Mom blogger Kate opened up on Babble about something that might not be all that uncommon: she loves her son more than her daughter, Bekah. What uncommon is that she talked about it. She writes:
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.
Kate blames it on a lack of bonding when her independent and challenging daughter was born, and the instant connection she had with her cuddly son. Readers were pissed, particularly when Kate said it wouldn't be so bad if she lost Bekah. Like if she died, readers wondered?
In a defensive follow-up note, Kate said she meant if she and her husband were to divorce, or if her daughter were taken away by child services, writing:
I never, never, NEVER said I “wish my daughter was dead” EVER!!!! I am shocked and ashamed that all of you took my words so poorly.
She also writes:
1) None of you in "internetland" know me well enough to understand why I'd write and publish such a thing (I actually pulled it for awhile but my real-life friends encouraged me to repost it)
2) It probably struck a little too close to home for many of you…you've had those same thoughts about one or more children in your darkest, most private times…and found it obscene to see your own worst thoughts out in the light of day
There's a lot of irony surrounding that post, and the reactions to it (and really, surrounding my entire online-writing career!). And in the name of honesty, I'm not done confessing. Oh yes, there's more….
I'm not a perfect mother.
There, I said it.
I appreciate honest writing (although I think if you are brave enough to write honestly you should be prepared for people to react honestly, too.) But all I know is this: I hope Bekah never, ever sees her mother's words. I'm sure she already notices that something is up–-kids are observant.
I think commenter "Shea" says it best:
Lady, we didn't walk into your home and tell you that you were a bad mother. You put it on the Internet. The largest public forum in the world. And you put it on a location that has a comment box. Don't be surprised when we are shocked at your choice of venue, and don't be surprised when we use the comment section to express that shock. Seriously, this is like Internet 101.
Fellow blogger John Cave Osborne gives Kate props for her guts, but gives five reasons he'd never admit the same thing.
Words could never describe how hurt I would be if, 18 years from now, one of my children used a highly visible platform to articulate disparaging thoughts about me in an essay that admitted in no uncertain terms that he or she loved Caroline more than me. And if that kind of thing would hurt me beyond words, I have to assume it would hurt my children beyond words as well.
And with that, I hope this hullabaloo will die down.
But what do you think? Was Kate right to bring her honesty to the web? Or are there some things you just don’t say? Do you prefer one of your children over the other?