I Resent My Daughter {For Taking Time Away From My Son}

*Some names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals.

I Resent My Daughter {For Taking Time Away From My Son}

My preschooler daughter can be sweet as pie, a good big sis to her baby bro, and a loving friend. That said, life with her is often not the hearts and rainbows you see in our Facebook feed.

I Resent My DaughterOf course her special needs are hardest on her, but researching them, finding the right treatments and doctors, helping her as best we can, and just parenting her hour to hour when she’s feeling her worst leaves her dad and I exhausted. Angry. Empty. Resentful that she’s sapping our energy and taking time away from our son.

When my daughter is having a hard day, I don’t have as much time or patience for my son as he deserves. During the roughest times, I feed him the crap my daughter prefers to eat instead of the veggies steamed in butter that he actually loves. Instead of the play dates, walks in the park, and classes I did with his big sister, you’ll find us headed to the store because last night I read that adding a particular vitamin to her limited diet will help.

I barely play with him on the floor like I did with his sister at this age. I crave alone time with him. When I get it, I often spend it distracted, tired, or coordinating my daughter’s needs. I do take time away to do nice things for myself. Unfortunately that often means unwanted time away from my son.

My daughter hit me yesterday. Thankfully it’s not a regular occurrence – it was the culmination of a really hard week of her not feeling well. I yelped in pain and my eyes teared. My son looked worried. I put my daughter on a break and scooped my wee one into my arms to reassure him. After her break, my daughter and I talked about how hitting me made her feel even worse, and we had a big hug.

Moments like that make me want to work even harder to help my daughter.

Sometimes parenting is the biggest gift and hardest life lesson, at the exact same moment.


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