Dennis Prager, one of America’s most respected thinkers, wrote wrote an article in Jewish World Review titled Baby Boomers owe America’s young people an apology. This article is a group apology for what we Baby Boomers have put the younger generation(s) – our children – through. In his blog, Dennis Prager, Baby Boomers, and the Signpost to Hell, Ben Bateman adds divorce to the list of things that we should apologize for. To be sure, both articles make for interesting reading and gives much food for thought. I admit that I am fairly new to blogging and when I surf the web for ideas to blog about, I am amazed at the amount of resentment I see towards the baby boomers by the younger generations.

You can see an example of this resentment in Boomers set to retire; the rest of us set to hear about it. Check out the reformated art on the AARP magazine cover and, what is most telling – the ‘Filed under’ categories (Filed under:Baby Boomers, We’re so sick of you, please die). At first, I thought that I had just stumbled upon a small group of disaffected youngsters but, as I have continued to surf about Baby Boomers, it is clear that this feeling is quite pervasive and I am sorry to say that I had no clue at all! As I ask myself what does all this mean to me, I realize that I have children in their twenties and thirties and I don’t really know if they resent me for being a baby boomer. Even if it is right, it is still a very sobering thought to realize that your whole generation is resented and blamed for many of the social problems we have today.

I’m a guy, and as a guy, my brain is screaming “What do I do?! I gotta fix it! How do I fix it?!” The truth is, the more I think about this, the more it resonates within me. My sense is that more than being selfish, immature and not wanting to grow up; the resentment speaks to something deeper and more fundamental. Each generation has a duty and a responsibility to pass on a legacy to the next generation; more than just a legacy, it is a covenant between generations, between parents and children. The resentment may very well be the younger generation’s way of trying to tell us that they feel that we have broken covenant with them and left them to fend for themselves.

If this is the case, we owe them more than just an apology, we owe them the relationship that they had a right to expect from us and we never gave them. We owe them the moral plumb-line that we were supposed to be for them and they never had or never saw in us. We owe them the love they had a right to expect simply for being our children and the next generation. In one word, we owe them ourselves.

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As a father and divorced man Christmas and new year’s does not necessarily have the same meaning as it does to most others. Even though I have family that live relatively close by (parents, siblings, Etc.), Christmas for me is a time to remember that I have not been able to be with my children in over fifteen years. The feelings are less intense now, less crippling but, they are still there; the pain, sadness, shame and weariness all come back to remind me and to haunt me. While my children are grown (my youngest is eighteen), there is still this emptiness that wells up this time of the year. Time after time I find myself daydreaming that my arms are cupped as if to hold a child only to feel the emptiness and ‘something’ that slips through my arms and my fingers like water – I can never hold on to it.

By now, the hope that someone, anyone – maybe even my children – would see the sacrifices that I’ve made is all but gone. In fact, by now, most all my dreams and hopes concerning family are all but gone. I feel like I’m trying to crawl out of a deep pit and every time I try, I slip back further and further. The one sliver of hope – and it is diminishing day by day – is the notion that my children, as adults, would want to reconcile and I can have a family again. But, it is another Christmas and I get no messages, no phone calls, no indication that I am even remembered. Day by day, time slips by and I’m so weary…