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Favorite child
Old 04-23-2019, 05:15 PM
  #1

Did you think your parents favored one child over the other? A previous post got me thinking about it. I think it's so hurtful, even if you mesh better with one than the other they should never know it.

Both of my kids think THEY are the best child. It's hilarious.

I think my parents got along with my younger sister better when we were growing up, but I never felt that they favored her. Now that we are adults we take turns being the one that's in trouble with mom....


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Old 04-23-2019, 05:23 PM
  #2

I donít feel like my parents did, but on my dadís side of the family I was the first girl born in something like 60 years, so I did get a lot of attention. I donít know that my brother noticed, but there were times when we got older that I felt it.

I love both my kids for different things. Not more, but definitely differently.

I was just at a small family thing and noticed that one of my cousinís boys got a lot more attention. Some of it was due to him having a one year old, but the other was just the difference in their personalities. One is very much more introverted. I wondered about it later because I didnít have any one on one conversation with him before he left and he was the only one I didnít manage to get to. It was strange.
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Our DDs
Old 04-23-2019, 05:27 PM
  #3

were very different. DD1 was hard headed, independent, and ALWAYS had to have the last word. DD2 was kind, generous and loving. When they were young, we always joked that DD2 was the favorite because she was so easy.

Things began to change when the girls were in college. DD2 became the queen of one word answers and DD1 would call us up just to chat. We asked if she was trying to gain favorite child status. She said, You bet! Later she said that if she knew how fun being the favorite was, she would have tried a lot harder when she was young!

But seriously, I don't think my parents favored one child over another. And we worked very hard to appreciate the strengths that our girls had and have.
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Old 04-23-2019, 06:05 PM
  #4

DH and I had this conversation at dinner tonight. My parents loved us all equally, but gave my older sister and younger brother way more attention than me. I was the most self sufficient.

It bothered me more when they favored my brotherís children over mine....because he got divorced. And moved in with my parents. And pretty much left my parents to raise them.

I love my DDs very much but they are exact opposites of each other.
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Favoritism?
Old 04-23-2019, 06:07 PM
  #5

Absolutely! At my dad and stepmom's house, my younger sister was the favored one (and still is). At my mom and stepdad's house, my older sister was the favored one. I'm the middle child, and honestly, I was much more independent than my sisters, so I liked that I was kinda left alone. I was also a P.I.T.A. and rebellious, not to mention super snarky/sarcastic, so maybe that was why I wasn't the favored one.


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Old 04-23-2019, 06:13 PM
  #6

Someone once asked the 4 of us who Mom's favourite was. 3 of us said immediately, "E". E looked shocked and said, "no I wasn't!" but didn't have an answer as to who she thought WAS Mom's favourite. We all knew Mom loved us but she loved E best. We think it was because she looked most like Mom's twin brother who died in WW2. Our mother never quite recovered from his death.

The next question was who was Dad's favourite. Almost in unison, we all said we all were. He didn't favour any of us over the others.

For my own family, I tell my son that he's my favourite. Of course, I only have the one so....
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Old 04-23-2019, 06:17 PM
  #7

My brothers and sister all said that our mom favored me more than them. However, they were 20, 19, 18, and 15 by the time I was born. By the time I turned 3 I was the only child at home. 2 of my brothers were in the army, 1 lived away and my sister was married with her own 3 year old.
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Old 04-23-2019, 06:25 PM
  #8

My sister was definitely my dad's favorite if us two girls. He actually valued my brothers the most. That leaves me. I was definitely the least favorite. No doubts about it and it never change.

My daughter always said my son was my favorite. My son always said my daughter was my husband's favorite so I think that worked out okay. My son has my disposition. My daughter has my husband's.
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Old 04-23-2019, 07:14 PM
  #9

I don't think my parents had favorites, but my brother is closer to my father and I'm closer to my mother. My mother says we give her different things to worry about.
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Favorite children
Old 04-23-2019, 07:17 PM
  #10

There is no doubt hat each of my parents have a favorite child.

I am a talkative version of my dad in female form. My brother is a quiet version of my mom in male form. I am Dadís favored child, my younger brother is Momís favored child.


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Old 04-24-2019, 01:17 AM
  #11

At the last family reunion when Mom was alive, all 5 of us appeared at dinner one day wearing T shirts that said "Mom likes ME the best"...to surprise her.

