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Parenting

favourite parent?

18 replies

dot1 · 29/04/2003 12:46

Has anyone else had this experience? our ds is 17 months old, and for the past couple of weeks he's started to favour my dp - wanting to play with her and shaking his head at me when I volunteer to play, etc. It's hard not to feel hurt! dp is his biological mother, and I'm not, so I don't know whether that plays a part. We both look after him pretty much evenly in terms of time, but when we're together I have tended to take a bit of a back seat (laziness!).

Have other Mums noticed their toddlers having a favourite parent? Is it usually the Mum rather than the Dad? Advice please!!

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Wills · 29/04/2003 12:50

Oh I've definitely experience this. Lovely isn't it! However now that dd is 3 I've noticed that this sort of behaviour comes and goes with time. At the moment my dh is definitely fav as its daddy this and daddy that. It may be that she's had me around solidly for the last 6 weeks (sick + holiday) or it may be that he's a little short tempered at the moment and doesn't particularly want the attention. Either way she's still going to him and its winding him up. Sometimes it hurts but most of the time I relish have a couple of moments to myself. I've definitely learnt that in a few weeks time she will be back to being a mummy's girl and daddy wont be allowed to do anything.

HTH

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elliott · 29/04/2003 12:56

Hi dot! My ds is also very fond of daddy - dh spends a day a week with him on his own, so we have fairly similar amounts of time with him. I am also a little 'lazy' when we are all together whereas DH is always (well usually!) patient and interactive so I suspect that is one of the reasons they get on so well. I haven't noticed ds rejecting me as such, but I do get the distinct impression that daddy is more fun!
Sometimes I am jealous but I try to see it as positive that he has strong relationships with both of us.
I'm sure your ds is just as fond of you, perhaps just at the moment he is preferring dp as a playmate.

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Meanmum · 29/04/2003 13:19

It happens in our house all the time. Our son worships his father and as soon as he walks into the room I am completely forgotten. Last night I'm just putting him in the bath when who comes home from work. You guessed it "God" or so our son thinks. He was literally trying to climb out of the bath in case his dad left the room without him. Unheard of as bath time is the best as far as he is concerned. Needless to say dh had to sit on the toilet in his work clothes and amuse ds until he had been bathed.

I think it's great as I hand him over as soon as dh gets in the door and leave them to it.

Mind you I'm the one he favours less as even at the child minders he is happy to stay with her rather than come to me, even when I just arrive to pick him up. His attitude is like, oh you, alright if you want me to go with you I will but I'm just as happy not being with you.

It doesn't bother me at all as I figure make the most of it while I can.

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eefs · 29/04/2003 13:26

ds is my little shadow and has been since he's been able to express a preference. This is probably because dp never got involved. However, the tide is starting to turn, dp is finding ds a lot more fun and plays with him more so I think in the future I'll be bypassed. It doesn't bother me, I know he still loves me and in any case I'd rather he got more attached to dp as I'll be having a new baby soon and don't want ds to feel left out.

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Jimjams · 29/04/2003 13:34

oh it changes all the time. Ds1 was very much glued to me until I had his brother when he was 2.8. He then did his best to ignore me and became very into daddy. He'll be 4 next month and is still very keen on dh, although when dh went away for a long weekend he ignored him for about a week after his return.

DS2 (15 months) loves me- or more to the point my breasts. I know that he'll probably go through a daddy phase later on. Fickle aren't they?

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dot1 · 29/04/2003 13:48

thanks everyone! I got really upset about it last night - crying all over dp, but I feel a bit better that it happens to other couples aswell..! What really gets me is that I'll teach him stuff - tricks and actions, and then as soon as dp is in the room he'll only do them with her, and not me!

Thanks again - Mumsnet threads are fantastic when you're down in the dumps!

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kaz33 · 29/04/2003 14:42

Same here, DS adores DP - because he is more fun. I do all the boring stuff. However, he does like mum to put him to bed at night and prefers me when he's tired or needs comforting.

I like to think that its because he is so secure in his mums love that he can safely reject me without comprimising his relationship with me.

