Would YOU admit to loving one child more than the other??

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Minx_Kristi's picture
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Would YOU admit to loving one child more than the other??
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I love how he says that the 5% of parents who don't say they have a favorite, are lying,,,,excpet for his wife and himself. :roll: I think he is a toole who found a contraversial topic to add to his book so people would read it and he could make money.

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LOL, yes that got me too!

I wouldn't say all parents have a favourite but I can imagine some do. Saying it is another thing.

I know for a fact that my Mum prefers my brother to my sister and I. She has never told us, but her actions prove it. My sister was a terror growing up and I think my Mum holds it against her even now. I on the other hand wasn't, but I have had sh*t relationships which could be something she despairs of. It's funny though, if me and DBF argue and I go to my Mum for comfort, he's this that and the other. Yet if my bro comes to her re an argument him and my SIL have had, she is reluctant to tell me anything and just blows it off saying all couples argue when tired or whatever lol.

When I told her I was pregnant, I got the 'I'm not happy about it speech...' When bro and SIL found out they were pregnant, they got the 'Oooh how exciting! I can't wait to see who the baby looks like!!'

xx

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I don't think that having a favorite is the same as loving one more. I love mine all the same but there are times when one is just in a hard phase and another isn't .....and it is natural and normal to have a little soft spot for one at times. The art of trying to be a good parent is not letting the kids know that, of course.

What your mom does sounds mean.

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I agree with Melis. Having favorites is not loving one child more than another.

And I actually do agree with the idea in the article that most parents have favorites, and i don't really think its all that controversial. Now the title of the article makes it controversial...due to the insinuation that favorite = more love. And thats just silly.

I think its important to be cautious and not deliberately show favoritism. But just like the article says...most people can tell who the favorites were in the family. I certainly know who they were in my family growing up. And my husband too....

but we were all well loved and pretty equally treated, knowing who the favorite was came out in little ways, never anything severe or blatant.

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I totally agree with Kim. My parents were pretty good about trying to hide it, but my grandfather was terrible about it. If we ever have another one, I'll probably have a favorite but know I'll never love one more than the other.

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I have to disagree. I am sitting here thinking as I read the article. Do I have a favorite? I have three precious and beautiful little girls. There is no way I could chose one over the other. They are all my favorite.

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Sorry y'all I'm just not down with the favorite thing. Favorite to me means preferrence. I don't prefer one over the other at all. There may be times that I prefer one's behavior at that moment, or maybe I prefer doing certian things with one child and other things with another (for example, I prefer shopping for my son because he could care less about what he wears and it is much easier howvere I prefer feeding my DD at dinner time because she is less picky). Just like I am sure they prefer playing football with Dad because he is better then I am and they prefer doing crafts with me because I am better at that.

But to me that is way different then speaking in the general sense of having a favorite child. I just don't think that's something I think is OK. Does it happen? I guess. But I don't think what you all are talking about is really "favoritism of a child" but more favoring specific things about one child over another. But it all evens out....or atleast it should.

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"culturedmom" wrote:

Sorry y'all I'm just not down with the favorite thing. Favorite to me means preferrence. I don't prefer one over the other at all. There may be times that I prefer one's behavior at that moment, or maybe I prefer doing certian things with one child and other things with another (for example, I prefer shopping for my son because he could care less about what he wears and it is much easier howvere I prefer feeding my DD at dinner time because she is less picky). Just like I am sure they prefer playing football with Dad because he is better then I am and they prefer doing crafts with me because I am better at that.

But to me that is way different then speaking in the general sense of having a favorite child. I just don't think that's something I think is OK. Does it happen? I guess. But I don't think what you all are talking about is really "favoritism of a child" but more favoring specific things about one child over another. But it all evens out....or atleast it should.

I don't know.....i guess i'm willing to admit that i click more with some of my kids than others. Actually, i really think that makes sense...because as a person, with certain personality traits, certain personal preferences and behaviors i click with some people *in general* more than i do others.

