Long-Term Effects of Favoritism

Do you ever play favorites among your kids – or know parents who do? The impact, good and bad, may run deeper than you think.

Effects of Favoritisim

Effects of parental favoritism, left unchecked, can be long lasting. A study titled Mothers’ Differentiation and Depressive Symptoms Among Adult Children found siblings who sensed that their mom consistently favored or rejected one child over another were more likely to exhibit depression in middle age. The study, published in the Journal of Marriage and Family, also revealed that these possible outcomes can affect both the favored and unfavored child.

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Perception is everything

“It doesn’t matter whether you’re the chosen child or not, the perception of unequal treatment has damaging effects for all siblings,” explains Dr. Karl Pillemer, Ph.D., director of the Cornell Institute for Translational Research on Aging and one of the authors of the article.

“The less favored kids may have ill will toward their mother or preferred sibling, and being the favored child brings resentment from one’s siblings and the added weight of greater parental expectations.”

Some positives

Long-term effects of being the favored child are not all negative. Ellen Weber Libby, Ph.D. asserts that there are, in fact, lots of advantages – including a bolstered self-esteem.

“The favorite child often grows up feeling confident and powerful with an attitude of ‘I can get things done,'” says Dr. Libby, author of The Favorite Child: How a Favorite Impacts Every Family Member for Life.

Dr. Libby points out that every president since Franklin D. Roosevelt has been the favorite child.

“In interviews with Harry Truman’s siblings during and after his presidency, they revealed that their mother loved them all equally – but there always something special between Harry and mom,” Dr. Libby explains.

Negative effects

On the flip side, in the long-term, favorite children may struggle with intimate relationships when they find that no one can possibly love them as much as the parent who favored them.

“They’re more likely to be depressed because they spent so much of their lives trying to court parental favor that they may not have developed their own personality,” Dr. Libby says.

“Likewise, the overlooked child, who didn’t have to do the ‘pleasing dance,’ may have been free to experience the things he or she wanted to experience and to be the person he or she wanted to be. On the other end of the extreme is the unfavored child, who is often on the receiving end of the parent’s anger.”

The unfavored child

The unfavored child perhaps stands to suffer the most – even long after he or she has left home whether it be through depression, weakened self-esteem or a chronic need to feel special. And in many cases, sibling relationships are strained as resentment from favoritism breeds.

“I see patients who, even well into their 50s, carry feelings about being the favored or unfavored child,” Dr. Libby says. “I have a patient in his 60s whose mom is still alive. He still feels slighted when his elderly mom needs something and turns to his sister. He still wants to be seen as special to his mother.”

Long term

Dr. Brenda Volling, director and research professor at the University of Michigan’s Center for Human Growth and Development, studies sibling relationships and knows all too well the devastating effects that can result from sibling relationships gone wrong particularly due to parental favoritism.

“When you’re young, you have to live in the same household,” she says. “When kids have grown and left the house, you’ll see a lot of instances where siblings avoid each other to the point where they haven’t talked in five years.

“The relationship can be that strained. And when parents get older, sibling rivalries don’t necessarily end. They often rear their ugly heads again.”

This post was originally published in 2011 and has been updated for 2016.

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Comments
  • I have been signed up for a camp that I don’t want it do. There is a workbook that I had to do for the camp as well as my brother. I asked for help Fromm mom and she said no and hat I had to do it by myself. When my brother asked for help she helped him and she said how much she loves him and I never get that.

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    • I’m a triplet and deal with this my mom favors one of my siblings and my dad the other one. Like one time my dad bought one my my siblings a new dress shoes necklace and told me I could have a dress because there wasn’t enough money the dress she has was 100 dollars the neclace 25 and shoes 60. I had a five year old dress that used to be that sisters it fit her. I’m 7 inches taller and thinner so you guess how that turned out. My mom bought the other sister a new dress hair curler( she has 2 already) and a necklace. Is that considered favoritism? If so it seems strange that even at the same age there’s favoritism. Does that mean I’m a bad kid and my parents don’t want mrs?

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      • In in a lot of pain after attending my family reunion.my mother always favored my youger sister and brother over me and the green monter called jealousy creeped in my soul and i cry and pray about but I’m so wounded by it please help me to understand what is happening to me?

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  • When you get older, you’ll realize that you are the lucky one. There are 2 kids in our family that my mom favored. They are in their 50s and still living with her and never learned how to live as independent, successful adults. If you don’t feel love from your mother, be determined to move away and stay away as soon as you can. Learn to love yourself and not need other people to approve of you. All you have to do is go on Facebook to see all the insecure people who are begging for a “Like” on everything they post. It’s really sad. Stay strong.

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    • Omg! This is perfectly said!! Love this!!! I have problems with my parents also. My twin girls are 3 months old and they never made an attempt to see them at all. I honestly hate my parents for acting and being immature jerks.

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    • Not necessarily so. There are so many variables because each family is so very different. Only time will tell the future of each party involved. I know the advice is well meaning, though.

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  • I thought it was just me! Here I am, just turned 57 and I continue to deal with my mothers OBVIOUS favoritism of the 3rd born of 4 children in our family. By now, I feel back-stabbed and HIGHLY resentful towards my mother. I don’t trust her or her so-called love. I see though in recent years it has been a Large burden on the favored child. I used to resent her for it and sometimes still do, as it continues. I guess it never ends… I am actually ashamed of my mother for having done this.

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    • I am 58..I am one of two unfavoured adult children..my twin is also..my older and younger sisters were given the family cottage as an inheritance..my twin and i were not..i got a little inheritance not much..but i am beyond angry..beyond hurt..i already have depression and a panic disorder..my mother died 5 years ago..i have written my father repeatedly begging him not to just give the cottage to only two of his children..he does not care how i feel..my twin accepts it..although she has serious issues of her own…i actually wrote to my youngest sister and offered to buy a portion of land at the cottage which she refused…i am beyond devastated i am now just isolating myself from all.

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    • I feel your pain. As the unfavored step-child, I watched my parents give my sister everything. A private school education, cars, houses and even an RV. All the while, I was walking to public school as my mother would drive by me while she was chauffeuring the favorited child to the private school they paid for. She would allow my sister to have friends over and even allowed a school friend from a bad family move into our family home while restricting me from having any friends over or even phone calls. The blatant favoritism was especially hard to swallow when they gave the favorite child a horse for Christmas — I, 8 years older, was given a $2 plastic chess set. I didn’t even play chess! Favoritism is a horrible thing to do to a child and especially when it continues on into later life. It never stops hurting, no matter your age. PS. I haven’t talked with my sister in 5 years….doubt I ever will again.

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      • that’s terrible, I was the step-child of the family and was treated like crap, i’m older now but they have not changed, they still treat me like crap, I have depression and low self-esteem because of them.

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        • Really? Right now I’m currently 14 is there any way to make my parents like me and treat me equally?

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          • No Mikayla there is nothing you can do because this will be like changing night into day! You need to get stronger in other ways like I did, I became a state champion bike rider for ten years I did this successfully (even though they never came to any of the events unless I forced them too) but what I gained out of that was power, a strengthening of self worth and that made me better than them and I then found a loving husband who has been my tower of strength for the past 21 years. That’s what you need to find, that will guild you in the most healthy way, good luck.

      • I honestly thought i was the only one who would experience everything i have went through. I am 20 years old now. I have an older sibling as well as a twin. I am pretty much the middle child. My mother does everything for my older sibling, more then she should ever do for her, more then she ever does with my twin and I. I was always the “problem child” even when i dont do anything wrong. I try to help and she pushes me away. During holidays my mother would spend like crazy for my other siblings and im left with whatever she could afford after. On my twin and i birthdays she brought us a electric razor. When my Older sibling birthday came it was pretty much giving her the world. This always been going on for years and i try to ignore it. I keep telling myself ill just work hard and get it. But when i think about it im hurt. I feel childish at the fact my feelings on this wont go away. I just wanted to have a mother and child bonding, I didnt think it would be a difficult thing to do…

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      • wow sad to read ur story,well i also grow up my step father, and my mum and younger sister,she was of all my mum fav,my mum will openly tell me that she hate me,i could never go close to her talkless of huging her or siting cllose to her,she was and is ready to spend millions of money on my sister but unable to let go a thousands for me i went to day school while my sister private school,she will say sort of bad to he friend about,when it comes to given things. my sister can have it all while i had nothing,my sister wil travel her best countries and all that had really lowered my self esteem,im not confident im weak and very vunorable and i want help coz it has realy affected my social life cuz my peers dnt like me and i now hate my mum for this. 03eb dwild

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    • I don’t think they ever change because my mother is the same way, she favors my half-sister over me, it will never change she’s older now and she still does that.

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    • to this day my mother is still like that, her and my step-sister will go out to eat and go shopping but don’t invite me but I hear about it later, so rude.

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      • Same here too. It is a horrible feeling. Not sure if to be extremly angry at my sister and mother or just very very hurt… I guess both

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  • I think it helps to have zero expectations of a parent that favors a sibling. Expect that a parent will say or bring up the favored child. I agree with moving on and only talk about what is going on in your parents life when you call or see them. And find people that are supportive of you. Most of all do your best and treat yourself kindly first. Parents get old and we need to be respectful of them but we also need to take good careof ourselves. Also break the cycle of favortism with your own children…find something unique and wonderful in each and be sensitive to their need to be loved.

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    • Very good insights. I am in my 60s and still struggle with depression, low self-esteem & difficulty with intimate relationships which I am seeing more clearly as being connected to having been an unfavored child. Building on what you have said, I have just lately come to feel pity for my mother. How much richer her life could have been if she had made the emotional effort to value each her four children as she did her one favorite. What a loss.

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      • I am over 60,am the first born of 5. Being the first I had my parents undivided attention. Even after the second child was born, we shared a special bond and things must have been pretty good. The third child came along and at some point she became my mom’s favorite. We started teasing her and, of course, we were punished. Our punishment was in the form of being shut in the basement with the lights off or hit with a yard stick. I became afraid of the dark, started to wet the bed, sucked my thumb and suffered horrible headaches. Of course, the bed wetting didn’t go without verbal humiliation. Later on,my sister and I liked 2 brothers from the same family, my sister raised such a fuss that I was told I was to stay away from the guy. I started drawing scenery and then went on to sketching dresses. I chose my major to be art and immediately my mother demanded the guidance counselor put me in secretarial classes. That didn’t work out in her favor. I turned to my grandmother who loved me unconditionally – taught me about flowers, taking care of small creatures. I rode my bike there as often as I could. We swam in her pond, picnicked. Then she died and I was mentally brought back to reality. Then I looked elsewhere for love. I had 2 failed marriages but have a beautiful daughter who is an RN. I moved back to my childhood town to help with my aging parents. The favored child is “too good” to help. I have spent the past 15 years driving my mom to visit my dad in hospitals, the nursing home, hundreds of doctor visits and countless trips to stores. Why? My sister has bullied me, humiliated me to the point I felt I had to do for mom. My mom is upset when anything negative is said about my sister, but has told me many times “get over it” when my sister verbally attacks me. This week I realized I need to back away. I have so much resentment toward my sister and hatred toward my mom. I had my mom’s love and attention at first, but I was cast aside all those years ago. Oh, I love to quilt, cross stitch, make necklaces and work with polymer clay – my love for art that I was prohibited from pursuing. I am not able to be in social settings because of my feelings of inadequacy that was instilled in me as a child. Now, I AM TAKING MY LIFE BACK and being true to myself. I will be leaving this area shortly and start my life. I am counting the days until I am free!

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  • My mom has a favorite but it’s not because she doesn’t love us but because she’s friends with my sister and she’s just my mom, but her mother is worse with blanton favoritism of her oldest child and her children she never corrects my aunt even when she dead ass wrong and throwing temper tantrums at 40.

