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Can You Really Love Your Kids Equally?

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A mom blogger over at Babble bravely confesses to loving her son more than her daughter. Can you relate?


Blogger KATETIETJE writes:

Okay. This post is serious. It's something I've been thinking about for a very long time, but I've been too afraid to say. I can't be the only one out there who feels this way, though. Because moms aren't perfect. Maybe we pretend that we are in front of other moms, lest we be judged for our failings. But we do all have them. And so...I've taken a deep breath, and I'm going to share.

I think I love my son just a little bit more than my daughter.

See, I have two kids. I have a 3-year-old girl, and a 20-month-old boy. I love them both, don't get me wrong. I find both of them amazing and fascinating (and frustrating!) in different ways. They are both clearly mine and I love them and want to keep them forever.

Continue reading Katie's confession at

Momlogic wants to know -- can you really love your kids equally?

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12 comments so far | Post a comment now
Lisa R. March 16, 2011, 9:55 AM

I think this article is very brave. I wasn’t sure how I’d react at first, but as I read it I thought, “How amazing that a mother would share the dark thoughts in her head that ALL of us have, and so few of us ever voice.” I have a teenage daughter & a toddler son. If you don’t think it’s easier to love my son on a day-to-day basis, you are wrong. The teenager challenges me every day; it’s like a roller coaster ride. My son will lean over while we’re playing a game & kiss me & say, “I love you, Mommy!” And I melt. The author may regret writing this one day, only because Mommy guilt is SO strong. But I commend her for putting into print the kinds of thoughts that all mothers (if we are truly honest) have had at one time or another. We don’t say it because we are programmed to believe we are bad parents if we don’t love all our children equally (impossible!) or want to spend every minute w/them or get tired of them wanting to hug us all the time (gasp!) or just get tired of them in general. Parenting is hard. No one tells you that. Mothers are expected to sacrifice everything for their children. (Fathers are not expected to do so.) And there are so many ways to feel guilty about the job you’re doing. If you are one of those arrogant, smug mothers who thinks she’s doing everything right (as, admittedly, I was), just wait. I hope you’re right, but if you’re not it’s going to come as a big shock to you. And not being perfect does not make us bad mothers. It makes us human.

Sweepstaker March 16, 2011, 5:16 PM

You’re not alone Kate. Sometimes I feel that too for my 2 sons. I just didn’t want to say it loud, cause I’m a mom and supposed to love my kids equally. But it’s brave of you for sharing us how you feel, at least I can say now that I’m not the only one who feels it. I’m still guilty about it though, so I try to share equal love for both of them cause I don’t want my other son to notice and feel bad about it or he may hate me at this at such an early age.

Buddha Lady March 16, 2011, 6:17 PM

Is it possible that this mom really means that she likes/enjoys one child more than the other? Children are unique individuals, as are their parents — in fact, as a kid, I certainly remember liking my dad more than my mom, just because he and I had a lot more in common and he had a more laid-back and affectionate personality, and was easier to be with, quite frankly. And yet I know I loved them both deeply…perhaps it’s the same when we grow up and have kids?

Carol March 16, 2011, 6:33 PM

Wait taht feeling migth change. However, if it doesn’t I certainly hope your daughter doesn’t pick up on it or you get comfortable enough with that feeling that it’s obvious that you favor him.

Anonymous March 17, 2011, 6:32 AM

I agree with Buddha. I don’t have kids yet but I am a teacher and I teach children of all different ages.

I think sometimes when it comes to children that perhaps a certain age is easier to deal with than another. A child of three is running around here, there, and everywhere, and just in case you don’t know where they are, they’re also equipped with a powerful voice box and the desire to excercise it. Compare that to a child who’s just learnt to walk and still sees crossing the garden as a massive challenge and think about which one would be easier to care for.

The same with the teenage daughter and the younger son. Will the son really be that much sweeter than the daughter when he reaches that age?

In the end, I don’t think it’s that love can be unbalanced, I think it’s just that the parent likes to enjoy the calmer feelings evoked by being with the less challenging child, those challenges and the feelings they evoke will change as the children mature.

Peggy Brister March 17, 2011, 7:54 AM

My 11 yr old daughter told me she thinks I love my 9 yr old son more than I love her because I treat them differently. I told her I do not love him more but I do treat him differently because he ACTS differently. She always has a smart mouth and a little sassy tween attitude and likes to roll her eyes and make hissing noises like air is escaping her. My son is sweet, very kind and giving, not slefish and never mean and he does things for anybody who needs something. He hugs me all the time, calls me when he is at his dad’s every night to tell me he loves me. He just acts BETTER than she does so I am nicer to him. When I am having to constantly get onto her and reprimand her for her behavior I am sure it is going to seem like I love him more. I am not going to treat him meaner to make her feel more loved. She can change her attitude and behavior if she wants to be treated equally. But I can’t say I love him more. Loving him is easier.

Carol March 17, 2011, 5:35 PM

Perhaps her daughter took her parents separation harder than her son? Your daughter may be acting out. And it doesn’t help taht you justif your behaviour to her. (I treat her brother because …)

me March 18, 2011, 11:15 AM

MY mom loves my sister more than me. She treats her completely different, bends over backwards for her, we had different rules growing up, she made me do stuff but gave her everything because she didn’t want to work for it. Bought me second hand clothes, bought her designer clothes, same with toys. I don’t understand why, my aunts notices it and tells me they feel for me. It breaks my heart to this day.

Hannah (14 yrs) March 18, 2011, 1:39 PM

I think that you should all be happy, weather you are a mother or a daughter, because you could be a lot worse off and not have the persons love at all. Be gratefull that you get even a little bit of love, because some mothers give their baby away, and some daughters run away. Life is not always what you want, live with it!

kelley March 19, 2011, 5:29 PM

Although I think the author is brave for speaking her heart, I do have to say that her daughter CAN tell the difference in the way she is treated NOW and IT WILL EFFECT her in the future. I am not trying to be mean at all, but I was the child who was treated differently and I rememeber a lot. My mother and I are not close to this day and after all these years I still try to not feel the resentment. In my head I still have that little voice that asks, what was so wrong with me?

Ruby March 23, 2011, 2:09 AM

The only reason she doesn’t like her daughter is because she looks like a pile of vomit. To be jealous of your own child is crazy and sad.

electric cigarette March 30, 2011, 7:26 PM

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