DB Shuns One of his Sons

What would you do in this situation. I care for two very young children, both are 11 months old and dad works at home. I'm becoming concerned that dad favors one son over the other. Whenever he comes up for a break he barely acknowledges one of the babies and he's all chit chat and cuddles with the other. When he does acknowledge the other he seems annoyed by him. He's not physically hurting the one or anything like that. Is this favoritism in the making? Is this something a nanny should address?


wrapping paper said...

That's sad.

Do you have any clue at all as to what might be leading him to show this favoritism?

I'm assuming the 11-month-olds are twins...? Are they the same gender? Are they the father's only children?

canadananny said...

I have no advice for you in this tricky situation, but I wanted to say I've seen this before. There were almost 2 year old twin boys who went to a daycare I worked at a few years ago. They sent the boys with bottles....Z always got 1 bottle and D got 2 bottles. D was often kept home (once a week or so) with mom and dad for a "family day" and Z was still sent to daycare. They talked to/played with D more, and generally ignored Z. This really showed as D was much more verbal/outgoing/physically developed than Z was! They were identical twins, but you could easily tell them apart because D weighed about 12lbs more than Z. I always felt so bad for them!

MissMannah said...

You asked what would I do in this situation. I would do absolutely nothing. As long as this child is safe and being cared for, you don't need to do anything about the father's parenting style. Yes, it sucks and one of the kids is really going to miss out, but then you can compensate by being as loving as possible to both kids. I really don't think you can do anything because it isn't your place. ANything you say regarding this will just be seen as offensive.

gypsy said...

I would definately point it out. Id say things like, "Hey what about me!?" As if ur the baby.

Or, say,"hey, u forgot to give a hug to baby B!" :)

Make them take notice & encourage fair treatment. Its very possible this can help them realize their being unfair. They very well may be doing it without thinking about it. Plenty of twins in our family & this is so common.

pro-nanny mama said...

How heartbreaking. You can't do anything. It would be commenting on their parenting style and all that will do is alienate you with the parents. Just keep loving both of them like you do. Sorry your in such a sad position.

MissDee said...


I know how you feel, because it is favortism and it blows. The reason why I know this is because I, along with my brother and cousins were our grandmother's favorite grandchildren, and on the flipside, I was shunned by my father.

My epilepsy and ADHD, along with my violent outbursts in my childhood (which I now believe which were caused by too much TV as a child and the hostility toward my mother's death and my father) made me a tough child to deal with. My grandmother, who was my best friend, was one of the few who understood me, not excluding my cousins and my older sister.

My father, on the other hand, expected me to be like my brother: smart, articulate and ambitious. The problem? I am me and me is I. He never encouraged me to try anything new. Didn't impose homework and set consequences for not completing it, yet did get his belt when I didn't do it, and lectured me for hours and hours and hours for bad grades. In fact, my grandmother bought me a guitar for Christmas one year and I played and played after my homework. I forgot to do an assignment, and he found out about it. My punishment? He walked through the hallway, screaming, yelling, and breaking my guitar on every and any surface he could find before he got his belt and whipped me for not doing my homework.

He would say I was beautiful but stupid and pretty but dumb. He didn't expect me to amount to much, and my older brother joined in on his beliefs: my older brother was searching for respite care for me when I turned 18, because they believed I wasn't able to care for myself.

I am the youngest of four siblings. My father's favorite child? My brother. How did I feel then and how do I feel now? I don't speak to my father or brother because of how they treated me as a kid.

I don't think there is anything you can do, except love both of these children, no matter who they are and what they do. My father's attitude toward me wasn't due to the fact that he is a bad person, but because of my mother's death, which hurt him more than he cared to share.

♥ Amy Darling ♥ said...

OP, I would tread lightly and carefully.

Perhaps when Dad says something positive about what the favorite one of the toddlers did or said, you can come back w/a.."And look at what Johnny did today...isn't he special??" In other words, encourage the father to praise both of his sons equally.

Other than that, there is pretty much nothing you can do about this situation. It is out of your hands.

alex said...

That is so sad! And Canadananny, I could not image them havign "family days" but leaving one twin out! I am shocked they were even allowed to only send one bottle. I wonder if CPS should have been called as 12lbs is a big difference in idential twins! And MissDee I am sorry about your dad too! I am a triplet and honestly we have joked about "favorites" before but our parents treat us the same and my mom makes sure presents are down to the dollar on birthday and Christmas. I don't know if you can say anything though but I was watching an episode of Super Nanny one time and I think they were triplets or twins and the mom showed obvious favoritism to one of the boys. Jo mentioned it to her and she honestly didn't even realize she was doing it. She was really sad. So maybe he doesn't even realize it/ I liked the other posters suggestion of mentioning, what about baby b? etc. Worth a shot.

Bethany said...

Sad. but as others have said not much you can do.

There was actually a study that came out not long ago that found that the majority of parents do favor a child.

He may not realize it, so you can do what has been suggested and be the voice of the baby. That might be enough to wake him up.

If he really does favor one over the other there is nothing you can do, but love on both of them while you are with them.

canadananny said...

The twins were only at the daycare for 2 months before their parents pulled them out to put them in a home daycare. I happened to have the twins in my summer camp group when they were 5 years old...D was still much further ahead in terms of speech and coordination (and was still probably about 15lbs bigger)...Z hardly spoke and when he did you couldn't understand what he was saying, although I know he was in speech therapy. I was only 16 at the time I was working at the daycare so it never occurred to me to call CPS, although the Head ECE teacher and/or my manager should have caught it!