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Acceptance of half-siblings

(14 Posts)
Zavi Tue 11-Jan-05 00:11:45

My son's father and I are not together and he is planning to marry later this year. I know that he wants to have more children quite soon so I need to gear myself up to the fact that my son will soon have not only a new step-mum but also half brothers and sisters. I find this almost impossible to accept. From my point of view my son's father's children are nothing to do with me so I find it impossible to regard them as my son's siblings! Anyone else felt like this - even initially?

sykes Tue 11-Jan-05 00:27:49

Not sure too many people are around, so thought I'd reply, albeit with not any relevant advice. My h and I split up and are now - very recently back together. He lived with someone for about a year and I know she really wantd to have children with him. I would have found it so hard for so many reasons, but I suppose they would have had a relationship (the children if it had happened) - sorry, crap post but just wanted to say that I do empathise. Are you okay?

joash Tue 11-Jan-05 00:31:50

I do have some empathy with your situation, however, I grew up with many half siblings and my mother deliberately tried to keep us apart throughout most of our childhood. It's not fair on the kids, they're the ones that have to deal with whether or not they view their siblings as siblings (IFYWIM). It's not an easy situation. Just take it one day at a time and see how your children respond - then follow their lead. I am very close to my half brother, but don't give a monkeys about the others (including my 'full' sister).

KateandtheGirls Tue 11-Jan-05 00:36:36

From the opposite side of the situation. My parents divorced when I was a child, and my Dad had another daughter with my stepmum. My mum had a hard time accepting it, although frankly she had a hard time accepting the divorce, my dad's remarriage, etc. I was thrilled to have a new sister when I was 11 1/2 and it was hard to feel that I couldn't talk about her to my mum.

It seemed slightly miraculous to me and my other sister that the day I got married and my half sister, then aged 10, was my bridesmaid, she spent the morning at Mum's house, my mum made lunch for her, etc. My half sister happened to meet me at my mum's house this past summer when we were there because she was coming on holiday with me and the kids, and even then it seemed a little odd for my now 20 year old sister to be in my mum's house having a cup of tea and a chat.

I guess the moral is for your son's sake try and be accepting. Any children will be your son's brothers and sisters and will be important to him. (I'm not going to say it will be easy though.)

Zavi Tue 11-Jan-05 00:52:39

Hi Guys, thanks for your insights. I realise that I'm being selfish in not wanting my son to regard any of his father's other children as siblings but I just find it so threatening. What I am worried about basically is that my son will find his father's house more attractive - because it will be more lively and he'll have other kids to play with/talk to - and will ask to live with his father. Our son is only 18m old so all of this would be a long way off anyway but I am already very worried about losing my son in this way. I'm also very worried however that, if I don't embrace his father's other children, that my son will resent me for that - and I don't want that to happen either. What a mess eh!!!

secur Tue 11-Jan-05 00:52:51

Message withdrawn

secur Tue 11-Jan-05 00:54:41

Message withdrawn

Zavi Tue 11-Jan-05 01:12:19

Secur, I really take my hat off to you. You've really managed to turn a potentially "complicated" situation around to everyone's advantage and I can definitely see the merit in working towards that. My son's father and I have both definitely gone out of our ways to compromise in order to maintain a good relationship for the sake of our son and to this end we've been really successful ...but accepting other siblings...certainly couldn't do it now, not at this moment in time. I hate the thought of my son having a life that I'm not a part of - maybe even a life that he, God forbid, would probably enjoy! That would feel like a real knife in the heart! I feel so silly feeling like this but I just can't seem to shake these silly feelings off.

secur Tue 11-Jan-05 01:20:18

Message withdrawn

otto Tue 11-Jan-05 11:51:01

Zavi, I am a stepmum to a 9-year old girl and I have a 9-month old ds. My dp split with his wife when their daughter was about one and dp and I have been together for almost 6 years.

I expect that dp’s ex-wife had similar feelings to your own when she learned that I was pregnant and dealt with it by insisting that by having a baby we were going to exclude her daughter from our life. This made things very hard for us, particularly sd who, on the one hand, was very excited at the prospect of having a brother, but on the other hand felt that this would mean that her dad wouldn’t love her anymore. It was all very unnecessary and hurtful and caused a lot of stress.

Things have got a little easier since sd was born and I can reassure you that even though sd loves her brother and likes being in our home, she has got used to life on her own where there is nobody to take her things or make noise when she is watching TV, or get attention when she wants it. Your son may well have lots of fun at his father’s house, but you will always be his mother and your home will always be his home.

Surfermum Tue 11-Jan-05 12:00:26

Good on you for acknowledging these feelings, as they must be hard things to admit. I can totally understand them.

I'm in the opposite position to you - I have a dsd and dh and I have now had dd. Dd and dsd adore each other (although I guess it could easily have gone the other way). Dh's x has said to him "I'm fed up with hearing (dd) this and (dd) that, (dd) is my favourite sister". It must be hard for her, and I expect I would feel the same in her shoes.

However, dsd loves her mum dearly and no-one will ever replace her, and just because she has a good time with us, that doesn't mean she doesn't enjoy herself at home either. I'm quite sure it is the same for your son.

reflection Tue 11-Jan-05 16:01:08

I think that children and their mothers have a very special bond and no amount of 'fun' will ever replace that. You really have no reason to feel insecure, of all the people in your sons life you will be the one he comes home to.

aloha Tue 11-Jan-05 16:10:27

Could I say one thing? I really think it's better not to use the 'half' word if and when siblings come along. My dh and his ex split when my stepdaughter was two (she left him) and we got together when she was six. She has been pretty horrible to us for some reason, but she has three more children and I am expecting my second making my stepdaughter the oldest of six (!) - I'm sure she very often really craves the peace and quiet of being an only child, which she was, quite happily, until she was seven. But neither her mother and stepfather or us ever refer to her siblings as 'half' sisters and brothers as we both think they are just her brothers and sisters. I actually wish dh's ex wasn't so resentful so they could all meet sometimes as I'm sure it would be nicer for my stepdaughter if that was the case. I'm sure it is hard to accept that your son will spend time as part of another family. I don't think I'd like it much either, but one day I wouldn't be a bit surprised if you met someone else and had more children yourself. And of course, while it can be a wonderful thing to have more siblings, but it will not make your son love you less.

Zavi Fri 14-Jan-05 19:48:21

Hi Guys (Gals!),
Thanks so much for your advice. I'm still working on it..

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