From the September 2003 Psychology Today (not online):
"According to Jane Adams, a social psychologist and author of When Our Grown Kids Disappoint Us, previous generations emphasized education and financial independence over all else for their children. In contrast, 'Boomers are the first generation for whom their children's emotional fulfillment is a primary goal. Their parental mantra has been: Be happy or I'll kill you.' In an effort to gratify their kids, Boomers have become unusually invested in their lives--determined to have an authentic, intimate relationship with their children."
Be happy or I'll kill you??
Nearly half the Boomer generation has aborted one or more children (again, the relevant statistic is that 43% of American women have aborted one or more children by the time they reach age 45). This huge rate of abortion of course affects how the Boomer generation as a whole sees children.
And how do they see them? Unfortunately, half of the Boomer generation saddled itself with "wanted children", the children you wanted and chose versus the children that got aborted.
What those surviving Boomer children got, in turn, were parents who were bound and determined that their "wanted children" be charming, healthy, well-adjusted, perfect little offspring. Oh, and happy, too.
"Be happy or I'll kill you" is the sad flip side of "If I don't kill you, you damn well better be happy."