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  • I am 53 and still live with favoritism with my oldest brother. I have married and now live overseas ,thank goodness for that. Once in awhile I visit my parents and things have not changed, all decisions will be made by my brother whether it concerns them or me!! He can do no wrong and he has great confidence that he is always, always right!! No one can argue with him and my mother is always on his side.

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  • The feeling of being back-stabbed by my mother because my brother is the favored child resonated with me. Just recently, I was caught in this lifelong dynamic once again at age 61. I was the lucky one. I grew up strong and self- reliant and independent while my brother is weak and co-dependent on our mother. He’ll be severely tested when she passes. I don’t know how he’ll make it, but he’ll have to finally grow up. I won’t be “mom” for him.

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  • My mom had 4 children 3 girls and 1boy and I am the oldest. I always have had it rough it always seemed as if me and my siblings were drowning she would save the second oldest over me. But the 2 oldest does not see it that way.

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  • Good article. At 44 I still deal with this. Both parents have favored another sibling and continue to do so. It has caused a lot of resentment on my part and I am reluctant to speak out about it because I doubt any good will come of it. I have learned to accept my standing in the family. I feel like an outsider. I rarely call or contact my family because I feel unwelcome and I feel that because I do not call them they think I don’t care or I am anti-social. Somehow no matter what I come out looking like the a-hole. If I say something I am giving them a guilt trip, if I don’t say anything I am indifferent. I can accept being treated differently but now I have 2 children and that same favoritism is rearing its ugly head. My children are being ignored while my siblings children get to go on family vacations and are visited regularly. As a child my grandparents were very important to me. It upsets me terribly that my children do not have a grandparent worth a damn and I keep blaming myself.

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    • U can’t control what your parents choose. I agree that it hurts, but ask yourself if u would really want their negative criticism in your children’s lives

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    • My father favors my younger brother. My brother can do no wrong. If my brother and I have a disagreement I’m in the wrong in my father’s eyes. The bad thing is that this affects my relationship with my Mother. I’ve written off my brother, therefore, I’ve written off my entire family in my father’s eyes. My parents brought us up to believe that family is everything…family first, NOT. My resentment is overwhelming toward my brother and father. My Mother wants me to apologize, but I can’t because I didn’t do anything wrong. So now I’m all alone and very depressed.

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      • same here when my younger brother does some dick move and i get annoyed, my parents side with my brother every time.

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    • WOW i could of sworn i wrote this,but even though I am a better person treat my children fair and equally even more so because i would never ever want my children to feel like i do to this day,it would kill me. I tried talking to my mom about this and right away she say’s i need a psychiatrist and i said of course with a mother like you,couldn’t help myself but resulted into bliss for her having a reason not to invite me to holiday gatherings. What hurt’s more is seeing her do it to my children and favoring my siblings children. It astonishes me that she can sleep at night!

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  • I’m the UN favored child. I’m now 21. I’m the only girl of 4 kids. And it is super obvious that everyone but me are mommies angels. I feel like the odd one out. It makes me feel as if I’ve done everything wrong my brothers are perfect and I’ve just been a handful.I wish I was loved like my brothers . I’m like the black sheep

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    • I am 23, the eldest among 3 children in family and the unfavoured one. My brother was always favoured. Now when i look i dont find a single incident which could prove they love me. My mom has often wished in an argument that i was dead. They brought me down. My brother has lied, had a girlfriend but i am the worst. I am looking for a job, am depresed and have panic attacks. I dont know what to do.

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      • VEDIKA,
        You will be ok. God has a plan for your life and in the END YOU WIN!!!!

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      • I have had panic attacks for most of my life and feel for you and your situation. Once you find the source of the attacks and get help with a good therapist and meds…hopefully you can find some relief , I feel for you.

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  • Being that ignored forsaken child .the black sheep of the family. Living the life of an emotionally unstable 21 year old young women because my parents weren’t my parents . Even though my mom pretends she cares I know her love goes to her boys, it’s just so obvious I’m the mishap , it makes me hate me even more, and hate life..

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  • I was asked my a friend if she could hang out with me. My mom said she could come over but we were planning to go out. My friends parents would drive me to the destination. My mom said no and started to yell at me, and grounded me for asking to go out. A few minutes later my sister goes out with her boyfriend. I am the middle child and feel so hated. Not even my mother truly loves me, and some days I feel she’d be glad to give me away.

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  • She hates me so much…I can even feel it with the way she luks @ me…she doesn’t support me,dunno Y?

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  • 1. Mother never came to any of my recitals or basketball games
    2. Senior prom left with my younger brother and left me alone.. So the only pictures I have of my prom is on side a restaurant we stopped at!
    3. Never supported anything I wanted to do unless my brothers wanted to do it to!
    4i was the first child to go to College and she didn’t even come help me move in or supported me in anyway but soon as my brother got out of jail she started and still supports him
    5. When I try to talk to her about these things she tells me I’m being sensitive
    6. She always tells me I’m gaining weight then try’s to compliment herself by saying what size and how small she is getting
    7. Never told me I was pretty
    8. I’m self-conscious about my feet because she always told me they were ugly
    9. She bought me a 1998 Honda then turnt around and gave my little brother her 2013 Malabo and is currently trying to give it to the brother that got out of jail when she knows my car brakes down everyday
    10. Filed her taxes with my step dad when she knew I wouldn’t get any Financial aid! I was forced to drop out and now trying to go to national guard!

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  • Your parents favor your siblings because you were the Cain and your siblings were Able. Your siblings helped your parents and cared more for your parents than you did. I’m also the un favored and it is because my siblings put my parents above themselves. I think the un favored will usually be the most successful though. My brother is almost 50 and never lived on his own but he is the favored one.

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    • Every case is different. I worked for my mother fixing her run down house, and caring for her generally (she was divorced) and advising her as she was terribly and dangerously indecisive. She would send tens of thousands of dollars to my younger sister who was overseas all the time and I received nothing. Her mind was always on my younger and older sister (the latter always benefitting from her financial generosity as she had a young family with one child having leaukemia and the father not supporting with maintenance (they too were divorced). I on the other hand was on a disability support pension and she resented the doctor I saw sometimes getting very angry at him, even once or twice trying to call him to say it. I was quiet and I was the brightest and extremely attractive and most tenacious in the family when I was a child but not competetive. I think the sibling rivalry caused my mother to feel she had to make up for the difference between us – after all the headmistress of the school she went to had a policy of not giving prizes. My mother took that to extremes.

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  • \I am the oldest of 3 kids in my family. Here is my story.

    Younger brother #1 is 3 years younger. He had severe allergies/eczema his entire childhood. My mother spoiled him rotten. Had to nurse and take care of him constantly. Our lives revolved around him. Now he is a 45 yr old adult with 3 girls. He is the biggest jerk on the planet. My mother constantly feels sorry for him and enables him giving him thousands of dollars for his needs. He makes horrible choices. He bullies the family. She expresses how sorry she feels for him. He lost his wife in 2011 from breast cancer. We all stepped in and helped. He made 60k at a fundraiser, after her death. It was to be for his children and to help pay medical costs. He has blown every penny. He does not have a college education and barely passed high school. He works construction. Has worked for himself for years and never claims taxes. Most recently last Feb, 2 months before my dad’s death in April, my mom gave him a $2000 check to remodel the bathroom so my dad could have a walk in shower to bathe. He took the check, cashed it, spent it and says he doesn’t have to pay it back. He stole money from my parents at their lowest time and yet my mom feels sorry for him. My mother has also spent thousands of dollars for his girls. Paid $1800 for the oldest to go on her 8th grade class trip to DC. Thousands in clothes, food etc.

    Younger brother #2 Has lived with my parents rent free, bill free, food free 38 out of his 39 years. It is a highly dysfunctional relationship for both of them. My mom sees my brother as her companion because her marriage was bad and my brother sees a free ride and stays. He has worked some over the years in factory or minimum wage jobs. Has never attended a college course. Is currently working at Lowes 10-2, M-F. My mother loves her baby being with her. He is now driving my dad’s truck because his beater is dead. I know darn well she is not selling that truck to him but giving it to him. I don’t make a fuss because this brother living with my mom has taken the stress off of me for caring for my parents.

    My story is this. I am the oldest. I have a college degree. I have a beautiful home, wonderful marriage, stable life, one child. I have only asked for money once to help buy a house and I paid the money back immediately. While my mother doted on her grand daughters, my son was left in the dust. My mother wouldn’t even host my one baby shower because it was “too much work”. I have received nothing. Yet I suppose I haven’t begged and manipulated my parents for money. I sit on the outside and watch the enabling/favoritism. I am very bitter and angry. Their will states we are to divide everything by 3. I feel I deserve more but will never say a word. Now most recently during my father’s death, I had a huge falling out with brother #2, the bully. It has taken almost 50 yrs but I am done with his toxic behavior. Of course my mom feels “bad” for him because I have now cut him out of my life. I can’t win.

    So when my mom passes, I will get whatever is coming and hopefully have enough to travel to Europe on a nice vacation. My brothers are salivating waiting for their big payout and hinging their future on what mom has. I have news. Mom doesn’t have that much. I am glad to be financially stable and not have to hinge my future on my mommy’s money. They will burn through whatever they get and the money door will be forever closed. My door is locked as well. Have fun with that boys. Have fun.

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    • it sounds like you have a good head on your shoulders, but your brothers do not, i’m happy for you, no good can come out of spoiled kids.

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  • I was the unfavorable child in my family out of my three brothers who I was the maid for them. I was never appreciated as a person. I was exploded by my mother who I met when I was six years old. As a baby I was raised by my grandmother until I turned six years old. This is when I met my horrible mother who treated me a slave from the beginning. This when I began suffering in my life. I was a happy and loving child. I was rejected by both of my parents. They did not appreciate me as a person. They only used me for their own benefit. I only meant something to them when I earn money to pay half of the bills and the rent. This made me a stronger and successful person. out of all my brothers I was the only one who graduated from high school. I also graduated a Business and Medical Administration School. I have a great job. I work with people with disabilities. They are part of my world. I was a special education student who face reading challenges. I learned to read not only in English but also in my native language. My native language is spanish. I proud of being bilingual. This way I can serve my Spanish clients. I left the negative things away from me. I am doing positive things in my life that make me happy. I mentor to my children and my nieces and nephew to take their education seriously and follow their dreams to for fill their goals. Don’t let your pain and suffering take control of you. Be strong and keep a positive mind. Learn to control yourself and be happy. Don’t worry be happy.

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  • It’s heartbreaking to read these comments. I was the favorite and I am not asking for any kind of sympathy. I will say it was extremely difficult to watch my mother treat my siblings the way she did while treating me so well. As I read all of your comments, I can only imagine that this is the way my mom made my sisters and my brother feel. It makes me want to apologize to all of you, for some reason, even though I am no more responsible for the actions of your parents as I was for those of my mother’s. I wish you all well and want to say that she messed me up in other ways (married abusive men, was absent whether she was present or not, etc…) but always managed to make me feel like she loved me more than them. Seeing how it has effected her relationship with them, as well as the effect it’s had on them directly is truly awful. I hope you’re all having a great day out there.

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  • My favored younger sister is executor of my late parents’ estate. She refuses to let any of the siblings into their house, even though we are all very responsible members of the community and very fair-minded. It has been over a year and very little has been done about their estate. Our parents would be so disappointed, yet they are the ones that chose her. Any of the rest of us would have been an excellent choice. Sad way for an adult to act.

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  • OMG, this posting echos, to the finest detail, what I experienced from my grandmother and what my husband experienced with his own mother. My grandmother is long since deceased, and I couldn’t be more relieved. That woman was a walking emotional atomic weapon. When she died, I wore pastels, and not black. Get the picture?