My children are my children, which means i naturally love them, no matter what they are like.....but i *will* click with certain personalities better than others, because i'm human. And seeing that they are not all identical in personality.....well, there is a logical flow here.

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I agree with Lana. Having said that, I do think that some families play favorites, and it's pretty clear to everyone even if it's not said out loud. My mom totally favored (and still does) my brother. For example, now, as adults, if we all have plans to do something together, but then my brother changes his mind and says he can't make it, my mom will always change the plans to a day that he can make it, even if it means that now I can't do it. Stuff like that.

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"Potter75" wrote:

I don't think that having a favorite is the same as loving one more. I love mine all the same but there are times when one is just in a hard phase and another isn't .....and it is natural and normal to have a little soft spot for one at times. The art of trying to be a good parent is not letting the kids know that, of course.

What your mom does sounds mean.

This is a really good point. My twins are off and on right now where they are alternating tough phases every other week it seems. Last week DD1 started getting her one year molars, canines, and her two upper front teeth. She was a bear until all 10 broke the surface this weekend. Needed lots of hugs and cuddles because the teeth hurt so darn bad. This week she is back to independant play and having fun mimicking my husband and I. Whereas DD2 this week is the clingy one. Her hearing is much more random and off rather than on this week and she's having excessive frustration with the intermittent sounds. So it's hard because always it seems right now one is much more flexible and go with the flow than the other.

When kids are older I think it's not favorites so much as each parent might share different interests with each of their children. Maybe one child might enjoy Sunday football more with a parent (DD2 loves watching the visuals during the games right now with my husband) and another might share a love of reading with another parent (DS much prefers reviewing his planes and trains books with me than football), etc., etc. Whatever peaks interest more.

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I'm with Kim and Melis-- I think we naturally "click" more with one kid over another. I will also admit that I go through phases with each one of my kids-- so my "favorite" rotates.

Of course I would never, ever share this with them and work to act in a way that they won't notice. I hope to never be as blatant or obvious as some of our mothers have been.

We have one child who is particularly challenging. She came that way. She's been that way her entire life. And I love her fiercely and madly and adore her-- but I can admit that she has been much harder than the others. I'm sure those qualities that make her hard right now will be wonderful attributes as an adult. I'd by lying if I didn't admit that her sister was much easier to parent-- but that doesn't mean I love her less.

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This is the definition of favorite:

n. 1. a. One that enjoys special favor or regard.
b. One that is trusted, indulged, or preferred above all others, especially by a superior: a favorite of the monarch.

Made up of the word favor which means ...

3. Unfair partiality; favoritism.

I just don't agree that that is typical of parents and that it is just a human condition to favor or have a favorite child in those terms. Or atleast I sure as heck don't think it's my unwillingness to admit it or me just lying in order to put on the facade that I am a superior parent. I just think that we all have things we like and dislike about our kids, spouses, etc. Children can be pains in the a$$ and there are times when my kids just drive me nuts and they are just not nice and I want to run away screaming. And sometimes I will say that I just don't their behavior.

But in the way that I see saying "my daughter is my favorite", I just don't buy it and I don't think it is ok and I have no qualms saying that I don't feel that way, nor ever have. I think it is too general a statment and is too weighted to be a non-chalant thing to say.Now that said, you all may have a different definition of favorite and not see it in the same way as I. And I suspect that we all are probably saying the same thing and feel the same way, but just use different words to express it.

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"KimPossible" wrote:

I don't know.....i guess i'm willing to admit that i click more with some of my kids than others. Actually, i really think that makes sense...because as a person, with certain personality traits, certain personal preferences and behaviors i click with some people *in general* more than i do others.

My children are my children, which means i naturally love them, no matter what they are like.....but i *will* click with certain personalities better than others, because i'm human. And seeing that they are not all identical in personality.....well, there is a logical flow here.

