7 Things to Do When Your Child Prefers One Parent

It’s common for a child to prefer one parent over another, but being rejected hurts. Find out what you can do to manage your emotions and survive this difficult phase.

when one child prefers one parent

I will always remember chatting with my 4 years old son Alex while driving him to gymnastics class. Out of nowhere, he exclaimed, “Mommy I love you!” I know, so sweet and adorable. My heart swelled up with happiness and a huge smile formed on my face. 

Then he followed his declaration of love with, “BUT I LOVE DADDY MORE.

OUCH. Just punch me in the stomach why don’t you? 

And if you think that’s bad, there is more.

Fast forward one year. I was driving my 3 years old daughter, and she was throwing a tantrum about how I wasn’t handing her food fast enough. Frustrated, I exclaimed, “You have to be patient because mommy has to focus and not crash the car!”

She responded, “That’s okay. If you crash the car and die, we still have daddy!”

Talk about a sharp dagger to the heart! But at least this was not my first rodeo. Even though her statement still hurt, I handled it a whole lot better because I already went through this phase with my son.

If you are feeling devastated and overwhelmed with grief like I was, know that you are not alone. According to a poll conducted by Parents.com, more than 90% of parents felt their child has preferred one parent over another at some point. 

Let’s talk about why you shouldn’t take it personally and what to do when it happens.

Why a Child Favors One Parent

Preferring one parent over another is actually a healthy part of your child’s emotional and cognitive development. He is exercising independence by choosing the parent who is best suited for what he wants at the time. 

Also, when your child favors one parent over the other, he is also showing that he feels secure with you and knows that even if he spends more time with the other parent, you will always love him and be there for him.

toddler prefers one parent

There are other factors that may play into your child playing favorites. Sometimes, a preference is due to a change in the parenting roles and family dynamics.

For example, the birth of a sibling or a job change may mean that mommy’s time is taken up by the infant or the new job. All of a sudden, mommy is not as available as before.

In response, your child may choose to spend more time with the parent who can give him more attention. After all, watching your mother breastfeed your baby brother or sister is no fun in comparison to playing hide-and-seek with daddy.

Whatever the reason is, being rejected by your child hurts. Here are helpful tips for surviving this difficult phase while maintaining a good relationship with your child.

Tips for the Non-Preferred Parent

1. Empathize with your child.

Trying to change your child’s mind about who they prefer may lead to tantrums and meltdowns. Instead, emphasize with your child when he or she demands the other parent. 

When my son screams for daddy, I tell him, “I know you love daddy and want to play with him, but he can’t be here right now. I understand that makes you angry and sad.” Show your child that even though you can’t give him what he wants, you are listening to him and acknowledging his feelings.

2. Take turns being the “fun” one.

Being the mom, you are responsible for making sure the kids eat each meal, their clothes are clean, they take baths, etc. Then daddy walks in and it’s PARTY TIME! 

When you think about it, it’s not surprising the kids prefer daddy when daddy’s presence means all play and no work. Therefore, make sure your husband also spends time doing the “non-fun” things and that you make time every day just playing with the kids and show them how much you love them and nothing else (put down that vacuum, woman!).

toddler only wants mom

3. Play to your strengths.

One day, I asked my son, “why do you like daddy more?” He said, “because he is stronger and can throw me higher!” 

Well, I can’t compete with daddy’s strength … unless I spend every day at the gym training for bigger guns. But my son’s response made me realize that he doesn’t love daddy more – daddy just has traits that lead to more exciting playtime. 

So pick something you are better at than your husband to do with your child. For example, my kids prefer me for arts and crafts because mommy can actually draw … daddy’s stick figures just can’t measure up.

4. Focus on the good.

Hey, I know it sucks that your kid wants daddy all the time, but look on the bright side – your husband is a wonderful father. He spends quality time with your kid and makes your kid’s life so full of laughter and joy. What’s wrong with that? 

Think of it as an opportunity for you to get some “me-time” and go get a massage or go shopping! Once your child is past this phase of preferring one parent over another, you may find that alone time is not easy to come by.

