One of the most difficult aspects of being a parent during the middle years is feeling powerless to protect our children from hurt. However "growthful" it may be for them to experience failure, disappointment and rejection, it is nearly impossible to maintain an intellectual perspective when our sobbing child or rageful child comes in to us for help. . . . We can't turn the hurt around by kissing the sore spot to make it better. We are no longer the all-powerful parent.