Writers love to claim again and again in print that ALL moms and dads play favorites and all kids do as well. It's the "dirty little secret" of parenthood that no one talks about, right? Except a.) They talk about it all the time and b.) It's really not true.
Amy Ettinger writing for Salon says she is secretly pleased that her daughter chooses her as her favorite over her husband. I get that. I do. I am living the opposite reality here (my kids adore my spouse), but I don't agree with the notion that everyone has a favorite. I have two (soon to be three) kids and one husband and I would never say I love any one of them more than the other. So take that.
Not only that, I also know that, while my kids adore their daddy and shriek with joy upon his return from work, that they love us equally. Still, I also know why they LIKE daddy better. He's just more fun. Here are five reasons why it may seem like daddy is the favorite parent:
1.) Daddy is a novelty: My husband is an incredibly good, incredibly involved parent. He knows their class schedules and has done more than his fair share of picks up and drop offs in the classroom. All that said, I am still the primary caregiver. I am the one who knows all the drama at school, keeps in touch with the teachers, serves as class parent and volunteers in the classroom.
2.) Daddy is fun: Admittedly, I need to CHILL out more. I am obsessive about healthy food and bed time and matching clothing. Daddy is much more lax and apt to read "one more book" even though it is 8:45 PM on a school night.
3.) Daddy says "yes" more: I am the no parent. No, cookies will spoil your dinner. No, you can't do a play-date tonight you have karate. No, you can't skip gymnastics to watch a movie. No, you can't watch one more show before bed. Who WOULD like me? Yikes.
4.) Daddy has more patience: In our house, daddy is generally the more patient parent. He'll take hours to go over homework and read 10 books. I tend to be more involved with packing the lunch, making the dinner, baking. I am task, task, task. Boo me!
5.) Daddy plays rougher: I am nine months pregnant, so I am not really capable of picking my 7-year-old and 5.5-year-old up and tossing them around, so yep, daddy's got me there, too.
Luckily, I am relatively confident that my husband and I balance each other out quite well. Even though they LIKE daddy better, without me, I am pretty sure they would eat way more cookies than they eat now, have less organic vegetables, and probably be wearing ill-fitting clothing from when they were three. It's called balance and you know what? It works. They love us both equally and there are no "favorites."
The love is different, but I am confident it's all the same amount.
Does your family have "favorites"?