Parental Influence

Commentary by Dr. Ursula A. Falk


Parents and Their Importance


Parents are  the most important people in our lives.  They raise us, teach us, protect us, and much more.  Most parents are “Good.”  They protect their children, they meet their needs both physically and mentally; they teach how to love, how to grow, what to believe, what is and is not important in our lives, and much more.  They choose what is essential  and that which is not; they are role models for their offspring; they show us which conduct and behaviors are acceptable and which are not.  They enable us to be strong and accept our weaknesses, to avoid what is not acceptable, and  much more.

 Parents will never be forgotten.  Their deeds and the influence that they had will follow their children all of the days of their lives, be they good or otherwise.

As the children become adults, they will follow or not the religious and other practices that they have observed as they were growing.  They may ignore some of what they have seen and attempted to do.  They may abandon that which they dislike or what is uncomfortable.  Much will depend how close they feel to their parents and how much they want or can accept or practice.  The company they emulate out of the parental home will influence them in addition to all of the factors described.  How much love the parents have given them and how safe they feel under the guidance of their parents, who have been their early and lifetime teachers/examples, remains.  Parents have more influence on who their children are emotionally than any one else in their young lives.  Parents are the first example that children have, and much depends on them their behavior, their acts, their warmth or aloofness, and is expressed in their children’s actions, their beliefs, their prejudices, their idiosyncrasies, and much more.

There is much that can occur during the lives of children as they grow.  The more sincere love, understanding, and acceptance that they feel from their mothers and fathers, the greater the possibility that they will adapt and follow their actions, their religion, their lifestyles.

Modern life has changed within the last fifty and more years.  Children, from infancy to adulthood, often have many more contacts than their forebears ever had.  Into their realities come the caregivers, the outside paid representatives that contribute much of a growing child’s  experience in their world.

As parents, we must remember that we are very important to the young lives that we have created.  As Jewish parents, we must instill the essential tenets of our religion in them.  We must follow the ten commandments and all that is important, honorable, and essential in our faith and the faith of our ancestors.

Our parents and their importance for us never leave our psyche, even if we remain in this world the proverbial hundred and twenty years!


 Dr. Ursula A. Falk is a psychotherapist in private practice and the author of several books and articles.

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