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Admit It, You Have A Favorite Kid. I Do.

By dadcamp |

buzz bishop and sons - all rights reserved, no duplication without permissionI’m getting some feedback from my friends and family on a post I wrote earlier this week.

I told the story of how our family came to be. My wife (then my girlfriend) got pregnant after we had known each other for just two months. We like to say that Zacharie chose us before we ever had a chance to really choose each other.

People were moved by the story, but at the same time their backs got up at one line:

If I were to be absolutely honest, my older son is my favorite of the two. He and I are adventurous partners in crime, and I can’t imagine life without him. He was an accident waiting to happen, and I’m so glad it did.
- DadCAMP on Kid Scoop

“Love your honesty, as usual,” commented Shannon. “Although that ‘favorite kid’ part could hurt someone’s feelings one day!!”

Yes, I have a favorite son and I’m not ashamed to admit it. I’m guessing you could look deep in the mirror and admit you have a favorite too.

My choosing Zacharie as my favorite is not about ‘playing favorites,’ or ‘preferential treatment’ when I’m parenting.  I don’t let Zacharie get away with anything because he’s my first pick, I just .. y’know .. like him better.

I’ve admitted that while I loved my sons the minute they were born, I didn’t really fall in love with them until they could do stuff. This is the video from the exact moment I fell in love with Zacharie. We were running and laughing and just being silly in a park. He was 26 months old.

Those first 2 years of life were not that exciting for me. My wife loved the babying of our boys, I was wanting them to run, and kick, and play.

From the moment Zacharie became old enough to ‘do stuff’, we have been out doing things: fishing, camping, hiking, flying kites, riding trains, going to parks.  So while Z was old enough to get out and have fun, his younger brother was still in the baby stage.

When it comes to weekends when my wife and I divide the boys up to have an easier time running errands, I usually pick Z.

2 weeks ago, aware that I always pick the oldest, my wife suggested I take our youngest out for an adventure. I took Charlie out to see some horses at a show-jumping competition.  There were marching bands, stables, yummy food, and lots of scenery. We had a great time, and I started to fall for him.

This weekend is my Dad’s 70th birthday party. We’re flying out to surprise him with a big fishing trip. I’ll be bringing Z while Charlie stays behind with my wife.  The flights weren’t cheap, and while I’d love to have brought the whole family, it’s easier to go fishing with a 5 yr old than a 2 yr old.

I admit it, my oldest son is my favorite because he can do more things.  To me, he’s more fun.  I don’t love either of my sons any more than the other, but I do like them differently. I’d be willing to bet you’re the same.

Do you have a favorite child? Why?

**UPDATE** Before you comment, read this quote from author Jeffrey Kluger “95 percent of the parents in the world have a favorite child, and the other percent are lying.”

This is not about preferential treatment. This is not about giving treats to one and not the other. This is me writing about the moments of selfishness when I choose one son over the other because they’re ‘more fun.’

Kluger goes on to say “There’s some value of the parents’ code … never to speak of it.” Well aren’t I the worst parent in the world?

Follow Buzz on Facebook or @dadcamp
Read more at DadCAMP or The Blog According to Buzz.

Get more DadCAMP on Kid Scoop:

Why No Child NEEDS To Do Homework In Kindergarten
Vintage School Library Posters Inspire Kids To Read
The Time When My Girlfriend Got Pregnant

MORE ON BABBLE:

20 tips every new dad should know
The 7 WORST things you can say to a child
20 things my kids have taught me about living
8 things I never thought I’d say… until I became a parent
20 mind-blowing vintage ads involving children

Image Credit Buzz Bishop – All rights reserved. No use without permission

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About dadcamp

dadcamp

dadcamp

DadCAMP is Buzz Bishop, a dad, broadcaster, writer, and runner from Calgary, Alberta. When not working the mic on XL103, or wrangling his two boys, he's always training for another Team Diabetes marathon somewhere in the world. Read bio and latest posts → Read Buzz's latest posts →

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153 thoughts on “Admit It, You Have A Favorite Kid. I Do.

  1. goddess says:

    Sure. I have a favorite daughter (our only one), a favorite oldest and a favorite youngest. I really cannot choose one over the other. Whilst the oldest and I share so much in common temperamentally and music-art-movies-wise, the daughter and I have a simpatico that can’t be beat. And while th3e youngest is truly his father’s son and a total anomaly to me, he is easily the cuddliest and the one I want to protect the most. Different flavors, different days- it’s a joke in our house who gets “Favored Child Status”" with me- the one who got up and made me eggs Benedict for a surprise? The one who offered and cleaned all the bird cages out without being asked? Or the one who offers to go with me on a walk and gives me a piece of his favorite candy?

  2. MLE says:

    You really don’t care that your kids could find this one day? I cannot imagine seeing something like this written by my mom or dad. No matter how secure you are in your parents’ love as an adult, to read that I wasn’t the favorite would be a crushing blow. In fact, reading that I WAS the favorite would be crushing as well because I would feel so awful for my sibling. WHY must you put this on the internet?

    1. dadcamp says:

      I have no problem at all having my kids read this, or telling it to them. The explanation is quite simple: I like doing things with my older son and as my younger son gets older I’m taking the opportunity to do things with him too. I’m fully aware I’m paying attention to one more than the other, and looking for opportunities to involve my younger. As it stands now, Z is my fave.
      My grandmother, on her deathbed, admitted as much to me. “You’ll always be my number 1 grandson,” she whispered. Sure, I was her first, but she has confessed she always had a soft spot for me above the others.

  3. AmberDoty says:

    To me it doesn’t sound like you have a favorite child, but a favorite stage. On any given day (or sometimes season) my “favorite child” is different. My kids are 3 and 5 and as they have grown I have enjoyed them more or less as they fall in and out of stages.
    It’s not so much about liking one more than the other.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Sure Amber, I’ll take that explanation. Like Alia says, I’m sure it will change and evolve over time. Right now, Zacharie is my first pick on the playground for Red Rover Red Rover every time.

  4. AliaAtreidesBr says:

    I’m about to have my second baby, and will deal with the issue in a few weeks… I’ve always believed, when younger, that parents do have a favorite. The thing is, favorites do change over times. When I was a teen and my brother was still that wonderful, cute kid, he was the favorite. Why not? My parents weren’t my favorite people in the world either.

    But then I grew up, my brother turned into a teen, and I became the responsible, smart one, the one that made good choices. I’m sure I was the favorite then.

    And I that’s when I had my son, and guess what: he became the favorite child! My parents will chose him over me or my brother any time… :) With the new baby coming, I’m curious to find out what will happen. Will I enjoy the baby phase once again? Or maybe I’ll look at my older son and be grateful that he’s already a little boy, and hope my second gets there fast? Whatever happens, I know I’ll love both my kids, even if sometimes I want to enjoy the company of one of them instead of the other. Just sometimes…

  5. Crystal T says:

    I think it is different for moms than dads. I do feel that dads can’t wait until they can do stuff with their kids. My husband is the same way, He gets our little boy things that he is way too young for and I’m always fussing at him for trying to make our child grow up too fast. Ha! We only have one and love him so much that I find it hard to imagine loving another child the same. I have been told that you do. So, maybe secretly some parents do have a favorite. My only concern with this is that, as many have said, your youngest one will read this one day and he will be hurt. You have also posted about wishing you only had one child because it is easier. I know that you will be honest with your kids about this, but he may take it the wrong day and resent you for it. But, in the end it is your decision and you will work it out and explain what you meant and hopefully Charlie will understand. As I always say, this is why I love Babble because everyone is honest.

    1. dadcamp says:

      I agree, Crystal. My wife at least, loved the baby stage. I want them to DO STUFF!! :)
      Anything I put online is something I would have no problem talking about with my kids. Trust me, The Chooch is NEVER going to feel unloved or second best in our house. NEVER.

  6. zchamu says:

    I think every parent probably has a favourite, and it probably changes over time. But there are things that probably shouldn’t get stated publicly, because in 5 or 10 years when your other child reads it it’s gonna stab him in the heart and any amount of your logical reasoning isn’t going to fix that. He’s going to feel second best when he reads this, guaranteed.

    1. dadcamp says:

      @Zchamu
      If you scroll up to the comments, you’ll see the discussion about me having a favorite “stage” more than a favorite kid. This weekend I’m going fishing, with my older son. My mother took my older son to a baseball game this summer. There are some things that the older the kid, the better they are suited. So I have more fun being a Dad with my bigger kid than my younger one. Big deal. My younger son is growing and will soon be able to do these fun things too.
      As for the “reading everything I’ve written.” I doubt my kids will roll through the reams of thousands of posts I have written. If they do, I trust they’ll have a more personal understanding of me, and where they stand than an anonymous internet commenter who has no understanding of our family dynamic.

  7. Mark C says:

    I think there are several ways of connecting with your children. There is the connection you get when you get to share yourself and the connection you get when you give of yourself. I suppose you prefer that reward you get from sharing and that why you blog.
    I am a full-time Single Dad to two teen-aged daughters and I have nothing to confess other than that I love them both completely and equally. I don’t even like one better. There are times when I connect better with one because maybe they are in a good place and they don’t demand too much and we get to share, however I can’t say that’s more rewarding than the situations where a kid is struggling with something, might be acting badly… they’re needy and they require dedicated, consistent and unconditional love. I think the reward has not been the love and attention my children give me, but understanding the depth of my love for them, and the volumes of love that is in me that I have ready to give.
    As a result they both accuse me of favoring the other… I think it would crush them If I was ever in a position to confirm that.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks for commenting Mark, and a big “I’m not worthy” bow to you and your single parenting of teen daughters.
      My boys are 5 and 2. It’s easy for me to like one more than the other at this age, I’m guessing that gap will shorten as they get older. Like I said, I don’t ‘play favorites’, I just have one.

