So that means that one tiny subset group, of the tiny subset of Americans who get a bachelor’s degree (about 10%), felt like they didn’t want to talk to their parents. So? That proves nothing about larger society.
I still think, done right, with compassion, without pushing, on REALLY important topics, and only once in a while with the door left open for the kid to approach on their own terms, parents can do this part of their job without a third-party crutch.
I agree with you about the “throwing the book” and the overly involved “cool parent” scenarios. Both are the bad ends of the spectrum. Success lies in the middle. My mom got the “book” thing, where her mom handed her a book by a priest to explain sex and never said a word about her period to her. My mother thought she was dying when it happened. She went too far the other way with me, constantly harping on me to talk, talk, talk, talk with her about everything. She wanted to be my girlfriend, not my mother. I HATED it!
So I get what you’re saying, purple. But anecdotal accounts are valid only for those directly involved, and I still think that a lot of parents just don’t want to talk about this stuff, and use the books to relieve them of the anxiety and pressure.