Having enough love for siblings

It was the typical Monday morning rush and I found myself nagging my daughter most of the way out of the door. The main sticking point was that the hairbrush fairy had stolen her tangle teezer hairbrush (god-send for long hair that knots!) and because we did not have time to comb the whole house (excuse the pun) I insisted she use my hairbrush, which caused a few tears. I then hit a wall feeling like I had been trying to do my best for her the whole weekend so that she was happy and yet she was still complaining about the little things. “What is it?” I exclaimed, “What do I have to do to keep you happy?”. Then she uttered what I had been dreading since the birth of my baby boy, “I think you love him more than me”. It broke my heart for her to say that so I explained to her how my love was in equal measure but that she would always have a special place in my heart as she was my first baby and I continue to be proud of her as she grows. She seemed satisfied (phew!) and then I thought about my positive discipline training and assessed whether I was using the right techniques. It takes a few goes to get the hang of it.

I bumped into my neighbour and mentioned to her what my daughter had said. I was shocked to hear her say she thought that her older daughter (age 10) believed that she was inferior to her baby sister (age 1) although, “she wouldn’t dare say it out loud”…She then added..”She is probably right too, I do love (baby daughter) her more”. She then went o to say what a bad mother she was. I can’t understand that mentality. Why can’t she just be a good mother? It’s not difficult. The girls are from different marriages but that should only mean more effort is put into reassuring her older daughter. What makes matters worse is she wants to have another baby. With that attitude, she will only push her oldest daughter further out into the cold. She then mentioned later that her husband was comparing the number of birthday present his one year old was receiving with his stepdaughter’s, implying that his stepdaughter was getting more. I can only feel awful for the oldest daughter as she is marooned on an island in another family that has grown around her yet not treating her as an equal. She even has the smallest bedroom while her baby sister luxuriates in a room twice the size. So I had to bite my tongue quite hard today……….and don’t even get me on the subject of their dog…..who is expected to sit in his bed all day in the vain hope he might see the outside occasionally.

I am blogging every day to raise money for Unicef. To see how this social media experiment is going, check out my page on Unicef’s site.

Thanks for reading.

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