  8. Gregory says:

    Good thing the non-favourite one isn’t old enough to understand. My daughter (3) sometimes tells me or my wife to go away, that she does not want to play with one of us, but prefers the other. We know it is a stage, will pass, but it still hurts a bit. We’re adults and can deal with it. Your kids will not have that understanding till they are grown ups. You still have some time to change your approach. If you don’t, you’ll pay for it when the non-favourite one is a teenager, you better believe it. You can have a favourite one, but keep it to yourself. One of the most basic needs every child has, is being unconditionally, equally loved by the parent(s). It’s a survival instinct. Take that away, which is what you’re doing, and it’ll affect the non-favourite one’s physical and emotional development, among other things. Why would you do that? Why isn’t this self evident to you is beyond me, and the most disturbing thing about it.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Read the post again, Gregory.
      I LOVE my kids to death, there’s no picking between them if a steamroller was barreling down a hill.
      That said, I’ll pick my 5 yr old to take with my extra ticket to the hockey game every time. I like Zacharie more than Charlie (for the moment). That’s what this post is about.
      You perfect parents are reading waaaaay too much into it.

  9. Mark C says:

    I get what you’re saying. I think what people are reacting to is the saying of it, and the potential concenquences if those musings become known to a child.

    I think the other thing for some of us is that we’ve maybe moved past which kid is more fun. In some cases … fun doesn’t last. If you have a kid with challenges or issues fun might happen in the moment, but there can also be a lot of grief, frustration and hardwork that occupies most of your parenting time. That isn’t all bad … it builds a connection too if you do it right and sometimes the time you spend with the kid that doesn’t respond as well, but needs you more, can be just as rewarding. When my kids are fun its a laugh and we all get to relax a bit … but when my kids really need me and all that I am … I feel a deep connection to the planet … I know why I’m here.

    I think thats when the idea of favorites seems a little absurd. I’m not a perfect parent, but the struggle to be one fulfils me.

  10. its not about you, dad. says:

    This exact situation happened to a friend of mine. Two brothers. The older one could always best the younger just by being older. He helped with dishes, hold down a conversation etc as for the younger he was always one developmental step behind. The younger hates the older brother now. The younger brother has a relationship with parents but despises the brother. The older brother has been cheeted out of a sibling by a selfish parent.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks for the warning, anonymous poster who doesnt use their name or email adress. I appreciate the heartfelt advice you are so brave to give. Your keyboard can be rest assured I am a fully involved parent with both of my children. But again, thanks for your anonymous concern.

  11. Lisa says:

    I certainly agree with you that most parents likely have a favourite child (I can’t speak for myself as we only have one so far, but it’s a logical argument that I don’t doubt). I think it’s very possible that people go through phases of preferring one or the other, and many people prefer certain ages whether older or younger (which you have also copped to). What I don’t respect, however, is people who openly admit that they have a preference and which child it is. I’ve read in a number of your posts, and you make it VERY clear that you prefer your oldest, more than once. Examples:

    “Truth be told, I was fine with one son.”

    “When we divide the boys, I usually pick Z”

    “If you already have 1 child, Stop. Don’t have any more.”

    “Sometimes I wonder how much less stress would be in my life if we had just stopped at 1″

    ‘I just .. yknow .. like him better.”

    And of course, “my older son is my favorite of the two. He and I are adventurous partners in crime, and I can’t imagine life without him.” (does that mean you CAN imagine life without your other son?”

    Your younger son will see this someday. Even if he is your favourite, it’s not fair to put it in a permanent place for him to see anytime for the rest of his life. I think it would break my heart if I came across something like this that my parents had written, which is why I don’t agree with you that it’s okay to admit. He will google you someday. And I can’t see how you could possible explain it in a kind way. I just hope your relationship is stronger by then, and he will see it as a dad who didn’t cope with younger children well instead of a rivalry against his brother which he lost through no fault of his own. I hope it will surprise him, because if it doesn’t, it will just be the confirmation of his worst fears.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks for the comment, Lisa.
      My kids won’t have to google me, I’m pretty much an open book and, as you can tell, don’t have much to hide.
      Both of my sons will see all I have written about them. They’ll see the movies I have made about them. They’ll see the blogs I’ve curated with their growth. They’ll see the photobooks I’ve made collecting our favorite memories.
      BOTH OF MY KIDS.
      I appreciate your concern, but it’s quite unwarranted.
      This post, while telling my story, was to be a springboard for other parents to discuss the feelings they have about the different types of quality time they have with each kid.
      This was my story, your mileage may vary.

  12. dadcamp says:

    If you’d like to add to the discussion, here’s a link you might want to click on first
    .
    .
    http://blogs.babble.com/kid-scoop/2012/09/19/the-comment-i-dread-most-on-parenting-posts/

  13. Kacy Faulconer says:

    I like Zacharie a little better too.

  14. Nancy says:

    You know, Dadcamp, you’re just not getting it. When so many people point out to you (nicely!) that it’s not good to say on the internet which of your kids is the favourite, maybe it’s worth taking a second look at it.

    I agree with you that most parents have a favourite, there’s even a book about it, I forget the name of it. it’s about favoured/disfavoured children, and the theory is that in every family with more than one kid, the kids will be divided half and half into favoured and disfavoured.

    You were a favoured child yourself (you identify yourself as such by the whispered comment from your grandmother), so I think that’s why you don’t see it as a really big deal. It’s a HUGE deal.

    It’s great that you have the insight to realize you favour one son… your challenge now is to fight against it and overcome it, and to not let EITHER son ever know that one is your favourite.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks Nancy, I appreciate your concern.

  15. Amanda says:

    I really don’t think you mean anything by this post other than you prefer spending time with your oldest because he’s at an age where he can enjoy some of the same things you do. I’m not sure that means you like him more, just that his age makes it easier for you to do what you like to do. The early years are hard for some parents bc they have such a difficult time giving up their personal time. Once a child is old enough to tag along on a parents outings it makes it easier for the parent. I’m guessing this issue would be more prevalent for people who have children a bit later in life since they are more set in their routines and hobbies. Also my parents never tried to hide that they had favorite but made it very clear they loved both of us equally. It still hurt and it still does hurt sometimes, even though they were open books and honest about it. So, if what you are saying is more about your older child’s ability to tag along more easily, please don’t set up a dynamic that no matter how honest you are about, has the chance of stinging one of your sweet boys.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hey Amanda, thanks for ‘getting it’ and I appreciate your comments. Thank you.

  16. Loryncello says:

    You think it doesn’t have an impact on your parenting, but it does. Your children will know. You think you are being open and honest but there is harm in that. Were this truly anonymous, you’d be fine. With names and pictures, you are setting yourself up for real trouble. Children are inquisitive and will seek this out. One child will feel superior to the other, their suspicions validated by your words and photos. The other child will feel hurt and will rebel. You will reap what you sow. I don’t feel bad for you, but I do feel bad for your youngest child because no matter how old he gets, he’ll never be as old or as able to do the fun stuff first. If you are smart, you’ll reconsider this post, remove it and spend some time considering the benefits of making each child feel like the favorite by dividing your time evenly even if one does seem less fun and interesting to you. After all, did you bring them into this world to entertain you or so that you could nurture them?

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hi Loryn, my sons are 2 and 5. I’m not playing favorites, I simply have a son I prefer to ‘play’ with. I didnt do well with the baby/toddler years with either son – my fault and issue. Read the posts that are linked within and you’ll understand my history. I’m well adjusted, my kids are deeply loved. Thanks for your concern.

  17. katie says:

    I sure hope your other children never learn to use Google and see this post. You may think that honesty is great and everything, but hearing from your father that he doesn’t love you all equally is going to be the biggest gut punch your child will ever receive.

    I would comment more, but it’s painfully clear from the comments that you are so confident in yourself and this horrible decision that the suggestions of others just bounce right off of you. Heaven forbid that here, on a parenting website, you listen to other parents. It’s okay to admit you’re wrong every once in a while, and this time you absolutely are.

    1. dadcamp says:

      hi katie,
      .
      i prefer to listen to people i know, and trust. people who know and understand me and my family.
      .
      i’ll take a stranger’s advice on potty training, or how to introduce vegetables, but not on how the intimate relationships with my children are formed.
      .
      i didnt write this piece looking for advice, or criticism. i wrote it as an expression of something i felt inside and asked others if they feel the same. you don’t. and that’s fine.

  18. Jessica says:

    My ex husband had a favorite for the same reason you do, because our oldest son “does” more stuff… I think that is ridiculous.. how will he ever get to know our youngest when he favored, spent all of his time with, and always chose our oldest? I have been protective of our youngest, feeling as if he was being left behind, since he was born because of this and now that we are seperated and he doesn’t see them I can hopefully protect them from the damage can do to them to have him so obviously favor one over the other.

    I don’t have a favorite. both of my children are very different, but totally equal, they both have their quirks that make them difficult to get along with sometimes and things that make it easier to be with each one at different times, but I will NEVER tell them what those things are. and most assuredly wouldn’t word as “favoring” one of them.

    what does your wife think about this?

    1. dadcamp says:

      @Jessica my wife and I have fully discussed this post, and she completely understands my pov

  19. Jackie says:

    I realize that you think you are being cool about this, and that by including phrases like “My choosing Zacharie as my favorite is not about ‘playing favorites,’ or ‘preferential treatment’ when I’m parenting. ” Means that you think are treating them both fair, and that makes having a favorite okay.

    It doesn’t.

    It’s very, very sad to me that you think there are times that you aren’t “parenting” when you are involved in your kids life. You are parenting right now, and every time you interact with your children. You are parenting every time you choose to send time with one of your children over the other.

    As someone who grew up in a family where we where all treated fair, but there where obvious favorites let me say it sucks. It sucks because you spend a lot time wondering what makes you less special and less lovable then the favorite. It affects your self esteem and your relationship with your parents.

    I hope some day you regret writing this. But it just makes me so sad to see parents proud of this kind of attitude.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hi Jackie, thanks for commenting from your glass house and wishing a curse upon my family. It’s so positive and uplifting.

  20. Mark says:

    As a father I can honestly say that a father revealing a favorite child to all the children is one of the dumbest most harmful non-physically abusive moves I have ever heard of….topped only by doing it publicly on a blog. I want to call you an utter moron but I won’t. I’ll let the rest of your family, friends and your unfavorite child do that.

