Independence Day by Richard Ford:
A parent’s view of what’s wrong or right with his kid is probably less accurate than even the next-door neighbor’s, who sees the child’s life perfectly through a gap in the curtain. I, of course, would like to tell him how to live life and do better in a hundred engaging ways, just as I tell myself: that nothing ever neatly “fits,” that mistakes must be made, bad things forgotten. But in our short exposures I seem only able to talk glancingly, skittishly before shying away, cautious not to be wrong, not to quiz or fight him, not to be his therapist but his Dad. So that in all likelihood I will never provide good cure for his disease, will never even imagine correctly what his disease is, but will only suffer it with him for a time and then depart.