Member Rara Avis
Your concern, Denise, reminds me of two brothers from Redondo Beach, Tom and Dick. They were raised by their mother after their father died in a Japanese POW camp during WWII, and Tom, the older of the siblings, was utterly convinced their mother liked Dick better than she liked him. There was, of course, no real basis for feeling that way, but every time the mother would single out the younger son, as is inevitable in any family, Tom's misgivings grew.
Tom's feelings were, of course, real. But they weren't justified. It would have been wrong for his mother to respond to those feelings by slighting Dick in even the smallest way, even if that would have perhaps made Tom feel better. Yes, we can and should take into consideration the feelings of other people. But when those feelings have no basis in reality we cannot let them dictate our actions. Tom's feelings cannot be allowed to supercede those of Dick or those of their mother, both of which are equally real.
I have little doubt the mother told Tom, probably many times, that she loved him just as much as she loved Dick. And I suspect, Denise, that for Tom those claims rang hollow. That's the way it is with feelings, after all; they can rarely be altered with mere logic or simple truth.
Fortunately, Tom and Dick turned out all right.