    With my husband, his parents were just inept. Across the board. It has informed them as grown men. The mother is still alive, and still every bit as dysfunctional. I resent her and my husband’s birth father so much, if for no other reason than the behavior and choices they made shaped these then boys and teenagers into the men they are today.

    I do totally understand that in order to live our best selves, that we need to “forgive” the stupidity and ineptitude of our parents. I get that “forgiveness” does not at all mean condoning this behavior. It means setting them free with “you were f***-ups as parents and this is your legacy and not mine, nor should it ever be.”

    I also understand that no one owes us success or wealth or productivity or a roof over our heads or clothes on our backs or just “things” in general. If there is something we want, then GO OUT AND EARN THE RESOURCES TO GET IT. Do NOT expect someone else to do it for you. That’s just total horse***t to do so. You give your power to others when you expect someone else to make your needs and dreams and goals a reality.

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  • This being said, I wish so much that my MIL did not favor my husband. The supporting article for this post indicates that occasionally there is benefit to being the favorite.

    Rarely, and certainly not in my husband’s case.

    His siblings, do this day, resent him and make zero effort to be in touch. The only time this happens is when my husband takes me and our two daughters to see them. We moved across the country several years ago, and each and every visit, from the time we became a couple through til now, is because my husband made the effort to see them.

    The result of favoritism is that my husband, now a grown adult, spends a great deal of time (more than what he would admit to me) feeling obligated to downplay himself, speaking in such self-deferential terms about himself. It’s as if he is forever trying to show his d**khead brothers that he isn’t “special”.

    I hate feeling like this.

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  • I have 3 other siblings and as long as I can remember, the oldest and youngest were always the favorites. My personality is more like my father and his family which is the opposite of the way mom’s is. They are all strong emotionally and are not very sensitive. Dad, on the other hand, was more emotional. I feel, therefore, that my family considers me to be a weak, sensitive, and an emotional person. I feel like the black sheep of the family and am the only one who has been divorced twice. The wonderful news is that I was the first one to accept Jesus as my Savior and found out that he loves me for who I am. I have had a life that has seen many miracles and a productive prayer life. I just moved out of my mom’s home recently. I should have known that the same ole same ole took place with plenty of rejection and mom stating she would never encourage me but that she did love me. I am living alone now and am reluctant to go visit her. With God’s help, I try and see her once or twice a week. I live in another city, but work in the same town she lives in.

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  • My grandmother & grandfather adopted my brother and I when we were really younge & my father died in 2007 when I was age 7 , so my grandmother favors my brother to replace the loss of my father (grandmothers son) It sometimes makes me feel bad .. :(

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  • I’m 46 and have been dealing with rejection by my family for years. I’ve done all I can to support them emotionally and financially. to my detriment always. My life has been dominated by their needs. I’ve always been the good daughter, but I’m the last on the list to be treated well. My mum always takes my sisters sides and always has. She has never stuck up for me. It hurts. It hurt when I was 15, 20, 30, 40… and 46. Only now I see that the family I love so much can never be fair or even decent to me. They tell me I’m sensitive and must have depression. All I need is kindness and to be treated fairly. They all talk behind my back and my mum lies for them. they have outings and my father adores their kids while never having a conversation with mine. Their problems are always bigger than mine and if I try to talk about how I get treated I am ostracised for causing trouble. They will never listen. I am treated like an idiot. Yet the borrow money, have forced me to work in the family business for years and I’m still on call for medical appointments etc, while my other sisters sit at home. I have 3 small children that need me. I have 3 small children that are treated differently to the other cousins. They will soon be big enough to notice and this rips my heart apart. I grew up with estrangement and lost all my cousins when I was young. I still miss them. I don’t want my kids to miss out on their cousins but my parents and siblings don’t care. They have each other and are very happy. One sister even outright told me that she just doesn’t care about me and told me that no one else does either. Everyone knows I am sensitive and am the first one there when someone needs help. I could never turn my back on my family but should I now? I will always feel guilt if I do. I feel stuck. I don’t want my parents to die and me not be there. I want my kids to at least know their grandparents. Is this better to put up with the little contact we have for the sake of the kids? Although it is soul destroying for me to see the blatant favouritism for my siblings and their kids? I know I will feel guilt if I turn my back on them but they turn their back on me all the time and feel nothing. I don’t want to regret and I can’t change them. I just can’t imagine my kids having their birthday parties without their cousins and their grandparents. They would ask where they were. This is so sad. I am devastated. I feel like I’m only just realising the gravity of my family situation. I have been in denial for decades because it’s too painful. My mum even tells me it’s in my head. This is so cruel. I see it all the time. Family outings without me. Giving them stuff all the time and their kids and not mine. I’ve got millions of hurtful things they have done and said and I keep coming back for more because I have always loved me family. I’m such an idiot. One sister in particular is very jealous and delights in any misfortune I have. She even told me my premmy baby would probably have heart trouble and lots of health and learning difficulties. She said it so coldly and hurtfully, then walked off. I went home and cried. I know she is jealous and spiteful. I’m too old for this shit. It sends me into spirals of depression. I’m a happy person but this continual family rejection does make me depressed. Then they turn this depression into the cause of the problem, not their continual rejection of me and my kids eroding my happiness and hopes for the future – making me very unhappy and depressed. They go on with their lives very happily without me. I know they tell mum and dad to forget about me and move on. If I had done something wrong I would be the first person to put my hand up and say sorry. I’m tired of begging to be treated nicely. I’m tired of trying to fit into a family that doesn’t even have basic respect for me as a person. Denial is a much happier place, but I have a feeling I can see the writing on the wall. I want this all to be a bad dream.

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  • can the parent get in trouble by the law for favoriting the other child more? I was recently jewed in court and my dad got custody of me, I have never been close with my dad and I don’t want to be, my mom is my #1 she always treated me and my sister equally! I have proof that he treats my sister better than me! what can I do? I want out of my dads house I want to live with my mom again, I’m 4 months from being 18 years old! I just can’t live with my dad it doesn’t feel like home to me! please help!

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  • my mom favors my younger brother better. in my house you are a loser if you dont have anything to give them. im 29 and he is 22, i feel like my parents resent me for not achieving i guess what they wanted. im secretly going to school online so i can get my psych degree, make money nad take my son and leave. the only reason they let me stay until im on my feet is my child. my mom hates me that ia have accepted her idiot attitude ant mean ways of bitterness after yrs of b.s from my dad i will not take. i dislike this aspect. im so reasy to move out of their house i hate it there. they paid for my brother to go trade school and i wanted to do the same and i just felt so hurt. they are very willing to help him but not me. but i dont cry about it cause im waiting on my mother to put them hands on me and she is so out of my life. she is mean when she is drinking and im not around when she is anymore. i stay in my room and do not come out because its not safe.

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  • I’m the favored child, and this is rarely been a benefit for me. I’m an only child and my cousins are like my siblings, but I think my cousins are fine with me, maybe they think I’m a little weird, but that’s okay. It’s actually my aunts and uncles who believe my parents spoiled me, and their resentment is projected onto me. My parents helped their children out financally a lot, but when I needed help with my tuition, my mom’s siblings, all 4 of them, had nothing to spare. Even as an adult, they seem to assume I can never have real problems, and any claim to a problem is an exaggeration, even illness. I honestly think I wasn’t treated for my depression (I remember being a depressed, anxious kid) and ADHD symptoms until I was 23 because apart of my mom believed them when they said I was being “dramatic” when I shared how I was feeling. Well, I stopped sharing. Then I was seriously considering committing myself because I felt out of control, hadn’t graduated college even after attending for 7 years, and was on the verge of a mental breakdown. Now, all my aunts and uncles see is someone almost 30 who still gets financial help from her parents, but they don’t see the resentment I have for myself for having to accept their help. On the other hand, being treated and my parent’s help has allowed me to finally get a full-time job that doesn’t pay well enough for me to be financially independent yet, but it’s a professional tech job nonetheless so there’s room for growth. My aunts and uncles did the “tough love” approach with my cousins and refused them any help once they became legal, and they are barely getting by. More “proof” of me being “spoiled”, in a twisted way. I don’t even want to tell anyone about my ADHD (only my mom knows). My mom wants at least 1 of her siblings to know just in case she passes away, but I fear that all that will happen is I’ll be scoffed at worse than I am right now. I don’t even feel like I can share things about my life, the joy I get from my profession, my hobbies, etc., because doing so before got me the “well aren’t you just so special” reaction. After years of feeling mentally defective, I’m more productive than I have ever been, but no amount of hustle on my part is enough. I make mistakes like any human being, but when I do it, they assume there must be some selfish intent in it, and it’s just more “proof” for their “spoiled” theory. Like the poster above said about her favorited husband, it’s like I’m expected to make myself as small as I can as some kind of repentance for being favored. Being seen as bratty, untrustworthy, and ungrateful, no matter how hard I’m trying–yep, this is a real “advantage”. Can we just agree that family dysfunction messes everybody up?

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  • Hello Everyone, My Name is Sandra from California. My life is restored for good. I want to share to the world on how Almighty Prophet Iyare Helped me reunite my marriage. To cut the long story short, after 2 years of break up with my Husband with no phone calls or email messages. when i read about great Prophet Iyare I decided to contact him in his iyareyaresolutiontemple@gmail. com because I saw so many testimonies of his help in the the internet. so i contacted him for help. to my greatest surprise, 3 days after i contacted him my Husband called me and started begging for forgiveness,at first I shed tears because I was shocked! i am now a happy woman with a beautiful baby girl. all thanks to Prophet Iyare. if you need his help to get any of your problems solved just contact him at iyareyaresolutiontemple@gmail. com his help is assured and guaranteed.

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  • I’m only 15 years old who soon to be 16. Since i was really little i can remember my parents going on my brothers side and always loved him more, it all started when it was my birthday and my parents bought him a better gift than me even though it was my birthday which confused me at the time to why my parents bought him a present. But anyway thats doesn’t matter that was little things anyway once I became 12/ 13 I started seeing really noticable things like my mum would see something funny on internet and she’d always only call my brother and never called me or if we drank tea my brother would always be the one called rather than me. For some time it didn’t bother me but the more it happened the more I got sad and its bothering me a lot now. It’s not just those things Im just setting an example of what happened but basically my brother would get everything he wished for and get all the love but Id get nothing. Me and my brother always fight and he annoys me everyday and every second he can and Id ask him to stop but he wouldn’t. He used to call me fat and a spotty f*ck everyday and he still does but whenever i say something in returt somehow my parents would hear me and always shout at me for it, sometimes i feel like they know what my brother is doing but they just dont care which im not suprised about. It feels like my whole family is agaisnt me and make fun of me and my brother gets all the attention. Its really hard to go through all of this.

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  • I’m the youngest daughter of 5 kids (3boys and 2 girls).
    My older sister was always my father favorite, whether she wanted a car, private university, party with friends at home, being admired for her beauty. And me? well. not love by father that s for sure but by mom? well, let’s say that her so called friend was questioning my mom one day, why I am not as pretty as my sister, I was only 6yrs old when i over heard it.
    You know what hurt the most, was the fact that she didn’t even stood up for me,
    The worst part is that all my youth I took care of her, while the favorite and other brothers lived abroad and only called once in a while. Iv reached the point that I hate my ‘kindness’ it is a weak point. Till today none of them take me seriously, they dont call if i dont, I didn’t know it is that bad till few years ago, when my niece told me in front of her mother (my sister) that she has been telling her behind my back, I borrow her cloth !!! how could you make up lies about your own sister to make her look bad.
    She still tries to indirectly make me feel back, not good enough, not pretty enough although I’m a decade younger than her. She does that specially in front of her new Bf.
    Their shadow has been effecting my entire life, career, love life and self worth.
    Recently, I’v been thinking about ending my life. This is the only way out of the black hole.