    Here’s what I do genius….When my oldest child of 3, and our only girl asks me who my favorite is I look her in the eye and tell her that SHE is my favorite oldest child and also my absolute favorite daughter. I adapt the message to my boys. They have each tried for years to get me to slip up unsuccessfully. I guarantee when I am gone it will be one of the fun memories they have of me and they will never know if I had a favorite child or who it was and probably won’t care. Instead they will remember me telling them they were my favorite X, Y or Z. As a dad you should have done better.

    I cannot imagine the harm you have done to the unfavorite child. As a parent you are most definitely NOT my favorite. I very much prefer your wife.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hi Mark, I don’t think you’ve read the posts clearly. Try reading them again and I think you’ll have a better grasp of the sitation. In the meantime, thanks for the concern.

  21. Roberta says:

    My father had a favorite child and it wasn’t me. Maybe he thought I didn’t know, but I did. It was obvious.

    My favored sibling grew up to be a bitter, controlling manipulator who made my widowed father’s last decades a living hell. I stayed out of it. He made his choice, just like you have made yours. I hope you’ve chosen wisely. Charlie will very likely hold you to it.

    1. dadcamp says:

      I hope he does to, Roberta. Thanks for commenting.

  22. m1nts says:

    I think I understand the overall point of the post (loving the stage instead of the kid) but come on! parents DO have a favorite kid, it’s just not the stage.
    My husband has 2 children, the youngest is my own and the oldest is another story. He doesn’t treat them differently, but I’m sure he loves more the younger than the older.
    His older child is a girly girl all-princess and fairies, ours is an all cars and trucks and balls kind of little guy. I find it obvious that my husband prefers to run cars all over the garden’s mud than sit on a tea table talking to dolls.
    I have 3 sisters, and my mother had and still has her favorite (and it isn’t me). It’s all about who shares the same interests, we all feel loved by both of our parents, but I hate medical terms and diseases and stuff, while my sister loves it (my mother and sister are both M.D.s)

    I believe all parents have their favorites, and that’s ok.

  23. Sammy G says:

    I am single mother of one, so my daughter is by default my favorite. However, I am one of four, and my mother has always had a soft spot for my brother, mainly I think because he needed her the most. I don’t think there is anything wrong with having a soft spot for a particular child, usually it’s for the child that you find easier to manage or have the most in common with. There is nothing wrong with that. While growing up, I perfered my dad to my mom. Mom was way tooo high strung and my dad was very go with the flow. I loved them both…but my dad was easier to deal with. We all have our “favorites” It doesn’t stop when we become parents. I am sure your children will turn out fine…:)

  24. Sherrilynne Starkie says:

    Based on my experience, it doesn’t matter if you say it out loud. The kids know who Mom or Dad likes best. This kind of partiatilty is harmful to all the children, wheather they are the faves or not. From what I’ve seen the less-loved kids seem to do better in life than the ‘pets’.

  25. alsy77 says:

    Having a favourite isn’t too rare… saying it in public is. Reading the comments my biggest problem isn’t discussing the issue, it’s the assumption that EVERYONE must have a favorite or they’re lying. That’s so unbelievably patronising.
    I don’t judge anyone for admitting to having a favourite but don’t cal me a self-delusional liar if I say I don’t.
    I’m blessed with two daughter (3 & 2 yrs old) and don’t have a favourite. I love the differences about their personalities regardless

  26. Lolly says:

    It sounds like your wife has three children instead of two. What happens when your bigger kids want to DO things that you don’t like? Are you out? If you are truly as misunderstood as you claim to be then maybe you need to take a look at your writing since clearly a good majority of the people reading have missed your point. Finally, your snarky response to Jackie who shared how this kind of preferential behavior can be truly hurtful is uncalled for. Somehow your opinion is more important than her experience. Don’t put it out there if you aren’t willing to take the heat.

  27. Mandy says:

    First off, as the parent of 4 children (mostly grown now) I am appalled that you would even make this statement to the world. Your 2 year old is a work in progress and still an infant in many ways. His personality is only beginning to develop (as is your 5 year old). So how can you know? Do you expect your 2 year old to never be able to “do more things” or will you ensure that he most certainly doesn’t so that your eldest will always be your favourite? And of course a 5 year old is more fun to do stuff with than is a 2 year old. Most parents GET that much.
    I would encourage you to see the gifts both your children have, the positives in their personalities and realize that each was made a certain way because they are unique.
    I agree with many commenters here and I do feel sorry for your kids (and your wife). Whether you realize it or not, you will carry your favouritism into your parenting; it will be subtle but it will always be present. And your second kid will get it, sooner or later. I know I did.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hey Mandy, perhaps I am a selfish Dad, I can admit that. I don’t like to stay home with my kids and so I will choose the older one if we’re doing one-on-one time on the weekends. I can say this discussion is giving me reflection to balance the scales, but I have never made my younger son feel less of a part of my life.

  28. Gramma says:

    Buzz. if that is really your name these comments are nothing but either one of two things. He is either a very silly man who is severely lacking in the social and emotional intelligence department. Worse he is a narcissist who is only using his son’s identity to get rich and famous. Someday Buzz you will get payback from your son. Unfortunately either Alberta Health or Alberta Education will likely pick up the tab for both boys counselling bills. I hope your wife has a higher sensitivity toward parenting than you or else you guys are in real trouble.
    Shame on you Buzz!

    1. dadcamp says:

      I’m neither rich, nor famous, Gramma, but thanks for your concern.

  29. Steph says:

    you are a lousy father. Honestly. You couldn’t handle being a step dad and now you’re screwing up your own kids by choosing favorites. You seem to assume that your readers are dumb b put it’s you as you assume your younger child doesn’t know he’s not the chosen one.
    As a blogger you’re judgmental and sensitive – two horrible traits. It sounds to me like you’re applying those skills to your parenting as well
    Good luck to e one that’s not your favorite – he’s going to need a lot of help understanding why he wasn’t loved as much. And please instead of exploring your poor parenting lash back out at readers.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks Steph for participating so eloquently in the conversation.

  30. Lynn says:

    Hello. My husband and I have tried to start a family for more than three years (married seven) and have lost two babies, so it is especially difficult for me to relate to your story. To be honest, I hesitated to comment after reading through the other comments–your responses sometimes seem cavalier and sarcastic which surprised me considering you posted a public blog with the topic of preferring one child to the other, with photos of both children. With respect, did you expect the responses to be lighthearted and congenial? You replied to one commenter, “i prefer to listen to people i know, and trust. people who know and understand me and my family…” yet you posted this blog in a public forum with comments enabled.

    I definitely don’t live in a “glass house” as far as this topic is concerned, but I acknowledge that, as someone who is childless (not by choice), the favoring concept is obviously something I can’t personally speak to. I don’t doubt parents have favorite children (the other commenters support you there), but posting that on the internet is something I simply can’t wrap my mind around. I understand this: It is great fun to play and interact with a child once they have developed more physical and mental capabilities and once they are more self-sufficient. You are out of the caretaker phase, so to speak. But why does that child then earn the “favorite” label simply because they are older, thereby quicker to get to the “fun” phase?

    Obviously I don’t know you; the limited information here suggests you very much love your family. Maybe you didn’t think through this one…maybe your intended tone didn’t come through….maybe you’re now nervous your younger son will be affected by this, and that’s angering when pointed out by strangers. I don’t know. I wish you all the best and hope you don’t forget for one second how lucky you are to have not one, but two healthy children.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hi Lynn, thanks for the thoughtful response. I can say this discussion has caused me to reflect on my life and take steps to balance the scales. At no point have I ever discounted the importance or love I have for my 2nd son, I have simply said the circumstances with which the first son came into our lives elevates him a smidge higher in my heart. Thanks again, and maybe you get lucky with your own family soon.

  31. Tom says:

    I’m just wondering what kind of emotional payoff you got for writing publicly about this. I can certainly understand having a “favorite” child, but I could never in a million years write about it knowing that someday there would be a very good chance that the less-favored son will read it. Or even knowing that the favored son would read it. Because no matter how you say it and no matter how you justify it, the less favored son will most likely experience this as a wound from the most important person in his life, and the favorite will always have it on hand as ammunition.

    So all that aside, my question still remains “why?” Did you need some sort of reinforcement in that you aren’t alone in your feelings? Did you expect that hearing from others would make the public statement acceptable? Or, like so many other people who write blogs, did you think that the need to be heard was greater than any need to edit yourself?

    Again…I can understand that one would be your favorite. But why you would ever express it in a way that will one day wound the second-place winner is beyond all of my comprehension.

    You say it’s not loving one less and that it’s not about preferential treatment, but it already is: you’ve mentioned Zacharie 7 times and Charlie only twice. And the times you mentioned Charlie, it’s pretty much to let us know he’s really not a lot of fun. No preferential treatment? You’re only fooling yourself.

    So, other than getting a thrill out of seeing how many people have read your blog, and enjoying the ego-boost that comes with getting strangers to comment, why on earth would you tell anyone other than a close confidante that you have a favorite child? What’s the reason? What’s the emotional payoff for you? Whatever it is, I sure hope you think it was worthwhile several years down the road when your need to go public comes back to haunt you.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hi Tom, thanks for the comment. I get an emotional payoff when people discuss my posts honestly. I write to provoke. I’m secure in the relationship I have with my kids, with my wife, and with my extended family. It is their love and support I crave, not that of “Tom from the internet”, but thanks for your concern.

  32. Jessica says:

    Here’s the thing. You might like the age of 5 better than the age of 2, but you should NEVER EVER put it out there that you like one child better than the other. Your child will read it one day and feel bad. That’s just the way it is. And then you will have to work it out. He will have a hard time understanding it was just because of his age. Words hurt. This should’ve been a conversation with your wife that you two could laugh about and understand. Not a conversation with the entire planet. You opened yourself up for ridicule.

