'I have a favourite and I'm not ashamed to admit it': Father sparks backlash after revealing he loves one son more
18:52 GMT, 24 September 2012
A father who admitted he favours one of his children on a parenting blog has spurred an onslaught of dismay and anger from commenters.
Buzz Bishop, a Canadian radio host and 'daddy blogger' wrote a post titled Admit It,You Have A Favorite Kid. I Do, sparking an online backlash from worried parents.
The 42-year-old father wrote on the parenting website Babble: 'Yes, I have a favorite son and I’m not ashamed to admit it. I’m guessing you could look deep in the mirror and admit you have a
Playing favourites: Buzz Bishop, a Canadian radio host and 'daddy blogger' (pictured) wrote a post titled Admit It,You Have A Favorite Kid. I Do, which has sparked a backlash from parents
Pointing out that he doesn't give his favoured child, five-year-old Zacharie, preferential treatment over his younger son Charlie, age two, Mr Bishop wrote: 'I don’t let Zacharie get away with anything because he’s my first pick, I just..yknow .. like him better.
'I admit it, my oldest son is my favorite because he can do more things. To me, he’s more fun,' he continued. 'I don’t love either of my sons any more than the other, but I do like them differently. I’d be willing to bet you’re the same.'
While some parents were quick to praise Mr Bishop for his honesty, many have angrily come to the younger child's defense, arguing that it may be common for parents to have a 'favourite,' but the unspoken parental law is that it should never be admitted.
'My oldest son is my favorite because he can do more things. To me, he’s more fun'
Laurie Boyle McGeary, a mother from New York, wrote: 'It's one thing for you
to think it, it's another for you to say it out loud.
'Their abilities will change with time and so
will your 'likes,' but what won't change is you posting that you like
one son over the other. Words you put in print can not be taken back.'
However Sherry Telle of Alberta, Canada took Mr Bishop's view with a grain of salt, commenting: 'Everyone likes
one child better at any given time, a 5 year old is easier for most men
to relate to than a 2 year old simple as that, I don't think you can
comment on who 'sucks' without knowing circumstances!'
Daddy's little boy: The 42-year-old father wrote on the parenting website Babble, 'Yes, I have a favorite son and I'm not ashamed to admit it. I'm guessing you could look deep in the mirror and admit you have a favorite too'
The stigma of favouritism, and the
effect it can cause, has led many parents to vehemently deny they have a
favourite child, regardless of the truth.
Pattison Denault of Toronto wrote on Mr Bishop's post: 'The key is not
admitting it so none of the kids feel hurt and start resenting their
other siblings. Announcing it in national articles and on facebook isn't
going to do your youngest any good.'
Mr Bishop, who says he uses his writing to share what he worries
about and struggles with in his parenting, explained to MailOnline over email: 'If everyone admits to thinking it, why is it so taboo to
actually say it out loud Is having a favorite the 'Voldemort'
Team Bishop: Mr Bishop and his wife, Jennifer, became pregnant with Zacharie two months into dating; 'He was an accident waiting to happen, and I'm so glad it did,' says Mr Bishop
When asked what he had hoped for in his readers' reactions to his post, he said: 'I was more hoping for people to admit they have the
feelings, and start a more sympathetic conversation. Instead, anonymous
avatars admitted they share my perspective (to some degree) and then proceeded
to vilify me for daring to say it publicly.
'Parents should be allowed to openly discuss their struggles
with parenting without being labeled the worst person in the world.'
Mr Bishop's wife, Jennifer, supports her husband's blog post.
She told MailOnline: 'I know where he's coming from, and I know he loves them both the same.
'It's just the age of the two, his favorite is the older one because he can relate more to him. It doesn't necessarily mean Zacharie is a favorite overall, it's just a favorite right now.'
She added: 'I have a favorite to go shopping with, I have a favorite at night time, I have a favorite in the morning wake up. I have more favorite activities with each kid, as opposed to saying I have a favorite kid.'
Jeffrey Kluger, author of The Sibling Effect: What Bonds Among
Brothers and Sisters Reveal About Us, claimed that ‘95 per cent of parents in
the world have a favourite child – and the other 5 per cent are lying.’
However in his book he adds: ‘But when it comes to family favourites
there’s definitely something to be said for the parental code of
Carolyn Egerszegi, a friend of Mr Bishop, wrote on
his Facebook page: 'I know you are a wonderful father to both your
boys.. but the internet does not expire and I would hate to think C
would ever find this discussion one day. It would crush him.
'Although you enjoy acting as a lightning rod for debate, I think in this case you are being self-indulgent at C's expense.'
Sibling sons: Mr Bishops wrote of his two boys, Charlie , two, (left, and Zacharie, five, (right), 'I don't love either of my sons any more than the other, but I do like them differently. I'd be willing to bet you're the same'
Mr Bishop told MailOnline: 'Perhaps I'm too naive to think that my words will not be one
day read by my children, but if they do read them, I trust I will have a strong
relationship with my kids that they will understand the context with which I
father of two also noted on his original blog post that, 'When it comes
to weekends when my wife and I divide the boys up to have an easier
time running errands, I usually pick Z.'
This is something Mr Bishop, who says he struggled with the younger years of child rearing, preferring 'the older kids who can get out and run around,' has since re-evaluated after his blog post's backlash.
'I will concede that the open discussion and criticism I have
received has caused me to re-evaluate the balance of time I spend with my kids.
I am now consciously planning to have more one-on-one time with my younger son,' he said.
'[But] I do not regret posting it. I will continue to write
about my children, I will continue to write about the ups and downs in my