It was simple to say that behind every terrible child stood a terrible parent, but what about the ones who had done the best they could? What about the ones, like Lacy, who had loved unconditionally, protected ferociously, cherished mightily-and still had raised a murderer? I didn't know, Lacy wanted to say. It's not my fault. But she stayed silent because- truth be told- she wasn't quite sure she believed that. Lacy emptied the contents of her wallet into the coffee can, bills and coins. Numb, she walked out of the gas station, leaving the carton of milk on the counter. She had nothing left inside. She'd given it all to her son. And that was the greatest heartbreak of all- no matter how spectacular we want our children to be, no matter how perfect we pretend they are, they are bound to disappoint. As it turns out, kids are more like us than we think: damaged through and through.