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    • Just remember that tomorrow will be brighter. Begin by practicing Self care. Google it. It’s just little actions that you can take to give back to yourself.

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    • Don’t contemplate ending your life…..don’t do it. There is a saying that goes, “The best revenge is to go on and have a good life.” I know how it feels to have a mother that treats me like trash, and belittle me in pretty much everything I do. I have been fortunate to have a supportive husband, and others that see and recognize what she does. That helps a little. My husband tells me that my mother is really jealous of us because we worked hard for what we have. She cannot say she gave us anything, the way she brags about giving so much to my sister, because she didn’t. Don’t give them the satisfaction of thinking they hurt you, even though I know it does. There is something wrong with the two of them, that the only satisfaction they derive from their pathetic lives is tearing you down. Maybe it would be better for you to put some distance between you and them, and stay close to friends and others who love and appreciate you for who you are. You may just have to move away so you can heal, and there is nothing wrong with that, it is self preservation. But DO NOT contemplate ending your life…..it won’t change who they are, or how they behave and in the end, you will hurt yourself more than them. Just go on without them, seek people out who do love you, and have a good life.

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  • I had the same problem with my mom. She always had a problem with me and loved my brother a bit more. I feel like this is because of the large personality difference between me and my brother. My brother was more… girly… he liked theater, show choir, always hung out with girls (never flirted with them, they were his best friends) and just acted very feminine. I, on the other hand, played Baseball at a young age, and played Football as a starting RB in high school. I hung out with friends and dated a lot of girls and got in trouble by the school (typical high school jock). My mom never went to any of my games and always hated me being in Football, even when I got me good grades in other classes, she’d always mock me in 9th grade for not starting on my first year. She’d always say I’d be a nobody in almost anything I did, even when I played Baseball in 4th grade. My mom always had my brother’s back, when my brother got suspended for a week for gossiping, he didn’t even get his phone taken away for a day. He basically got a slap on the wrist. But when I get in trouble for hanging out with girls after midnight, I get grounded for a week with no phone because she thought I’d try to do something bad. It’s my last year of High School, I don’t even live with my parents anymore, I live with my girlfriend and working as a bank clerk. I recently got a football scholarship to Michigan State University to study Economics. I feel like this is a burden that my mom put on my shoulders that I’ll have to carry around for years and I don’t know how I can forgive her. I try to but she keeps on doing something to piss me off… I hope no one else has to go through a similar situation. I’m so glad I can finally get out of that hell hole that was my home. I hope no one has to feel the way I did when my mom cheered for my brother one day in show choir. Then made fun of me for an entire week for fumbling on the one game she went to. I’m just glad that’s over and it seems my Girlfriend had the same issue too as a child. I’m really glad I got this off my chest.

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  • My mother has always favored my younger sister. My mother was 7th of 9 children herself and always resented being one of the youngest. She would say the older children always had the advantages, the opportunities, the best of everything. There was only my sister and me, but from the minute she was born, I became an outsider. The best thing I could do could never measure up to the worst thing my sister did. As I got older and graduated from high school with honors, and again from college with honors, my mother belittled everything I did. When I got married and we bought a house, my mother said it was unfair, that in her estimation we had not “earned” the right to home ownership. My husband has a terrific private sector job and my sister works for the government, and again, according to my mother it is not fair that we have the things we have (which we have worked for) and my sister does not. So, recently, to “make things up” to my sister, and “even the playing field, my mother GAVE her the house and bought her a new car. My mother says “I have two daughters and I want them both treated equal” but her idea of equal is buying for my sister what we have. We have a house, so my sister must have a house. Mind you, my mother has never given us a cent for anything. I am so sick of hearing them both carp “no fair” every time we do or get something. We are planning a cruise to Scandinavia this spring, and once again, they are wailing “no fair” because my sister cannot afford a vacation like that. So my mother is going to take my sister on a Hawaiian cruise later this year. Once again, she wants BOTH of her daughter treated equally. Except her idea of equal is giving my sister everything she sees us having or doing. It has been this way all my life. Yet when my mother has work she needs done around the house, she expects my husband and I to come over and do it for free, because she sees no reason to pay someone to do something that one of her kids can do for free. I so resent my sister, and I hate my mother. She has never been a mother to me, she has never even told me she loved me, the way she has my sister. The most she has ever said is, “You are a member of this family.” If it weren’t for my husband pushing me to call her or go visit, I would never bother with her. My husband has been very good to my mother, and quite gracious, even though she has let it be known she doesn’t like him and thinks he is stupid to do the things he does for her, knowing she doesn’t like him. She calls him a fool all the time. I just don’t want to be around her.

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  • My mom and dad had me at a young age and was forced to get married when my grandparents found out my mom was pregnant. well their marriage didn’t work out and now my mom can’t stand my dad. well my mom got married to my step dad and had my little sister, we are 10 years apart. After she was born my step dad started treating me different by not really recognizing me or really caring about anything when it came to me. My mom will sometimes make jokes and say my sister is the favorite but I feel like there is some kind of truth behind that. Anytime I ask for something I am told no but if my sister wants it she gets it. She tells my sister all the time that she is going to be smarter than me and more successful. I feel that My sister is favored more because my mom doesn’t like my dad and I was the reason they had to get married in the first place. And my sister is favored because my mom loves my step dad and they planned for my sister.

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  • My teachers always tell me, I’m academically gifted (which I’m a little proud of.) My mother and stepfather would never praise me or comment on it. A very few times, I got a small shoulder clap or something like that, but I’ve never really got the attention I wanted so badly. I’m the youngest out of 5, with an older brother-, sister and two stepsisters. They’re between the ages of 19 to 23, and I’m only 14, so I’m a bit younger. Anyways. Every time I want to show them my grades, they always dismiss me and begun to talk about my siblings. I feel extremely ignored. My mum also seems to let all of her anger out on me. My two full blood siblings have glasses, so it’s not weird I sometimes have troubles seeing. We took a test, but the test said my vision was perfect. A week passed, and I still had troubles seeing what the teachers write in the blackboard. It was in October, so a bit close to Christmas. My mum got very angry at me, because glasses are expensive. She began making sort of fun of me, saying things like: “let’s take a test in every store in this city, huh? Why don’t we just buy you glasses now, you can Tiger of Sweden glasses of you want, let’s buy 30 pairs.. Etc.” It made me so upset, but my mum was right. Glasses are expensive and the test said nothing was wrong. It’s almost December now, and still don’t dare to bring it up again. I’m very quiet at home, because people usually blame everything at me, and I rarely bring friends from school, because I don’t want to get in an argument with my family in front of them. So to be honest, I’m not that social. I have a big dream about going to USA for a year, I want to attend high school, just for fun. A lot of kids from my country (Denmark) do that. My mum don’t really want to send me though. It’s too expensive, so I would have to pay a part of it myself, which is fair really, but they payed for all of my siblings. She wouldn’t let me go either, because I have diminished social abilities. I don’t want to tell her I blame her for that, though. Although I don’t always understand why I’m their least favorite, I have a theory, but it’s quite stupid: My mum and dad got divorced when I was about 4 years old. My mum took me and my siblings away from my dad, and I haven’t really seen him since. Sadly I grew up to look a lot like him, which my mums friends often comment on. I feel like my mom let the anger out on me, because I have my dads look. But I don’t know, perhaps I’m just a stupid kid?
    From the 14, Danish girl.

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    • No, Danny, that really isn’t stupid at all, it may well be very astute on your part to realize this and put it together. I have a similar circumstance, in that I look much like my father and his side of the family, and my sister looks like my mother and her side of the family. All my life, my mother has complained how much I look like my father, whom in life she could not stand, and his side of the family who she hates. She says she looks at my sister and sees herself, and so she cannot help but adore her. She looks at me and sees my father and grandmother, two people she cannot stand. She said she feels she cannot relate to me and does not feel we have anything in common. She has little to do with me. If I don’t make the effort to stay in touch with her, she will not stay in touch with me. She has even remarked that were it not for the fact that I was her daughter, she would want nothing to do with me. If I was just a person on the street, whom she didnt know, she would just pass me by. My mother has spent her life trying to hurt me. It does not hurt as much now that I have moved away and don’t have to be exposed to her so much. I think it bothers her that I have gone on and created a good life for myself, and she cannot hurt me like she used to. There is something broken in her life, but beyond that, I do not like the woman and would prefer having nothing to do with her. I have panic attacks when holidays come around because trying to buy a card for her…..all the cards out there for mothers say how they were so supportive, so loving, so good, etc….and in my case, this was not true. Where are the cards that say she abused me, mistreated me, was deliberately cruel to me???? And as far as gifts, no matter what I give her she does not like. My sister can give her the same exact thing, and she will brag about it for the rest of her life, but what I give her gets tossed in a pile to donate to charity. I try not to think of her. As I said, when you can put distance between yourself and them, it will get better. Is there a church or a club where you can be around positive role models, who will help you build your confidence and social skills, until the time comes that you can move away and live on your own and support yourself? Or maybe a teacher or sports at school where you can be around people who will help lift you? Wishing you all the best. I think you are quite observant and smart.

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  • I’m currently feeling this way because my parents just seem to looooooove my brother, but not me. I usually take home all As for school and when I get a B, they give me their shame. But, when my brother brings home an A, my parents get super happy about it. They don’t understand me either, for example, they also give me shame for not speaking like someone from the south should. I say you guys, and soda, but my brother says yall and coke. I just hate it. Also, today I found something i our Christmas stuff. I only had two ornaments with my name on them, but my brother had about seven. Mine were only from my grandparents. My mom and dad said we love you both the same, but that seems like such a lie for some reason…

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  • It never stops hurting. I’m now 70 and was and is the less favoured child. I have always tried to please my parents and achieve. My success did not help at all, it just drove them further toward my younger brother who was lazy and never achieved much in life.
    I am suffering bouts of severe depression in my later life. I always hoped things could change but my parents have transferred ownership of their real estate portfolio to my brother. The reasons they did this keep changing whenever I say it is unfair. I am struggling on a small pension whereas he is living the high life.
    It’s so hard to realise you were and are just not good enough, nice enough etc in their eyes.

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    • I am almost 60 and I can completely identify with what you say. My husband and I have been successful, and it seemed to infuriate my parents that we worked hard and achieved and provided for ourselves. When we got married 35 years ago, my parents did not give us a wedding or anything, in fact, they acted like they were ashamed of us marrying. They gave us $50 as a combined wedding/Christmas present. Through the years we have managed to buy our own house, cars, taken a few nice vacations, etc. But we did it ALL on our own. My parents bought a house for my sister, several cars through the years, and they paid for her insurance, they have bailed her out of credit card debt to the tune of $60,000…..they do everything for her and give her everything. They call us snobs. They demanded that when we made our will, we leave everything to my sister. They contributed nothing to us as they did her, but they think they will dictate terms of our estate, and said it was up to us to make sure she was provided for. They have left their estate to her in total, saying we don’t need anything. We moved to the other side of the country to get away from their craziness, which infuriated them even further. No matter what we do, they don’t accept anything from us and ridicule us to anyone who will listen. It was always that way growing up, they did everything for her, nothing for me, they told me I was older and had to pave my own way. I have never understood any of this, I have never understood what could I have possibly done to get this kind of treatment. But I eventually have to stop wondering, because I have a wonderful husband who loves me, friends who love me and are more like family to me than they ever were. But these are the people who are supposed to love you unconditionally. I have no respect for them, and am just as happy not to be around them. When my father died, on his deathbed he said he was so concerned for my sister…..not me…..but he wanted me to promise I would look after her and not let her financially fail. I told him I could not do that, she was 35 at that point in time, and had a job with good benefits, but still he was concerned only about her. My mother is 90 and feeble now, and my sister lives with her rent free. My mother informed me that she was leaving everything to my sister, as she was the one who stayed behind, that I had chosen to marry and leave. That is what kids are supposed to do, but she said I abandoned her. I know they are wonked, but it still hurts.