None of us thought our parents had favorites. One younger brother got lots more attention when he was young, because he had some significant health and learning issues. As those resolved, he became just one of the kids...
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Old 04-24-2019, 01:33 AM
  #12

Yes I definitely think my parents had favorites. i am very independent and able to support my family without their help so me and my kids were treated a lot different. My sister and her kids live with my parents because she could not support herself after her divorce 16 years ago so they are the favorites by far! It is very evident and has been very hurtful through the years. We're at a point now that we are not very close at all. My niece and nephew could do no wrong and my kids are the cause of my niece's and nephew's poor behavior.
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Old 04-24-2019, 02:12 AM
  #13

Well, I am an only child so if I am not the favorite, there is a problem. Seriously though, I am close with my parents. I always wanted siblings growing up, but my mom was not able to have more children and my dad was against adoption and other options to have children did not exist back then.

When I look back though, I think there were definite benefits to being an only child.
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Old 04-24-2019, 03:05 AM
  #14

I can honestly say that I donít think my parents had a favorite. There are just the two of us and I am the younger one. As a little kid I would try to play the sympathy card by crying that they liked her better because they had her first, but it never worked

We both frustrated our parents over different things and we both were appreciated for our differences equally.
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Old 04-24-2019, 03:55 AM
  #15

We always joke that my brother is the favorite child because out of the four of us he is the youngest and only boy. Although he is the closest with my parents, I don't think they favored anyone. They love us all equally. Plus, my brother was probably the most difficult teenager, so he lost points as the favorite child then .
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Old 04-24-2019, 03:59 AM
  #16

Our mother favors one of my sisters. This sister had surgery right after birth to correct a digestive issue. There were no problems after the surgery, but growing up my mother continued to "hover" over her, excusing her from chores, etc. when we were growing up, aways referring to her problem as an infant. My mother still refers to my sister as being "fragile."

Fast forward to adulthood. I now realize that my mother's pampering and treating her differently has affected my sister to the point that considers herself "fragile." She's avoids doing physical chores. She has little confidence in herself in making the smallest of decisions. She did marry a very nice man who enjoys pampering her and does everything for her. He's so very patient with her! It's a match that works out for both of them!

Being an adult now, I can understand how my mother's over-protective treatment has shaped my sister's self concept. I love my sister very much.

I can truly understand how a parent's "overly protective" behavior can actually hinder the self confidence in a child well into the child's adulthood.
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Old 04-24-2019, 06:21 AM
  #17

I donít think that my parents really did have a favorite, but DHís mother very obviously favors his younger brother. It actually bugs me more than DH, because heís used to it.
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Old 04-24-2019, 09:23 AM
  #18

It seems that it's difficult for parents to not have a favorite because certain personalities just naturally get along better PLUS it's hard for parents to NOT outwardly show it...the latter may be more difficult than the former.

It seems the most common, textbook comment parents say when they (really) have a favorite, but don't want their kids to know it is to say, "I love you all equally, just in different ways." I say, yeah, right, but of course, certain parents probably mean it.

It's SO important for parents to NOT show it and think about how their words/actions appear in their kids' eyes. Too many minor actions adds up over the yrs and appears as if they show favoritism.

My dad was 1 of 6 and he was the ONLY boy. In some families, that might make him the favorite, but not in his family. From what I know, he probably didn't feel like the favorite. His sisters would gang up on him and beat him up...probably not literally OR perhaps so. Today, the very youngest sister is the only living one.

My mom was 1 of 5 and she was the middle sister. She knows she wasn't the favorite. Her older sister was with her mom and I don't know who her dad liked most. Her older sister and their mother were tight and remained like that till the day the mother passed. Today, my mom and her older sister are the only living siblings and they talk just about daily and have for years now.
This sister (my aunt) shows favorites amongst her 3 (now adult) kids and it's a sad shame for my mom and me to see.

My fiance' is 1 of 4 and the oldest. He's definitely NOT either parent's favorite. He never wanted to be, but he can't even just be treated fairly or adequately and it's been sad and maddening for me to see it from the sidelines. He's literally treated so insignificantly like the toss-away person that no one wants...he's treated like an invisible family member and there's no reason for it at all because he's the one who's got the best character (humble, kind, down-to-earth, moral, loyal, generos, sincere, etc.) everything his highly narcissistic siblings AND parents are NOT.

