Ask Danielle: My husband prefers his kids to my daughter

What if your partner obviously favours his children over his step-child, or a family member buys caged eggs? The Weekly's Danielle Colley tackles the tough issues...

Dear Danielle,
When I married my husband, I was the mother of one daughter and he was very accepting of my little girl. We have since gone on to have more children together.
My problem is that my partner clearly favours his biological children and although I understand that they are his blood connection, I feel that my eldest is just someone who lives in our house for him.
My daughter is a smart kid and she’s approaching her teenage years, and although her relationship with her father is strong, I worry that she will notice her step-dad’s favour with the others and it may negatively impact her.
What should I do?
Loving Mum
Hi Loving Mum,
Often we do have favourites with our kids, even if it may differ from day to day depending on who is being the larger pain in the butt at the time, however as parents it’s important that we never let our kids feel like we love them differently.
Although there are three parents in this relationship, you do need to gently broach this with your husband as he may be unaware that it is obvious to others.
I would suggest they do an activity together without the rest of the family, whether it’s weekly or monthly, and that it's just 'their thing'. It will allow your eldest to feel like her step-father is making special time for her, and it may also help him to increase his bond with her as she’s entering a notoriously interesting stage in her life.
Any effort put in to build their relationship now, will be reaped tenfold later.
Dear Danielle,
I have a conundrum. I have an aunt, a rather wealthy aunt, who buys caged eggs and I feel sick about it.
I told my mother last time we were at my aunt’s place that I was going to bring up the importance of buying chicken eggs from a reputable source but my mother said this would be me “over-stepping the mark about someone else’s choices”.I know that my aunt can afford cruelty-free eggs (and they aren’t that hard to come by) but she is basically a tight-ass and will do anything to save a cent. I feel like this just says so much about who she is – it kind of makes me not like her.
Am I being too judgemental?
Dear EggFriend,
When we have an issue we feel strongly about, it’s often hard to understand people who do not feel passionate about the same thing, but this is what makes us all wonderful and unique. Different things light different fires for us, and this is something that obviously ignites a spark for you.
I think a discussion with your aunt would be better than silent judgement because at least you can then be certain that she is making an informed decision about her egg purchase.
Although cage eggs are frowned upon by a majority of society, they are still for sale in our supermarkets and some people simply aren’t aware of the conditions caged birds live in.
I suggest you give her the benefit of the doubt, have a chat about why it’s important to you and if she continues to buy the eggs, then you can be certain it’s just not something that lights a fire for her and you can judge her as you see fit.
Danielle is not a qualified counsellor and all advice is opinion-based only, to be followed at the responsibility of the recipient.
Do you have a dilemma or conundrum you would like to ask Danielle?
Drop her a line at askdanielle@bauer-media.com.au and she will endeavour to help you sort your life out.

read more from