  33. Angie Nader says:

    At least your being honest! everyone here judging you probably have worse things in their life than honesty :)

  34. Nancy says:

    You say Sept. 24 at 6:33 pm “I have simply said the circumstances with which the first son came into our lives elevates him a smidge higher in my heart.”

    No, you said more than that. But even if that’s all you’d said, that is really horrible. It’s not right to love one son more; that’s even worse than liking one more. You’re saying worse things in your clarifications, not better.

    I find it disturbing that you don’t even feel a bit guilty for feeling this way, and instead are breezily defensive. Those poor little boys! It’ll be a lot better for your whole family if you learn to admit when you’ve made a mistake, as despite your defensive words, you probably do have a wee smidge of remorse by now. If you don’t… wow.

    Sometimes, it really is OK to take advice from the internet. This is one of those times.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks Nancy, I am working at balancing the scales, sure. I still stand by my post.

  35. Char says:

    Calling all children, young and old: Do you have a favorite parent?

  36. JG says:

    Honestly, DADCAMP, it’s just the terrible 2′s throwing you off. But next time you want to share it with the world, remember that a conversation with just you and your wife will be more profitable and enjoyable. You really put it out there.

  37. Carrie says:

    I have 4 kids. I love them all equally. However, I have a favorite, sometimes two, at any given time. I don’t sweat it and I don’t feel guilty because I have been a mom long enough to know (9 years) that the favorite cycles. They’ll all been a favorite at some point, and the older ones multiple times. And by favorite, I simply mean that I enjoy spending more time with them at that point and they’re more entertaining/fun to be with. Let’s be honest here… who wants to spend time with the 3 year old that’s in the screaming “That’s MIIIIIIINE. NOOOOOO!!!!!!!!” stage over the 9 year old who has a to die for sense of humor. But I am sure in 3 months when he’s in the asking a hundred billion questions a mile an hour stage and she’s in the “Sweet, I want to bake with you, and clean with you, and be your sidekick stage”, she’ll be my favorite too. It’s a natural cycle, I think.

  38. Tom from the Internet says:

    You may be secure in the relationship you have with your sons right now, but once one finds out you favored the other and used the internet to let everyone know just so you could provoke some comments from strangers, my guess is that the security you now enjoy will evaporate.

    If it’s your sons’ love and support you crave, you should have kept this to yourself. Writing about it to provoke comments shows that what you crave is an audience. Essentially, you’ve gotten an ego boost at the expense of your sons.

    You said “thank you for your concern.” My concern is not for you in the least. It’s for your sons, who will most likely pay for your egoism in the long run. And I don’t need thanks; because of your blog, I honestly feel sorry for them.

  39. Grace says:

    A while ago my husband and I had this same conversation…..in our bedroom! We have 3 children and our oldest daughter was easy breezy while our two boys were very challenging (to say the least). Do we like hanging out with our daughter better…yep. Would we ever tell our 2 and 3 year old that…heck no”
    I totally understand likeing “the stage” better,. I always say ” I hate the baby stage” and Oooooo the faces I get, but in today’s day and age putting out ” I have a favorite kid” blog is a little risky. Your kiddo might read this one day (like many others have said) and take it the wrong way, even if you say you are a open book, he might not understand even if you think he will!

  40. SHERYL says:

    Guess what jerk. I’m sure your youngest son already knows it and will always know it.

  41. Will KC says:

    When I read your post, I don’t have any animosity toward you, but I think about a friend who has two children in elementary school. One child is active in school sports and activities. The other child (their second) is bound to a wheelchair and will always need to have the care from his parents that is normally part of that “first two years of life” (that time you called “not that exciting”). His father will never be able to take him fishing, kite flying, or hiking, but they spend time sitting in the sun in the backyard just being together. With your criteria in mind, that child wouldn’t have a chance of having you fall “in love” with him but his parents consider every moment with him a privilege and an honor (his life will likely be short). They have a deep bond with him that has been forged even during mundane tasks like feeding, bathing, and diaper changing. I hope one day you’ll realize that the time before you say you feel in love with your children was precious–for some people it’s all they have. I realize that you’re just being honest and open about your real feelings and state of mind during that time, but the challenge as a parent is to think about more than yourself and what you consider fun, boring, etc. It’s about something greater than you, blogging, and provoking others.

  42. MichelleKCanada @AnotherLookBook says:

    Just read this article and I was all “wow”.
    My 2 youngest sons are watching football right now (15 & 12) and I just asked them, “How would you feel if you found out that one of you was my favourite?” They both responded that it would suck big time. Then they responded, “What nutbar parent would ever admit that.”
    Yeah so, have fun raising your boys and be prepared to put a little bit of money aside for therapy. Cheers,

  43. Michelina says:

    I have a 4 year old son and a 10 month old daughter. My son is the light of my life so I do understand where you’re coming from. My plan has been to tell each of them while we’re alone, “You are my favorite but if you ever tell your sister/brother that, I’ll deny saying it forever.”.
    I thought it would be clever but now after reading these comments it doesn’t seem so funny. Adults live with the wounds of childhood favoritism.
    As a suggestion, even though staying home with the youngest isn’t what you like to do, why not do it anyway. Surely Charlie would like to spend time with his daddy one-on-one and it would be neat for mom and Z to get some fun time together.
    Just my thoughts. Thanks for the discussion.

  44. Coco says:

    I can relate. One of my sons is far more hard work than the other. I love them both, but most of the time the older one is far more likeable. I am hoping the younger one will mellow out but suspect it is personality rather than a stage. I do adore him though and he is my baby. He is just of a personality type less like me and more like his father, ha! I think it evens out, and needs no emotional handwringing reaction, but I’m not sure I’d ever be brave enough to articulate it as you have, because I’d hate to hurt either of my sons’ feelings. (I like that you took your little one out recently and had a great time. This suggests to me that there is plenty of hope!!!)

  45. jude says:

    Sir I can understand you feeling the way you do. In fact, I love my first born son so much that I was scared when I became pregnant with my second child (daughter) that I wouldn’t have enough love for her since I was OBSESSED with my son. The minute she was born, I forgot all about my husband and son and enjoyed my time with her in the hospital. THey both have different needs from me but I could never choose between them. LIke in Sophie’s choice, would you choose your first born? over your second? Please don’t tell this to your second son as it will screw him up mentally. Don’t be selfish and have the need to express yourself at you son’s expense.
    Good Luck to your family
    Jude

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hey Jude, thanks for the comment. My blog is my emotional gym, I work out a lot of stuff in there, so I will continue to write.

      1. dadcamp says:

        I’m going to borrow this comment from Cassandra responding to another post:
        http://blogs.babble.com/kid-scoop/2012/09/19/the-comment-i-dread-most-on-parenting-posts/

        “Ha. My favorite is when (anonymous) commentators tell me they “feel sorry” for my son for having me as a mom. Really?! How about feeling sorry for kids who are abused, neglected, hungry and living in poverty, etc…”

  46. Shannon says:

    When first reading this I immediately pictured my children, and my heart broke to even think of one being “favored” over the other. By anyone! But here is a more relatable way of putting it. When you have your first child, you can’t imagine loving any other living human more that this wonderful precious gift, your first child. When you have your second, you are scared to the bone that you will not “feel” the same about the second as you do the first. Everything your first does is AMAZING, and you can’t imagine it getting any better! When you have your second child, for a while, just like the first, he/she is so needy, and everything you have already done once before. Not much is different in what a newborn needs. Parenthood starts becoming “rewarding” (for lack of a better work) when you get that very first hint that your child actually KNOWS who you are, and actually starts “giving back”. You don’t know your second child because he/she is too small to have a personality all their own. Given that your children are apart in age, I am certain that you will actually regret putting in black and white that you “like” one over the other. You will always have a special place in your heart for the first, because it is exactly that – your first. Just like all your firsts, most are memorable. My kids are now 4 and 6, and I could never in 20 lifetimes like one above the other, or prefer one over the other. OF COURSE there are days when you would love to have a mute button for one and/or the other, or make a comment like “This one is driving me nuts”! That is what I hope is normal is a house with 2+ kids! I don’t agree that putting down that you like one over the other was the best course of action without a thorough explanation, but it’s done, and you have tried to explain it has nothing to do with lack of love. Another thing we all need to realize is that Mom’s have an instant connection, no matter what the order. Dad’s don’t even know their child until they are born. Just give it some time, I’m pretty sure in a couple years you will think, “how could I have even thought that”? Well this is my hope for you anyway. When I talk to second time around Mom’s, I always tell them not to worry, their love, AND like will grow right along with those babies!

  47. Kenya Parrish-Dixon says:

    I saw this on the news and then sought out the blog because I thought the media was joking. Well, they were just reporting. First, your sons are adorable. Congratulations. Second, parenting is hard and these little people don’t come with manuals. Third, I get it. You are being tongue in cheek and truthful. Now the hard part. Being a parent involves using good judgment and often backtracking. This was poor judgment on your part. You are the father and as often as possible you should try to put yourself in your children’s shoes. Zach is going to feel guilty and he may be teased by other children. He will carry this for the rest of his life in a not so healthy way. Your younger child will feel slighted and like he is not good enough. He may also get teased. The dynamic between them will be stressful and every parental decision will be analyzed for proof of your declaration. Both children will carry the burden of this very childish declaration for a very long time. Parents have always had favorites. Families know who the favorites are but parents always deny having favorites. You know why? because a child is not equipped to handle the emotions that come with being labeled not good enough by a parent. Additionally, the child that is the favorite denies being the favorite as well. You know why? because even the favorite craves a sense of fairness and often has compassion for his/her siblings. The favorite wants to earn praise and accomplishments. You just set a very odd dynamic in play. The good news is that you aren’t the first parent to make a mistake – in public (we all make them but usually don’t choose to publicise and then defend our mistakes). The better news is that with some reflection, you will probably regret this public admission and will use the next few years to work this out with your boys so that they don’t get a sense that this was anything other than dad being immature and silly because he is so wonderful and loving. Even very poor moments of parental judgment can be repaired. Just don’t ever do it again. Have a good day.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks for the advice Kenya. I’ll just leave it at: I (mostly) agree.