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  • It helped me alot today to read all the comments. I was unfavored, though i always achieved and did things right. My sister, who i looked up to while groing up, was the center of love and amazement, beautiful, intelligent, deserving of trips abroad, apartments, gold jewelry, fancy clothes, etc. i was the younger one, and always referred to as the little one, always the sensitive one, always percieved that way. Many years have gone by, many events and many specifics to illustrate different treatments for me and my sister, none worh going into because everyone else has already sited all the permutations of money, education, vacation, credit, adulation, even the love that extends to the grandchildren.
    As time went by, i became the educated professional, succesful on a national level and recognized by anybody who ever works with me (not trying to sound special but rather demosntrating how the unfavored siblin goes forward becoming strog amd independent). My sister, on the other hand, has had everything given to her, but can never be financially responsible. Even her deadbeat husband plays my parents for money, a house, investments for business, etc, neither are employed and both have overreached with a gorgeous house even the most successful person in my industry cant afford, lavish trips, maid service, private schooling, etc. i ask for none of this, and have tried to help my parents with their finances so that they may retire comfortably, so that their moeny lasts the rest of their days, the money that my father earned. Sadly, now he has alzheimers and my mother has taken advantage of this, probably unconsciously in her defense, to give everythin to my worthless sister and brother in law. There is no rectifying this. Any of the advice that online sites or therapy gives you to broach the subject with the parent will lead to denial, not to awareness. It leads to accusations that we are sensitive, not that we are seeing things from our own perspective. Its that we are unreasonable, jealous and crazy, not that our parents have done things wittingly or not that lead us to feel depressed and anxious.
    One website i read today said to “live with it.” At first I thoughg, how crass, how careless. Then i read many peoples comments across several blogs today, everyone echoing what i saw on this site, everyone eching to some degree what i have felt for years now. The most capturing part was how many people commented on moving far away from their families to escape such horse manure, to literally emmigrate away from the problem because there is no good way to deal with it. I have an uncle who moved to ireland for the same reason, as he was by far unfavored, and i am certain that this is what my mother saw with my grandmother (she too was unfavored under a 3rd brother), and she has overcompensated with good will towards her daughter , my sister, trying not to repeat the errors of her miserable mother (my grandmother is a grand manipulator and clinically insane, sadly). These are things that apparently we cannot escape. I am sure that there are more intelligent and mature minds than my own on this forum, and i would be surprised to see if anyone found a legit solution to improve the resentment and hurt and rage caused by favoritism. In short, the only true solution seems to be is “live with it.” I am now contemplating significant distance from my mother and my sister’s family as the only way to cope with this anymore.
    I only pity 2 parties here. My son is an innocent amd darling child, the center of my universe, the greatest gift i could ask for and a true kind miracle from god, a creation only possible for me from a very lovin and supportive wife (also an unfavored sibling, and she totslly gets it, but she is also trying her damnedest to help bridge the divide only to get verbal abuse from my fsmily, and yes i explode at the each time for the horrific disrespect which would surprise you). My son loves his granparents and his cousins. He wants very much to see them and spend time wih them. I am sure that my neice and nephew feel similarly. I want for the children to be close and have a relationship, but my sister will manufacture lies and prevent this. My mother will chime in about how my sister is wonderful and its my fault the kids arent closer. My mother barely makes an effort to see my own son unless its while shoppin or at a restaurant (her favorite activities). She will babysit my sisters kids and do anything for them, but not my boy. I dont begrudge my sister pr her kids anything, but there comes a point where my child is starting to notice the disparity and get hurt by it too. It gets difficult to keep giving him excuses and explanations until he is old enough to handle the truh. He is only 4, explaning any of this to him would be a ridiculous and unfair burden. Secondly, i feel bad for my dad, who i love so dearly but with his alzheimers defers all his activities and decisions to my mom. There is NO opportunity to have him spend time with my son without my mother harping on us and trying to give me guilt trips over my sisters family.
    I came to write tonight when i would normally never open up about this because tonight, i brought my son to see my parents at dinner, just for the opportunity for him to spend time with them. Its the firsttime in months since we have seen them or spiken because this scenario has been growing out of hand. As my mother continued to pour onto me guilt, even to tell me about her disapproval of my wife (who is from another ethnicity, but lets face it is the absolute most amazing thing in my life along with my son, and a highly successful career), i finally had to tell her to cut it out about the sibling, to concentrate on my son, on why we were here, because otherwise i wasnt having it, and i would pack up, take my family home, and forego dinner. That i would be much happier cutting them all off and never brokering the bullshit and lies that i was being fed. Today i hit the boiling point. I love my wife, i love my son, and i finally love myself.
    My point to anyone who might read this is hopefully to help them feel better. The other people will never change or improve. Any therapist who tells you how to help your infavoring family see your side of things and make life better ought to go back to med school and ask for a full refund. Life doesnt work that way. Our families will share the same stories, flaws, successes and failures as everyone else. Our stories will be no different because we are all human beings. Take solace in your families, in your spouses, in your friends, in your careers, in your homes, in your vacations, in your achievements. Love and honor those who love and honor you. Stick by them and be decent. The flaws of your blood relatives dont have to be your flaws, or your anxieties, or your depression. Besides, most of the unfavored siblings here have commented on their financial indepence and success, with the contrast of the favored siblings failures and never ending financial inadequacy. I fear for my sisters children when my mother dies, because the money will truly dry up at that time. I hope the unfavored of you take solace in your inner strength, in your accomplishments. Even those in their 60s and 70s, who have done so much and still feel burdened by our parents failures, i pray for the strenghpth for you to let it go. Reading your stories and writing my own tonight has helped me realize not to take this personally, and to feel a little better about things. Remember, these arent bad people, just deeply flawed relatives who just cant help themselves, whereas we can control and influence our own lives. Thats more than alot of people can say. Thank you all for your stories, you helped me tonight.

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  • They say you have to give respect to get respect. You dont have to cowtow to anyone if they dont give you fundamental respect.

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  • I live with five other siblings, two brothers and three sisters. I am the oldest. The eldest of my sisters is defidently my Dad’s favorite. Whenever an issue comes up between us, he thinks me and my ten-year old brother (he takes my side) are lying, but he just takes her word for it. This is what happens all the time, but when I try to tell him, he refuses to listen, which he always does. The only good thing about this is that I have developed a strong relationship with the aforementioned brother.

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  • This is too true. I was the favorite child, my sister and I have never gotten along. Yes, I do have confidence in myself to get things done and achieve goals but I struggle with intimate relationships, I struggle with friendships with other girls, and I am always trying to please others rather than find out my own personality. ugh.

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  • I live by myself after getting kicked out due to my twin sister and I not getting along. I have a career and my sister smokes pot, sits on her ass all day and bums off of the government. But yet I get kicked out. My mom baby’s my sister so much. She tells my sister not to get a job and try to get social security. After being a good big sister and all got her a job. My mom got mad at me for getting her a job and told her not to take it. 2 years later she is still sitting on the couch sleeping till 2pm everyday. Every time I call and invite my mom to do something she says not that she is busy. Then I saw her out with my sister doing what I was inviting them to do. I’m officially done with my mother.

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  • So today is Christmas. I know it is not about gifts, it is about the birth of our Savior. However, when buying something for my mother and sister I have always taken into consideration what they like and try to get something for them that they might not buy for themselves because they can’t afford it or can’t justify the purchase maybe. My mother is 90 and my sister lives with her under the auspices of taking care of her, but in fact, my sister sponges off of her. Though she has a good job and makes $55,000 a year, and has no expenses living with my mother, she never seems to have two nickels to rub together. In the past I have made clothes for my mother because she is short and has trouble finding things to wear that fit well. This year she said no more clothes, as she doesn’t go out much anymore. I was going to make her some flannel nightgowns but she said no to that, too. She is not the kind of person who likes perfumes, soaps, Hickory Farms, or jewelry. So it is very hard to buy for her. In the past I have given her restaurant gift cards, because even if she doesn’t go out, she can order in and these places will deliver. She no longer cooks. Well, I knew she liked Shari Berries, and Lindt chocolate, and I arranged to have that sent to her. She said that while she liked them, she did not appreciate them coming from me, because traditionally my sister and her friend give them to my mother, and my doing it was “horning in” on a tradition with them. I made a fruitcake for her because she always said she liked the fruitcake I made. This year, she informed me that she did not want that, they were rich, and the only reason she acquired a taste for them was because my father liked them, but he is dead and gone now, so she doesn’t want that either. So I asked her what could I do for her, and she said, “I don’t think I want or need anything from you.” Then this morning, opening the gift that she and my sister jointly sent me……they paid $15 in postage to send me a box with glass and sand and beads. They informed me it had previously been a Christmas ornament, that they knew had a chip in it, but bought at a “reduced rate”, and that it must have broken further in transit. Also included in the box was a very old plastic pill box. The plastic was yellowed from age, and the plastic clip in the front to hold it shut was broken off. They informed me that both of these items had been purchased at the Goodwill store. They thought the pill box might come in handy to hold small sewing items, since I sew. ?????? They made a point of asking me if I liked it, and when I told them that I found the whole thing rather insulting, my sister said in a very condescending tone, “I thought you were the good Christian who said Christmas was not about gifts. We thought you would appreciate anything….what a hypocrite you are.” I told her I never sent gifts to people that would insult them or that they could get hurt on…..I got cut on the broken ornament reaching into the box before I knew there was broken glass in it. They laughed. And my mother said, “I don’t really care what you want, this was what I wanted you to have.” Then they asked if I got their card…..the card was one of those freebie type cards you get from Paralyzed Veterans. This card was so old, it actually broke when I opened it. It was a generic card that said, “Happy Holidays” and it was signed “best wishes, Lydia.” Is this the kind of card you send your daughter? Is this the kind of stuff you send your daughter or anyone who is supposed to mean anything to you? My mother then went on about how my sisters friend gave her two beautiful flannel nightgowns (that she told me not to give her) and how she got Shari Berries from the other friend, slippers from my sister, and an assortment of restaurant gift cards (when she told me not to do this anymore either because she doesn’t go out anymore.) My cousin called yesterday, and said for the first time in at least 10 years, she got a HUGE and very ornate card from my mother and sister, and they sent her a $50 gift card to Olive Garden restaurant. She said that they actually paid almost $10 for this card, it was all glittery and very large, over 12″ tall, and very ornate…..after not sending her a card in over a decade. I don’t know what I did, but it has always been this way, even when I was very young. My parents used to give us the Sears catalog and tell us to pick out 3 things that were under $7, we would get one. I never got any, I generally got something that was either meant for a boy, or that I couldn’t use. I would watch my sister play with her Barbie dolls, Barbie car, Barbie house, etc…..my mother lavished her with gifts all the time. To me she would say
    “I really don’t care what you want, I gave you what I wanted you to have.” I guess the good thing is that at 90 she can’t live much longer to interject my life with her misery. After my mother is gone, I want nothing to do with my sister.

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  • I am 28. My younger brother is the favored child and is now a recovering alcoholic and drug addict. He was dealing and even smuggled drugs in my dad’s car. My brother was arrested for possession but my dad bailed him out of jail. He was arrested a second time and sent to a secure hospital after getting high and lying in wait for my sister with a makeshift cudgel. We considered he was too dangerous to let back into the house and when he was released from hospital he became homeless.

    After living on the streets for a week, he begged my mom to let him live at home again, saying he would change. My mom put down a strict set of guidelines he had to follow otherwise he would be kicked out. Among them, of course, were no alcohol or drugs. However, when Christmas came, my parents let him have one glass of wine against my advice. One glass became two, and soon he was stealing spirits, drinking and smoking in his room.