5. Manage your feelings.

Oh, the number of times I just want to roll my eyes and yell “FINE, BE THAT WAY!” to my son when he chooses daddy over me. Or just retreat to my room and binge eat ice cream by my lonesome self. 

While it’s okay to share your feeling with your child (“I feel sad when you tell me to ‘go away’”), you should keep your voice nice and calm. In addition, you should express to your child that he or she can play with daddy, but you will always be there for them when they are ready.

6. Talk to your spouse.

If you are the preferred parent, recognize that your partner may be feeling jealous and hurt. If you are the non-preferred parent, recognize that your partner may be frustrated having a kid clinging on to him all day long. 

Work out a schedule together where the preferred parent can step away so that the non-preferred parent can spend some quality alone time with your child.

toddler only wants dad

7. Remember that it’s just a phase.

Toddlers’ frontal cortex is still developing, so they have trouble regulating their emotions. Thus, when daddy gets home after all day with mommy, they can’t help but channel their intense happiness fully on one parent and totally push aside the other. 

On the other hand, when a toddler doesn’t get what he or she wants, he or she will probably throw a tantrum. This is when they say things they don’t mean, such as “I hate you,” or “I only love daddy” to try and get what they want.

As they mature, this extreme favoritism dynamic will subside. At 4 years old, my son started to ask for me a lot more and preferred to have both daddy and mommy around rather than just daddy alone.

Now at 7 years old, my son is mature enough to appreciate both parents equally. While he would always want to go to the lake or play tag with daddy, he would also ask to do fun science experiments and explore nature with mommy.

Final Thoughts on Child Favoring One Parent

Being the non-favored parent is heartbreaking. 

Just remember, it is common for toddlers and preschoolers to go through phases when they show a strong preference for mommy or daddy. It’s part of your child growing up and maturing. 

Think positively – your kids are happy because daddy is around, daddy is happy to play with the kids, and you are happy because you finally get a chance to drink that coffee you made this morning. Life is good.

Are you the preferred parent or the rejected one? Tell me in the comments!


About The Author

49 thoughts on “7 Things to Do When Your Child Prefers One Parent”

  1. Thank you so much for this article. I’m the reject parent in the family, haha. My son, 22mos old, loves his daddy. And yes I am so glad they are bonded and my husband is a great father, but it is soul crushing to hold your baby at the end of the day while he screams for daddy to put him to bed. I have to try to find balance during the day to have fun, as opposed to cleaning and cooking and being the disciplinarian. It’s hard! Your tips are realistic and doable and hearing your story made me feel so much better. Thank you!

    1. Aw I am so happy this article helped you! It’s so hard being the rejected one, but you know that your kid loves you no matter what. I have a much better relationship with my son now that I find time during the day to just let go and have fun with him. Dance party!!!

    2. My daughter loves to play with me (daddy) during the day after work but she seems to like her mommy more wen it comes to sleeping her, sometimes i am able to sleep her but other times she prefers her mom and it sometimes gets in the way of her finishing her college homework but i know reading this article and these comments i can get good feedback….. sorry if its only for moms just looking for info to help out

      1. Would it be possible for mommy to study elsewhere at night so she is kind of out of sight out of mind? It might take a few nights for your daughter to get used to not having mommy for the night but after realizing that daddy is just as good at night she will be okay with you putting her to bed. Then you can go back to perhaps alternating mommy and daddy so that she is not dependent on just one of you?

  2. This hit home! I am the one that is away all day at work and my husband works from home so he is home with our 8 month old.. there are many times I notice he prefers dad over me and I have been trying to work through it.. thank you so much for sharing these tips!

    1. Aw that’s so hard to be away from your kid all day! Remember your son loves you no matter what and I am sure he would love to spend more time with mommy!

    2. my daughter is 7yo. her father and I coparent. always have. we never lived together. custody battle is going on at the moment. i used to be very flexible with her dad until he called the cops on me. for not followinf the Allocation Judgment. but for 7 years he never followed it… and I never called the cops. so needless to say, my daughter seems to prefer him more eight now… since the schedule has changed. i stopped being flexible with her dad due to him calling the cops on me 2x. although he still sees her the same amount of days… he did tell my daughter iam at fault as to why he doesnt pick her up from schoolanymore. i asked him why he would say that, he said he answered honestly nd only shared the truth with our daughter. i have never felt like tonight, defeated to see her cry so much for her dad.

