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Would you ever admit out loud that you have a favorite child?

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You have a favorite child? Fine, just don't admit it!

By Rebecca Dube, TODAY

A dad blogger wrote about how one of his two children is his favorite, and now he's surprised that people are criticizing him for it.

Dude, are you serious?

First of all, liking one child a little more is nothing remarkable. Plenty of parents have a favorite, even if the status rotates based on which child has not recently colored the dog with Sharpies or put pancakes in the DVD player.

But you don't say it out loud! And you certainly don't publish it on the Internet for everyone to see, and Google, in perpetuity. While the writer doesn't use his own name on the column, he does helpfully supply photos and name his children, both the favorite and the other one.

There's nothing subtle about what he writes:

Yes, I have a favorite son and I’m not ashamed to admit it....

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 .. yknow .. like him better. ...

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.

If there was a parenting boot camp, and maybe there should be, this would be one of the first lessons screamed at you by the cranky drill sergeant. When your children ask who's the favorite -- and they will, and they will be persistent and sneaky about it -- SAY NOTHING. Oh sure, they may suspect that you have a favorite. They may wonder, and they may accuse. But they must never know. Sibling rivalry is tough enough, and naming a favorite is just throwing parental kindling on the fire.

If you feel up to more advanced parental Jedi mind tricks, you can take each child aside and tell them that they are secretly your favorite child, but not to tell the others. If you're lucky they won't compare notes until after you're dead. If not, at least you'll discover which of your kids can keep a secret.

Don’t drive yourself too crazy trying to always make things always fair. The real trick is to minimize conditions that break down sibling relationships and cause long-lasting resentment. ... Never compare or praise one kid’s behavior in contrast to a sibling: it can create long-lasting strains.

So, for example, writing a blog post that says "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," as this dad does, is the kind of thing that can really mess a kid up.

Here's the thing, dad blogger: Not every thought you have as a parent needs to be published. There's a thin line between refreshing honesty and just being mean, and going on and on about your favorite (and least favorite) child crosses the line. At least in my book. What do you think? Do you have a favorite, and would you admit it?

by on May. 22, 2014 at 1:37 PM
Replies (41-50):
by on May. 24, 2014 at 5:53 PM

Sure I have a favorite. But I only have one kid, so it doesn't matter. good

by on May. 24, 2014 at 5:57 PM

My son is my favorite son, and my daughter is my favorite daughter. I have one of each, and they're both my favorite.

by on May. 24, 2014 at 6:09 PM

My 5 year old DD is cute and a real ham. My 7 year old is helpful and does what she's told better. They both have their positives and negatives. I love them equally. Having my first pregnancy end in a still birth really really makes me not take either of my kids for granted. I'm afraid if I ever did it would come back to bite me. Those two are way to important for petty thoughts.

by on May. 24, 2014 at 6:12 PM

Yes my son is far and above my favorite child ever.

There isn't realy one that is even close - probably never will be, maybe if I have a grand child one day ... 

by on May. 24, 2014 at 6:15 PM

very easy to admutt, oh wait i only have one lol

by on May. 24, 2014 at 6:15 PM
1 mom liked this
Usually it's the dog.
by New Member on May. 24, 2014 at 6:19 PM
1 mom liked this

I don't have a favorite, but who I get along with better has changed back and forth ofter over the years.  I think what that dad did is awful.  Way to make your other son feel like crap.  And all because one child makes his errands run smoother?  He should try to get to know the other son better, enjoy what time he has with both of them and keep his opinion to himself - or at least from him kids.

by on May. 24, 2014 at 6:20 PM
1 mom liked this

my kids have different strengths and weaknesses i appreciate their differences. for this guy to go public is beyond stupid. if his child reads this some day he'll never forgiive his dad.

by Anonymous 2 on May. 24, 2014 at 6:21 PM
1 mom liked this
This issue bugged me as a kid but I find it funny now. Turns out that the personality traits that made my brother and sister the favorites as kids aren't as good for being independent adults. The personality traits that I possess that drive them nuts when I was young are really nice to have as an adult. But at least they get to have their two favorite children living at home with them for the rest of their lives. My mom calls to complain at them and I just chuckle.
by Anonymous 3 on May. 24, 2014 at 6:24 PM
I feel that as long as you treat both child equally and don't let your favorite one slide away from things they should be punished for, its OK to have favorites. I treat all 3 of my boys equally, they don't get away with things, and are punished equally. My favorite is my middle son. He's 3 years old.
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