  48. Lisa says:

    Parental favoritism puts the unfavored child at risk for depression, behavior problems, and substance abuse/dependance problems among others. The favored child is at risk for having a sense of entitlement believing that s/he is above others so rules don’t apply to him/her. This interferes with the favored child being able to form healthy relationships with co-workers, friends, and intimates. I hope you started a therapy fund. You might want to read these:

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/surviving-your-childs-adolescence/201103/adolescence-and-parental-favoritism

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100707220510.htm

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-narcissus-in-all-us/200901/when-parents-play-favorites

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-favorite-child/201104/when-favoritism-becomes-abuse

  49. Fran says:

    Well, I don’t think it does anyone any harm to confess that you like someone better than the other. I know that I am my mum’s favourite and my sister is my dad’s. It’s just because we are more alike, it doesn’t mean though that they love us differently. It’s just that we are closer. It was the same with our grandparents. My mum’s parents liked me better, I was their first grandchild and i am so much like my mum so I was more like their second child and my sister was my dad’s parents’ favourite because she had been their youngest grandchild so she got really spoilt. But no one was angry or upset about that. I think everyone knows that you can’t like everyone the same way. I love my parents exactly the same way and my grandparents as well but does it make me a bad person to admit that I have my favourites as well???

  50. CIndy says:

    What is UP with that quote by Jeffery Kluger? Seriously, totally don’t agree. I have 2 kids with one on the way and every time we add a kid to our crew our hearts expand to include the next one. How could we have favorites when they all have such amazing things about them? Probably it’s because we see them for who they are becoming as they grow each day. We anticipate both of their fabulous futures individually. Hopefully it gets easier for you to do this with Charley! We do admit, 2 year old temper tantrums can be frustrating, but it will fly by fast. Glad to see at least that all the comments have got you thinking and you aren’t just being a cynical, defensive kind of guy. Maybe it was worth it for that!

  51. ThisHurts says:

    I grew up in a home without a dad and where my mother always favored her two sons. I am the oldes of three and the only girl. My mom, now deceased, rightly admitted once that she loved her middle son the best and always, always favored the boys over me. I grew up feeling isolated and this causes me pain to this day. My brothers live in another state and on my mother’s death bed, they asked her to tell me she loved me. She was unable to speak then and just shook her head. I strongly advise you to stop this nonsense that will hurt your sons forever. Don’t think for one minute my brothers are not aware of my pain and have tremendous guilt over it. You sound silly. If you want entertainment, or a being that “does things” buy a pet.

  52. Karl Bivens says:

    We can never tell the future…
    What if you had a life-ending accident today?
    All that would be left are your words of loving one child over another…
    It is easy to think that it is okay, that you will blog about the joys of the other child as they grow…
    What if you never got the chance, and this one is all you left behind?

  53. Countrygirl says:

    Wow. That’s truly a ballsy statement! Nothing like ruffling some feathers! :) This is a great debate and it truly is something that people do not talk openly about.

    I have 5 children and while I do agree that I may get along better with one child over the other I really try to look within myself to see why I may have difficulty with the other child. I then try to see all the wonderful things about the child I have troubles with and learn to have a favorite something the other child. :) Cuz maybe I will adore doing something with the other child that I haven’t discovered yet or they will teach me something that will open a whole new world to me. I try to do individual one on one dates so I can get to know all my children on an individual level and appreciate their uniqueness. It is true, I love certain personality traits about each child and the older ones are easier to get along with for me too! They are so fun and it’s a blast to develop that parental friendship with them especially when they have a great sense of humour. :) However, I try not to play favorites and try to enjoy each child at each stage they go through. Just like in life, some people you click with and others it takes some work and soul searching to really discover some sort of commonality.

    It def takes courage to admit that you do have a fav. It is true, lots of parents do have a fav. I do understand your reasoning behind it, however the psychological implications must not be overlooked. :) I agree with others that if you openly make it known that you have a fav. the other child will resent you for it and become jealous. Mental/psychological issues will arise for your unfavorite child later in life. This statement will affect him later in life. Even if you do say, ‘Oh, but I love you too…’ It’s not the same. Everyone wants to feel important and valued in their parents eyes. For you are their world. Kids are very astute and pick things up very quickly. Not feeling valued will lead to self esteem issues which will affect their entire lives in all kinds of ways. It’s a slippery slope.

    While parents may not ‘openly’ say they have a favorite, it is shown in how they talk to the other child or how they treat the other child. They just may not be aware for it may show up non-verbally. For example, someone heard me talk to my kids and told me afterwards that my tone changes with each child that I talk to. I thought that was so interesting because I really thought that I treated them all the same, but it was not so. My tone soften for the younger one, was harsher for the middle one (the one that easily exasperates me) and more adult for my older one. So it was an eye opener for me to have that pointed out and I now try to keep in mind my tone and body language around my children to make sure that they all feel loved and special for who they are as an individual. :)

  54. misty says:

    You make yourself sound egotistic and selfish. You’re contradicting yourself when you say you don’t “play favorites” you just have one. That doesn’t even make sense. How would you feel if your mother said “I just like your brother more than you because he can do more. I feel bad for your kids and your wife.

    1. dadcamp says:

      I’m quite aware of where I stand in my family and I’m fine with it. Thanks for your concern, Misty.

  55. Lorraine M says:

    Did you people read the whole blog before passing judgement?? I did……..I took away this that his oldest is his favorite right now because he can do stuff that the other can not. He doesn’t love one more then the other he just prefrefers to spend time with the one the is probably less work. Hanging out with a bigger kid means less tantrums, longer time between finding a bathroom and in general less hassle. all you parents out there can’t tell me that there is one kid you prefer to take or leave when you do something just to make it easier on you. I asked my kids to read the blog and tell me if I had wrote that would it hurt their feelings now ( my kids are 19, 14 & 11) to see that I had a favorite and they all said no that’s silly. Why is everyone so worried about how his kids are going to feel when they get older and see what he wrote…….they will see that their dad loved spending time with them. He is not the first or the last dad who likes to spend time with the older kid opposed to the younger one. My kids know I love them but differently, there are something’s I love doing with one that I would rather not do with the other. Does that make me a bad mom?? I don’t think what you wrote will have any lasting effects on your kids when they grow up because honestly how many elementary kids are reading your blog?? These crazy people who are sensationalizing your blog will find someone else they feel did some horrendous to their kids feelings and you will be long forgotten about. Maybe me……LOL. Keep on loving your boys and have many more adventures with them THAT is what they will remember.

  56. Gregory says:

    My hats off to writing this post. I think it is a corageous thing to say. But then again I just think you are a parent and expressing the age old “my favorite child is who ever I am speaking to at the time”. I think it he is just applying it to this situation since his one child has not quite developed a personality like his oldest. He stated several times he loves both sons equally. So stop critizing his parenting skills and worry about your own.

  57. shelley h says:

    I was the youngest of three childten who grew up knowing i was their least favorite child….I developed feeling inferior and with compromised self esteem…requiring counselling…..I have NEVER forgotten the damage created!!!
    I am intelligent, educated,compassionate and loyal and never did anything to embarrass them.
    But i became a people pleaser to survive….not by choice.
    How could a parent put these feelings on paper? Children already sense the indifference and words are visual and a constant reminder!!

  58. Robin says:

    Cut the poopy people! I’ve got a favourite child too. The older one. But now that the younger one is able to do more stuff, it’s starting to flip flop back and forth. The truth is that parents and kids have their own personalities and you’ll likely connect with one (or 2) better than the other(s). Your kids will probably have a favourite parent and you’ll have to be okay with them announcing it to the online world as well!

    http://www.dirtyrottenparenting.com

  59. Dan G says:

    I understand your point. My daughter is three years older than my son. She has always been able to do things he couldn’t do because he was too young.

    Now that has changed because my son has gotten older. My children has completely different personalities. One is an actress and one is an athlete.

    I am sure that two things will come out of all of this. One, you will see that your kids are completely different individuals. Two, you will be stripped out your “Father of the Year” award.

  60. Walt says:

    if you like him so much, why did you spell his name wrong?

    1. dadcamp says:

      You’re awesome, Walt. I’m French-Canadian. My son’s name is the French spelling.

  61. Mom Of Two says:

    WOW! After reading these comments, it looks like the line for Parent Of The Year is going to be very long this year. Leave him alone. At least he is truthful with himself and others. I have two kids and I love them with my whole heart. However, they are different so I like them differently.

  62. Mac says:

    Well, you got your fame. Kind of weak type of fame you are choosing.

    You are correct, it is not “…too evil.” More like Evil Light. Your current trajectory is for lonely middle age and elderly years.

    It took you 2 years to fall in love with your now 5 year old? Wow. You really are all about you. I am sure you will be able to look back to this blog of yours and other like actions for the source of your challenges to come.

    Pray for his kids. He has little to offer them.

  63. Beta Dad says:

    I hope the pageviews were worth throwing your kid under the bus, dude.

  64. Laurie P says:

    As the youngest in my family, I too understood that I was the least favorite child. And the damage done by that knowledge has taken a life time to undo. Now as the mother of two I can say that I do not have a favorite child. I love both equally and I LIKE both children equally but for different reasons. And that is because I spent time with both children. You can’t know your child if you do not spend time with them.

    One of the biggest problems I have with you posting is that you admit to wanting to take the easy way out and not deal with a toddler. Did you do the same with Zach? And if you do not spend the time with Charlie, how are you ever going to know him or learn to love him. Because Zach will always be older and better able to do things with you.

    Did you really stop to think of what you were saying before you posted it here? I find your posted comments as the worst kind of shallow parenting. Did you even want children before you had them?

  65. TJ says:

    Reminds me of this post: http://blogs.babble.com/being-pregnant/2011/03/15/mom-confession-i-think-i-love-my-son-a-little-bit-more/?cid=plusblog.

    So sad :`(.
    You may have, unwittingly, created animosity between your sons. Good going, dad. I have two kids, and I can honestly say, I don’t like one more than the other. If I did, I would not say or write it out loud. Bad move, imho.

