Friday, September 24

Do mothers and fathers really love all children equally?

The maxim is repeated from generation to generation: all children are loved equally. But is it true or is it a phrase that seeks to cover a taboo, that of recognizing that there are favorite children? We wonder if we love our sons and daughters equally, but also if love is confused with affinity, mania with headaches.

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For the pediatric nurse Armando Bastida it is very frowned upon to say that we have a favorite child. “And yet it is the most normal thing in the world.” The creator of the platform ‘Raising with common sense’ speaks openly: “Loving our children very much, it is normal to feel a predilection for some of them. And we should not feel guilty because that does not mean that you stop loving others, or because of of course you’re going to treat them worse. ” Bastida believes that we all have to give them the affection they deserve: “Of course, we must be careful not to favor the preferred son over the others simply because he is the favorite. In this sense, we must be as fair as possible.” From there, “the relationship does not have to be the same with all of them, simply because they are people with different sensitivities and needs.”

Elena Domínguez is a clinical psychologist and mother of three adolescents. She believes that children are loved equally, but “what you don’t have during the whole process of childbearing is the same affinity since each one generates different emotions.” “There is always a child who stresses you less and with whom you get along better, but it is important to understand that the emotions they generate in us do not always have to be pleasant.” The emotions that we have when raising them are sometimes contradictory, confusing or intense, and according to the psychologist that is normal, “even if they try to sell the upbringing as an idyll.” So love is the same for everyone but “they are the emotions we feel when interacting with one another, that when they are more difficult, more confusing or challenging to handle are confused with loving them less”.

For Pablo Ruiz, father of three, primary school teacher and part of ‘Alaya Difundiendo Infancia’ there are two different ways: “We have to differentiate between the bond and the relationship.” When a mother or father has a child, by the mere fact of birth “a super powerful bond is generated that makes any father give his life for it: that is love, that is wanting.” And, on the other hand, he points out, “there is the relationship in which the affinity appears, which is less or more depending on the child.” So, according to the teacher, sometimes when we compare wanting, what we actually establish is a relationship between more or less affinity.

Guilt is a heavy stone during the entire parenting process and for Pablo Ruiz it is the first thing that must be expelled from the family context because it “weakens a lot.” And decisively he says: “We are always going to love a child and the one with whom you spend the least time, the least talks you share or the least close ideas you have, is not loved less.”

Uncomfortable behaviors

“There are aspects of one’s personality that can make you feel closer, but it has nothing to do with love,” says teacher and psychopedagogue Sonia López, who believes that often the lack of affinity with one of our children is due to that “it reminds you of things about yourself that you do not like. Or, quite the opposite, if you are an ultra-orderly person and your son does not show himself that way, it is the first thing we see in him, what we consider bad.” Mothers and fathers tend to look at what bothers us the most about us (or us) or what is most different from who we are.

We tend to think that our children have to do everything right to be the least bit uncomfortable. “There are times when we feel some detachment with the most restless children, with those who suppose us extra work and that is super unfair towards them”, Sonia López tells us. We want them to make life easier for us by doing everything the first time, “because since we live so fast there is little time to accompany us from calm, so our stress does not allow us to stop and think that these behaviors of child scouts are totally normal and healthy.” What we fathers and mothers do is label them as bad “and feel more akin to those who give less problems”, to those who make us feel calm, to those who need less care and attention.

Mothers and fathers try to understand the world of children with adult eyes, while they are autonomous beings and “we must give them the opportunity to learn to be and explore from their gaze,” says the expert, who points out that for A healthy relationship has to start from acceptance: “We have to assume that with the child that we have the least ties, who would be the disorderly one, he has the right to be so because he is young and is learning. If there are behaviors that make us uncomfortable, we begin to fill with negative labels such as, for example, chaotic. And it is not, only that he is learning to be. Or if he is a teenager, his disorder manifests the constant psychological changes that they are learning to accept and it is good that it is so “.

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