''We will have to give up the hope that, if we try hard, we somehow will always do right by our children. The connection is imperfect. We will sometimes do wrong.''
''Somewhere slightly before or after the close of our second decade, we reach a momentous milestonechildhood's end. We have left a safe place and can't go home again. We have moved into a world where life isn't fair, where life is rarely what it should be.''
''If we are the younger, we may envy the older. If we are the older, we may feel that the younger is always being indulged. In other words, no matter what position we hold in family order of birth, we can prove beyond a doubt that we're being gypped.''
''The need to become a separate self is as urgent as the yearning to merge forever. And as long as we, not our mother, initiate parting, and as long as our mother remains reliably there, it seems possible to risk, and even to revel in, standing alone.''
''Craving that old sweet oneness yet dreading engulfment, wishing to be our mother's and yet be our own, we stormily swing from mood to mood, advancing and retreatingthe quintessential model of two-mindedness.''
''A normal adolescent is so restless and twitchy and awkward that he can mange to injure his kneenot playing soccer, not playing footballbut by falling off his chair in the middle of French class.''
''Adolescence involves our nutty-desperate-ecstatic-rash psychological efforts to come to terms with new bodies and outrageous urges.''
''We have to divide mother love with our brothers and sisters. Our parents can help us cope with the loss of our dream of absolute love. But they cannot make us believe that we haven't lost it.''
''Because we believe ourselves to be better parents than our parents, we expect to produce "better" children than they produced.''
''Close friends contribute to our personal growth. They also contribute to our personal pleasure, making the music sound sweeter, the wine taste richer, the laughter ring louder because they are there.''