    I confronted my dad and asked him why he didn’t put a stop to my brother’s behavior, and my dad gave me a bunch of excuses and made out like I was the unreasonable one. I really felt betrayed, as we had all agreed that my brother could only stay if he was sober and didn’t steal.

    This pattern has been going on my whole life. My parents have always let my brother get away with murder without considering the effect on the rest of the family. They see him as a sweet little child who can do no wrong, even though he is now a grown man.

    I agree with the earlier poster who said you shouldn’t expect anything from favoring parents. They are not going to change.

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  • Try bring adult unflavored child. My sister has 4 kids (I have None) She has been on walefare for 14 years, I ost my job 2 yrs ago due to health poblems and I have been living scarcely off my savings to a total less that 10,000 in year and have nothing left now. She always gets the excuse that she has it rough even though she should of learnt after 2 kids what costs it. And she buys all the toys, all playing platforms and tablets for all the kids, aged 3-14 yea. And what do my parents do??? Give her the tablet because she is “underprivileged” I feel like I am being pincsed for trying to make it. Graduated from high schhol (she didn’t) getting a career (She hasn’t worked in 15 years. And did I mention that they bought her a car???? (Not me!!!) I even had to buy my ankle bracer which were about $100 each that were not covered my medical with no money, not to mention spending over $500 a month on prescriptions that I so not have. and when I try to include y self with her kids she treats me like a pedifile yelling at me (hey have witnessed it). No wonder I tried to kill my self regularly. My life revolves around her, at 16 I used to have to search the city at night when she ran away from home. Please tell me if I and underpreciatied.!!! And all they had to say is that “its all in my mind” they never bought me a car or helped in any payments. I had to do everything by my self!!!!!I just want to die. I have been paying rent since I was 15 and I am still the bad child. I never asked for money and always did what was asked of me. aghhhhhhhh

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  • I’m a 48 year old female, the 3rd of 4 children, boy-57, girl-54, girl-48(me), boy-47. My oldest brother is the favored one, since we were kids his needs, desires, whims, etc… all were catered too, he is 9 yrs older than me and as a small child I saw how my mom went way out of her way to make him happy at the cost of her relationship with the rest of us, we joke about it sometimes to each other, but it hurts us personally and as a family unit. The favored son is a drug addict -in recovery, but still a drug addict, he lives in my moms house, she says he gives her money, but how? He’s on disability due to mental problems from all the drugs. All my life everything was given and used for my brother, he’s been in and out of boys schools, jail, 2 long term prison stays, halfway houses, rehabs every other year, overdose drama- that’s what I call it when they say they’re overdosing but really they just want attention, he’d take about 10 pills call up crying no one loved him and say he needed to be rushed to the hospital. This was usually because he had just been caught doing something so wrong, like when he broke into our house and stole our and his own Christmas presents to sell them for drugs, he’s been married 5 times, has 5 kids that we know about, and has never paid one penny of child support, he starts trouble between people just to make him look better and my mom believes all his crap!! If we say one word about his actions, my mom will turn it to an assault on her, how we don’t understand she’s his mom and he needs her. We all needed her, but she doesn’t see any of this she only thinks we’re mean to him and he uses this to draw her in deeper to his ways of thinking. My dad- he was my stepdad who adopted me and my younger brother when we were 11 & 12, my older siblings were too old or married. My oldest brother never liked my stepdad, probably because he saw through his BS and wouldn’t let my mom give him everything. My dad passed away in the beginning of November, no one has asked her for anything, but my brother has her believing were all trying to get something, what??? I have no idea, the rest of us don’t want or need anything, so now she’s constantly saying she isn’t doing anything with anything for a year, we don’t want her to do anything, we don’t want her money, we just want her to be safe and secure. But my brother has been planting seeds in her saying things that “he” would do, he’s the one who wants something, he always has!! And like always he is getting his way, he’s driving my dads truck, wearing his ring, and walking around moms house treating us like its his house and why are we there?? I tried talking to my mom about this, but as always she takes up for him. I don’t feel sorry for him, he’s had 1000 more opportunities then any of us, I was actually told that they weren’t wasting college money on me because I’m a girl and I’ll just get married anyway..????? When I had to stay with my mom once due to my husband being in the army and sent to Italy, she told me I needed to get my own place, it was too much to me and the kids at her house, I guess a drugged up theif is a better house mate. I do have hatred towards my brother, and it’s my mom and his fault, she treats him like a king and he treats the rest of us like peasants who should be grateful for any crumb he throws our way. All while crying to mommy that he doesn’t have nice houses like we do, ummm get a job and buy one!! You seem to have plenty of money for other stuff, …..he can’t own anything cause the state will get it for back child support, this doesn’t deserve a remark. … Wait yes it does, be a responsible father you deadbeat! Even his adult children don’t talk to him, he’s stabbed them in the back over money….. It will never end and I could write a novel on all his exploits, I’ve barely touched on them, it’s endless…. I love my mom but I refuse to be treated like a old shoe, thrown in the back of the closet until your feet hurt and you need a shoe that comforts you, you never comfort me..

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  • Favouritism is horrible. I’m the youngest of four, and I’m the unfavourable child. My dad favours my eldest sister and eldest brother, my mum favours my older brother. My two eldest siblings have flown the nest so to speak, but all that’s left is myself and my brother. I was always brought up under the understanding that he could do whatever he wanted (stay off school, have new things, get money from my parents, come home late at night drunk) and he will be fine. They’ll look after him. If I dared to do any of that, hell would break loose. I came home from a party early, having drunk two drinks and I was screamed at and treated like a Leper. I was still sober. My brother comes home steaming drunk and gets glasses of water, food, tucked up in bed, the works. We both work. Every time he comes home he gets fussed over and waited on hand and foot, I come home and hardly any one says hello. They prepare his meals, do his laundry, clean his room and do his dishes, everything that I had to learn to do myself from a young age. I was so desperate for their approval, I went to college and then university to study a course I hated, as no one else in my family had even been past High School. That didn’t work. His girlfriend lives with us, and she’s given birth to his baby. I am usually the one that gets lumbered with the task of babysitting her toddler and his baby, and made to feel like shit when I refuse because I already have plans or need to do something else. By everyone. My boyfriend isn’t allowed over most days, and if I were to get pregnant without being married they would “kick me out” because “it’s different for boys than it is for girls”. I’m just saving up for a down payment on a mortgage and not telling them so that I can leave. As sad as it is to say, the day I leave will be the day the favouritism stops, I hope.

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    • Unfortunately, favoritism does not stop when you move out. I did this, and it actually made things worse. First, I was called a traitor. Then, my mother decided if I thought I could move out and take care of myself, that I should no longer be included in the family. She didnt want anyone knowing about all the abuse that had occurred at her hands, so she went to the family and trashed me, and got the majority of them to shun me, while building up my younger sister, the favored child. My sister has always lived with my mother except for a period of time when she moved out of the house to go live with a man she met in a bus station. The guy was out of work and living in a bus station. She said he was “cute” and struck up a friendship and decided he needed her to save him. He was an alcoholic and drug addict, and she let everyone know she was taking this misfit in under her wing and trying to help him stand on his own two feet. But he didnt want that, he wanted someone to leech off of. She lived with him for several years, and at one point they broke up and he went back to an old girlfriend and got her pregnant. Then they broke up and he went back to my sister. He got sued by the old girlfriend for paternity and my stupid sister actually went to court with him and said she would be responsible for some of his child support. She put him on her checking account and credit cards, and then they broke up two years later….he actually left her. But before he did, he cleaned out her checking account of $20,000, which was money left from a trust fund left to each of us by my aunt, and he ran up her charge cards to the tune of $30K. She was financially ruined by him, but there was nothing she could do because SHE was the one who put him on all her accounts. My mother felt sorry for her and invited her to come back and live with her, rent and expense free, in exchange for her doing the housekeeping, etc. My mother does not hold my sister to account for anything, in my mothers eyes, she is the poor sibling with no opportunity, and by contrast my mother thinks everything has been handed to me on a silver platter and I am a snob. I had previously said I would not be so stupid to put someone on my checking or charge accounts that I was not married to, and for that, I was told I was “heartless” and “lacking compassion” for my sisters “suffering.” My mother went on to shower her with gifts of money, a new van, tires, sound system, a vacation because she works too hard, and now most recently, my mother put her on the deed to the house because she wants to know my sister is taken care of after she is gone. I am treated like the bastard child because I moved out….during which time I was responsible, held a good respectable job, paid my own way, saved my money, and eventually married a good, loving, successful man. But my mother says I am a snob who looks down at every one, and that neither my husband or I deserve what we have. She criticizes me at every turn. It doesn’t get any better, because once a parent like that makes up their mind, there is no changing it. My mother cannot change her opinion of my sister without seeing the truth first. She refuses to see the truth because then she would have to admit her part in creating it. And that, she cannot do.

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  • If your mother dont show affection or appreciation since your a kid she never will…..i moved out and she still dislikes me….i did everything right i always cleaned for her did good in school and i always tried to show her these things …..she never cared she always put me down when i was a kid saying i was useless and worthless…but yet my other siblings she would praise and trust me when your just a kid these words mean alot they get stuck on you forever….i beleived the things she would tell me so guess what my self esteem was so low i felt worthless ,ugly ,useless…i always told her if she never liked me why didnt she just abort me or maybe gave me away…my other siblings always got new phones new stuff and I never did ….it got pretty ugly when i was just a teen beacuse suicide was just on my head i begged god everyday to take me away so i would not suffer her rejection…by the time i was in high school things were still the same she never appreciated the little things I would do and my siblings were messing up and she still saw them like angels..i met the love of my life my now husbandI when I was a senior….we dated for 4 1/2 years and my mom hated him just as much as she hated me….she never gave him a chance …me and him never saw each other but he didnt care he loved me so much that he never dumped me knowing my mother was never going to accept him ….the only times i would see him would be at church on sundays beacuse church was my only gettaway to realease my stress and me being a Sunday school teacher too…so he would go and just by seeing each other from far away made us both so happy….aftwerwards i coudnt take it at my parents house anymore i left my home and everything behind for him….and guess wat it was the best choice i ever made because he helped me bring my self esteem up and always told me “u can do it”! “I believe in you”! ….and now i have learned to love myself and be a better person overall ….i thank god for bringing him in my life he was my recompense for all the bad things that ever happened to me …. my mother still dislikes me but guess what i will not let herwords hurt me her negativity get to me!

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  • This is a good read. I am from the Philippines and I thought it was just me feeling the favoritism issue with a parent. I admittedly grew up having very low self esteem with doubts in every decision I make. Like the time the doctor told me I have a tumor and was forced to quit working for a year for treatment. After recovery, my mother upbraids me over and over that they are affected financially because of losing my job and compares me to my successful sister. Not even realizing that my illness isn’t intentional. My father on the other hand showed nothing but pure love and care both for me and my family. The only thing that makes it hard for me every single day now is my mothers’ constant upbraiding; making me wish they just let me be and let fate took me to the Lord’s care; that way, my family will still receive benefits from my insurance monthly.

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  • This is so true and I am crying as I reas the article about. I am the middle child and my mom favors my younger brother and never can argue with my sister. My parents are accepting to their partners while they seem to make my fiance not exist. If I point out to mom where are my siblings–all finish and have a great degree now…and I am left to hell them at home(still haven’t gotten my degree), she tells me I am talking bad of them and always seems jealous. How can I not be? I feel the runt of the little, so left behind, working hard to earn and studying to earn my degree whilst my siblings are out there having their great lives except being here to help out my parents; driving them to doctors’ visit and all. If I make a mistake it ia always on the spotlight, my siblings’ mistake? No big deal. I hate this life.