I agree with Kim. I love both my kids and could never choose one over the other. Ever. However, there are most definitely times when I can relate to one over the other because we may have similar likes/dislikes... also, when one is going through a testier stage than the other, it is definitely much easier to like the other's behaviours/etc. more. It's not a matter of choosing favourites. It's a matter of which one I can relate to better at that time. And sometimes it's one. Sometimes it's the other.

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I don't really care what word we use to describe it. I know it exists because i feel it.....and can't help the way i feel and I don't think its some weird abnormal thing or something terribly wrong. its just a matter of fact is what it is.

I don't care if the phenomenon goes unnamed. That's fine if other people feel like there is no possible way there is a child they could find easier to get along with or have more in common with overall. At the same time....i don't personally agree with that stance because to me its totally illogical to think its not possible with ones own blood children, when in the general populous we get along better with some people more than others.

I think that the fact that they are our children means that we love them regardless of any frustrations or incompatibilities, but it doesn't mean those frustrations and incompatibilities don't exist...and it makes no sense to me to assume that those frustrations and incompatibilities would be scattered equally between all offspring. And it makes no sense that similarities and compatibilities would be spread equally between them either. Biology just doesn't account for that.

And its not a matter of it being ok or not. One can't *make* oneself naturally get along better with someone. Its not a choice.

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To the naysayers, after spending all day with a 2 and a 3 year old after being stuck in the house for a week from snowstorms.....you can't see how in some ways you would look at your 6 month old (who can't say no, who can't mess up the house, who only wants to love on you and nurse and cuddle with you......could feel like a favorite? Because they are so sweet and easy and it feels like they are giving more than they are taking?)

I don't know. I'll just second all that Kim says. My parents totally have favorites. They simply each get along better with one of us. I don't see it as a big deal. I know thoroughly and completely that they love us 100% the same.

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"Potter75" wrote:

To the naysayers, after spending all day with a 2 and a 3 year old after being stuck in the house for a week from snowstorms.....you can't see how in some ways you would look at your 6 month old (who can't say no, who can't mess up the house, who only wants to love on you and nurse and cuddle with you......could feel like a favorite? Because they are so sweet and easy and it feels like they are giving more than they are taking?)

I don't know. I'll just second all that Kim says. My parents totally have favorites. They simply each get along better with one of us. I don't see it as a big deal. I know thoroughly and completely that they love us 100% the same.

Yes, in that instance I can see that child being my favorite. But IMO when someone says "this one is my favorite" I don't see that as the same as saying "I fover this one right now because they aren't driving me crazy". KWIM? To say she is my favorite child is a very finite and general thing to me. And it also has nothign to do with the childs behavior or thier attitude or really anything about them as individuals.

Let me see if I can explain. It is common amongst Cuban (maybe even most Latin) mom's to favor the son. Not because they are better behaved or don't whine so much or they can relate to a certain child more. Solely because they are the son. My father is favored by his mom more then his sister. Most of my girl friends growing up who had brothers, their mom's favored their brother. It's just how it is for some reason. The boy gets treated like the baby, the pride and joy, the prince, while the daughter has all the responsibility and the consequence.

So when you and Kim and the other's say, you favor one child at a certain time because they are easier to get along with or the other one is going through a rough phase or whatever, it just isn;t the same to me as the way I see favoritism to mean. To me, when I hear favoritism, it means that a parent favors one child over another indefinitely for no logical reason.

Does that make any sense?

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"culturedmom" wrote:

Yes, in that instance I can see that child being my favorite. But IMO when someone says "this one is my favorite" I don't see that as the same as saying "I fover this one right now because they aren't driving me crazy". KWIM? To say she is my favorite child is a very finite and general thing to me. And it also has nothign to do with the childs behavior or thier attitude or really anything about them as individuals.

Let me see if I can explain. It is common amongst Cuban (maybe even most Latin) mom's to favor the son. Not because they are better behaved or don't whine so much or they can relate to a certain child more. Solely because they are the son. My father is favored by his mom more then his sister. Most of my girl friends growing up who had brothers, their mom's favored their brother. It's just how it is for some reason. The boy gets treated like the baby, the pride and joy, the prince, while the daughter has all the responsibility and the consequence.