  3. So hard when this happens!! My kids have taken turns preferring each of us but it’s always hard to be the “least favorite” but also exhausting when you’re the current “favorite”.

  4. This can be tough! Thanks so much for sharing your story of going through this phase. Finding that balance is so important and you seem to be on your way. 🙂 Great job Mama!!

  5. These are fantastic tips! My daughter is 1.5 and already a daddy’s girl, and I know its going to get worse as she gets older. I joke that since hes her favorite, he can change her diaper and feed her then.

  6. I think I’m only the preferred parent because my baby girl eats constantly and does not allow for pumping. My husband always steps in when he can and I love that. He knows she loves him, they just have a different bond.

    1. Aw sounds like your daughter is still very young so probably not at that stage yet. My daughter just started being more with daddy around now and she is almost 3. Before she would cry when I leave the room. My son is all about daddy haha.

  7. We better have an idea about this 7 things to do when your child prefers one parent. This would really mean a lot. Thanks for notching this one out.

  8. I am the Mother of a wonderful 8 year old miracle child. I gave birth to her at age 41 after years and years of trying to get pregnant. I went back to work after my maternity leave was over. At that time, my husband was working. Then, right before I went back to work he left his job and it was decided that he stay home with her since I was earning more money than he was. It would take all of his salary and more/plus part of mine to put her in daycare. I did not have to worry at all about her health or safety while at work. This is still the case now. I work Monday through Friday, 40 hours a week. He works part-time, mostly on the weekends, and holidays, when I am at home. When one is working the other is home with her. However, she prefers her father and she says that I am the “mean one” sometimes. By the time I get home from work, make dinner, and eat it is time to go to bed and start all over the next day. He has more time to be with her, teach her virtually, and play than I do. The only time I have is the weekends, if I am lucky. I work to keep the house clean and organized. Of course, he helps but this is a full-time job by itself! I always tell her that she is my “miracle child” (only about 4 people thought I could even have a child and go through child birth) and that I love her so much but she still prefers her father. I love my husband and daughter so much but my heart just sinks when she says “I want my Daddy” when I am with her. I guess he spends more time with her, he knows her better, and she gravitates to him. Her name means “father’s joy” and we did not even know this until after we picked her name. Any suggestions to make her love us both equally?! I am glad that I am not alone but the other children being referenced by others are much younger than mine. Thank you for this article and for your time in reading.

    1. Aw I am sorry Kara it’s so hard to be called the “mean one”! I would ask your husband what he does with your daughter and try to even out the fun between the two. Can your husband take on more chores and “not so fun” stuff with your daughter and give you more just fun time when you are alone with her? You are definitely not alone and favoritism happens at any age! I hope the situation improves, I know it’s not easy, both of my kids prefer my husband but they are getting better. They have learned that going outdoors and have fun is better with daddy, but mommy is better at arts and creative fun. So maybe play to your strength and exaggerate it so your kid can really have lots of fun with you? Thanks so much for sharing your story, feel free to reach out anytime!

  9. I’m the preferred parent and i know it’s a phase and I’m here reading the post because my husband is taking full advantage of the situation and giving excuses like “he prefers you anyway” whenever I needed help. How do I make my husband understand that it is tiring being the preferred one? We’re both holding full time jobs, 40 hours per week.

    1. Wow hats off to you for having a full-time job with your kid! I think it’s a matter of sitting down with your husband and making him understand that 1) you need help because you are tired, and 2) it’s just a phase BUT his current attitude will prolong this phase. I definitely recommend getting him one-on-one time with your kid with you just… somewhere not available (out of sight out of mind) and have him 100% focused on having fun with your kid, and do this as much as possible. Hopefully he will find the bonding experience rewarding and want to keep doing it!

