Mom Confessions: I Favor My Older Child


hushIt's time for a Mom Confession -- because, let's face it, we're real mothers and sometimes it doesn't work the way the parenting books say it should.

This Week's Confession:

"I favor my 8 year old over my 6 year old. My 8 year old is much easier to deal with. My 6 year old throws constant tantrums. Even though I feel that way, they get treated equally. I think a lot of mothers secretly favor one child over the other, either because one is easier to deal with, sweeter, smarter, cuter, whatever the reason. You can't help what you feel inside." --anonymous

"But it should never be shown to the kids," the mom continues. "I know that I love them both the same. I just feel that one is easier to deal with and I'd rather be around (shopping, movies outings) that one. I don't pay my "favorite" more attention. If anything, the other one gets more attention because I feel guilty for favoring one."


Do you think it's perfectly natural for a mother to favor one child over another, either due to personality or a medical issue the child is going through?

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Total Votes: 391

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Does favoring a child translate into loving them more than another -- even though you might not think so on a conscious level?

We all have secrets -- so thanks to this brave mom for sharing her honest thoughts, and thank you for keeping this conversation non-judgemental!

activities, discipline, siblings, tantrums


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gitan... gitanomadre

This  poll just blows me away    I can' t believe it    I just can't believe that you would favor one of your own children over another      Please stop  having them then  would be my strong suggestion ,    

NoDra... NoDramaMamma

NO! I love my children equally. I see and enjoy them both for their differences. One is easier the other harder. Then the tables turn. You may love one more secretly than the other but your children pick up on that. I am refraining from being non judgemental so I will tell you something I just found out....Someone I know does this and her children are a little older but close in age, she called to check on the boys at their grandma's house and one of the boys answered. The non favored one...He said" 'Johnys Mom is on the phone' " This may sound extreme but think about what you are saying. I saw this question earlier and it has sat with me all day. Love your children equally and accept their differences. Make a point to find time to spend individually with you and your children every day. This makes them feel special and you are more involved with them. We have 6 children aged 21, 17, 14, 11, 6 and 4. Business owner, honor students, performing arts school, chess club and a pain in the ass! I LOVE THEM ALL JUST THE SAME!

sunmo... sunmoonstars

I really understadn where the OP is coming from because you cannot help the way you feel.  But as the "other child", the non-favored one, the one that is loved my family.  It hurts.  It sucks.  It has ruined my family.  My mother has favored my sister my whole life, and I have been able to see it for most of my life.  Even though I am an adult now and mother myself, I cannot believe she is like that.

If anyone thinks they can hide it and still "love them the same" without letting the kids see it, I think you are fooling yourself.  The kids can tell, more-so as they get older.  and it hurts.

yadayada yadayada

In my opinion, you love your first born a little differently.  My sister always said that our mom loved me more.  Of course, mom doesn't love me more.  She told us that she loves us each in a different way.  Anyways, she still doesn't understand and she's 33, but, she only has one son.  I am 40, have 2 toddler girls and can totally relate to what mom was talking about.  I don't "love" or "favor" my oldest anymore than my youngest, I just love them totally different.  And I think that if you don't have more than one child you will never understand that.

Lelan... LelandsMommy

I don't know that I would necessarily say that I favor one child over the other, but I definitely relate more with my oldest. He is just like me as a kid (and now in some ways), and I find it easier to see things through his eyes. My husband doesn't always see why our oldest is so sensitive about some things, or why he's so quiet in social situations, and I know exactly because I was/am the same way. My husband relates more to our baby. They are both outgoing, playful, easy-going guys.

I love both kids equally. Just because I feel more kindred with one child doesn't change the connection I have with my other child... After all I fell madly in love with their daddy, and if baby is just like Daddy, it stands to reason that I couldn't help but have an equally great (but different) connection with the baby too.

Maybe what I feel towards my oldest is favortisim... I don't know.

Kurstyxx Kurstyxx

I had post natal depression with my first child who's now 2.

Love still just doesn't come naturally even though i'm fine now.

I have a 5month old who seems to be my favourite just because i don't have to work at the bond i have with him. I'm only now starting to love my 2 year old like a mother should but i really have to work hard at it. It makes me feel so guilty because i know it's not his fault but i know it's not my fault either!

It's as if i lost out on time with my 2 yr old so i'm making up for it with my little 1.

I just hope that one day i'll feel the same towards BOTH of them.


scoot... scooter3017

i dont necessarily favor one child over the two boys are 12 months and five days oldest i "baby" more because he was a NICU baby and spent  weeks away from him but my youngest is very cuddly and loveable towards people so i guess they are both "favored" in different ways??  i mean both get lots of attention they both get disciplined the same way ect ect!

toria... toriandgrace

Just look at Jon and Kate Plus 8, it's clear which twin they prefer. Some children are more difficult than others. You love them both, but parents are only human, it is common for them to SECRETLY enjoy time spent with one child more than another. My oldest brother never calls my family, rarely comes to visit, never sends Christmas presents (despite the fact that he is an attorney and has money) and my other brother loves visiting family, calls just to check in, etc. so which grown child do you think my parents prefer? Is that wrong?

Novem... NovemberLove

I think maybe she's confusing "favoring" with just having more relief with one kid or another?  I'm sure she loves them both the same and at the same time, I'm sure she has natural emotions about how one is easier to handle than the other.  You simply need to remind yourself that you DO love them both the same but the challenges are different.  Then, make sure that you never treat them differently based on your frustrations with one or the other.

myboy... myboys2318

i have two boys each one is so different  i have different feelings for both but i dont love one more over the other because i feel that would be wrong that is not fair to the child. every child is different they should necer be compared they have their personality and traits and they should respected for it

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