Don't Ask My Child This Question

motherhood May 31, 2019

I will never allow anyone to ask my daughter this question:

“Who do you love more: Mom or Dad?”

I anticipate that people will chuckle dismissively at this, and with a roll of their eyes and a condescending wave of their hand, say “Oh, you’re just afraid of what her answer will be!” They will be correct, but only partly.

I am afraid, but not of my child’s answer.

Love is a complex emotion to grasp. Even adults struggle with its meaning and the feelings it entails. The meaning of love will change and evolve for my daughter as she grows. She will decide for herself what it means for her.

I am not afraid she will love me less or love me more than anyone. She loves me. Period. She loves her father. Period. She has, and will continue to have, a unique type of love that is specific to me, and one that is specific to her father. She has displayed and conveyed that since birth. This is the way it is meant to be, and it is beautiful.

What I am afraid of is the question itself.

It presents itself as a silly question, a harmless musing, but it is anything but that. Upon deeper thought, one will realize that it has the potential to ignite a never-ending war inside my child. I will not allow anyone to challenge or threaten my daughter’s peace. My husband and I do not compete for her love, and she will always be reassured of that fact. We will not be pitted against each other in her mind, nor will she ever be asked to choose sides.

This question is not innocent, productive, progressive, educational, healthy, or entertaining.

Above all, it isn’t necessary in the slightest.

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