  10. Love these articles but still I feel torn since his dad and I are no longer together and haven’t been since he was born basically. But he’s with me 5 days of the week , only Monday and Tuesday bc that’s all his dad wants and says he can make time for. While I work and run my own business, single mom and do it all!! So when he goes there all my parenting and having my son on a healthy schedule goes out the window! Can eat and drink coke as much as he wants ( he’s not allowed at moms, he even told the dentist that..which I’m happy for! 😅 )
    But his dad likes to play a dirty childish game and hates when my 4 year old is a little “ mommy “ when he leaves me … so when he comes back it’s all negative and only want dad. I know how his dad is and unfortunately low enough to put things in my sons head.
    I’m just torn !

    1. Aw I am so sorry to hear about your situation. That’s so difficult with the dad like that! I am not sure of your relationship so I don’t want to give too much advice. I would perhaps talk to your son about why he wants just dad. What he is doing is short-term and what you are doing is giving your son a healthy and happy life long-term. He is learning more valuable skills and knowledge with you, like knowing that coke is not good for his teeth. If he says “dad lets me drink coke whenever I want” then I would just tell him the fact of why coke is bad and perhaps even do a fun experiment with him to show him why coke is bad. Stay away from saying anything bad about the dad (you don’t want to play tug-a-war with your kid) but stick with the facts. Also, since you are with him more days of the week, you tend to be not the fun one because you have work to do! Just make sure to focus on work when it’s time for work but when it’s mommy and son time, 100% focus on him and be EXTRA fun. It’s not about how much time but the quality of the time you spend with him.
      Good luck with everything! I am here if you ever want to just vent! <3. It's an impossible situation and you are doing your best for your son!

  11. Hello, I have a very smart 4 yr old who says he does not LIKE his mother, he willing says he loves her. But he absolutely has no interest in being with her at all. He frequently talks down to her and makes her feel low and cry. I do not speak that way to my wife so its perplexing to both of us.
    Additionally im the strict disciplined one who also does the punishing.
    My wife takes him(and our younger son) out for fun activities often and he says he has fun but still doesnt like her.
    The tips we have either already been doing or dont apply since my wife is the fun one.

    1. Hey Joe!
      I am sorry to hear about your situation. Is your wife the one spending most of the time with your kids?
      I am in the same situation now with my 4 years old daughter (when I wrote this post it was for my son, who is now 6). I spend the whole day with them and I take them lots of fun places and do lots of fun activities with them. But when it comes down to it, my husband is the one who goes crazy playing tag with them and does more adventurous stuff with them. He is the strict one and also loses his temper more than me, but he does the “crazy” stuff that sometimes makes me cringe but the kids love it. My fun is more quiet fun and though the kids enjoy it, they prefer my husband playing with them much more.
      My 4 years old also tells me that she doesn’t want me and wants daddy. She even says that it’s okay if I die because they have daddy (imagine my face when she said that!!!).
      The thing is she is my second. I have been through this with my son and I know this is just a phase, so I laugh off her “insults”. At that age they can’t control their emotions and will say things to get what they want, hence putting down your wife. The best thing you can do is continue trying with your wife, never lose temper or give up, and as much as possible, tell your wife don’t take it personally. I know it’s hard, I cried a lot with my son.
      But I am here to tell you that it gets better. He will get over it. My son at 6 years old (and even at 5 he was a lot better) is pretty happy with either my husband or me. And he was A LOT worse than my daughter when he was 4.
      Hang in there. If your wife wants someone to vent to feel free to email me at [email protected]. Sometimes it helps to just let the frustration out!

  12. Hi! I loved the article! It truly helped me.
    I used to be the preferred parent until 2 years old and I admit it was a little tiring but now that she is 2,5 months she prefers my husband and she even pushes me away saying no mommy! Very hard and sad…
    just wants this phase to go away quick!
    I think that now that my husband has been more around the house and travelling less for work and I’ve been taking a little advantage and having more “me” all the sudden she started rejecting me.
    Now my husband is going away for 15 days, although is gonna be hard I can’t wait to have mommy/daughter time and go back to being the fun one!

    1. Aw I love how you are so positive about all of this! Stay strong and this phase will pass. It sounds like you are taking great steps to bond with your daughter <3

      1. My son is 20 months. I went back to work 5 months ago and my husband stays home with him now.my son doesn’t have a preferred parent during the day when I am home but at night if he wakes and I go in he screams and throws a huge fit like he doesn’t know who I am. Then daddy walks in and he curls up with him and is totally calm. It’s heartbreaking and I feel like I’m doing something wrong.

