Siblings Rivalry & Favouritisms

I come from a family where my parents loves me and my younger sister unconditionally. Even though my parents have high expectation from both of us, they accepted our strong points and tolerate our weakness. They love both of us for who we are, and that is one thing that that no outsiders could deny. They love us, and they are not shameful of showing their affection to both of their daughters, even in public. Which is pretty rare for Asians. My sister and I do have to endure occasional bear hug from our mother in public and our father’s constant kiddy treats like ice cream and cookies during our family outings to this very day. While it’s a little embarrassing for both of us, we do appreciate the fact that no matter what happens, and no matter how old we grew up to be, we’ll always be our parent’s little girl. It is nice and comforting to know that.

My parents made sure that both of us felt their unconditional love for us. However, they do not treat me and my sister the same way, because they could never have, but that does not mean that my parents treated us unfairly, that’s merely because my sister and I are both two different individual. We may be alike in a lot of ways, but we’re also completely two different individual in other ways.

When my kid sister was just born, I felt that she took away my parents from me, because they pay her more attention to her than me, and she always gets me into trouble with my mom and dad with her constant reports and complain of my teasing and bullying. I used to think that my parents loved her more than me, but as I grew older, I realized that they loved us all the same, only in different ways, because my sister and are two different individuals and affection as well as attention should be given differently according to our personality. I assume, a lot of parents are like this too.

Anyway, enough about me and my sister. Let’s get back to the thing that I would like to send across today which is siblings rivalry and favoritism among immediate family members. Boring and lame topic, no? But I came from a family where my parents loves me and my younger sister for who we are and accepted our flaws, no matter how bad and annoying it is, so when I came across families who loved and care for one child more than the others is rather awkward for me to see.

I could never get used to seeing a father or mother shoving one of his son in a corner and treated him like nothing more than a punching bag to release tension and stress, just because that child is just mediocre in everything while he dote on his other children as if they are his treasure.

I saw some element of favoritisms today in a restaurant that I patronized during lunch with my colleague where a father treated his son, which I assume, his second son rather unfairly in comparison to his eldest and his youngest children. The boy in question was having a bowl of rice with dishes in front of him. While the father filled up the elder brother and younger sister’s bowl with meats and veggie, this poor boy had none. The father  did not even attempt to put any dishes on this boy’s bowl and deliberately ignored him.

And so, I continued to watch the family of four with sadness and sympathy for the boy. The boy wore a hurt look on his face, but put up a cheerful front and reached out for the last piece of fried chicken with his chopsticks and placed it on his bowl, and was about to eat it when his elder brother, whom in my eyes is rather bratty and lack of manners, started to whine and told the father that the younger brother took his favourite dish, which is the chicken wings.

I was not prepared to see what happened next, and I would have curse the father all the way to hell if I did not hold my tongue in the presence of my colleague. Guess what the father did, my precious readers? He gave the second son a dirty look, and reached out for the piece of chicken in the younger son’s bowl by using a pair of chopsticks and placed it on the elder son’s bowl and told him to eat it.

The younger boy protested his father’s action, claiming that he took it first, but the father simply barked at him and told him to shut up instead of filling the younger boy’s bowl with other dishes as a compensation to his loss. What disgust me was not only how the father treated his children in such an unfair and undignified way, but also at the way he spoiled and pampered his elder son. Even if the elder son is his favourite kid, does this mean he could hurt his other son’s feelings that way?

I was completely stupefied to see that the elder brother ‘s reaction to all of these. He laughed at his younger brother’s predicament and wore this smug and satisfied smirk as he’s gotten what he wanted in the first place-which I suspect not only the chicken, but to see his younger brother being shouted at by their father.

Frankly speaking, if I was the mother of the elder boy, I would have slapped him across the face  or give him a piece of my mind for being such a glutton. What else could you do to instill manner in a spoil rotten child who have his bowl full of dishes and still want to take away a measly piece of chicken in his younger brother’s bowl? The boy needs to be taught some manners. But it’s not only manners that the elder boy lack. He also need to be taught on how he should conduct himself with his siblings and be a brother to them instead of only being his father’s pet.

