What is characteristic of the modern family is that on the level of profound personal experience, parents and children live apart... Now we are entering a social structure in which...there are only three ages: childhood, adolescence, and old age.
The husband of the mother is not a father, he is a regular guy, a playmate for the boys, engaged in the same foibles and subject to similar impulses. Since he neither represents the legacy of the past nor is capable of keeping pace with the boys in the pursuit of the future, his status is rather precarious.
Unless a fellowship of spiritual experience is reestablished, the parent will remain an outsider to the child's soul...
Excerpted from 'I Asked for Wonder'
by Abraham Heschel.