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susanmt · 29/04/2003 15:34

My dd is a real daddy's girl - partly I think as i was ill with pnd after I had her and then ill in pregnancy with ds. It is less pronounced than it used to be but when he comes in I may as well not exist (for either of the kids) as Daddy is everything.
I try not to take it personally!

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Bozza · 29/04/2003 15:41

Usually my DS wants me to bath him (I think because he is tired and therefore clingy at that time of day) and protests if DH does it. But I went away for a couple of days recently and when I got back, it was "daddy do it".

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Furball · 29/04/2003 20:55

Ds (20 months) wants daddy all the time. I think in our case Dh works, where as I am a SAHM. It doesn't bother me in the slightest, Dh walks through the door and Ds is demanding to be picked up and cuddled from the minute he steps through the door. Phew, I get time to myself, even if it is cooking our dinner

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Chinchilla · 29/04/2003 20:55

My ds usually always wants me, and dh gets really upset by it. However, on Sunday, we went swimming, as ds clung like a limpet to dh, and didn't want me near him. Now I know how dh feels! Don't worry Dot, it's nothing to do with being the biological mother. Your ds will not know the difference.

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Linnet · 29/04/2003 23:13

When our dd was about 1 year old she would wake up in the morning and call for daddy and he had to give her the morning bottle, she never wanted me. We've always shared the childcare and spend equal amounts of time with her but daddy is most definitely her favourite. Like someone else said Dh is more likely to play rough and tumble games with her and has a lot more patience with her than I do. But with me she likes to bake and help with the housework occasionally, play quiet games and do colouring in so I guess it balances out. She likes daddy to read her a bedtime story but I have to lie beside her for a while before she goes to sleep. And the other night I was working late and when I got home she was still up because she had fallen at school and scraped her knee and all she wanted was her mum to have a cuddle before she went to bed, aaawwww, I guess sometimes she does just want her old mum. I'm hoping the next one will by a mummy's boy/girl

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bea · 30/04/2003 09:17

Oh Dot1! Don't worry... it's all swings and roundabouts! phone you soon!

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slug · 30/04/2003 10:42

The sluglet was a real daddy's girl until dh became a SAHD. I suspect that this is because there is novelty value in mummy now. Whenever she has the screaming heebejebees it's me she clings to, even if it was me who uttered the dreaded "NO" word in the first place. Very tedious indeed. Having said that, we were out with the in laws last week and in the middle of a tantrum she reached for Nannie. Mother in law looked embarassed, but I was just relieved that for once the tears could be cured by someone other than me. Hurray! now everytime she has the wibbles we'll send her roud to her grandparents to be sorted out.

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motherinferior · 30/04/2003 11:24

My two-year-old is JUST beginning to ask for me rather than Daddydaddydaddy - we share childcare pretty evenly and I suspect one reason she always wants him is he actually gets up rather more when she's sleeping badly. It's really hard, isn't it. She did once reduce me to tears when she was ill, shouting at me to go away and that she wanted him (poor chap had to comfort us both)...mind you this morning she told him she wanted me but I suspect that she's realising the bump in my tummy means a sibling pretty pronto!

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kayleigh · 01/05/2003 10:22

dot1 - my dh gets upset sometimes as although ds1 is very much a daddys boys, ds2 is a complete mummys boy and won't let dh do anything for him if i'm around. But on the other hand sometimes it's me getting upset as this makes me feel slightly smothered as I can't get on with anything else and let dh take over, say bathtime, as i have to be there too for ds2. Hopefully it's just a phase (my excuse for all sorts of behaviour!)

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MrsS · 01/05/2003 10:36

Oh god I must be a terrible mother. On the occasions when DS1 (who's nearly 2) wants DH instead of me, I run off cheering before they can change their minds.

Dot1 I'm sure that toddlers preferences go in phases and it's not personal. Enjoy a bit of space whilst you have it and don't use not being his biological parent as a reason to disengage, at 17 months I'm sure he has no idea of that fact

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dot1 · 01/05/2003 11:01

thanks again - I know (I think) it's just a phase, but I suppose like you say Mrs S, I worry about the non-biological bit...

ds is still favouring dp, but I'm trying to take the advice lots of people have given, and enjoy the freedom..!

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