It's really sickening to see and his parents don't hide their favoritism at all. I've never seen such cold-hearted a-holes in an enitre family in my life and he's recently fed up with most of them too, most recently his own mother.
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Old 04-24-2019, 12:37 PM
  #19

Absolutely!! My dad favored one and my mother favored the other. Both parents do say I’m independent and I’m the one who can take care of myself. My father recently gave me a picture of my sister and I when we were young. She had long blonde curls and was wearing a beautiful dress. I had my hair cut so short I looked like a boy. I was wearing a T-shirt and shorts. My DD asked what was up with my hair. I said it was because S was the favorite. My dad sat there and said nothing because it was true.

I have been truly blessed by in-laws that have always treated me like gold and like their own child. Guess it works out in the end.

Last edited by noonespecial; 04-24-2019 at 12:53 PM..
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Old 04-24-2019, 12:45 PM
  #20

Double post. Sorry.
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Old 04-24-2019, 01:15 PM
  #21

that definitely happened in my family. It was tough because the first three grew up together, then a gap, and then the last 3 were together. I'm sure that my mother's favorite was my younger sister who got everything early, or new. I got a hand me down bike, she got a new one - stuff like that. She was the baby. I don't think she even realizes how much special treatment she got. I certainly wasn't going to point it out.

I think my dad's favorite was my oldest brother. He's 18 years older than me, so it didn't directly affect me. He was pretty even handed with the last three of us.

I grew up feeling like the odd man out. I was always over-achieving and was "the good girl". I guess it was to get my parents attention.

I have tried hard to not favor one son over the other, but my oldest has Asperger's syndrome and is on the Autism spectrum. There was no way they could be treated equally, just fairly. He will tell you that his younger brother is the favorite. I don't know what the youngest would say. He was certainly easier to raise and very, very easy to love. I do love them both, but yes it is different with them.

Last edited by letsgomets; 04-24-2019 at 01:16 PM.. Reason: Why does everything I post put in extra spaces that I have to go back and remove????
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Old 04-24-2019, 03:25 PM
  #22

I was the favorite as long as I was perfectly well behaved. If I screwed up, the world came crashing down and I was punished far more than my brother would have been.

For example my brother was defiant and stubborn. Once when he was a teenager he did something illegal and was arrested. I had found out about it through the gossip mill about 6 hours before the police arrived to arrest him. I didnít tell my parents because I knew the whole house would be in an uproar and my brother would beat me the first chance he got.

My parents found out I knew and didnít tattle. I was grounded for 3 months! No phone privileges, no going to a friendís house or having friends over, and no tv! My brother had no consequences other than one month in juvenile detention.

These types of situations always made me feel like he was the favorite.
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Old 04-24-2019, 03:33 PM
  #23

My brother and sister got a ton more attention when I was little. They were a lot older than me. I was an oops baby. They got attention because they were teens and wild and doing a lot more than me just playing barbies. They needed more attention! Now my parents get along with me better. I think because since I was way behind my siblings I had more time with just me and my parents when my siblings moved out.
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Old 04-24-2019, 04:54 PM
  #24

noonespecial, OMG, I can't imagine how the way your parents behaved must have affected your psyche!! It seems they wanted a son so badly, they "made" you be the boy they always wanted by cutting your hair short and wearing boyish clothing. That's emotional abuse and even physical abuse (without them actually hitting you).

Loveslabs, my fiance' was never in trouble overall, yet his siblings who smoke, drink, got arrested, etc. all get favored too. It's infuriating to see how his parents are.
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Old 04-25-2019, 06:25 PM
  #25

My mom seems to favor one of my sisters, the one that is most like her. My dad seems to favor one of my other sisters, the only child who always seemed to prefer my dad. However, I feel they love us all equally and I don’t think any of us feel like we are unliked or unloved. Well, maybe one of my brothers may feel that way, but he still has a very teenaged type of relationship with my parents.

For my own kids, yes some days I will favor spending time and interacting with one over the other, but more due to their teen moods that can make them unpleasant to be around. Usually my boys will take turns being in unpleasant moods. So maybe since DD is now living 10,000 miles away and I don’t have to deal with her moods or messes, she might be my favorite (I do miss her lots though).

My DH was one of two boys. My BIL died when we were in our 20’s, when he died my MIL said to my DH, “I don’t know how I will survive without my favorite son”. I am pretty sure she meant it.
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