I was practically fuming when I watched the little boy sighed, and in a defeated manner, he reached for some veggies and swallowed the food halfheartedly while watching his brother and sister devoured their food in enjoyment. I do not doubt that the food was tasteless on the younger boy’s tongue.

I was hit hard on the head then, to realize that this is probably a common scene in most families. What’s worst, what I saw today was probably only a little glimpse of what most children who are in raised in big families are forced to endure every single day during their growing up process.

They’re treated unfairly and was ignored all the time because their siblings overshadowed them in many ways and things are never easy for them. Whatever they do were not appreciated as in their parents’ eyes, and they are always useless, stupid, whiny, bratty and ungrateful. They’re always shoved in a small corner as their siblings were put in the spotlight. Sometimes, the parents do not even see the child’s achievement or helpfulness as their favourite are constantly bragging about their contribution and take credit for what their brother or sister has done.

The children who were ignored and lack of love grew up to have rebellious streak and lack respect and love for their parents. They grew up having bitter feelings towards their parents. And they are often misunderstood as the parents refuse to pay even slightest attention to them or spend time with them.

What’s worst, not much thing change when the children grows up. Some parents tend to dote on certain daughters or sons just because one earn more than the other, or one gives more monetary contribution than the other. In worst case scenario, these children’s achievement and success will also be compared with immediate family members of their age, like cousins, or even in laws, not only in private, but in public as well.

I could never stand seeing that, period. I condemned this kind of parents to hell. As a parent, how could you treat your children so differently and love one child and shower him or her with love and attention more than the other? The child that you claim to have flaws and useless is your flesh and blood. Why can’t you treat all of your children as if they are a part of  you instead of some stray puppy you’re forced to shelter in your home?

Cleffairy: Sometimes, just sometimes, I could understand why some children claim that whether their parent(s) are still alive or not makes no difference to them, and they wouldn’t even care if their parent(s) is claimed by Death the very next hour in their life.

14 comments

  1. lz says:

    Gosh..

    It’s really hard to believe how can a father treat his son that way. Sigh..
    I have never witness any real case yet. I choose not to believe. That’s really sad..

    But I guess, the younger boy will be a more successful person than his elder pampered brother in the future!

  2. arc says:

    It is crucial to distribute our love evenly to our children, even in different ways for each. What a disheartening moment for the small boy to experience that. I wonder what had he done that he ‘deserve’ that situation? Well, if he did any mistake, why can’t the father just forgive him? Hello, that is ur son, ur very own blood and flesh (I’m talking to the bias father)

    As for me, I think my parents have distributed their love fairly. It’s not that they have treated us in the same way, as though we, the siblings, are vary in many ways. But, sometimes, I do feel that my parents had some kind of bias thing. Nonetheless, the favoritisms wasn’t as bad as what u’ve told here. Great post =D

  3. KevinP says:

    Speechless. I do not think of any parent would do that. Feel sorry for the child to have a father like that.

    Anyway, back to the issue of showing affection… my kids, two boys, pretty macho.. at home they will allow u to cuddle them etc. But in school, we normally want to embarass them by cuddling them, my wife goes a step further to kiss them and they will BLUSH, I tell you, its nice to see them blush and well, I guess we only live this time once, might as well make it memorable.

  4. eugene says:

    i worked with children in the church before, and i have seen cases where children are really not what they are inside from the outside. Guess ISO of couselling the problematic children when should instead cousell the parents. The stigma left by the parents onto the children can have very severe bearing, and it could be a vicious cycle.

    Let us build happy families, and have happy children

  5. cleffairy says:

    Lz… I’ve seen a few like this, but they’re not as terrible. like the elder bro getting scold for the younger sibling’s doing, etc etc, but, this is the first time i see a middle child being treated this way-well, not really first time, cuz i’ve been told countless times that my husband have similar experience when he was growing up as well. Even my cousin sisters have the same problems, as my uncle prefer sons more than daughters. She and her sisters are often neglected. Thank God my parents are not like that.

