My Infant Son Is The Best Boyfriend I Never Had

newbornMy 6-month-old is the best boyfriend I never had.

Actually, I stole that line from my friend, who when we were discussing the differences between having a daughter and a son, mentioned this memorable line.

I am “in love” with my son. I don’t just love him; I’m IN love with him. One of my friends, who has both a son and a daughter, says that having a son is like a love affair. Don’t get me wrong, when my daughter was born, my heart swelled to the point that I thought it would explode with love, as it did when my son was born. But, I’m realizing, that as he gets older there’s just something…. different about the kind of love I have for my daughter and with my son.

It’s very hard to explain, without sounding inappropriate, but I’ll try to explain to the best of my abilities.

When my son sees me, I can actually see the love in his eyes. He likes to caress my face. When I walk into a room, his grin is huge. So, yes, he is like the best boyfriend I never had. And, also, he’s a flirt. He’ll look at me and give me a huge smile, and then turn away for a moment, and then turn back batting his eyelashes at me. I fall more in love.

My one friend who has a son and daughter says her son comes up to her every day, places his hands around her face and says, “Mommy I love you so much!” I asked, doesn’t her daughter do this (mine does) and she answered, “Are you kidding me? Never. She’s a daddy girl’s so she does that with him.”

When mothers who have sons ask me how my boy is doing,  I mention, “I’m in love with him. It’s like a love affair!” They completely agree with me. “I know,” they say. “That’s exactly right.”

It’s just a hard feeling to articulate. With my daughter, who obviously I couldn’t love more, I treated her more like a china doll when she was a baby. I would have fun dressing her. I was so careful with her. And now, and I know people hate to hear this, but we are friends (in fact, we are BFFs).

With my son, although I can’t see into the future, I just feel it’s a different sort of love. People always say, “Oh, she’s such a daddy’s girl,” as if that’s a really cute thing, when it comes to fathers and daughters. But when you say, “He’s such a mommy’s boy,” it comes across with somewhat of a negative connotation, as if they are boy-men who can’t do anything on their own.

So, while I love my daughter, I love my son but I’m also IN love with him. This is a two way street. It’s not only that when I cuddle him and feed him before bed, I feel this sense of, “My god, this is such a great feeling,” but it’s, like I mentioned, the way he looks at me and reaches out for me, as if I’m the one and only person he wants.

Also, when my girlfriends come over, he doesn’t give them the grins he gives me. Yes, this all may be a baby thing, because babies (unlike men) are so innocent and always just happy to see your face. They are so easy to please them, so simple and basic. Another reason I may feel “in love” with my son, is because he’s an extension of his father, who I adore and they look so much alike.

This is not a matter of loving one child more than another, because I don’t; it’s just some sort of feeling I have about my son. The one and only difference between my son being the best boyfriend I never had, is that I do have to change his diapers.

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You can reach this post's author, Rebecca Eckler, on twitter.
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  • Diana

    God help this kids first girlfriend.

  • Angela

    Gender might not have anything to do with it. I have 2 sons but I experience that euphoric love high a lot more with my youngest. I think there’s a lot of different factors. For one thing my oldest is more high needs while the youngest is generally happy and mellow. Also I’m a lot mellower this time around and spend a lot less time stressing and focus on really savoring each phase. My oldest has always been most excited to see his dad but my youngest prefers me to anyone else in the world. And yes. there’s nothing like a smiling, cuddly baby to induce a rush of oxytocin so it may lessen as he gets older. I think though that the point is that you love your kids as individuals and while I’ve never felt as though I love one son more than the other I do feel more connected to one or the other from time to time.

    • Xyzzy

      This. My parents had the euphoric love for me at birth, then when my brother arrived 5 years later, it was a shadow of what they felt for me, and they had to fake it for the first few years of his life while they grew to love him. Also as you said, they could be much more laid back with him; Dad likes to recount how, when I fell down the stairs as a little kid, he somehow managed to go around me from behind and catch me before I’d hit the third step — then when my brother fell down the (much shorter) set of 3 stairs at around the same age, Dad had mellowed enough to just calmly watch to see if there were signs he’d hurt himself.

      I’ve been friends with both of my parents at least since the beginning of high school (they still took control when they felt it was needed) and didn’t rebel or push them away as a teenager, while my brother has always had a largely traditional relationship with them. I think that’s more related to me (and our parents) being autistic than gender, though, as he was a very feminine boy while I was a very masculine girl..

      The only thing that’s semi-consistent with the author’s comments was that my parents were also afraid of my fragility, except in our case it was because I was born with serious birth defects, severe asthma that emulated cystic fibrosis at first, then was often failure-to-thrive & off-the-charts undersized most of my infancy. Maybe they didn’t feel they had the luxury of holding anything back emotionally, or were too busy worrying about my body self-destructing to fear that they’d cause damage through normal handling…

  • VanCan

    You know, not every thought that goes through your brain needs to be expressed. Seriously. Get a grip. Get some therapy. You’re going to mess up your son. I had the misfortune of marrying the son of a woman who thought like you and it was hell. After five years, he moved back in with his mommy because no other woman could love him like she did (his words).