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  • I’m about to be fifteen and my parents seem to favor my twin brother..even though I have better grades, a better attitude (to their faces that is), work harder, do all my chores, and I’m the more obedient one. Our birthday is in two days and my mom already told me that she’s getting my brother a new video game console that he wants while I probably won’t get anything from them. I’ve been asking to get my ears pierced or to get a camera but my mom said that I have to “earn it”..haven’t I already? My brother is the one who needs to earn his game console…
    It really hurts to feel unfavored and unloved.

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  • im 24 years old and my own mother refused to even come to my wedding or have anything to do with it, where she actually planned and paid for my older brother and sisters weddings. and right now shes jetting off to switzerland to attend my step sisters wedding. I am a was always a good child and did what I was told. both my brother and sister are older than me and still live with my parents. i am the only one that actually moved out after getting married. it hurts alot but i have two kids of my own now, and i am breaking this ugly cycle by loving my kids equally and making sure that they know

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  • I have a older Brother and a younger sister of 18 years old at the moment.

    We are all from different dads but live in the same house.
    My mom bought my Brother a car when he was 25 years old.
    last year she bought my sister a car while she was still 17 years old.
    I bought my own car from my own hard working money as my mom did not have money to buy me a car.
    when I was not working for 6 months my car broke down I could not afford to fix it I sold the car so I can have money to go look for work again.
    before that, I asked my mom to help me with some cash so I can fix my car she told me she don’t have but a week after me selling my car she bought my 17 year old sister a Volvo S40 which tells me she had the money.
    I just don’t know anymore.
    When I wanted to given my mom my salary she told me just to give her money for food which I did but it become to little she wanted more which I offered her more she then told me its too much I must give less so I gave her less.
    now she is complaining that I eat too much and whatever I want from the time she decided to take in a child without parents.
    I just don’t know anymore…today I asked my mom if she didn’t see my sicks coz I only have 3 pairs, she shouted at me and said I don’t wear your socks so I told her but u washed it and I just took it out of the basket now.
    I am use to washing my own clothes she just did it cause she says I throw too much washing powder in.
    Someone please tell me wtf is wrong with this women and why is she making my life so unpleasant for me :( I feel like I can strangle her

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  • Our grandson was the firstborn and our granddaughter came next. The parents clearly prefer the daughter, esp. by the mother. We feel stuck in the middle because we see the effects of the last 2 1/2 yrs. on him. Our grandson craves their love so much, but they fawn over the daughter. We’ve tried to give him special attention, but at the age of 5 he is expressing himself saying that we make him feel special, but his parents don’t. Also, he said his mommy & daddy don’t love him. At church he wants to sit on his daddy’s lap, but is often outed by his sister. When confronting the parents, the DIL became outraged and punished us by withholding the boy from us and no longer inviting us to their home. We are heartsick.

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  • I was unfavored by my mom all thru my childhood. My sister was born 7 yrs after me and she became the darling of the entire family, not to just my parents but to my grandparents, uncles and aunts. For some reason I was always looked down and never got attention as much as my sister. I studied well, but never talented in other things like dancing or sports, simply because I was not encouraged to participate in things other than studies. But my sister on the other hand was very pretty, talented in studies, sports, dancing, kind of all-rounder (partly because my mom spend so much time and effort for her). Thru out my childhood, I wondered if I was adapted thats why I am not loved as much as my sister. I would blame it on my plain looks, glasses, not so talented. Nobody in my family including my cousins really liked me because I looked different than them.. (I took my dad’s side in my looks).
    I am now 35, married to a loving husband (whom they didn’t like initially) and have a beautiful daughter who loves me to bits. My daughter is 6 years and my husband so much want another child But for the reason I was unfavored, I am scared to have another child to share all the attention that my daughter is getting now. Maybe it sounds unwise, but I can fur sure tell that my own childhood impacts my life’s decisions now. We live in a different country than my parents.
    My sister committed suicide few years back due to a rejection. We all mourn for her still.. Now my parents show all the attention to me and my family. But it makes me always feel that now they have no choice other than to give me all attention. Everytime I call them, the first question will be about my daughter, not even how are you. I understand they love their grandchild, but still I feel I am the second-hand child. It still hurts me that my parents never loved me as much as my sister. It hurts to think had my sister lived, may be my mom would have completely ignored my family. I feel I am just being stupid to think like this, sometimes I disconnect the phone with them and cry. It hurts me so badly sometimes that I feel it should have been me who should have died.. I feel even my parents would have wanted me to die instead of my sister.. actually she was a better person than me to be honest.. more beautiful, more kind, more talented..
    To read about other’s feelings and feel that I was not alone to be unfavored by parents gives some comfort..

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  • I am willing to my fifty’s feel the effects thing this hurtful thing. it would seem even God himself made me but just didn’t love me over my sibling. he would ask for anything and it seemed that he would get it before he even finished sentence. me I would ask for the same thing and never got it. failure after failure trying and trying grinding and praying hoping and having faith no matter what never getting it done never receiving it. no one can ever tell me big God and people don’t have favoritism. If it was not so there will not be the name in the dictionary from jobs to happiness you name it . from having children die to watching life changing Contract fall right through the cracks.and it didn’t mean that my sibling was more obedient than me fact it wasn’t so that wasn’t the case. in fact when I did better things got worse I was diagnosed with Clinical depressdepression. all my natural born life is seen I will shout it out and told no.also the darker of the two I was really cute cause every kind of black man there was.no one even noticed me when I was at least 17 or 18 years old. yet I was always told to have faith and believe and with that the things that I wanted to happen never happen. so I am saying this life is not what you make it don’t believe the cliche life is what God allows it to be and in the end you must just accept it and try to make the best of it and try to be happy and don’t be ignorant about the fact the guy that man does favor of the people over you.

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  • Both my parents favoured and still favours my older brother over me- in fact, everyone sees it: my cousins, aunties, uncles and even my brother and parents as well ( I know because they have told me verbally)! Examples of this is when we are fighting. No matter what the situation is, my parents automatically find the blame in me, and from the bottom of my heart, I am telling you that most of the time, my brother causes it.

    Sometimes the fight gets physical (usually initiated by him) and while I would scratch him he would punch me (i would like to add that I am 13 and he is 19. It may seem like I am speaking from little experience, but trust me, I really have seen more than one would think), but because I have dark skin, darker than his, in fact, you would never see the bruises that he would cause me. Him, however, because he had lighter skin, and because I scratched him in places that usually show more scar-ring (sorry can’t spell), for example his chest and stomach, there would always be red lines.

    My parents would call me names and stuff (with the equivalent meanings of saten, the sh word, the b word, the f word and so on). This honestly makes me feel so bad about myself. Where I live, corporal punishment is allowed, and, well, lets just say that right now my life is really painful.

    Anyway, thank you for reading. Please comment if you have any way of coping with the pain. I hope you have a good day!

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  • So, Mother’s Day is about a month away, and already I am stressing out over cards. The only cards they sell say things like “Mom, you were always there for me, and you are my best friend, best mother in the world, etc.” Where are the cards that say “Mom, you never loved me the way you loved the other kids, and because of it, my self esteem is in the toilet, you always made me feel inferior, you never bothered with me, the best thing I could do never measured up to the worst thing your other daughter would do, I grew up feeling like the outsider.” Where are those cards? What do I do for Mother’s Day, when she expects a card and gift, and my life will be hell on earth if I don’t do something….but there is nothing on the market that accurately describes how she treated me and made me feel.

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  • Joann K.

    Wow….I read all of these and unfortunately know for sure, that I am not alone with this. It’s such a terrible shame to know that I don’t carry it alone. Or that it’s just me thinking crazy !
    I will be 47 this year, and my “Mom” is STILL doing this to my sister and I, to this day, and vistied her “family tradition” upon our children now as well and I wish I could sure her or something for it ! This is our entire next generation – which to me is unacceptable, abominable, abysmal, atrocious, disgraceful, deplorable, shameful, sick, and cruel.
    For myself, I always have got to find the good in things. I’ sure that has come from what she did, and does to my sister and I. It has made me a better parent to my own children. I have to look at it like that.
    And I do love my sister. We do have a very close bond,sisterhood and friendship, thank God for that too. We know what my Mom does is wrong and bad. And she is the only woman/female on this earth that I trust completely.
    And I do love my Mom and Dad. Yes, it hurts. I’ve had major issues trusting anyone, them just women. I’ve had problems with my self worth and self esteem. Mostly I have experienced problems making, having, and maintaining friendships with other women because of it. I am very leery of women in general. I do not trust them and think they WILL hurt me. It’s completely irrational, and I know it!
    I’ve lived long enough to know, life is short, moments fleeting, and people are flawed. My Mom was born with fetal alcohol syndrome and probably did the best she could, just like any parent. This is in no way excusing her bad behavior.
    I do wish there was something I could do or say to her to make her stop, but I seriously doubt anything would change and all it would do is cause drama with her and I’ll wind up having to apologize ! Am I right ???
    I do hope that each and every one of you, and even myself, find some way to make our peace with this horrible thing that this is. And that somewhere in our hearts, find a way to forgive them and make the very best of our lives. I will often times take the high road with things and be the better person, and this is one of those times. It’s so sad that this has happened and continues to go on for so many people other than myself.
    The worst part is knowing I’ll probably never get an apology and she owes me one big time. But even if she ever did say or mean she was sorry, what good would that do after all this time and making our kids be part of this too? Even if I stopped communicating with her and the kids, she wouldn’t get it. It’s just the way it is and will always be. It’s crazy.

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  • Joann K.

    Oh, I forgot the best part…My husband is also an UNFAV. His mother lives with his sister. Has always gotten her kids expensive X-mas gifts, while mine got Dollar General toys that would be broken within an hour of receiving, Also, she did live nearby, but was always too busy with his sister’s kids to help out with or spend time with them. So my kids have really gotten the shaft big time. I am still so grateful we had the years we did with my GREAT grandparents, Thank God, Thank God for them. We all miss them terribly.

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  • Ok, so I’m my mother’s oldest child out of three. My brother and sister shares the same dad. My mother married him when I was 3 yes old. I had to fight for my mother’s attention since then. My step father took away the mother and daughter bond that we once had. When I turned 4 my mother had a child for my step father and that’s when all hell broke less for me. My mother allowed him to physically abuse me, remember I’m only 4yrs old. I can remember him starving me if I got one alphabet wrong. I would stand in the corner for hours. Then along came my Lil brother. Once my sibilings got to the age of 5 & 6 he would compare them to me, saying I’m a deer and their lions. Being so young I didn’t know why I was treated this way. The beating continued. Fast ford, now I’m 12 yes old and my mother finally divorced my step father. I’m 29 years old and my mother is under my sister spell. My sister actsite like her father with my mother and controls her. My mother use to complain about me smoking or doing pills and at the age of 48yrs old my mother is doing pills and smoking with my sister which is 25. I guess my mother truly doesn’t love me. I remember when I was a Lil girl I had a nightmare about my mother being a robot chasing me around the house trying to kill me. All my life I’ve always been the bigger person but it’s time to take a stand for myself. My mother side of her family is full of incest. And yes, my mother and my sister are down with that. I just found out about it today. My mother’s father is a big pervert, so my mother allows my sister to flaunt and flirt, with our own grandfather. How disgusting. I can’t get no type of family support due to me not being freaky with them. My mother knows I’ve potential and a very strong women, but all my life my family has brought me down to distract me from the women they will never be. I am the Lord’s daughter. By me becoming a beautiful women inside and out, I’ve realized it’s time for me to let the Devils go. I don’t have a family.