        1. I hope this is just a phase. I will let you know that we went through the same thing. It was horrible because we were on vacation in France but due to the time difference, my husband had to work in the middle of the night. My son would wake up and scream for daddy while he was on a conference call and I had to do my best to stop him from waking everyone in the resort up. He did get over it that phase, so I am hoping your son will do the same!

  13. This is a good read but what do I do if my son is preferring his father and we live in separate homes. His father has a girlfriend and his house is the fun house. Meanwhile, I’m pulling double duty and trying to make my 2.5yo happy. This is heartbreaking and unfair especially since he left us when my son was a newborn and I haven’t had time to find someone new because up until recently the father was barely around.

    1. I am so sorry to hear about your situation. It’s definitely not easy and you are being so strong for your kid. Unfortunately, we can’t control everything, so focus on what we can control. When you have your kid with you, being 100% focused on playing and having fun with him. Remember this is a phase for kids, and they will grow out of it.

  14. Hello Betty,
    Thanks for sharing your experience and methods. I’ve been down lately because my daughter 2.3 years old has expressed her preference over my husband. She used to stick with me until last week when papa has been called for. She clings to him for comfort and hug when she is afraid or scared (used to be me…). She loves to play outside, and papa can serve that role well while I’m busy breastfeeding another daughter and cooking. Our family is bilingual; she can speak my husband’s language since we live in his country, but not mine. So she talks mostly to Papa 🙁 I will try to cheer up though and follow your suggestions.

    1. I hope the situation improves sooner than later, but I do think the trend of having this happen around 2-3 years old is very common. We are a trilingual family and we used to have the opposite happening, where my husband was jealous that my kids would speak Chinese to me more than they speak French to him. But that changed as they learned more French and now they know both languages equally. I think the fact that you are breastfeeding a baby also causes your older one to cling to papa. The same thing happened to me. It’s just that we always have the baby with us and that’s not fun for the older one, whereas papa can play with them without other distractions. Think positively and I believe things will get better as both of your kids get older!

  15. Hi Betty,
    I confess I was so relieved to read this! My daughter is 2.5yrs old and she just will not have me! All I hear is “go away mommy”. It’s been like this since she was about 1 and just getting worse now she can communicate better. It’s a ton worse now I’m expecting my 2nd as I can’t physically do as much as I could before (I’m now 36bweeks pregnant and HUGE!). She’s also an exclusive toe walker so needs to be carried much more than a toddler usually would, which I just can’t physically manage now. Sometimes I really struggle with the rejection as she just keeps telling me she just wants daddy and loves him and not me, but it’s reassuring to hear that it will get better! We share the parenting responsibilities fairly equally (we have one day each with her a week), but since lockdown my days have turned into torture as she knows daddy is in his office at home and so she can get to him! I just hope number 2 isn’t like this or I’m not sure my poor nerves will stand it!

    1. I can’t imagine being pregnant and having to handle a toddler who is all about daddy during the lockdown! Stay strong, it is definitely a phase and it sounds like you and your husband are dealing with the situation well. Kids always want what they can’t have (well, adults too right?) and having daddy in the office at home doesn’t help. I will have to say that #2 might also go through the same phase, but hopefully not as badly because they do have the older one to play with instead of just mommy and daddy! Good luck with everything!

  16. This sounds more like a jealous mom wrote this with untrue stereotypes to account for the child preferences – makes it sound like the only reason the kid prefers dad is because daddy is the fun one and never does the hard stuff (not true in so many households, and yet dad is the preferred one – what then?), ‘you can play with daddy, but I’ll be the one that always loves and is here’ (jeez, that’s harsh – daddy just plays with you and isn’t going to always be there; I’m the one that really loves you’), and ‘focus on the good’ as if it’s bad the kid prefers dad. This article has some good snippets, but comes across a bit jaded.

