While I can't claim to understand Kirk Gibson's relationship with his son, or his own upbringing, I can understand the sentiment.
I grew up in Tucson with my Dad, who was decidedly absent at many of my life milestones.
My vague memories of high school graduation were of attending alone, picking up my diploma and going home. That's it, the whole thing took less than an hour.
While others posed for pictures amongst throngs of friends and family, made plans for a celebratory dinner and otherwise lived it up, graduation was no big deal at my house.
I WAS expected to graduate; in fact I was never aware there was another option. That attitude towards life milestones carried over to birthdays, holidays and other events my friends seemed to be celebrating on a regular basis.
It should come as no surprise that the example set for me by my Dad influences my views on these "milestones" today and while I have no problem with Mr. Gibson's choices, I wonder if he knows how it will affect his son later in life.