So when you and Kim and the other's say, you favor one child at a certain time because they are easier to get along with or the other one is going through a rough phase or whatever, it just isn;t the same to me as the way I see favoritism to mean. To me, when I hear favoritism, it means that a parent favors one child over another indefinitely for no logical reason.

Does that make any sense?

FTR, my presonal stance is not the idea of a rotating favorite (even though i think that does happen on a short term basis). I actually do think ultimately we gravitate towards certain people more than others, including our own children. That's why i can look back at my family and say 'x' and 'z' were definitely the favorites, and not say "we were all the favorite at one point or another"

However, in my view, it doesn't happen for illogical reasons as in your example. The bold is the key difference to me. To me, its all about personality and how we are just drawn to certain types of people.

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Well I only have one...and some days when she's being completely crazy, she's not my favorite person in the world. I think it's OK to admit that to yourself as long as you aren't projecting it onto your children making them feel like their Mother doesn't love them as much as another child.

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"KimPossible" wrote:

FTR, my presonal stance is not the idea of a rotating favorite (even though i think that does happen on a short term basis). I actually do think ultimately we gravitate towards certain people more than others, including our own children. That's why i can look back at my family and say 'x' and 'z' were definitely the favorites, and not say "we were all the favorite at one point or another"

However, in my view, it doesn't happen for illogical reasons as in your example. The bold is the key difference to me. To me, its all about personality and how we are just drawn to certain types of people.

I agree. I have rotating favorites (like that term!) now/in the short term ~ I mean, heck, certain stages of a kids life are simply irresistable, others less so ~ and I bet someday that I will be closest to one of my three kids. I still maintain that I can love them exactly the same but one (or two) may simply be more likable to me. My parents each are closest to one of the three of us, in both cases the one that they are almost exactly like. I think that that is pretty normal, though I see how the term "favorite" can be off putting depending on how one experiences it.

And Lana, we are Italian ~ and my brother the only son ~ and he basically resides inside my father's a$s, so I know of what you speak! Smile

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"Potter75" wrote:

I agree. I have rotating favorites (like that term!) now/in the short term ~ I mean, heck, certain stages of a kids life are simply irresistable, others less so ~ and I bet someday that I will be closest to one of my three kids. I still maintain that I can love them exactly the same but one (or two) may simply be more likable to me. My parents each are closest to one of the three of us, in both cases the one that they are almost exactly like. I think that that is pretty normal, though I see how the term "favorite" can be off putting depending on how one experiences it.

And Lana, we are Italian ~ and my brother the only son ~ and he basically resides inside my father's a$s, so I know of what you speak! Smile

Thank you Lord, cause I was starting to think no one understood what I was talking about. So do you think that that kind of favoritism (based on gender or order of birth) is different then what you and Kim are talking about? Cause I do. I totally get being drawn to one person, child or family member or strager, more then to another because of the relationship and the connection. But again that is not what I think of when I hear favorite. What I think of is more liek the bolded and to that I can;t say I think is a natural or necessarily a good thing.

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I do think that favoritism exists in some families, but I don't think nearly in as many as he claims. I think it's more in line with what the survey showed on Today/Parenting.com. Nor do I think favoritism equals more love although it may feel like it for some children. I don't think a favorite can really rotate. If they're rotating isn't it more situational in how one is relating more with another in that moment in time? I have seen clear lines where some parents favor one child over their other children even when all children are the same gender and I've also seen where they favor one gender over the other. They may love their children all the same, but treat them very differently given the same situations.

And it all may have to do with perceptions of each individual. While one sibling thinks that the other sibling is the favorite, the other may be thinking the reverse because of their own perceptions in how their relationships are with each parent. When in reality, a parent could have simply been relating with one child more at one time and more with the other child at a different time. I think more parents lean more towards having favorite traits in each child as their personalities are all different, than to have specific favorite children whom they love more.

