Skip to content

On Emotional Presence and Imperfect Parenting

In an age of external perfectionism, our children’s failure to achieve the standards we set for them can cause us anxiety—which itself then becomes an obstacle to the very thriving we hope for.

This week on HeightsCast, Headmaster Alvaro de Vicente discusses how to avoid this pitfall. He suggests thinking of good parenting as analogous to tacking into the wind: in order to stay on course, you need to be comfortable taking a non-linear path. In parenting, this means being more focused on processes and less attached to outcomes. It means continually adapting our approach, even as the ultimate aim remains the same. 

Relatedly, Alvaro delves into the importance of “quantity time” and emotional presence, explaining how a parent’s disposition affects the tone of home and how a home’s tone affects the interior disposition of one’s children. 

Ultimately, if parents want to bring peace and joy to their children, then they must first find the joy and peace that comes from being children of their heavenly Father. 


  • 0:45 Introduction 
  • 1:30 Perfectionism in parenting 
  • 4:50 Good parenting is like tacking 
  • 7:30 Anxiety in parenting 
  • 11:45 Emotional presence 
  • 14:42 An overflow of our interior life
  • 18:20 Emotional detachment from success? 
  • 20:20 Be who you are called to be 
  • 24:50 Intentionality in parenting 
  • 26:50 Finding peace as a parent
  • 30:10 Routines of availability 
  • 36:15 The point: be at peace and enjoy your children 

About the Guest

Alvaro de Vicente

Headmaster, The Heights School

In addition to his responsibilities as headmaster of The Heights, Alvaro acts as a mentor to high schoolers, and teachers senior Apologetics.

Learn More

Subscribe to The Heights Forum Newsletter

I'm interested in content for...
Select if you'd like to receive a monthly newsletter specifically for any of these educator roles.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.