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  • No daughter is ever her mother's darling. That spot is always reserved for the son.

  • Sons do not need you. / They're always out of your reach; / Walking strange waters.

  • However kind sons may be disposed to be, they cannot be daughters to a Mother.

    • Abigail Adams,
    • to John Adams (1784), in L.H. Butterfield et al., eds., The Book of Abigail and John: Selected Letters of the Adams Family 1762-1784 ()
  • Once an angry man dragged his father along the ground through his own orchard. 'Stop!' cried the groaning old man at last, 'Stop! I did not drag my father beyond this tree.'

  • Your sons weren't made to like you. That's what grandchildren are for.

  • Wherever my son is, I do not know. / This is the womb that carried him, / like a stone cave / lived in by a tiger and now abandoned. / It is on the battlefield that you will find him.

    • Auvaiyar,
    • c. 3rd cent., in Joanna Bankier and Deirdre Lashri, eds., Women Poets of the World ()
  • Indeed, the tie is stronger than that between father and son and father and daughter ... The bond is also more complex than the one between mother and daughter. For a woman, a son offers the best chance to know the mysterious male existence.