    1. I am sorry you feel that way. This article was written from my personal experience, and I can’t cover all the scenarios (for example, divorced parents who live in separate houses, or like you said, the other way around where dad is the preferred one despite all the household duties) since I don’t have any experience with the other circumstances. This article was written purely to encourage parents (you don’t have to interpret it as just for moms, it works the other way around too) who feel like their children favor the other parent to smile and power through this phase with some suggestions of what to do that might make it better.

  17. Hi Betty! This is the second time I I read this article. My 4 year old since he was around 1 he prefers daddy. Even my parents when they describe my son to friends and family they say “he loves his dad, he is obsess with him”. I kind of have taken a step back and let him just pick his favorite but lately it hurts more because he is learning and he lets me know that he doesn’t want me and want his dad. I’m the only one that buys his toys and cloths and anything he needs. My husband does not understand how I feel, he keeps saying it is just a phase. It has been an almost 4 year phase. He never disciplined him and let’s him do whatever he wants. In the other hand I’m a lot more structure and even sometimes I feel like giving up and just let him do whatever he wants. But I know that is not the reason why he prefers dad and also I want him to have some structure in his life. I just feel like if I just leave they will be ok. My son probably will be better off without me like he lets me know every time I ask.

    1. Hi Ary,
      I am so sorry to hear this, and please PLEASE don’t give up. I think the hardest part here is to convince your husband to work with you to be more equal for your son. Daddy will always be the fun one but he also needs to step in on the discipline. Has your husband ever had to take care of him for a longer period of time without you? I am curious if he has to take care of him for days at a time if he would be stricter since it’s not all fun and games all the time. I bet they won’t be ok if you just leave.
      My 5 years old is currently going through this phase and she has been for 2 years now. She would push me off her bed and says she wants daddy instead, or not hold my hand and runs to hold daddy’s hand. I am dealing with it better right now because I went through it with my son, who actually was a lot worse when it comes to letting me know exactly how much he wanted daddy and not me. Around 6 years old he was a lot better because he realized that it would hurt my feeling and he wanted me to be happy too.
      I think yes, it is a phase, but it doesn’t mean the phase will go away if you don’t do anything about it. I hope you can somehow open your husband’s eyes to that. Your son will reach a certain level of mental maturity at one point and knows that his words hurt you. And he will also realize he gets different things from each parent; like my son knows I am the one to go to for discussions about nature and reptiles (he is obsessed) and daddy is the one to go to for laser tag and swimming in the pool.
      Again, please don’t give up! Good luck with everything and please come back and let me know either way. My email is [email protected] if you want to email me privately!

  18. Thanks for the article. Hearing I’m not the only mom who is bluntly flinched at from their child lol my 2yr old daughter if I so much as speak to her or look her in the eye she has a breakdown. She runs screaming from me refuses to hug me, she’ll beg to see my mom or my sister and husband, my other 2 children but flinched with disgust at me. My husband just keeps telling me to keep trying and make her spend time with me but it makes me uncomfortable. I can’t seem to explain to him I don’t have the emotional strength right now to be pushed by my child who loves everyone but me. Maybe it’s because she has seen me have seizures, but it’s not something I can stop so I just have to wait for my toddler to be old enough to explain things to her. My husband gets upset because I just go upstairs and sit on the toilet to escape the situation but if I don’t give myself a breather then I’ll end up shouting at her for rejecting me. He really wants a break as well as she cries if she leaves the room and tries to follow him everywhere, he gets them up, puts them to bed, does all dinners and tidies as well as taking care of me. But how do I bond with her if she will scream if i so much as say her name?

    1. Aw this is such a tough situation and I am sorry you have to go through it. Toddlers have huge emotions and this could be her acting out because she is afraid of mommy’s seizures. Like you said it’s probably a waiting game for her to be mature enough to understand, but meanwhile, just try and keep as calm as possible. It’s very difficult on your husband I bet. Perhaps do as much as possible to help him with stuff that doesn’t involve your daughter, like house chores and cooking if you can? And when you are emotionally up for it, try to connect with your daughter. What does she like to do best? Like for my children, we don’t allow sweets or screen time. So if I were in your situation right now, I would try and do an ice cream “mommy and me” date because my children can’t resist ice cream. And make that a mommy-only thing. I hope things get better sooner than later!

