickers. They could never understand how many invoices they didn't see because we had correctly planned/engineered/anticipated problems and headed them off. I could make a higher-cost selection that would save us millions, and they would never even have an awareness of what I did - but they would complain about the higher cost. They could never grasp the concept of cost versus value.
I think you're having the same issue. You don't have an awareness of how your efforts have influenced the thinking and consciousness of your sons, but that doesn't mean there wasn't any influence; it's just not auditable. Take credit for your efforts, they have paid off, and give thanks.
This is the one thing in my life that I got right, thank goodness, my children and grand children are happy and prosperous and productive. I'm curious to listen to the above podcast and see how much it agrees with my methods, which apparently worked well enough.