My eldest son is my favourite child. I can admit that freely because I only have one child. But studies show that most parents have a favourite child even if they don’t admit it. Or even show it.

A recent article in Time Magazine reports

One oft-cited study showed that about 70% of fathers and 65% of mothers exhibit a preference for one child or another. For fathers, it’s most often the youngest girl; for mothers, it’s typically the oldest boy.

If it’s any consolation for Mom and Dad — to say nothing of the unfavored kids — favoritism is hardwired into our species. Since families, at their evolutionary essence, exist principally as a way to get as many genes as possible into the next generation.

Every parent defines the lucky child differently: for some the choice is based on beauty, for others brains, for others birth order.

I come from a family of three girls and I cannot deny that there have been times where all three of us have played the favourite card. I know I am my father’s favourite, although my sisters and he will deny it. I think my middle sister is my mother’s favourite although she will definitely deny it and so will my mother.  I guess that makes them good at masking their bias…and it makes me lucky.

Lots of my friends have more than one child and I often think that I can spot their favourite (it always seems like the youngest  but that may be because the youngest child seems to need the most attention, and usually they are a whole lot cuter) . In fact I get jealous on their children’s behalves, I am generous with my emotion like that. But I can’t imagine how I would deal with more than  one child so I try to temper that jealousy and spoil the child that I think is getting the raw deal. I am quite sure I am wrong some, or most of the time. I sincerely hope so.

Do you think your parents had a favourite child? Do you?

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