    I really hope you write under a pseudonym so your son never finds this article.

    • rebecca eckler

      yeah, he’s six months old. He’s quite talented at putting things in his mouth but not so talented at google searching. And so what? He reads that I love him when he’s older. He has three older sisters and I think, um, that he’ll know how to treat women.

    • VanCan

      You know things are forever searchable on the internet, right? I can still find my grad thesis from 1997 when I Google my name. And he’ll read that you’re IN love with him, not that you love him. That’s a major distinction that you went to great lengths to make.

      You’re a professional writer and your response to criticism includes the oh-so-tiresome “um”. That’s depressing.

    • Diana

      Imagine if his friends find this in 15 years time. Ugh!

    • Anon

      They’d pat him on the back slap him high five and tell him how lucky he is to have a hot older chick thats in love with him as a mother.

    • chickadee

      And so will her daughter be able to read this….

    • Anon

      I’d bet he’s talented at putting things in his mouth, like your tits. Yeah he’s gonna read his milf mom is in lust with him and views him as her greatest boyfriend, he’ll be beating off like crazy while reading it. I guess you and his three older sisters are gonna show him how to treat a woman in the bedroom, he’s gonna get alot of practice at fucking with all of you.

    • Mel

      It’s no pseudonym. She’s on facebook. Poor kid has no chance…

    • Anon

      She’s not gonna mess him up at all he’ll love her parenting, most boys fantasize about having a hot slutty mom who let’s them fuck her and wants to be the only woman in his life.

  • Heather

    I’m in love with my son, too! I love my daughter more than anything, but I agree with you completely that it feels a little different with a son. My husband also seems “in love” with our daughter. It’s very hard to describe without sounding creepy, but I totally understand what Rebecca is saying. Kudos for writing about this!

  • mel

    I guess I can’t really relate to this article. I have a son–my only child right now and I cannot say that I was ever “in love” with him or compared his actions to those of a boyfriend. My son was a huge flirt as a baby as well and I thought it was adorable. I love my son more than anything but it’s not quite like that described above. Perhaps I need to have more than one child…?
    As for the “momma’s boy” thing–yes, it does have a negative association because it often extends into adulthood and has a negative impact on the man’s romantic relationships. Mothers like this are extremely meddlesome and critical and the son usually does not have the balls to tell her to back off. These men also either still rely on their mothers to take care of basic needs or the woman ends up taking over the role of “mommy” rather than wife/girlfriend. This is from both my own experience and those of my co-workers. Don’t get me wrong–a “daddy’s girl” can be just as harmful and creepy if the father refuses to let his daughter become an independent adult (which is the point of being a parent!).
    So Rebecca, I guess my point is that there’s nothing wrong with how you feel about your son as long as you let him grow up.

  • lin

    I don’t think there is anything wrong with your feelings, but the description is off-putting. Picture a dad writing that about his daughter and the creepiness factor skyrockets. I love my kids differently, but neither like a boyfriend or girlfriend

    • sara

      Agreed. Nothing is wrong with intensely loving your children, as they’re not only an extension of you, but in most cases also an extension of the love of your life as well–i.e. husband, wife, but the problem is comparing and meshing very distinct types of love–i.e. erotic love and maternal/parental love.

  • sven

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  • Daisy

    Oh Rebecca. I can normally get behind most of the crazy things you post because it’s just your own unique brand of quirkiness, mostly harmless, and it takes all kinds to make the world go round. But this? Sigh. You do read STFUParents, don’t you? (If you don’t, you should.) There’s quirky and then there’s just plain weird with a dash of borderline inappropriate.

  • TJ

    when you say, “He’s such a mommy’s boy,” it comes across with somewhat of a negative connotation, as if they are boy-men who can’t do anything on their own.

  • HaydenT

    I find it really irritating when people say that babies flirt. What they are doing is seeking attention by giving attention. I hope I don’t actually have to specify that it is non-sexual attention.

  • Helen Donovan


  • wmdkitty

    Perhaps you should have named your son “Oedipus”…

  • CrazyFor Kate

    Okay, this is creepy.

  • sara

    Sorry, but this just sounds hugely inappropriate (borderline incestuous), riddled with favoritism and as someone else essentially said, preparing this young man for a life of momma-boy-ism. I hadn’t even finished the article and instantly “momma’s boy, “love affair” and “love one child more” occurred to me. I do feel sorry for the “other woman” who would dare interfere with your “love affair.” Like someone else said, “get a grip.” He’s your son NOT YOUR BOYFRIEND OR HUSBAND. Btw, the difference between a daddy’s girl and a momma’s boy is rather evident in how men and women are socialized. A girl who has had the first man in her life love and cherish her will be more likely to be a woman who is strong, independent and highly likely to select a man who loves and respects her genuinely. Conversely, a mollycoddled boy is less likely to be a man of independence. In fact, he will usually shun women who would like to love and cherish him because “they’ll never be good enough,” as they’ll “never be momma.” Also, they’ll tend to choose women who are overbearing and perhaps even abusive, which will give them an excuse to abandon their pursuits of women outside of their mothers. Nice try, but apples will never be oranges.