    Anyway, when I saw how the boy being treated, I wondered, whatever he did to deserve that and how long has it been that way? I’m more than sure that the boy will be scarred. Yes, the ones who are treated unfairly and lack of love usually grow up successful. However, there’s a side effect to it. They also grow up to have resentments towards their parents and immediate family members. They do not love their parents, whatsoever, and will be sure to tell their kids and spouse about how unfairly they have been treated.

    Arc
    , parents can never treat their children equally, because all kids are different. But what’s important is to love, and not deliberately ignore and mistreat the children. That ought to be good enough for the kids. kids dun ask much, you know?

    Kevin
    … lol… you also liddat with your kids ah? LOL. =.= to this very day, i also need to endure such thing from my mom and dad! Anyway, back to the topic. Hmm… you haven’t seen this, huh? I’ve seen a few times already, but this one is the worst so far. Such thing happens all the time in huge families and typical families that gives priority to eldest son, etc etc.

    Eugene
    …yeah, I agree, some parents ought to be counsel, as in some typical families-duzzin matter Malays, Chinese or Indians, some parents really practices favoritisms-preferring sons to daughters, eldest to youngest, etc etc.

  6. James says:

    Cruelty!!!! Fark those parents!!! Eating is the most enjoyable thing how can they ruined it!!! Damn them!!! Jie shud report to child abuse..dat 1 counted as child abuse right?

  7. cleffairy says:

    Seng, yalorr, feel bad for the boy. But, jie think ah, a lot of families with a lot of kids is like this…treat some of their kids good, and some pretty bad.

  8. amoker says:

    I had my hair cut, colour and treated yesterday in Seremban by this pretty lass of 19 years old called … Evonne. Super hot chick. Then she relate her family story, that she is no longer attached etc. ( kekek). Yeah, her father is very controlling and her elder sis think that she is getting all the favours. So, your story reminded me of my 2 hours of knowing her.

    Oh ya, we are doing some stuff for the orphans tomorrow. We collectively collect some dough, squeze our company for more fund and do it.

  9. cleffairy says:

    =.= I think favoritisms exists in many families. It’s just that most are not as extreme… but still, children can feel it. Some children do feel left out.

  10. Vern says:

    I guess for my brother too, when I was born, he prolly felt jealous that his baby sister was getting all the attention. What more, if I cry, he gets the blame! We didn’t exactly, like one another for a few years. Haha! But my parents never really played the favouritism game – as a matter of fact, we were both treated equally so much so that I had this “anything you can do I can do better” thing against my brother! Haha! Over the years we figured what we could do, what we couldn’t and the best ways we could complement one another’s abilities – and I must say we make a pretty good team now. So yeah, my parents are pretty good at what they do. 🙂

  11. cleffairy says:

    Vern, i have a sneaky feelings that your brother would give anything to get you into trouble with your parents when you’re just born. LMAO. Frankly spekaing, i felt the same way about my younger sister as most elders sibling does. And we never see eye to eye with my sis until I left for college. I’ve always felt that she gets all the attention, and my parents loves her more than me, etc etc. She whine and complain to my parents alot like an annoying brat….damn fed up back then. But, it’s just jealousy. When I left the nest, I learn that my parents loves us just the same, even though in different ways. 😛 Ahahaha… you know what’s best not living with parents anymore? Now, when she gets into trouble, she will really kena, cuz no more big sister to point fingers to. LMAO.

    Ah, yes, Merry Xmas and Happy Holidays. Good luck with gossip to you and ur bro. 😀

  12. ecam says:

    Perhaps the younger boy not belongs to the father? A product of extra marital? Which explain the bad treatment to him. His wife got pregnant and he thought “That child is not mine”. After all this can happened and usually at that.

  13. cleffairy says:

    Ecam… the kid looks exactly like his father. Like carbon copy, only smaller version, so cannot it’s not his kid la. Even if it’s not his kid, the child is innocent what?

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