Parents who favor one child?
As a child, do you ever feel like your parents favor one sibling over the other? Some may have experienced less attention or praise from their parents because they had to share it with another child who seemed to be deemed better in every way possible. It doesn’t matter how old you are; if you believe that your folks show bias towards either of you – it can be downright hurtful.
We all remember getting extra servings of cake, being taken out for ice cream without our brothers and sisters, or receiving special gifts under the Christmas tree. It can make us question why some kids always get more than others!
In this article, we’ll take a humorous look at the concept of parental preference and explore why some moms and dads seem unfairly biased towards one child over another. If any memories pop up while reading along… just know that we’ve all been there!
The Not-so-Golden Child
Are you this kid? Then join the club because many individuals fall into this category! You might have forgotten what getting an ‘atta-boy’ feels like when compared to your younger sister who could trip on her own shoelaces but still receive admiration for “trying.”
You may recall how blessed she was within primary school to be enrolled in extracurricular activities provided by your mother who would pick up and bring her anywhere she wanted regardless of distance. Meanwhile, as soon as rivalry is introduced between siblings during adolescence regarding specific actions their parent(s) provide for them- status becomes vital.
It’s easy to wonder what makes somebody favored since so few parents will admit that they love one kid more than another (even though rumors tend otherwise). But here are several theories:
1. Firstborns Do Have It Easier…At Least Initially
Parents sometimes treat firstborns differently because everything is fresh and new to them, so mothers and fathers take more time adjusting as brand-new parents. As a result, all those first moments– the first toothy grin or steps–are greeted with extra affection and attention, often intended for their unique child but at the expense of siblings.
2. Close or Roommate Parents May Favor One Child Over Another
Some psychologists claim that being close friends between parents correlates to favoritism within offspring. The theory is that moms and dads who share a closer bond unintentionally become overly protective towards each member’s respective personality type, showing favoritism based on relatability to oneself over another family member.
3. Similarity Bias?
It could also be called perceived similarity bias; this suggests that typically folks identify more naturally with other people who share similar personalities or interests! So occasionally it’s natural for us humans- including our parental units- to have favorites among their descendants!
4…OR Maybe It Is You!
We hate even putting this out there/ but it might not always be “them.” Sometimes? Just sometimes-it may genuinely boil down solely since maybe you’re still living in your teen years despite ‘growing up.’ Were your grades dreadful/improving quickly throughout high school? Are you socially awkward compared to others? Do you have issues with authority figures altogether -not excluding parenting authorities? Perception becomes reality- If care/giving feels unequal from either parent(s)? Assess yourself before assigning blame immediately elsewhere (juuuust saying!).
Still convinced something fishy is going on because your little sister got an extra slice of cheesecake last Sunday dinner just like what happened during Christmas Day when she was gifted dual-flying drones while glued almost exclusively onto her smartphone screen? Check out these unusual side effects:
Side Effects of Favoritism
Favoring one sibling over another can potentially cause long-lasting harm to both children’s mental health status, so it is good to feel validated when feeling punished/neglected at home. The child who gets everything she or he wants could grow up arrogant and conceited, lacking humility as an adult (which’s never been a quality desired anywhere!). Moreover, they may constantly challenge authority figures since compliance has not been necessary historically in their upbringing.
On the other hand, ‘the’ other sibling can suffer from self-esteem issues leading to depression throughout adulthood (if they don’t process the why of how this dynamic transpired). Several personality disorders might develop too: borderline personality disorder among various others being potential long-term results!
Another possible unfavorable outcome? Ridiculously high amounts of physical violence would frequently erupt between siblings in some households where nothing is considered fair game! It can leave brothers and sisters with wholly broken relationships that carry on into early adulthood through their entire lives without ever reconciling (crazy right?).
How Can You Handle Parental Bias?
Think you’re dealing with parental favoritism within your household but need advice as to how? First off- realize that what’s happening isn’t really something that any one person can control entirely… A lot depends upon open communication channels existing between parent/family members admittedly acknowledging these different treatment instances! Assuming we get there; here are several things that you can do:
1. Don’t Try To Be a Golden Child
Don’t try and compete intently for attention by playing therapist after discovering their rules lean towards unfairness unjustly affecting oneself besides another -especially if it contributes more damage than benefitting any future changes resulting from such recognition.
Instead? Focus instead on priorities such as personal hobbies/studies/interests etcetera absent worrying about comparisons found elsewhere via differing “golden” criteria held favorably towards certain individuals by mom/dad(s). Doing so will help keep your focus aligned accordingly rather than concerning yourself regarding those arbitrary labels almost impossible to live up to.
2. Bring It Up in a Mature Manner
Another method suggested? Start informing parents of the issues at hand but done so by articulating ourselves more objectively rather than venting this material in effort-driven conversations!
Instead of saying “you never focus on me, and it makes me feel neglected,” consider leading with genuine inquiry: “Hey, I’ve noticed lately that you seem to be spending more time/attention on little Sally. Is there any reason for this?”
By doing so, mom and dad’s position become clearer since they face a concrete observation perhaps leading themselves also not realizing favor towards another child unintentionally disregarding others entirely! (And maybe only after wrongly chastising one them already..)
The End Result?
In conclusion; Just like we can’t control what random relatives will discuss throughout holiday gatherings each year- sometimes getting extra servings/slices is beyond anyone’s control just as well -ish at least. But dealing with apparent bias within parental units must occur delicately without fear following attempts being rejected initially if adjustments should indeed happen.
Simply communicate maturely- seeking areas doing things according statements discussed without expectations as much possible would turn out worse before occurring anyways right? Breathe evenly because sitting back waiting could last forever without ever happening too…(And nobody wants that!!).