    1. dadcamp says:

      My blog is my thought gym, TJ, it’s where I work out my issues. It works for me. Your mileage may vary.

  66. marinka says:

    That’s weird. I always liked your other kid better.

  67. Angela says:

    Wow people have very strong opinions and are not afraid to share. It does feel like a lot if them are projecting there terrible childhoods on you. I can totally see where you are coming from. I have three kids 8, 11, 12, and I find that I do favor one over another at different times and in different curcumstances. They all have different personalities that lend to certain activities and occasions. I wonder as your youngest child gets older, and is capable of more, if you will find moments where he is your favorite. Either way I don’t see the scandal here. You seem like a loving father and that is what’s really important.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks Angela. It’s easy to react to a sexy headline, I get it. And keyboards give people courage to say silly things. On the surface, I see the sexiness to this story. However, to the people who know me and my family, this is very much overblown.

  68. TJ says:

    A journal would be just as effective to work out your issues, but much less hurtful and maybe less damaging to your sons, their self-esteem, and their relationship. They’re YOUR issues, not your sons’, so why put them- both your issues and your sons- in the spotlight? If, God forbid, your older son were to suffer some type of accident or disease that deemed him, in your eyes, less fun or capable of satisfying your desire to do stuff with him, would your younger son become your favorite? I’m no expert, just a parent, but bit egocentric there, don’t you think? Of course, as I said before, this is my ho.

  69. Tammy says:

    After reading this and all the comments…..All I can say is WOW!!!! I have 2 boys of my own and I also have 2 step-daughters, and let me say this I love them all…no matter what life brings you, you face it head on and when it comes to children they are all different in their own little ways, and to have a favorite over the other is so wrong on so many levels. I pray you look at how this could hurt and truly effect your youngest child. The same sex parent is the most influential on a child’s life, children look up to them more than anything. Children at young ages are what some would call time consuming, however, that is the most important time in their lives and for you to choose to not spend as much time with your youngest child is hurtful and wrong. This is the time to bond with them and as they grow and introduce them to new and adventurous things in life. You say you don’t want to take your youngest child on the fishing trip because he is 2, I can understand that somewhat, however, he also can see (even at his young age) that you choose his brother over him to do things with. I know you say you are going to do things with him when he gets older but the truth is the time is NOW! Life is too short to not spend time with your children. Just remember children are very smart and they absorb so much and understand more things than people give them credit for.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hi Tammy, I think you’re reading a little too deeply into the piece, but I appreciate your passion. My youngest is not neglected in the least. He’s loved and a fully complete part of my life and family.

  70. Robert Carter says:

    I think most children know who is the most favoured without being told. In this case think the Dad loves both children equally but just finds it more fun to hang around a 5 yr old rather than a 2. I would tend to agree that 5 yr olds would be more interesting, can do more stuff and converse more. Each to their own I guess. Some people prefer babies. Just wait. Soon they’ll both be teens with their own set of challenges. Good luck to you all !
    (an only child and childless by choice)

  71. Jennifer says:

    Sounds like your parenting style is more about you than your kids. I get that because my father was the same way. As long as he was having a good time and doing something he enjoyed, he was great to be with…otherwise, not so much. Good news is I don’t hate my father. Bad news for you is – he had four kids and told us individually we were all his favorite. At any rate as a mother I don’t really get your position. I kind of think exploiting your inner most feelings about your children on a blog is at best tacky, particularly when it could have consequences way more devastating than causing a public outrage. I admit there is one of my children that I relate to more than the other. And sometimes I would rather take one than the other when we’re splitting them up, mostly because one is older, thus easier to deal with. But a favorite? No. That makes no good sense to me.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Hi Jennifer, I dont think your family dynamic reflects on mine in the same way I don’t think mine reflects on yours. Thanks for the comment, just the same.

  72. John Davis says:

    I have no problem with what you are saying, but don’t get too mad when a few years from now BOTH your kids like their mom better than you…:)

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks John, I’ll take my chances.

  73. Amanda says:

    As long as you love them equally, it should be fine. Chances are your kids are going to choose a favorite parent, anyways.

  74. Asha says:

    It seems like some people are taking this way too seriously while others “get it” and relate. I am a mom of two as well, one baby, one 3 year old (both daughters). Lately I have sort of been “falling in love all over again” with my three year old and really seeing the value in her beyond-toddlerhood age. At the same time, I’m all over my second’s babyhood in a completely different way. I love the crap out of both of them for totally different reasons, but some days (or even weeks), I “like” (want to hang with) one more than the other. It switches often for me. I’ve had lots of convos about this with parent friends and they all have expressed similar sentiment. I’m not sure why so many people are going wild over this. Dadcamp is clearly not saying he has kid preference. And from reading his other posts he seems like a pretty awesome dad. I’m glad his posts are getting extra traffic :)

  75. peter chin says:

    It’s strange that you somehow separate spending time with children from love, as if you can love both sons equally, but can still willingly spend more time with one than the other. That may make perfect sense to you, but makes little sense to anyone else, and even less to Charlie.

  76. Victor says:

    Don’t worry Dadcamp…

    When your sons ARE big enough to read this,, I’m pretty sure their reaction won’t be “OMG! You had FAVORITES!?” but probably more likely “Wow Dad! The Internet sure was an annoying place in the old days, before they developed butthurt-filters!”

  77. Kalukoo says:

    Sadly, there are favourites. Your children will clearly lay that out for you when you are a senior. You will have taught them well, I suppose, about favouritism if I am reading your writing correctly.

    Sounds like you conditionally favour your children based on your needs at any given moment in their development cycle.

    I’d like to suggest that parenting is not about satisfying the needs of the adult.

    Rather, isn’t parenting about unconditional love, unconditional favouritism and love for all the children in the family? Wouldn’t it be great if a child could at least have that perception that ‘mom and dad’ favour ‘us’ equally and ‘hey there are no conditions for their attention’? Isn’t it the role of the parent to make that perception…their reality? Is that pie in the sky?

    Sounds like you intend to fully act on philosophy of favouritism as a child rearing method. I think I read that while you love them both equally there will be a favourite. Hmmm: I am sensing cognitive dissonnence will become an issue for your children: a state of hold 2 or more conflicting cognitions in belief and values as you chose one over the other on trips, hockey games and so forth while explaining the fine points of equal love yet not being the ‘favoured’.

    Give the public a report in 10 years on your success. Perhaps I am wrong and you’ve nailed down a great new parenting style. (If I am right…set aside some time, money and professional therapy to repair possible psychological damage of the non-favoured child..just speculating).

    Good luck and Aloha!

    Post script: Memories and Aloha – by Kalukoo (Dad in Hawai’ian).

    If you are able to think with ‘aloha’ I doubt you could conceive favouritism among your children.

    AloHA – defined: “With my eyes, I look into yours and give you ‘HA’…the breath of life”.

    Beats ‘hello’ any day don’t you think?

    I often say one of my roles as a parent is to create great memories for my children – twins now in their late teens. So, we do (or at least try our best to).

    Being the equal opportunity parents we are (far from perfect parents, mind) both twins got the trip to Hawai’i when they were 16 and both got to engage in every opportunity equally. Of course, one chose to sky dive and the other didn’t. One surfed. The other did not. Both loved shopping! We did not pick and chose what child did what based on our favour.

    We vacationed as a ‘family’ interacting and learning (hopefully) from those interpersonal experiences tolerance of other, acceptance. We also had a fantastic vacation. All agreed.

    There are no favourites in our family. Just the way it is. Period.

  78. trea says:

    When one son gets more time than other one, YES that is preferential treatment

  79. Robyn says:

    My parents never told myself or my sister who their respective favourites were, but it didn’t matter. We still knew. And the favourites swapped around as we got older. Now I genuinely don’t feel that there is a favourite (we’ve both annoyed them to such a degree that it no longer matters).

    Realising at the age of about eight that my sister was my mum’s favourite wasn’t a big deal to me. But then we both knew that I was my dad’s favourite. Not sure how it would’ve affected me if that wasn’t the case though. So I guess my advice would be to make sure that your wife doesn’t prefer Z too. You can each pick one, just make sure it’s not the same one.

  80. Shelley says:

    I’m not a mother, but I am an aunt to two nieces, and I definitely have a favorite. So does my sister, and although she won’t admit it, it’s obvious to everyone else. Better, I think, to be self-aware and to admit it rather than to treat one differently whilst insisting there’s no difference. That’s just crazy-making to the poor kids. I like to think, “I love them the same, but I like one more.” There’s nothing terrible about that–it’s true of all human beings. Some we just have a greater affinity for.

    By the way, I was my father’s favorite (i.e., we were two peas in a pod, got along great, and liked doing the same stuff), and my sister was mom’s favorite, for similar reasons. We all knew it, and we’re all happy and well-adjusted. I am not worried about either of your kids!

  81. katie says:

    WOW! The internet is making this out to be like you’re a monster. However, it makes TOTAL sense. I have 3 boys and I love them all the same but there are different things that make them my “favorite”.

  82. realitycheck says:

    It’s an honest perspective, and I believe you love both the same. The sad thing is your “least favorite” child will always harbor those feelings of being less liked. And when situations arise where you have to side with your oldest even if he’s right, the younger will always see it as favoritism. I live it everyday with my oldest sibling. She is the golden child, never been hit, spanked, reprimanded, though she’s caused trouble from her teens way into her adult life, done all sorts of things bad/wrong – you name it, but never got talked to or disciplined the way I did – their “least favorite”. When he gets older and doesn’t quite do things like the older one, never say “why can’t you be more like so&so”. It’s damaging – I know. Make sure you’re never this way.