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"culturedmom" wrote:

Thank you Lord, cause I was starting to think no one understood what I was talking about. So do you think that that kind of favoritism (based on gender or order of birth) is different then what you and Kim are talking about? Cause I do. I totally get being drawn to one person, child or family member or strager, more then to another because of the relationship and the connection. But again that is not what I think of when I hear favorite. What I think of is more liek the bolded and to that I can;t say I think is a natural or necessarily a good thing.

ITA with Lana. Favoritism isn't a good thing. Do I sometimes like one of them better than the other? Sure. Do I sometimes connect with one of them better than the other? Sure. but I don't have a favorite child and I never will. My dad had a favorite (me) and it ruined his relationship with my sister.

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"culturedmom" wrote:

Thank you Lord, cause I was starting to think no one understood what I was talking about. So do you think that that kind of favoritism (based on gender or order of birth) is different then what you and Kim are talking about? Cause I do. I totally get being drawn to one person, child or family member or strager, more then to another because of the relationship and the connection. But again that is not what I think of when I hear favorite. What I think of is more liek the bolded and to that I can;t say I think is a natural or necessarily a good thing.

I don't really think that it is inherently what Kim and I are talking about....not due to gender....but I will say that I think that gender can and does play a part in some families.

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I know I don't post here but I hope you don't mind me jumping in on this one.

I think I agree most with culturedmom on this one. I do know that some parent absolutely have favorites. My IL's most definitely do, and for FIL it is by far DH, for MIL it is DH's oldest sister. The middle sister gets nothing but negative judgement, where SIL1 (the biggest screwup I've ever met) gets babied and they make excuses for her.

My parents (I'm the oldest of 5) never had a favorite. We are all very different in personality and some of us fought with our dad more but it never felt like one of us was favored over the other.

I think that perhaps the connotation of the favorite differs from person to person based on what I'm reading here.

I read a news story not too long ago where a father was forced to choose between his two children who were drowning in a river because he could only save one. Favortism to me means that if all your kids were drowning in a river you know which one you would save. That's not a decision my mother could make, could you? Honestly.

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"Potter75" wrote:

I don't really think that it is inherently what Kim and I are talking about....not due to gender....but I will say that I think that gender can and does play a part in some families.

For instance. My brother majored in what my Dad did. He now works for my Dad. He drives my Dad's boat. They belong to the same country club. He is trying to BE my Dad. Of course my Dad relates to him the most. My brother coveted that. He needed that. He could not survive on his own. He was culled to be that, and he responded.

We (my sister and I), didn't. We could do our own thing. We quit on the idea of being the "favorite" because we were independent enough (via the equal love thing) to be our own people. We were able to be our own individuals, with our own victories. .

I know my perspective is biased.....but I fervently feel as though the whole "favorite" thing can be as much as a crutch as it can be a blessing.

I, for one, can't respect what he has done, because it was done under the guise of some gender bias and the need for him to have a "sponsor' if you will, due to personal inadequacy. Anyone can become someone else, given the incentive. It takes a lot more balls to become ones own person.

I don't think that the idea of having a favorite is as abnormal as my personal example is. I think that my example is rather,,,,,extreme and disgusting, personally. That said, I think that I may relate to my daughter the most, as an adult. She is me. I love her harder, in some ways, because I recognize her struggles. I understand her personality. I want to help her, because I understand her.

I think that when we (in this thread) talk about the small things ~ it is so normal. Like you understanding how the baby is the easiest. Yet the truth of life is that those little people become adults.....and we are going to have one, or the other, who is easiest to relate to. Someone who we have the most to talk to with in a car ride. Someone who we can be like "oh man, remember that!" with. I think that in families like your's and mine, Lana, it can be super annoying !~ because the "favorite" is the one who needed or whose parent needed them to be.....but I believe that (as a child who isn't the favorite) I can understand how one got from point A to point B.

Would there be a difference if a parent spent more time with one particular child who appears overall to be needier not because of favoritism, but more out of the necessity because the parent was worried about that child's well-being and growth? If so, couldn't the other child(ren) then possibly view this as favoritism simply because of their inability to fully understand the dynamics and the situation at the age they are or because they are craving more time with the said parent themselves?

