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Ever feel like you're cheating on your firstborn with your second child?
Is your youngest child getting all the attention while your eldest feels a little neglected? While it can be tricky, it's a lot more common than you think. See what these parents have to say about it.
Ever feel guilty that you're "cheating" on your first child with your second? (iStock)
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Most parents dread the arrival of their second child, as much as they're excited. How can I ever love another child as much as this first one? What if I don't have enough love for the second child? Will I be able to spend such beautiful quality time with the first, if the second is going to take up so much time?

For whatever period of time, your first born was your only priority and having to share that attention may feel like a strange transition. Naturally, a new baby is extremely dependent on you so it may be a little tough to manage your time (props to you for being a parent and doing exactly that).

Being in a situation where your youngest requires all your attention may not sit too well with your other children, leaving them feeling jealous or neglected. This is completely normal for a lot of children, while others may not have this sense of jealously at all, which is completely normal too. 

The truth is, love doesn't get divided, it grows. Your heart will double in size and there'll be plenty of love to spare. Time? That's another issue!


Do you ever feel like you cheated or are cheating on your first child with your second? How did you deal with the situation? Let us know by emailing us at chatback@Parent24.com and we could publish your comments. Do let us know if you'd like to remain anonymous.

One parent took to Reddit's r/Parenting community to ask: Does anyone ever feel like they’re “cheating on” their first child with their second? 

Here are some of the responses and sound advice, which many of us can relate to:

“There’s a lot more overt lovey-dovey silliness with my younger”

With babies in general, people tend to get a little bit more excited, call it "baby-fever" if you will. They usually get showered with love because of it, but older children may not take to the affection the same way. Nothing to feel guilty about. 

“There is so much love to go around”

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There really is enough love for everyone, it's all about finding that balance.

"I can't shake the feeling of being disloyal"

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It's a strange feeling, but it doesn't last.

"I genuinely believed "how could I ever love another as much as this one?""

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Being a new parent and investing all your love in your new bundle of joy must seem like love can't be shared, but when the next one arrives, you'll realise there really is enough love and adoration to go around.

“Your love doesn't get divided, just your attention”

The love of one child does not mean the absence of another.

  •  Also see: Speaking gently: 20 things you should never say to your children
  • Even some of our favourite celebs experience it

    In an interview, John Legend joked about how his daughter Luna is territorial of him and would get jealous of her baby brother Miles, saying “I think she's just becoming aware that he's the competition.” Although this may seem like an issue, John thinks that "It might be good because [...] she’s doing more to ingratiate herself to us, which means it might be a good thing for her to have a little competition." This makes Luna closer to him and Chrissy, which is obviously a good thing.

    The Kardashians are also notorious for claiming Kris Jenner favourites Kim and Kylie above the rest of her children, even though she probably loves all of them equally.

    Even if you do feel yourself bond with one child more than the other, it's human and can often fluctuate anyway. Some people just get along better than others, and maybe you have more common personality traits or interests with one of your children than the other, it is perfectly normal. It doesn't mean that you love them more.

    So, say goodbye to the parenting guilt and make sure you shower your children with equal amounts of love and you'll be good to go!

    Do you ever feel like you cheated or are cheating on your first child with your second? How did you deal with the situation? Let us know by emailing us at chatback@Parent24.com and we could publish your comments. Do let us know if you'd like to remain anonymous.

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