  83. tisha says:

    I have four daughters ages 26, 18, 14 and 9 and I have a favorite (and not afraid to say it) , my 14 year old is my favorite!! Doesn’t mean I love her more than my other three!!!
    And I’m sure you love your sons equally.
    (And by the way my husband has a favorite also, our 9 year old)

  84. Alan K. says:

    We have Two boys, 13 and 15 and my inlaws fav. is our 15 year old and because of that well, who can guess who my fav. is but I don’t treat them any different I love them both the same and I keep it to myself other than this post. Alan in Cincinnati Ohio

  85. Neil says:

    Well said Dadcamp. I found your blog, simply because of the reaction to it. Some have questioned the wisdom in the honesty, even yourself, but I also admire your honesty regarding being a parent is about how parenting fits in with your own life choices and desires. Of course we have extremes from total neglect or abuse to trying to bring up a child with non sexually biased identity. Doing the things that you enjoy doing with your kids, will of course slowly change the things you enjoy doing without them, and will migrate to doing the things they enjoy doing. Contentment and life satisfaction is the ability to do all those things you need to do because you know they are an integral requirement to do the things you desire to do. I strived to never enter into a weekend without having planned something to do with the kids. I am now rewarded with invites of ‘Grandad- you come with us’.

  86. Dawn says:

    I read this story on yahoo and it remind me of my and my Dad’s relation .
    In our case my sister was the chosen one. My dad was very vocal about it . I affected very negatively throughout my life . Now , when I am in my middle age I look back and see how it could have been without struggling to get approval all my life and to deal with all the insecurities I developed just because I felt I was not good enough even for my own father . Ofcourse I never developed any good relationship with my sister either . So think carefully what you say and do infront of your children as it has long lasting effects on their lives . It may be nothing for you but it is alot for them . I would suggest you to stop saying such things and please remove all that blogs before your little one start reading and understanding this you may not like him but you may do him a big favour by atleast pretend to like him equal .

    1. dadcamp says:

      I’ve never said I do anything less, Dawn.
      This is a very large tempest in a very small teacup.
      Thanks for the comment.

  87. Paul says:

    Copped this a while back, too. Nice piece, I tried to be a bit more circumspect but it is something worth talking about. Only not worth being cursed!!

    http://www.dailylife.com.au/life-and-love/parenting-and-families/playing-favourites-20120516-1yqix.html

  88. Jennifer says:

    I’m happy to see you’ve changed your blog and that you can see an evolution in your relationship with your second child. As the sister of the favorite child I can tell you how hurtful it is. I’ve always wondered why, why can’t I never be as good as her, why can’t my father ever look at me the way he looks at her… it came to a point where to protect myself I decided to stop any contact with my father. I also don’t think I could ever have more than one child because I’m so scared of treating them differently. As I grew older it became more and more obvious and therefore more hurtful for me. So please carry on thinking about your relationship with both your sons.

  89. bob says:

    i believe u shouldnt have posted this keep to urself u would have had no problem!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  90. claire says:

    My husband and I have talked at length about this. We both love our kids equally, but each of us feels closer (atm) to a different child. I find my daughter easier to be around, easier to like, we have more complementary personality traits. My son is harder for me. He was harder as a baby, a toddler, and now a kid. Our personalities, likes, interests are just less in line. So my gut reaction is to say, yes I have a favorite. But while it is often (not always) easier, and more “fun” for me to be around my daughter I wouldn’t pick one over the other in a major decision. I find conversations about love and feelings we (as a society) seem to lack the right words to discuss the nuances that exists.

    I also reject the idea that one single blog post will crush your child in some nameless future. The ongoing relationship and conversations with your children as you raise them are what will shape them. Either you will have a healthy relationship and they will maybe someday read this and go, hey ya, or you will have had a bad relationship and they will read this and it will confirm what already existed. But I suspect if you are open and honest about your feelings and processing them (even shocking in a public forum! on no please go hid all of your feelings away somewhere dark it is not ok to talk about them! *eye roll*) you are well on your way to a happy path :)

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks for that Claire. I can say the past week has caused a little self-reflection and I’m aware of my bias and trying to move away from it. Thanks for the comment.

  91. Alaska Dad says:

    I battle against the stereotype that you perpetuate: Dad’s just want “to do stuff.”

    I think you summed up your attitude nicely when you stated: “Those first 2 years were not exciting for me.”

    Being a Dad and a good or great one is not about you. It is selfless.

    Being truthful to yourself is one thing. Projecting it to the world is another and I am sure has given you a lot more notoriety in the Blog world which is probably what you wanted by making this post.

    Maybe if you were more involved with your children in the first two years your bond would have been strong enough for you to think more deeply about future affects on them when airing your preference.

  92. Arthur says:

    I don’t feel I have favourites with my sons although I always preferred my mother to my father. I have two sons seventeen months apart in age. What I have found is at different times I have found it easier to get on with one than the other. It really did vary from year to year. Teenage years were at times difficult with my eldest but now he is 21 we enjoy each others company once again. In recent years I have felt the youngest gravitates more towards his mother as he adores being waited on and fussed over so he possibly has a favourite amongst his parents if not the other way around. I do feel greatly loved by him so I don’t have a problem with him being perhaps closer to his mother. I think people are making a big deal about what you said which is quite ridiculous. Your only crime was honesty. Good luck to you!

  93. Someones daughter says:

    Uhmmm anyone notice that maybe the mom favors the youngest since she gets him more than the oldest so maybe both kids see the favortism. My brothers favored but that doesnt stop me from being a daddys girl. Parents have fav.s but heres a secret….so do the kids. So get off this dudes back. I think he should be congratulated for taking his kid out so much and doing so many cool things with them. Most kids just get put infront of a t.v.

  94. CoolerRebelSibling says:

    I know I wasn’t the favorite growing up, but in general I feel that it’s better for things to be out in the open and discussed rather than kept secret. If you’re not the favorite, you feel it, even if it’s unspoken. Knowing that it’s not uncommon among parents to have favorites validates the feelings I had as a kid. As an adult, you learn that acceptance and love are a lot more important than being a favorite. It doesn’t bother me anymore that my mom gets along better with my brother because I can see how alike they are (and how different they both are from me). Thanks for opening up the discussion.

  95. rugmaven says:

    I am the oldest of six and I was a favorite child, my parents never said it outloud or put it in writing in any form but all knew. I do not have enough time to take you through the events of my life but here is a condensed version. The second favorite was my baby sister who was the last. Mom died at 12 , the middle four bonded because they were middle children basically ostracized the two of us and in the case of my baby sister still do. I also became their mother figure so they begrudingly gave cut me some slack because of the dual roles. I am 65 now and have one child. That decision was based on the fact that you love all of your children but i believe it is human nature to have favorites. I had one so my child would never have to go through the emotional turmoit that my brothers and sisters did as she will always be the favorite.

  96. Linda says:

    I must admit, my jaw did drop at some of the author’s statements, but after reading the entire post, I think I see where he is coming from. I am a mother to two sons whom I love equally, but are there times one is easier than the other…yes!!! Do I have a special bond with my first…yes, he was my firstborn, and made me a mother. Do I love him more…NO. My husband is very similar to the author. He is just not very comfortable with babies…never has been! I accept that about him. Once our oldest was big enough that my husband felt more comfortable, he has been VERY involved! And, as our youngest gets older he becomes more and more involved! I took it as the author was saying he does not love his older son more he just has more fun with him, and feels more comfortable and confident being alone with him. I had to accept that my husband was just not comfortable taking off with our boys when they were babies or even being left alone with them! I think as his younger son gets older he will form a strong bond with him also…exactly like my husband has. Do I think he could have explained himself a little better…YES! Saying his older son is his “favorite”, probably not a good idea!

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks for reading the whole post, Linda.

  97. Melanie Roberts says:

    What happens if Charlie doesn’t share your interests? Will you be willing to do his “stuff ” so you can hang out with him or are you just going to leave him and take Z?

  98. Heather says:

    When I read “favorite”, I heard connection. It seems a fairly basic concept that you will connect with your children differently not only in response to their different ages but also in regard to their personalities as they develop (and yours as well if you’re motivated to allow yourself the opportunity to dig deeper with age as you encourage your children to).

    I think it wiser to ask the father what he meant with the intent to truly hear his explanation (which appears to me pretty straightforward) than to join the “how dare you” party where everyone who participates rides the waves of emotion that allow them to feel superior and gloriously indignant. Meet people where they are and you may experience more scenery than your own backyard. It is not an easy thing to do always but if we expect our children to attempt to truly understand the world around them then we must begin with ourselves.

    Still, would I have chosen the word “favorite”? No. So then I wonder at his reasons for choosing it. That is a bunny hill I am more interested in climbing then riding along with the lynch-that-daddy mob.

  99. SarJay says:

    I must admit I do have a favorite child. My first born son is: the apple of my eye, the one I kiss first, The one I love the most!! PS He is an only child!!

  100. carole says:

    My brother was always the every thing I spent 59 years trying to win my moms respect,I realize I wasted my time,money,and my. Love with my mom it broke my heart

  101. Kae Trudeau says:

    Hi Dadcamp,

    Thanks for being honest about how you feel and it’s great that you use your blogs for discussion of real issues. This book may be of interest to you. Siblings Without Rivalry
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/60540247/Siblings-Without-Rivalry

    Hope the book might be helpful and would certainly be interested in what you think of it.

    In it, it says it is very normal for parents to have favourites, but it has some great strategies on how to make each child feel special, and it recommends to focus on connecting with each child by doing special things with them. The book does warn that letting your kids know who the favourite/non-favourite is can have negative effects for children. And that often, it is the choice of who the parent wants to spend time with that lets children know who the favourite child is.

    It also recommends that every week, equal amount of one-on-one special time is set apart for each child, i.e. Mom with Kid 1, Mom with Kid 2, Dad with Kid 1, Dad with Kid 2. This allows each child to build special memories. Even though in some families, parents try to balance favourites by dad has one favourite, and mom has another, both children often end up negatively impacted by knowing they are not mom/dad’s favourite.

    Perfectly normal to have a favourite. Have you had a chance to ask your siblings how they felt about you being a favourite or them being non-favourite?

    Again, would certainly be interested in your thoughts regarding the book. And thanks for the references you posted as well – interesting articles.

    Kae

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks for the thoughtful response, Kate. Refreshing to read. I’ll look up the book, I appreciate the recommendation.

