Which of my children is better: the oldest or the youngest?

Families with two or more children are treated differently by their parents. There is no apparent reason for this, but it does happen. Moreover, it continues into adulthood as well. Now let me tell you what happened.

At the dean’s office, I am a staff member. Although I do not perform specific tasks, I frequently interact with students and assist in organizing events for the university. I have two daughters, but I do not favor one over the other. Their problems, needs, and desires are all equally significant to me. In the future, I will also treat them accordingly. On the other hand, I recently had to face a completely different situation with my students.

My students got a chance to study abroad one day. Studying in Austria for one semester and earning a double degree was an excellent opportunity for students. Although the education was free, students had to pay for travel, board, and room expenses, which were reasonable, in my opinion. 

During that time, there were two brothers attending university. One brother was in the 2nd year, and the other was in the 3rd year. Oliver, a senior, received a full scholarship from the university, but his parents were not fond of him. His parents supported his brother Max in everything and paid for his education despite his poor grades.

This time Oliver came, and he brought money for the trip for his brother. His parents trusted Oliver with the money since he was the most responsible of the two brothers.

Initially, I asked you, “So you brought money to go on the trip? That’s right; this is a great opportunity, and you have excellent grades.”.

“Yes, no, Ms. Paul, this is for Max.”

“You won’t travel? But this is such an amazing opportunity that you’ll never forget, and you’ll gain a lot of experience from it.”

“No, I won’t go to Austria to study. We don’t have enough money. My mother thinks I have enough education here. And Max may have one last chance to prove himself.”

Although his voice was strong, he soon found his eyes filled with tears, and his voice sounded like a small child’s.

“I would like to leave now. Thank you.” 

Oliver walked away from the table. It was quite an emotional moment for me. The biased criticism of his parents cost a promising young man a great opportunity. Is there anything he could have done differently? Why not achieve more of the things he has already accomplished? The answers to these questions have yet to be given.

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Which of my children is better: the oldest or the youngest?