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  • I am also an UNFAV of my mother and sitting here crying after my father’s funeral. My father treated all of his three children equally but my mother clearly favors the eldest daughter. My mother an sister sit together and laugh and conspire and completely exclude my other sister (only slightly an UNFAV of my mother) and me. It feels terrible. Even though I am in my late 40’s, all the feelings of childhood come rushing back. My mother always saw me as a ‘problem’ and I’m sure she not-so-secretly hates me. Now that my dad is gone I feel very alone. I’m considering breaking ties with my mother because the relationship with her is just too strained and painful for me.

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  • I’m so terribly sorry you hurt and that your mother chose to be this way. We cannot change people, believe me I wish we had the power to do that! Even if we understood why it still wouldn’t ease the pain. Surround yourself with people who love and appreciate you. Get counseling and read self help books. I speak from experience where I was neglected and rejected my entire life,my mother favored my brother over me so did my stepfather who I exposed him after he molested me. I was mentally and physically abused from my 1st husband and abandoned and rejected by my 2nd husband for the first 14 yrs of my marriage by my 2nd husband. I finally received counseling bc I wanted healing bc I was walking wounded! My heavenly father and Savior loves me and it’s unconditional! He loves you just the same! We are His favorite. Nothing we do or say can make him love us more or love us less.

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  • I’m so sorry for each and everyone of these post as I understand favoritism with children is not healthy for anyone….I just ran by these post, but nothing is by accident….I want to encourage each and everyone of you that you will make it in life…..and JESUS love you all I also pray healing to every situation…..you’ll will make it Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding, and all your ways acknowledge HIM and HE will direct your path (proverbs 3:5)……JESUS LOVES YOU MORE THAN anyone in this world :-) :-)

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  • I hear most of you! My parents both of them have always favored my sister 1st, my brother 2nd, and I’m just not on the favored list at all. As an adult I’ve mostly gotten over it by accepting it but, recently my parents started favoring my sister’s kid more than my child. They will fly and visit her and even give her child her birthday gift months ahead and my daughter’s gifts are months late. This made me upset so, I just am stuck between forgiving old problems and new issues with favoritism between the grandkids. So, now I’ve learned to just keep my distance. Talking to my mom is like talking to a co-worker or acquaintance you know spreads rumors and drama. Now I’ve learned to keep my distance. Keeping your distance means your parents reach out to you. When I turned 18, I went two years without talking to my parents. Now that I’m almost 30 it’s once a month or every couple months. It will be interesting to see which grandkid they favor next because my sis “their favorite” is prego. Hopefully they don’t favor one of her kids over the other but, based on their track record, they will. My best advice to anyone is to try to forgive, don’t forget, and hopefully you meet your husband or wife that will give you so much love that whether your parents love you or not, it won’t even matter no more.

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  • I commented last year, well, things haven’t changed abit. I must say my mother loves me but I still cannot stop comparing the different ways she treat my brothers especially my oldest and his family to me. We are a Christian family but sad to say I don’t see any biblical manners in my parents especially with my father who died ten years ago. He loved me until his first grandson was born, then it was hell for me. I got scoldings every time my nephew cried as he blames me for making him cry although I did nothing!! He would also belittle me calling me stupid and all sorts.
    Sad to say my eldest brother has taken to his footsteps with his children and grandchildren too.

    My mother has told me that I will be disinherited, wow!! what a blow!!
    Well, anyway, it has always been more for them and less for me but should I be complaining?? I still feel the love from her and it is very disturbing on how I feel as I cannot put a finger on it completely and say my mother was mean to me.
    Although I feel the favouritism very strongly, my mother sometimes even tell me that what she gave who was bigger and nicer than what she gave me.How insensitive, right?I hide my painful feelings all the time.
    And now she tells me about disinheriting, my oh my.
    I think she still resents and cannot forgive me for living overseas as she has the idea of me the only daughter taking care of her when she gets old and it is payback on her part.When my father died she kept telling the relatives with me by their side that she has her sons still, well, I felt terrible, she did not even mention me at all, like I don’t exist!!
    BUT I am not going to let her make me miserable is what I keep tellingmyself but once in awhile I have this strong surge of hatred for her.I feel lousy about that too.

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  • I have to say that my heart breaks with some of the comments that I read. I know my parents love me but for me, action speaks louder than words. I am the oldest of 4 siblings with 1 being my full blood sister and the others step siblings. My parents are divorced but somehow manage to treat my siblings the same. When I was younger, I was the bad child. Always in trouble for stupid things and criticized about my weight. I was often asked why I couldn’t be like my sister. She was and still is beautiful, tall and skinny (model like). And she was very smart in school. I was a socialite and loved just being around my friends. But my parents did not understand that and would ground me all the time. Now, being the adult, I am extremely successful with a college degree and a wonderfully well paid job. God is great! But, my parents continue to cater to my sister and my other siblings. I am the only one without children but I am happily married. We just chose our careers instead of having children. At least for now. I never see my parents anymore because they either have things going on their own lives (great for them) or they are watching the grand babies. There is never anytime for me. I wouldn’t ask for a lot and j don’t even care about material things. I would just love the emotional relationship with my parents. Unfortunately, every time I try, they are always babysitting. I have to call in order for them to communicate with me. Otherwise, I would never hear from them. I’m tired of being the only one trying. I don’t think they have ill intentions but are just so preoccupied with my siblings kids that they forget about the one sibling without kids. It’s already lonely enough not having a kid but I am being shut out because I do not have any. It breaks my heart! What keeps me moving is my wonderful husband and my best friend. Without them, I would be so lonely! I work hard to not let this get to me and try to heal relying on God to fill this gap. So, I just keep praying as I know God has amazing plan for me and he loves me so much. Keep praying and keep your head up!

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  • I haven’t had the opportunity to read majority of the comments shared, but I had been raised with a sibling that was a favorite, and much like the other examples shared, she was the oldest.

    My sister wasn’t simply the favorite child that was benefiting, she was aware she was favored and was an insufferable cunt who knew she could use it with immunity since my mom will always side with her.

    Making messes that she doesn’t clean up, letting my mom clean her room, at the age of 21, refusing to take trash out despite claiming to not believe in gender roles, asking for sums of money for college in the thousands (making my mom withdraw from her 401k to do this), refusing to learn how to drive because my mom won’t first buy her a car, emotional incontinence like cursing, crying and screaming when she’s told no (which is the reason she can’t learn to drive).

    The refusal to associate with extended family and yes failure to develop an intimate relationship with someone else because their habits are so intolerable to everybody else, though I wouldn’t want someone alike because it would be double trouble

    Fast forward 16 years of age I found out it was only my half sister when I went to visit my dad, and it all made sense. My mom has always been the supreme defender of my sister of course parents protect their kids of course but my mom’s was the extra step, you can’t say anything to my sister.

    Example: I bought a bottle of shampoo for my dandruff that was used by my sister. My mom was aware. My sister purchased organic fruits from the store. My mom was aware, I however wasn’t. I went to get a piece of fruit when my mom exclaimed
    “That is your sisters, she paid for it, don’t touch it”
    I asked “Why didn’t you say that when she was using my shampoo?”
    to which she replied
    “That’s you guy’s issue, I don’t get involved, talk to her about that”

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  • I’m a middle child of 4 sisters. My father passed away when we were very young and my mother has always favored my youngest sister. When we were younger it was easier to accept but as we have grown into adulta the favoritism is much more noticeable. I know my mother loves me and has been of help to me and my family. My little sister has been the one who has had pool grades, dropped out of college (after 3 attempts) never had a job until well into her 20s and my mom has always made an excuse for her behaviors. My sister got married and couldnt support herslef so she move in with my mom, husband and all. Even though my mom never allow this if it were me. I feel so much resentment towards my sister. She knows she gets away with anything and always feels the need to criticize my parenting when she is not a parent herself and my mom supports her. I’ve always been there for her because I know that that’s the only way my mom will appreciate me. I’ve tried taking to my mom about it but it only causes problems and my mom gives me the cold shoulder and I hate it. I dont know how to not be bothered by thia situation anymore

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  • I’m clearly not the favorited in my family. I knew this since I was a young child, but I thought that is the way it was. My mother loves my 2 younger sisters. She brags about them and had physically fought my sisters bullies. My mother always called me horrible names, even wrote them behind my school pictures. My mother told me that she tried to abort me but nothing worked. Long story short, my childhood was horrible. She hit, punched, cussed at for minor infractions; such as broken glassware while washing dishes, using one hand instead of two while putting leaves in trash. My sister began to use my mother’s behavior towards me for her own purpose in the form of taunting and teasing. My sisters and their friends called me the names assigned to me by my mother and sadly she defended them for calling me the horrible names because I was those things
    As an adult, I though I could forgot about the things and move on. However, the past always rear it’s head. My son is almost an adult and he starting to ask questions. I lost my husband to cancer, when my son was young. Now, my son wants to know why my parents and sisters did not help us survive those first hard years? My sister did not want to delay her vacation, so she left my late husband’s services ealire, mother did not want to any time off from work. My other sister just want to get back to her social life.
    Over years, coworkers, friends and assortment of people always wondered why my family never visited, (especially for important milestone in my life. I even offered to pay the airfare. My refused to visit but wanted the money for the airfare). I always been ashamed that I’m not respected or loved by my family. It’s truly embarrassing. My son was hospitalization recently and I reached out to them for support. I was so scared for my son. No one returned my phone call.
    Recently, my sister was diagnosis with cancer. Ironically. I expected to give support, which I had with cards and phone calls. The majority of my calls are sent to voicemail and cards/gifts are not acknowledged. So, I stopped calling and sending cards/gifts. I received a call from my mother on my voicemail that I’m not supporting the family. Does anyone have any thoughts?

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  • I really thought there was something wrong with me at a point in time, my mother never even liked me, and she is always defensive saying she is not preferential. I’m the last child out of four, she calls me ugly, gossips about me to my siblings and outsiders, she is really terrible. she might be my birth mother but that’s where it ends, I don’t even like talking to her, I’ve told her before that I don’t even think she wishes me well in life. I really tired, I’m in my 20s, I’m also ready to protect my children from her in the nearest future because I know she can never change. People around me don’t believe parents can be cruel, well they never experienced it that’s why they judge wrongly and point the finger at the child. I feel for the grown ups with kids that are still suffering from this, I hope they stay strong and show the children what love really is. My mother is a terrible person as well as some mothers out there, it’s their character, I hope they have good explanation when they face God for their judgement. I am still battling self-esteem and confidence. I pray God sees us all through soon.

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  • I posted about 6 months ago, and since then, things have gotten even worse, if that is possible. My sister, the favorite daughter, called me a few weeks ago. She has been living with my mother and taking care of her for the past several years. Her name was put on everything from bank accounts, deed to house, insurance, etc. My mother decided to cut me out and leave everything to my sister, in exchange for my sister not getting married and staying to take care of her. I am the eldest and my sister is youngest. She has always been my mothers favorite. Well, favorite daughter called and said there is no more money, she ran through it. She and my mother have taken vacations, done home improvements, had alot of fun, and since she was on the bank accounts, my sister played fast and loose with friends she was trying to impress. Long story short, my mothers worst fear has come to pass, she has outlived her money. She is 90 years old, my sister is 55. So, my sister said if my mother finds this out, she will have a heart attack and to write a check fast for her. I told her no way, I want to see what the money was spent on and how fast she went through it. She said that means I don’t give a crap about “our” mother, if I don’t do something. I want my mother to see what her favorite daughter got them both into. All they have is my mothers social security and sisters salary, they are living hand to mouth. My sister said that they could lose the house if they can’t make tax payments, etc. I told her I was sorry, but that all these years I have put up with their lies and abuse, and I am not going to anymore. I am not writing checks without first seeing where the money went. And even then, I don’t know that I am going to do anything, because if I do, my mother will find some way to make me responsible for this mess. She never has held my sister accountable for anything.

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