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Do you love your children equally?

(13 Posts)
fantus Fri 19-Aug-11 12:14:40

Or do you feel differently about one or more? (if you have more)

I don't want to sound like a terrible mother but it has been playing on my mind recently.

When I had DS I fell in love with him almost immediately and that love has just grown - he is now 5.

But I really struggled with DD who is now 16 months. Not to love her because I do, I adore her, but it just feels - different some how. Sorry if I don't explain this very well. I had PND after having DD and for the longest time I just felt numb. I knew I loved her but some times I struggled to feel anything at all. And now I am left with such feelings of guilt over the first 12 months of her life. That I didn't love her enough or enjoy those moments that I will never get back with her.

I have recovered well from the PND and I finally feel like I am fully appreciating her and I do love her, so very very much. I guess I just feel guilty that the joy I felt with DS was missing for DD during the first few months of her life.

Is it just me or does anyone else feel differently about their DC's?

stripygiraffe Fri 19-Aug-11 12:19:24

I love my DD and DS differently because they are different children and they both have different things that melt my heart. However, I do not love one more than the other.

wordsonapage Fri 19-Aug-11 12:21:30

Same as stripy

deemented Fri 19-Aug-11 12:26:38

I love them all equally, but in different ways.

I love DS1 because he was my first, and will be my foreverbaby - he died shortly after birth.

I love DS2 because he was so tiny and prem, and he's stuggledd so much, but he's utterly amazing.

DD because she's just fantastic, so quirky and unique.

DS3 because he was my surprise baby, and he's so so lovely. Has gorgeous curls and an amazing smile.

And am currently pregnant with DC5 - and i love him/her already because i know they will be my last baby.

The intensity of my love for them is equal, but it manifests itself in different ways.

PrettyCandles Fri 19-Aug-11 12:32:09

I love my children differently.

It's not about loving each more, or less, or equally. They are each one a unique individual, with different personalities, and they trigger different feelings in me. I, too, have had PND with one but not with the others, and have behaved in ways that I regret.

But you see, it's not a once and for all situation. If you feel that your PND influenced your relationship with your dc, or your parenting, well you have constant ongoing opportunities to change that. You can constantly rewrite the future.

I find that I have a lot more patience and tolerance for one of my three. But, rather than feel guilty about it, I am trying to develop my patience and tolerance for the other two.

lynniep Fri 19-Aug-11 12:44:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cat64 Fri 19-Aug-11 12:49:11

Message withdrawn

bejeezus Fri 19-Aug-11 12:51:42

dont feel guilty fantas

PND is hard and not your fault

but also even discounting PND, you dont lavish the same attention or indulge subsequent babies as much as the first- because you just dont have the time that you did when you have an older sibling to take care of as well. I had PND with DD1 and not with DD2 so reverse to you and definitely feel like parts of DD2s life/development have gone by without the fanfare and jubilation that we felt with dd1.

I used to think that 'i love them equally but differently' was a bit of a cop out until I had dd2; but its so how it is

JemimaMuddledUp Fri 19-Aug-11 12:59:23

It is a well used phrase, but I really do love my 3 DC equally but differently.

I don't think I fell in love with DS1 immediately, it was a very traumatic birth and I suffered from PND afterwards. TBH I fell in love with both DS1 and DS2 when DS2 was born. But DD (DC3) was the only one that I looked at immediately and was totally overwhelmed with love.

DS1 is very strong and independant, and I kind of admire him. I am very proud of him.

DS2 is a bit less sure of himself, and I tend to think he needs protecting a bit more. He is probably my "baby", despite not being the youngest.

DD is my pocket rocket, she is tiny but has the big confident personality of someone twice her size! She definitely rules the roost.

So I love different things about different children.

naturalbaby Fri 19-Aug-11 14:09:46

mine are only little and i wonder about this sometimes. if i think about the age and stages they are at it's 'easier' to love one more than the others. i'm trying to seeing as a balance of time i spend with them affecting the way i feel - the younger ones are getting more attention and therefore more affection and love but i don't think i really love the oldest any less, but sometimes i worry that it might be the case because of their personalities and temperaments.

fantus Fri 19-Aug-11 17:58:10

Sorry to post and run but thank you all for your honest replies.

I think that what I was expecting is what Jemima describes, that overwhelming love. But I think the reason it felt so overwhelming with DS is that it took me completely by suprise. I really had no idea how much you could love another human being until I had him. Whereas as I suppose now, to feel that love is natural and also it built up for DD over a longer time so it's not taken my breath away as such. I hope that makes sense!

I do feel guilty. Not so much about how I treated her. Even at my worst when I couldn't understand why she still loved me and wanted me I would hold her and kiss her and tell her I loved her over and over again. I feel more guilt over how hard I found it to feel anything. And I used to think that she deserved someone better than me who could love her as much as she deserved. But I know now that was the PND and not me.

I'm glad to hear though that it is normal to feel differently about them but still love them equally. And they really are like chalk and cheese!

confusedperson Sun 21-Aug-11 14:03:34

I am afraid to say that loudly but I feel very little love for my DS1. He's been a challenge since he was born, and spoils everyone's mood in the house almost non-stop. He is 3.5yo and it should be getting better, but actually is getting worse. He is so consciously malicious, manipulative, aggressive, always talks back, fussy, hits, spits etc. etc. I only love him when he is asleep..
DS2 is a different matter, the most lovable baby ever.
It is such as shame that I feel so differently about them, and I wish I could do something to feel better about DS1....

2kidsintow Sun 21-Aug-11 22:53:50

I'm not sure that I love one more than the other, but it is certainly EASIER to love one than the other.

My DD1 has always been a bit of a Daddy's girl, probably encouraged by the arrival of DD2 which resulted in me spending time with baby and DD2 having trips out with Daddy to give me peace from time to time. She never liked cuddling for too long, would pop into our bed, then announce -at the age of 3- that she had enough and would take herself back to bed. She loves spending time to herself reading or listening to music. She can be really lovely, and will still at 10 link arms with me or hold my hand when we are walking around town. More usually, however, she thinks it is uncool to be seen to be showing affection. If she is hurt or upset by anything she will actively make sure that she shuns attention and will strop off. I have to nag or shout at her to make her let me check if she is OK. I've made sure that we have spent the majority of the holiday going out together to enjoy being with her before she gets to the stage of only wanting to be out with her friends.

DD2 is still only 6, but she is a different kettle of fish! She has from the beginning loved sitting on my knee and cuddling. She came through frequently for sleeps in our bed for years. She tells me constantly that she loves me (I almost fell over the other day when the older daughter actually responded with the same words after I told her I love you instead of laughing and looking embarrassed) and wants to spend time with me constantly. It is lovely, but totally different.

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