I have plans to take a lie detector test to prove that I love my son as much as I love my daughter.
Why? I let a damn troll get to me. A random troll messaged me, out of the blue a couple of weeks ago, with some pretty harsh accusations about my parenting and basically saying it was clear that my love for my daughter was stronger than the love I have for my son.
Why does she think that I love my daughter more? Well, the troll thinks that just because I post more photographs of my daughter on Facebook than I do of my son, clearly, I love my daughter more.
My blood boiled instantly. If she had said this to my face, I would have punched her in the throat. I know I should ignore trolls, and usually, I do. But, there’s nothing worse than a random stranger who feels it’s appropriate to “diagnose” me, or my parenting, or how I raise my children, especially if it’s purely based on photos I post of my children on Facebook. Last time I checked, it is my wall, so I can post whatever I damn well please, thank you.
There is no deeper meaning when I post photographs of my children to show them off, or share some accomplishments, or post a funny meme or selfie, especially when I am having a good hair day. The photos are moments I’ve captured and like to share with my Facebook friends. Let me repeat: Do not bother looking for a deeper meaning, because there isn’t one.
I don’t always have impulse control. I could have just blocked this troll. Instead, I wrote back. “Thank you for diagnosing my family dynamics,” I began. “I think it’s fabulous you have so much free time on your hands to actually compare the number of photos I post of my daughter versus the number of photos I post of my son. I’m sure that was a productive use of your time. Now maybe you want to worry about your own children? Have a great day! xo Rebecca.”
What kind of person takes tabs on the number of photos someone they don’t know posts of their children? Who actually notices these things? Who actually calls someone out on this perceived belief that I love my daughter more?
And then it got worse…
Ten minutes later, I received another message from this woman, who, admittedly succeeded in making me furious, and who obviously didn’t get the message to worry about her family, not mine.
“The fact that you despise his father can’t help,” she wrote. I swear, my blood pressure went off the charts. I’ll admit, it’s taken time for my son’s father and I to get to our new normal of being co-parents, but “despise?” Not only is that a pretty big word to throw around, but I’m not exactly sure how me posting more photos of my daughter has lead to this woman thinking that. I don’t despise him. Even though we didn’t work out, he gave me the greatest gift, my son!
I guess I was in a feisty and procrastinating mood because I continued to engage with her and it’s almost impossible to argue with a troll. But I couldn’t help myself.
When she wrote back, asking if I would “take a lie detector test,” I thought, “Game on! This will be fun! I’ve never done a lie detector test before!” And I know I’ll pass with flying colours. Most people who know me, or follow me, know that I have an incredibly close bond with my daughter. But I ALSO have an incredibly close bond with my son. At least once a week, I go on one excursion just with my son to do what he likes to do, be it seeing a movie, or going to Reptilia to see snakes. And, once a week, my daughter and I have “movie/sleepover” nights.
And, no, I don’t think it’s time, nor will there ever be a time, for a parent with common sense to openly admit they love one kid more than another. I don’t believe that 99.9 percent of parents even have this thought. When will, or would it, ever be okay to be like, “Hey Kid # 3! I’m taking kid #1 for ice cream because I love him more than you! Bye!” Or, “Kid #3 gets the last slice of pizza because I love her more than Kid #1 and #2!”
I believe that yes, we can admit that we love our children for different reasons, but that doesn’t mean we don’t love them equally. Like many families, my son and daughter have very different personalities. I will go as far as admitting that, the kid I “like” more, at a given moment, is the one who I only have to ask once (maybe twice) to do something. I’m sure any parent, who has an overtired four-year-old having a tantrum, while also having a six-year-old quietly reading a book, would probably think, “At this moment, I’d rather hang out with my 8-year-old.” But that has nothing to do with love, and more to do with, um, not wanting a headache. And that example is in a moment, not overall in life. Growing up, even though I was OLDER than my brothers, I had an earlier curfew. Was this fair? No. But never once did I think that it was because my parents loved my brother more.
So why do I post more photos of my daughter than my son? The ONE and ONLY reason is simply that my son hates getting his photo taken. It’s a not-fun, 20-minute ordeal to get him to smile for the camera. The tantrums are not worth it, and bribing him to pose is starting to cost me a lot of money. My daughter loves smiling for the camera. My son detests it. Simple as that! Would this troll rather me physically FORCE my son to let me take photographs of him, just to post them to show strangers that, indeed, I do love my children equally? Sorry, I will not torture my son that way. I love the dude!
A rare photo of my son, Holt, smiling. Yes, I love him just as much as his sister!
I love my son because he’s a goofball, talented in almost every sport, and he loves nothing more than to make me laugh. I love my daughter because she’s wise, independent, incredibly outgoing, and has a huge heart.
Also, I’ve known my daughter for almost a decade longer than my son, so I’ve had nine more years to post photographs of her before her brother was born.
In this article, “Parents Really Do Have a Favourite Child, No Matter What They Say,” a research team who followed families years ago, says, “For your entire lifetime, your parents have kept up a very, very good lie…Whether you were the straight-A sibling or the one acting out in class, your parents have led you to believe that they love all their children equally,” and then going on to state that “science tells a different story.” Screw science on this one!
Sure, I have friends who hang out with one of their kids more than their other offspring, but not because they love that child more, but they simply have more in common, thus spend more time with them. If you ask any parent if they loved one child more than another, not many mothers would ever admit this anyway, so it’s hard to have faith in these types of surveys. You may have some who say, “At this moment, out of my four kids, I love the one who is letting me go to the washroom.”
Most importantly, however, the research also found that “no matter a child’s birth order, every single one was suspicious of their parents liking another better. Everyone feels their brother or sister is getting a better deal.”
So, yes, I’ll take the lie detector test, for shits and giggles (don’t worry, I plan on bringing a friend/bodyguard.) But, please, stop diagnosing my love for my children purely based on the fact I post more photos of my daughter compared to my son.
Because that’s as insane as me taking a lie detector test.
Tagged under: diagnosis,time with kids,mothers love,siblings,parents and Facebook,feelings of love,kids as equals,how a mother's love is translated,unconditional love,younger siblings,mothers of boys,mother and daughter,favorite child,I love you to the moon and back,loved ones,posting about your kids online,mother and son