Mum's panic as one of her daughters is 'more attractive' than the other
This mum is worried her kids are going to notice very soon.
Editor / May 13 2019
An upset mum-of-two has revealed how worried she is that friends and family constantly comment on how pretty her baby is, compared to her older child.
The mum left an emotional post on Mumsnet saying that her youngest, who is just 20-months-old, is a very pretty baby and is told this all the time but no-one ever comments about her three-year-old.
She explained that she thinks both of her children are "fabulous" in every way.
But most people only seem to be take an interest in the younger one so she's worried what impact it will have on her other daughter.
She wrote: "The (horrendously shallow) issue is that people keep commenting on how gorgeous/beautiful/pretty my youngest is and it's really starting to rub me the wrong way.
"We were at a family party yesterday and three people commented at different times and two of those times my older daughter was present.
"I'm worried she's starting to notice and I'm not sure how to handle it. Last week her little sister was pretending to talk to her Nana on an imaginary phone, I thought it was adorable and did say, 'oh you're so cute' and older daughter came running out of the living room to exclaim, 'I'm cute too!"
She adds: "Generally I try hard not to comment on personal appearance, instead complimenting them on being clever/funny/kind but I fear it's only a matter of time before they realise that society ranks girls on their appearance more than any other attribute and this saddens me.
"I only intend on having two children and I fear them being so close in age will amplify the comparisons and could cause irreparable damage to older daughter's self esteem if I don't handle this properly."
The advice came thick and fast from other mums who believed there was very little that could be donw without making the situation worse.
One said, "You can't stop people and sharply calling them out will underline the subtext to your other daughter more starkly than anything.
Another added, "I'm the eldest of three girls. I'm very plain and they are both beautiful. I think I always knew and just came to accept it. I don't think there's any hiding it from the child. Unfortunately people are thoughtless as well. I'm afraid that's just the way the world is."
She suggested trying to boost both of their self-esteem. "Children's looks change so much, the 'plainer' child could become a ravishing beauty (or not) and the 'cute' one might become a 'plain' adult or any combination of scenarios. So, one cultivates a sense of self-esteem, self-worth and self-acceptance."
What would you do in this situation?
Frances Sheen has been a magazine and website journalist & editor for the last 20 years - both in Australia and the UK. She's appeared on countless TV and radio shows to discuss parenting and launched her own social media parenting brand. She's the mum of two little girls and juggles that with a busy working life.