Headline, May17, 2014



NOT ALL experts agree on just what the impact of favouritism is,  but as rule, their advice to parents is simple:

If you absolutely must have a favourite  -and you must-  keep it to yourself. Even if your kids see  through the ruse, the mere act of trying to maintain it can help them preserve:

The emotional pretext too. A bit of denial that does little harm. What's more, the effort it takes to tell a benign lie is in its own way an act of love toward the unfavoured child. 

''The very perception of unfavoured treatment is bad,'' says Shawn Whiteman-
An associate professor of family studies at Purdue University. ''Perception is the key,''

And a powerful one too. Psychologist Victoria Bradford of the University of Indianapolis has studied the favouritism extensively, looking at the impact of what's known as 

LFS (least favoured status) on children's self-esteem, socialization and relationships with other family members.

No matter how she broke down her data, it all told her the same thing. ''My main conclusion was how horrible favouritism is on siblings,'' she says flatly, and sibs themselves often agree.

Charles Dickens wrote poignantly about his own LFS, which he experienced most acutely during a period in which his family had only enough money to send his older sister to school while he worked in a bootblacking factory.

Even as a highly celebrated adult, he never fully got past the experience. ''My whole nature was so penetrated by the grief and humiliation.'' he wrote later in life, ''that even now, famous and caressed and happy, I.......wander desolate back to that time in my life.''

Clare Stocker, a research professor in development psychology at the University of Denver, put some statistical meat on the bones of Dickens' experience. She studied  136 sibling pairs, then returned to observe them again two more times
at two-years intervals.

Over that period, she found that kids who felt less loved than other siblings were more likely to develop anxiety, low self esteem and depression. Some of the subjects would react by exhibiting behavioural problems, leading parents to crack down on them-

Only widening the gap between the kind of treatment Mom and Dad were meting out to them and the kind being lavished on the favoured child.

The kind of damage that can be  done to an unfavoured child throughout the long slog of childhood is easy to understand. Harder to fathom are the ways a best loved son or daughter can suffer,  -but they are real as well  -and go deeper than merely the resentment a first-tier child.

The biggest risk may be that when you spend your early life enjoying the huzzahs of your parents, you may be unprepared for a larger society in which you're just one young adult out of many-

 With the special charms Mom and Dad saw in you invisible to everyone else.

The story of the family prince struggling with adulthood is a theme in both drama and history.

Arthur Millers's Death of a Salesman  is about more than the tragedy of its lead character,  Willy Loman,  as he loses both his livelihood and his dignity. It's also about the crises of his sons   -particularly Biff,   the oldest  -who grew up-

On a steady diet of parental praise, only to find that others play by very different rules, expecting laurels to be earned before they are bestowed.

When, as an adult, Biff at least learns the truth, he blames not himself, for his failure, for making him temperamentally ill equipped to do so:

''I never got anywhere because you blew me full of hot air, I could never stand taking orders from anybody!'' he shouts.

''The door of your life is wide open,''  Willy protests.

''Pop!''  Biff answers :

''I am dime a dozen, and so are you.''

The Honour and Serving of the Post continues:

With loving dedication to Mustafa, Ibrahim, Eman, and darling Mariam, parents and grandparents.

With loving dedication Hugs and Kisses to Shahzaib, Salar, Zaheem, Hazeem, Anique, Nahil, Ayma,  Ahsen, Armeen, Mayna, Haniyah, Meriam, Daniyal, Rahym, Sanan, Sanyia, Hamaza, Nabia, Sanyia, Nayab, Asim,............

With most respectful dedication : Mariam, Rabo, Dee, Ali, Hussain, Ehsan, Aneela, Zeba, Paras, Hassan, Sorat, Hyder, Aqsa, Saima, Sammen, Areesha, Talat.

See Ya all on !WOW!  -the World Students Society Computers-Internet-Wireless:

''' The Sibling Honour '''

Good Night & God Bless!

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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