"Parents will accept any amount of second-guessing from their own children, but not from the childless: You’re not allowed to express an opinion about parenting unless you are a parent. Sounds reasonable enough. How could I know, etc. etc. (Simply having parents doesn’t count.) But here’s the thing: Everyone makes judgments about everything all the time. You have an opinion on your dentist without having gone to dental school. You judge the value of goods while knowing nothing of the intricacies of international supply chains. You comment on teachers (your kid’s, your own) without reading up on pedagogy. And you have every right to, because you’re a human who experiences things. But parenting, with its contemporary existential heft, is cordoned off in a special area set aside for people who agree with you. Because if you are critical of how someone parents, you expose the raw nerve that throbs inside them—especially mothers, Senior suggests—all the time: This is the most important thing I will ever do. I am terrified I may be doing it wrong. And if I do it wrong, I have failed as a human."