My brother-in-law, Reese, told me the other day that I favor Wyatt on Facebook. It bothered me at first, then I admitted it: I do. But not just on Facebook. I think sometimes I favor him at home, too and I actually recognized this a little while ago but was afraid to admit it. It bothered me again.
I think favoring him has happened for a few reasons:
1. He's so darned cute. I just can't get enough of him! (I mean really, who can't help but love those cheeks?)
2. He's little and I feel over-protective of him
3. I feel I need to work with him on Therapy and things a little more than I need to with Eden
I don't really have much control (or want to change)the first one! But I think the other two are changeable. But maybe it's not so much a drastic change in behavior, but just a simple change in attitude, for a variety of reasons. First, I don't want Eden to grow up feeling like I care for Wyatt more than I do her. She is my beautiful little first-born, special girl. Secondly, I don't want to "baby" Wyatt and do more harm than good. Being overly attentive can actually reverse some of the work I do to make him rely on his independence. I have been trying to foster this in him from the beginning. I think I need to look at it as growing both of my kids in their own unique ways ways. They are not the same people, so their development, personality and strengths will be different, but I should not be more or less attentive to one than the other. Wyatt isn't the only one who needs me (which I've always known in my head, of course). I DO need to work with Eden on developmental milestones and I DO need to play with her, just as much as Wyatt. I love playing, learning and working with both of them! So in the future, I'll just make sure that happens - equally.
I'm certain this aspect of favoring isn't a new concept. And I'm sure it's not even a concept related to just families of kids with Down syndrome! Lots of parents struggle with favoring one child over another, for each of their unique reasons.
So...Do you play favorites?
Have YOU struggled with this? How have you worked through it already or are you now trying to figure this balance out, too? I'd love to hear your stories, perspectives and advice!
(I simply request that you be respectful and responsible in your comments on my blog, please!)