Does playing favorites make you a horrible parent?
Consider that you provide enough support and love for all of your children but you favor one over the others.
I think that at different times of their lives I have especially liked one of my kids more than the others (I have 5 kids). I also think that I've sometimes given special treatment to one kid that they others didn't get--I don't see how parents can avoid that. However, I really think it is important to work hard to find good things about every kid no matter what stage they are in. Playing favorites doesn't make you horrible--it is just normal human reaction to things. However, I think parenting gives us a chance to rise above our normal feelings and do the right thing, even if we don't want to do it.
As long as it isn't obvious to the other children so they live with that for the rest of their lives resenting the favoured one as I have read so many stories about.
It can be hard at times but it is very important to show each child that they are loved .
Everyone is different. However, in my experience as a parent I cannot imagine playing favorites. This will become a problem for BOTH the child who is NOT the favorite and for the child who is favored. Why? B/C the child who is favored will experience feelings of guilt; the child who is NOT will have feelings of resentment.
In the end, your children will not build close relationships with each other. If there are two -they will always feel the separation of favoritism. If there are more--the children who are not favored may 'gang' together and ignore the favored child.
While this may not be a big problem while 'mommy' is around to manage the behavior, think of a time when you are no longer living and your children rely on each other for support and love. The 'favored' child is now odd man out b/c trust me...his / her siblings do not see this child in the eyes of the mother.
I have had two women (one being my mother in law) tell me that I MUST prefer one or the other of my daughters. I could not comprehend this. It is beyond me. My response? I love my children each for the unique people that they are. Do I favor one? No. Do I love them differently-yes. Why? Because they are individuals. Love is unconditional. Period. I accept and love my children and grandchildren in the way that they are: special and unique.
Does favoritism make you a 'horrible' parent, no. But, I hope you look into your heart and ask yourself what it is about this child that you favor. You may be surprised by the answers you discover. Then, ask yourself if there is something that you can uniquely enjoy about your other child/children. God Bless.
It's normal for parents to have their own favorite. It's not wrong to favor one over the other. What matters is how they deal with it. If they tend to attend to the favorite child's needs and ignore the others, that makes them horrible parents.
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