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What about grandparents and favoritism/love? Is there a difference when there's a generation gap in equating favoritism and/or love between grandchildren? Is it based more on gender or based on their own (possibly favorite) child's children?

Do/could favorites change upon the death of a child?

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I think favourites exist. But I don't think that parents should tell their children.
I'm one of five kids and I know there were times in my life where my other siblings were my parents favourite, but my parents never said "Jordan is my favourite right now" or "I like Emily more than you today". They didn't do this because they loved us all and wouldn't want any of us upset.

Grandparents definitely have favourites and I know that for a fact because my grandmother has made it very clear that me and my siblings are not her favourites. She lives by the saying "A son's a son until he takes a wife, a daughter's a daughter for life". She shows definite favouritism towards her daughters and their children than she does to my dad and us kids. I find it sad that she thinks its okay to treat her grandchildren so differently. Not to toot my own horn, but my siblings and I are pretty freaking awesome and she's missing out!

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You know. i was thinking about this debate today because i realized that I am in a similar situation even now, with my MIL. My MIL has two daughters-in-law, and she DEF. favors the other one.

My MIL is really great and just like a lot of us have already said, she doesn't *blatantly* favor her and she tries to be very equal, and never purposely show it.

But you can totally see it LOL. Its little things. For example we all go to the gym together. Sometimes after we are done there, we all go out together. But if the other DIL can't go.....we never go. However if I can't go, they will still very often go.

The other DIL was supposed to go somewhere today, out of town...but due to the cruddy weather she's not. When MIL found out, she practically lept out of shoes in delight. Trust me, i would never garner such a reaction from her LOL

She is not mean to me at all. In fact she is lovely to me, but its very plain to see that I am not the favorite. And it makes sense too. Other DIL has much more in common with her than i do. She likes to garden, loves to cook....went on the adventure of learning to quilt with her. I have a rather brown thumb and i truly do not take any pleasure wahtsoever in cooking. And really, just overall personality wise, they just seem to get along better. For the record, i love the other DIL....we get along really well and i enjoy spending time with her. My MIL too.

Oh and on the note of illogical favoritism.....other DIL is from Maine, and I am not. And while it would probably never be admitted, i have no doubt that it plays into the whole thing. And yep, that part makes me roll my eyes a bit.

I know its not the same as dealing with it from your own parents....but just saying these things happen and they aren't really so awful.

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Personally I don't favor any of my children over the other... but I do have different loves for them. I know that might sound strange... but I'll try to explain. With my eldest, he was my first, so he holds a special place in my heart. With my middle child, another boy, he was my first child with my current DH, so that, coupled with the fact that he has some special needs, makes him dear to me in a way that's different than my other son. My daughter, well, that's self explanitory... she's my princess. I have another boy on the way and I'm sure my love for him will be the same but different from his siblings, as he'll be my baby (DH is getting the snip after this one!) and the baby of the family.

I think it's OK for parents to have favorites, but it's when they start showing that favortism (which maybe can't be helped?) that it becomes a problem. I know my grandparents showed favortism all day long with their children. They had three kids, my aunt, my dad, and then my uncle. My aunt was my grandmother's favorite, as she was the only girl. My uncle was my grandfather's favorite, as he was the baby. All through the years (especially in adulthood) it was blatantly obvious who their favorites were (for example, they paid for my uncle to go to college, but not my dad) and that even trickled down through the grandchildren. My cousins got way more love and attention as a result, and myself and my brothers and sisters pretty much got jack. Another example of this, in the last years of her life my grandmother and I worked for the same timeshare company. We saw each other every day and when I became pregnant with DD I of course invited her to my baby shower. Well, my cousin (my aunt's daughter) was pregnant at the same time as I was, and she went to her shower and not mine. No reason, no explination... just didn't come to mine. So like I said before... if you want to have favorites that's your perogative, just don't show that you do.