"God does not abandon us, but he does allow us to be tried. Just as the juice of the grape has to ferment in order to become a fine wine, so too man needs purifications and transformations; they are dangerous for him, because they present an opportunity for him to fall, and yet they are indispensable as paths on which he comes to himself and to God. Love is always a process involving purifications, renunciations, and painful transformations of ourselves - and that is how it is a journey to maturity."
Pope Benedict, Jesus of Nazareth vol. 1 (p. 162).
At times, my mom and dad were tough parents, but they acted out of love and I am so grateful. The early bed times in grade school, the strict curfews and "breath analysis" at the door in High School, the discipline of assigned housework and a clean room, the expectation to do well in school, Sunday Mass no matter what, the effort to have dinner as a family every night which demanded sacrifices from everyone, the enforced "respect" especially towards my mom, the intolerance of bad language…all of this contributed to a purifying but effective "journey to maturity."