  102. shy says:

    hi – i heard you this morning on kiss 92.5 (toronto) on the roz and mocha show. i liked what you said – about the parenting community and how insanely judgmental it can be from one parent to another, rather than being supportive, down to earth and well, HUMAN. i think those crazy ones are probably the ones that are the MOST insecure about their own parenting skills. i’m not at all sure why people feel that us parents need to be these perfect entities whom carry ourselves through the day as super moms/dads 24/7.

    as a mother myself, i too wasn’t great at the baby years. i loved our daughter even before she was born and nothing would have stopped myself from protecting her and loving her. but i hear you – those were just not my years. and i did question if i was cut out to be a mom. now, 8 years later, i know i am now.

    besides, parenting is not suppose to be easy. it does not come as naturally as people make it out to be. it is a learning process. i always say that if it was that easy, we wouldn’t even be having these controversial conversations. that there wouldn’t be these mommy-wars and intense debates online in the parenting community.

    and relationships are complex. we are, after all, individuals and no two people are alike. that includes our children. there will always be, naturally, one kid we may connect better with at any given stage of life, over another.

    reading more of your other blog posts, i get the sense that you do love all your children and put a lot of quality time in your family life to both your wife and kids. and i think at the end of the day, that’s what counts.

    you sounded like you were keeping it all in stride on the radio show. i hope the trolls leave you alone soon. peace.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thanks so much for coming to the blog and commenting, Shy. I do love both of my boys very much, your words are very much appreciated.

  103. Y.E. says:

    I read the article as well as the comments, and to be honest, the comments were what I found most appalling.
    I’m the older sibling. I’m also my father’s favourite child; my younger brother is my mother’s favourite. I like my father more than my mother (always have – funndamntal personality conflicts) – he’s my favourite. Within families there are favourites. Children have favourite parents; why shouldn’t parents have favourite children?
    My mother does not like me as much as my brother. This has not led to emotional trauma on my part, nor has it led to my brother being spoiled as the “pet”. My parents treat us fairly, and while they haven’t said their preference allowed, it is evident. They don’t need to. And more importantly, IT DOESN’T MATTER.
    Buzz, even as a teen, I know exactly what you’re saying. And commenters? Maybe in your family favouritism was exaggerated and so detrimental. But as Buzz has demonstrated, and as my family shows, having favourites is normal and, no, does not screw up the child. As long as you don’t give one preferential treatment, which Buzz isn’t.
    Conclusion? I don’t understand why the Internet has jumped on you, Buzz, for admitting something that we all know is true – unless they just don’t want to admit it to themselves.

    1. dadcamp says:

      Thank you, Yasmin. I was bumped from one talk show request by a kid who kissed Carrie Underwood. That should about explain where the seriousness of my post should stand on the outrage scale.
      My kids are hugged, kissed, loved, adored, respected, and spoiled. BOTH OF THEM.
      The faux over-the-top outrage is ridiculous. I’d argue the language people used to spew hate at me and my family says more about their character (or lack), than the original post says about mine.

  104. casinos visa says:

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  105. Kansas555 says:

    I’ll have to show this article to my husband. Our oldest is 9 and will be 10 before our second is born, its a huge age gap that I’m worried about. My husband on the other hand is worried that he’ll like our daughter more for one reason… when M was 10 months old, I was in the Air Force and deployed. I didn’t return until she was 17 months. That time with just the two of them created an incredible bond and forever made her a daddies girl. He’s scared that since I’ll be home all the time now he won’t be able to forge that bond with F and he’ll show favoritism toward M. I’ll let him read this article to know that it’s truly OK. Especially beause M will be in college by the time F is 8!

  106. Lyndsie says:

    I have 5 children and I’m going to admit I do have a favourite, he’s my youngest and he’s a real mummy’s boy. Saying that, I love my children all exactly the same amount. Just because he’s my favourite doesn’t make me love him more.
    I am quite honestly disgusted by the amount of comments calling you a bad dad because you’ll admit to something most parents won’t.
    I have lots of family and each of them has a favourite out of my children, they are all prefered by one aunty or uncle or grandma or grandad. We all know it and don’t get all neurotic about it.

  107. Jennifer says:

    I completely understand where this dad is comming from, I dont think you meant to say you have a favorite kid though…….. Maybe a favorite age or favorite stage. You love your children equally im sure. My grandmother had a favorite gender she preffered boys over us girls, my mom preffers girls. My dad wanted boys but had two girls i was the oldest so i was the tom boy lol. I have 2 children i have 1 boy and 1 girl. I dont have a favorite child but each of my children are able to do different things. If i was you i would try to find things your 2 year old can do. My two year old boy loves trucks so we sit outside where the construction is on our road and just watch them work. My 3 year old daughter can do more then my two year old but i try to give them each the same amount of alone time with me as possible. Basically why not try to find things you and your two year old can do together. Instead of always picking your oldest spend time with your youngest because they start picking everything up at that age, you dont want your children to battle for your attention trust me it can get bad i remember battling my siblings and it got horrible. Even as adults we dont talk anymore because my parents had there favorites and it was a non stop battle a lot of negative attention was brought on but negative or positive we was getting attention non the less dont put that on your self please.

  108. Norma says:

    you should write a blog about the things you love the most about your youngest boy and make it up to him ha! BTW your sons are absolutely adorable!

    1. dadcamp says:

      You know what, Norma? That’s brilliant. I will do exactly that. Thank you.

  109. Aunty Ro says:

    I’m not a parent, so can’t really pipe in. I do have a couple of nephews and a niece, and although I love them dearly, I often feel the middle is my favourite as he’s a big ham like me and we just get on better. I would never admit this to the children themselves as, I said, I love them all equally and no need to cause any kind of emotional damage for the sake of semantics. However I do have one question for DADCAMP – what did your wife think of this post? Does she agree? I’m betting the baby is her favourite, as most women I know prefer babies, but I myself prefer toddlers, cause let’s face it – they ARE more fun!

    1. dadcamp says:

      My wife fully understands where I’m coming from and is very supportive of all that I write (although she wishes I would have a filter). She was quoted in The Daily Mail article that covered this viral story.
      .
      BTW – I have a follow up post: http://blogs.babble.com/kid-scoop/2012/10/04/ill-admit-it-i-have-another-favorite-kid/

  110. Jennifer Ison says:

    I completely understand where this dad is comming from, I dont think you meant to say you have a favorite kid though…….. Maybe a favorite age or favorite stage. You love your children equally im sure. My grandmother had a favorite gender she preffered boys over us girls, my mom preffers girls. My dad wanted boys but had two girls i was the oldest so i was the tom boy lol. I have 2 children i have 1 boy and 1 girl. I dont have a favorite child but each of my children are able to do different things. If i was you i would try to find things your 2 year old can do. My two year old boy loves trucks so we sit outside where the construction is on our road and just watch them work. My 3 year old daughter can do more then my two year old but i try to give them each the same amount of alone time with me as possible. Basically why not try to find things you and your two year old can do together. Instead of always picking your oldest spend time with your youngest because they start picking everything up at that age, you dont want your children to battle for your attention. (OH yeah and i would much rather travel with the older child then a youger one, the attention span is longer and no tempur tantrums, both of my kids fish so i cant comment about that lol)

    BTW i dont honestly think your sons will hold this against you, You will write a million more blogs it would take them a million years to find just this 1, I also see a lot of negative posts. All i can say is your being true to yourself along with everyone else its not like your one of those parents that abandoned your children, your there for them you raise them and you love them. Thats all that matters. Hold your head up and do what YOU think is right. Be there for your babies no matter what. If your wife or family dont have a problem with this post then i can not judge you i dont know you on a personal level. You have very beautiful children. Have a good day :)

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  112. Natasha says:

    This is an old article, but nonetheless I felt it was worth commenting, as your sons are still very young and you have a chance to change your attitude.

    I read your post and every comment. If you review the posts, you will find that the people supporting you were either favorites of both parents themselves, or each child had a parent that favored them.

    There is not a single positive comment from anyone who was the least favored child. This is not people ‘projecting’ their childhoods onto you, this is people taking the time to let you know the extent of the damage that you cause when you spend more time and give more attention to one child over the other.

    Now, it isn’t the sixties, and it is no longer acceptable for fathers to dismiss favoritism of their eldest because ‘they are more fun’. This is a very narcissistic attitude, and not surprising since you admit you were the favorite. When one child is favored it creates narcissistic attitudes.

    If the only people commenting were psychotherapists, you would be getting far stronger and more critical comments.

    It doesn’t matter that you have said it publicly, your youngest already knows that you favor your eldest. Whoever you like in your heart more, what counts is that you spend an equal amount of time with them, no matter who is more ‘fun’, and that you give them equal attention when both are in the same room.

    The damage you will otherwise cause will be tremendous, unless of course, your wife is a blatant about preferring to spend time with your youngest and consistently give him more attention.

    Being a parent is not about YOU, its about your children, and you can say all you want that you love them equally, but if one gets more attention, there will be nothing you can say to convince them of that.

    If you don’t stop this pattern, it will only become worse as they get older. Being defensive about your point of view is not going to help your youngest son. And frankly, I find it astonishing that your wife is okay with this. Perhaps she was also the favorite growing up.

    A father that chooses to spend more time with one son over the other because it’s more ‘fun’ is a father who is putting his own needs ahead of his children’s, as you do the ‘favorite’ damage as well – for one thing, he will become used to getting more attention and expect it, and may spend his life doing his best to please you so that he can maintain his status as the favorite.

  113. Kate says:

    I love this! My mom always said when we would complain about playing favorites: “Of course I have a favorite…it’s whoever is being nicest to me on any given day.”

    That said, there are four of us (three girls, one boy) and it’s my brother but he’s also the one most consistently kind.

    Let’s be honest, kids know who the parental favorite is without him saying it. And you know who your parents favorite is too. Should he be blasting it all out over the interwebs? I think not (as my wise mom says again – there are the things you think and then there are the things you say) but hey, none of us are perfect parents.

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