    • Anon

      Sorry, but you’re being a blatant hypocrite. It’s pathetic how you’re going out of your way to make it look like one is positive and one is negative using terms like “cherish” when describing a man loving his daughter yet saying “coddled” when describing a woman loving her son the same way, no matter how you try to spin it if a girl will grow up to be a woman with great qualities being a daddy’s girl then a son will grow up to be a man with great qualities being a momma’s boy too. Men are just as much shaped by the first woman in their lives, a mother showing her son how to properly be treated by a woman will cause him to choose a woman who respects him as a man and will take care of his needs the way a real woman should. Saying it’s different based on how men and women are “socialized” is just as much bullshit as the typical “apples and oranges” card, nice try but attempting to justify double standards will never work.

  • Byron

    Babies are easier to please than men? I beg to differ.

    Stick your naked bosom in the face of a man for hours a day every day, the second he asks for it, and then see if he is not just as pleased if not more than your baby. :p

    • Kohoutek

      Men (who are not “mommy’s boys”) are MUCH easier to please than screaming babies.

  • Shuddering

    This is a truly creepy article. If it were a facebook post, it’d be on STFUParents in a heartbeat. Some things are best kept to oneself.

  • glitterhammy

    When every comment is negative; it’s time to listen and re-evaluate your thoughts. This is beyond weird.

  • Someone who knows

    I believe what you are saying can be true for some moms, but this is why women don’t get along with their mother-in-laws. Mothers of sons feel like they are being replaced and forget that mom and wife are two completely different roles and have different places in a man’s life. If forced to choose, a good man will pick his wife over his mother. If you don’t get over this, it will eventually drive a wedge between you and your son.

  • Victoria

    Chiming in late: While I agree with the other commentators, I could see how the flush of hormones for a nursing mom and an environment of baby-care, 24/7, might bring the infant into the center of mom’s universe…if she looks to him to fulfill her emotional needs, this kind of borderline romantic fervor is bound to creep in. There’s a saying “Mother is God in the eyes of a child,” and the kind of power that brings could create the type of mom whose identity is wrapped up in her baby. I’d suggest some deep thought, and then maybe widening her interests gently. Leave baby and go to a writing club, get out of the house, find other meaningful pastimes…re-establish an identity apart from “baby’s significant other” and see if things don’t gradually balance out. Parental love is wonderful, and distressing when it’s absent, but it can be crippling too, as other commentators have mentioned.

  • HeatherOnt

    It’s totally not creepy and I can completely relate. I have a 3.5 year old daughter and an 18 month old son. I love my daughter to bits and am so proud of her. She is fiercely independent and unless she is tired or not feeling well, I practically have to beg her for a hug. My little guy has been incredibly affectionate from the get-go. He comes over and gives me spontaneous hugs and then goes back to play with his cars. It’s just a different sort of love than I have for my daughter. I don’t love one more than the other, they just evoke different feelings of maternal love from me. My sister, who also has a boy and a girl, told me when I was pregnant with my boy that it would be this way and I didn’t get it.

  • Kohoutek

    Get some help. This is not normal or healthy at all.

  • Mary Della Valle

    Sick, sick, sick, sick. I am convinced that this “mother” needs a shrink to cure her sick relationship with her chyld

  • Greer Phillips

    I get this and I back you. I used to call my son my “boyfriend” and my “lover” when he was a baby. He was/is a Mommy’s Boy, completely obsessed with me, and the feeling is pretty mutual. Even at 3 years old, he’s a total snugglebunny, always wants hugs and kisses and is constantly like, “Oh, Mommy, I just love you so much!” I only have him so I don’t know if it would be different with a daughter or not, but I feel like the words “in love” describe it perfectly. And ew to the people who would suggest you’re being incestuous or inappropriate with him.

  • Jdawnindenco

    Get help. You are a twisted sick woman. You are blatantly giving your son a sexual dysfunction and messing with any normal healthy intimacy he may feel towards a woman he maybe potentially want a sexual relationship with. Most parents go overboard with this attachment parenting but this is entirely Inappropriate.

  • SisterBenedict

    Let’s pretend that a man wrote an article like this about his little daughter. Gross and inappropriate? Absolutely. And so is this one.

  • analyzethis2

    This girl is a welfare baby maker, she writes and lives as a tween would, time to quit giving her the attention she craves from pushing out those government cheques.

  • Dee Dabs

    Oh my gosh, you are all freaking rude, ridiculous, and are completely missing the point of this article. Obviously she didn’t mean that in a inappropriate way. You’re all childish and need to stop.
    Rebecca, I definitely see what you mean. I have a 16 month old son and I feel the same way. He is the most amazing person I’ve ever seen.

  • julianna

    I don’t find this article disturbing at all. I feel the same way for my son. Eveverybody has a dirty mind to think that this lady was trying to say something creepy about it. its just a love you can’t describe its so pure and beautiful. the love is compared to a boyfriend because you always want to see your son and be with him just like when you have a boyfriend, but obviously not everybody thinks the same.