The Duncan Banner

Community News Network

October 22, 2013

Yes, Mom may like one child best

Despite what they may say, mothers have favorites among their children, and a new study finds that those preferences tend to continue into old age. The authors of the study suggest that doctors, hospital staff and family members need to take those preferences into account when decisions are made about caregiving and other matters for the aging parent.

"There's been a great deal of research done on younger mothers with young children in terms of favoritism," said Jill Suitor, a sociologist at Purdue University and one of the authors of the paper, published in the Journal of Marriage and Family. "It's very common for parents to differentiate between their children" with regard to punishment and feelings of closeness, she said.

Researchers know less about favoritism among older parents, however, so Suitor and her colleagues began a survey of several hundred families 15 years ago. They found that older parents also tend to favor some children over others. "If anything, perhaps it becomes more common," Suitor said. "It certainly doesn't become less common."

As part of their survey, the group asked women between ages 65 and 75 about their relationships with their children. About two-thirds said they were closer emotionally to one of their children than another, feelings that generally persisted seven years later when the researchers surveyed the women again.

At that point, four-fifths of mothers said they preferred one of their children as a caregiver. Mothers tended to prefer the child whom they saw as sharing their values and their perspective on the world, the group found.

In previous studies, Suitor and her colleagues have documented the negative consequences for elderly people when they can't be near the child they trust most, consequences that included an increased likelihood of depression following an illness or an injury.

There are also serious emotional consequences for adult children who feel excluded. Suitor hopes her group's work can help them cope with those feelings by recognizing that favoritism is normal.

She also said that when adult children are asked to name the sibling to whom their mother feels closest, they are correct less than half the time, so some of that sense of exclusion may be baseless.

              

1
Text Only
Community News Network
  • How spy agencies keep their 'toys' from law enforcement

    A little over a decade ago, federal prosecutors used keystroke logging software to steal the encryption password of an alleged New Jersey mobster, Nicodemo Scarfo Jr., so they could get evidence from his computer to be used at his trial.

    July 25, 2014

  • Russia's war on McDonald's takes aim at the Filet-o-Fish

    Russia said earlier this week that it had no intention of answering Western sanctions by making it harder for Western companies to conduct business in Russia.
    But all bets are off, apparently, when you threaten the Russian waistline.

    July 25, 2014

  • cleaning supplies Don't judge mothers with messy homes

    I was building shelves in my garage when a neighbor girl, one of my 4-year-old daughter's friends, approached me and said, "I just saw in your house. It's pretty dirty. Norah's mommy needs to clean more."

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Arizona's prolonged lethal injection is fourth in U.S. this year

    Arizona's execution of double-murderer Joseph Wood marked the fourth time this year that a state failed to dispatch a convict efficiently, according to the Constitution Project, a bipartisan legal group.3

    July 24, 2014

  • Police Brutality screen shot. Technology plays key part in battling police brutality (VIDEO)

    Allegations of police brutality are nothing new -- as long as there has been law enforcement, citizens have registered claims that some officers cross the line. But in the last few years, the claims of excessive force are being corroborated with new technology from cell phone cameras, police dash-cams and surveillance videos. 

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Facebook continues moneymaking trend

    Facebook seems to have figured out - for now at least - the holy grail for all media right now: how to make money selling mobile ads.

    July 24, 2014

  • Has the ipad lost its swag?

    July 24, 2014

  • 072214 Diamond Llama 1.jpg Llama on the loose corralled in Missouri town

    A llama on the lam cruised Main Street Tuesday before it mistook a resident’s fenced backyard for a place to grab a meal and freshen up.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Hospitals let patients schedule ER visits

    Three times within a week, 34-year-old Michael Granillo went to the emergency room at Northridge Hospital Medical Center in Los Angeles because of intense back pain. Each time, Granillo, who didn't have insurance, stayed for less than an hour before leaving without being seen by a doctor.

    July 21, 2014

  • Starved Pennsylvania 7-year-old weighed only 25 pounds

    A 7-year-old Pennsylvania boy authorities described as being so underweight he looked like a human skeleton has been released from the hospital.

    July 21, 2014

Poll

Should the date for The World's Largest Garage Sale be changed from the third weekend in July to sometime in October to take advantage of cooler weather like we had this past weekend?

No. It's better in the summer cause kids are out of school.
Yes. More shoppers would come during nice fall weather.
Either time is fine.

     View Results
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.