      1. Hi Betty, so grateful
        for this article. My son is 6 , throughout his entire life his father was the most favorite one for him, even when he was 5-6 months old he didn’t smile at me but only at his father. We’ve undergone a lot of difficulties with him, he was diagnosed with autistic disorder and after 5 years of hard work with therapists the diagnosis was fully cancelled. I was the strict parent and I think that sometimes he didn’t hurt himself because of he was afraid of me. But these stuff is already in the past. Meanwhile, the relationship between me and him is even worse now, he even doesn’t want to
        Come home where we
        Live. He doesn’t want me to take him
        To his favorite places if daddy is not around. I feel devastated. Sometimes I feel the extra one in the family and tell my husband that I’ll wait till his puberty and leave them cause my son doesn’t need me and want me. All these rejection things have become worse during the past months, and I’m living in a hell. I addressed this to a psychologist, she answered me that daddy and grandma are safe places for
        My son and he doesn’t feel that safety with me I need to
        Make our games funnier and spend quality time even more. I am trying my best after our conversation but everything becomes even worse. And sometimes I’m not able to control mysef and I’m telling him go and live at your granny’s if you don’t want me. Oh I forgot to tell you that he has the same good attitude both towards my hubby and his mother, and what comes to me and my mother he just expresses however he can that he doesn’t love us. Sorry for writing this long.

        1. I am so sorry to hear that Nelly! I can’t imagine what that’s like for you. Since your son is on the spectrum it makes things extra difficult. Is he also seeing someone to address this? Sending you lots of hugs <3

          1. Hi Betty, thanks for your reply. He’s now seeing only a speech therapist since his behavor has been regulated no symptoms or signs from his disorder. Last time his state was evaluated as the mildest one, in other words his main problem has been characterized as a mild deviation of mental and speech development ( a very mild state) so he isn’t seeing a psychologist now 🙁

  19. As a rejected father this is so so painfully difficult for me…looking for any help or words of encouragement i am completely demoralized and dejected by my scenario and its placing a huge strain on our overall family as i have been dealing with this for YEARS now. Our daughter is 4 1/2 and I cant even get her to give me a hug. I should tell you I am a very very engaged father, mom drops her off at school, i pick her up, write her letters through school mailbox at lunch, get her ready for bed each night, read bedtime stories, sing songs, take her to the park, go out of my way to have daddy/daughter dates doing art, going to the park, going for walks, giving special little prizes/treats, literally anything and everything i can do to just get to a point where she will just give me a hug or show the slightest excitement when she sees me. Instead every day when i pick her up she looks like she’s disappointed to see me and even upset that i am picking her up from school. It’s killing me and I just feel like the only thing left to do is make myself scarce in hopes that my absence might make the heart grow fond. I grew up without a father myself and was over the moon about having a daughter who i always thought and wanted to be a “daddy’s girl” she is anything but. It’s been years going through this I am so dejected and sad. THIS DOES NOT SEEM NORMAL TO ME.

    1. I would have to say that at 4.5 years old, you never know what phase she is going through and how long the phase is. I think you are doing what you need to do – how sweet with the letters! I encourage you to stay strong and keep being the fabulous father that you are. Both of my kids now have gone through this phase and at 6 and 8, they no longer show this extreme favoritism. Since I do spend all week with them (I am a homeschool mom) they do tend to favor my husband on the weekends, but that’s natural, and if my husband is busy and they end up with me the whole weekend, they are still fine.
      I know it doesn’t seem natural. My son especially would just throw the biggest tantrums whenever he woke up without daddy at like 3 AM every day for the longest time when he was about 4-5 years old. Nothing I do could calm him down. And similarly during the day too. But around 6 he got over it. I didn’t do anything different, my husband didn’t do anything different, I think he just matured out of it.

  20. I am the father and I am the rejected one my daughter was with my wife since kinder garden she is now almost 8 years old and my wife turns to be as a school teacher at the same school with my daughter this is so hard for me actually she refuses me and prefer her mother and that is is hard for me I wish if there is any way that I can at least when I show up at home that she runs at me and give me a hug, when can I do?

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