I’m conflicted about a specific behavior I’ve been noticing about my husband regarding our youngest child. He seems to be neglecting the boy and favoring our eldest daughter, and I don’t know if it’s because she’s “his little girl” or he has other motives…like our son’s complexion.
We’re an interracial marriage, and we’ve been together for fifteen years now. Our first daughter looks more like him, with his straight hair and Caucasian facial features. Meanwhile our 3-year-old has wavy hair and a darker complexion, just like me.
My husband is wholly whipped for our daughter and has been since she was born. I know dads tend to be more caring toward girls because they’re little princesses and can’t be harmed. Also, they seem to have a genuinely deep connection, and even though I’ve felt left out on some occasions, I’ve let it slide.
However, that doesn’t explain my husband’s indifferent and sometimes cold behavior toward our son. He’s always comparing the kids, whining about the boy being darker that his sister and complaining because he doesn’t look like him. Now, I don’t know if he’s just mad because every father wants his son to be a mini version of them, or if there’s more than the surface meets with his apprehension.
He completely spoils our daughter, she gets everything she wants in the blink of an eye and is often treated to spontaneous outings. He has left our son behind on several occasions claiming he’s too “fussy,” and he can’t control two kids alone. Of course, our boy is fussy; he’s only 3. And why can’t he take care of both kids if I can do it?
Last week, I took the kids to the beach with my parents. They got a little tan, but since my daughter skin is so pale, hers is more noticeable. When we returned, my husband lashed out at me for not putting sunscreen on her, even though I did. He also told me to take her to an indoor pool next time they wanted to swim.
I've let several situations like that one slide, but that night I couldn’t contain anymore and confronted him about it. He said I was crazy and taking things out of context; he explained that he’s just overprotective with our daughter because she’s his first born and because he was raised believing girls need more attention and boys need to start building the character from a young age.
I don’t know what to believe anymore. Our son is still small and probably doesn’t react to the situation, but I’m afraid my husband won’t change his behavior and start catering to our boy. No matter what he says, all boys need their father to set an example and start teaching them boy’s stuff.
Yes, I know single moms can do that but is not the same if he has a supposed paternal figure in his life that’s ignoring his role.
What should I do? Is it possible my husband is telling the truth, and he’s just repeating his family patterns? Should I bring the topic to the table one more time? Should I seek professional help for our family?
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February 01, 2019