Is Honesty Always
For many moms, being completely honest with themselves – never mind the Internet – isn't easy. Can you reflect this candidly? "The thing is, in the day-to-day life, I find it easier to gravitate towards my son. I'm more patient with him. I'm less likely to get angry with…I'm more likely to pick him up and snuggle him, or to get something he asks for quickly. I'm less patient with my daughter, more likely to fight with her or refuse to get her something for no good reason…These are really on my worst days though…on my better days, my normal days, I make more effort to try to be fair to both."
Always trying harder to be a better mom is an admirable quality, and how can one accomplish that without first acknowledging her shortfalls? Kate herself says, "I just keep hoping I can be a better parent." On one hand, Kate's honesty and ability to look at her parenting strengths and weaknesses can only help her improve as a mom. Additionally, by sharing so openly, she might help other moms who have similar feelings but are afraid to address them.
Conversely, the idea that her daughter may -- and probably will -- read her words one day is difficult to imagine. Even if Kate and her daughter build a strong relationship and wonderful mother-daughter bond over the years, how would her daughter feel if she read her mom's cutting words at the age of 12 or 13? While Kate specifically addresses that possibility in the comments -- "As for my daughter reading this, I would be happy if she did. I think it would help her to understand that I'm not perfect and I struggle but I love her and I am always trying to be better for her" -- many readers doubted that her daughter would take it so well.
Over 400 readers shared their thoughts, some supportive, some disapproving and some sharply critical. One reader stated simply, "Excellent. I believe this post deserves an award. This is exactly how I feel with my 3 year old daughter and 10-month-old son. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!"
Another was less appreciative of Kate's openness: "This isn't about perfection. Of course mothers aren't perfect. No one is perfect. And your feelings are what they are. Obviously, you are struggling with them and want to do better by your daughter with your actions, which is a good thing. Hopefully you will find a way. However, I question your judgment in publicly posting your feelings like this. There is no way that this could EVER be a good thing for your daughter to read. How could she ever benefit from knowing that, "There are moments – in my least sane and darkest thoughts – when I think it wouldn't be so bad if I lost my daughter, as long as I never had to lose my son. He is special to me. He is close to me in a way that no one else is."? Or that, "I secretly hope that this new baby is a girl. I want to start over with a little girl now that I'm healthy and an experienced parent. I want to love her and cherish her as she should be."? Those are harsh, harsh statements."
>>What do you think? If you loved one of your children more than the other(s), would you share? Should Kate have kept her thoughts to herself? Or did she do some mothers a favor by being honest – perhaps helping them acknowledge and work through their own feelings?