Sunday, March 02, 2008

Step

3 weeks ago, while Abigail talked to her dad on the phone, he finally told her that he had indeed gotten married in October, without her being there. I had held off on telling her, insisting that she talk to her dad about it. He just never talked to her after his wedding, so that was the first time she had the chance to ask.

At any rate, we were talking about relationships today: I am my mom's daughter, and Gonzer's grand-daughter. Abigail is Teta and Uncle Jordan's niece. Abigail's new sister will be their niece, and Gaga and Pepaw's grand-daughter as well. Then she asked why I have "2 dads" and I explained that Pepaw is my step-dad.

I think that's when she put it together.

"Do I have a step-dad, Momma?"

"No. You just have Daddy."

"Oh, but Sarah is my... what?"

"Your step-mom."

"Oh. Sarah is my step-mom. (pause) But you are still my Momma, right?"

I reassured her, and then ended up having to explain how Daddy and I were married, but we aren't anymore, and he is now married to Sarah. Abigail wondered why her dad and I weren't still married, so I explained that you can only be married to one person at a time. She was really asking a lot of questions, and eventually she figured out that if I ever got married again, he would be her step-dad. She was really interested in that little bit of information.

It was so difficult to have this conversation with her, and as much as I don't miss my prior and I really don't miss being married to him, it breaks my heart when my little girl, just 5 years old, has to process the idea that her Momma and Daddy used to be married and aren't married anymore, but that her Daddy married someone else. The most heart-breaking part? This...

"So, you were married to my Daddy until I was born, and then you didn't want to be married anymore?"

How do you make a 5 year old understand that it was not her fault?

4 comments:

Eryka said...

Sometimes God has bigger and better plans for even mommies and daddies. Families come in all shapes and sizes. And God decided that everyone in Abigail's family was better off for you two to get divorced. Tell her all the awesome things that she has gotten to be a part of because of the separation. All the amazing people in her life, and all the fun trips she has gotten to take. God knows what he is doing, even if we can't fully understand. :-)

elj377 said...

I have no advice but it sounds like you are handling it well. Abigail will know that it isn't her fault!

Jordan said...

My heart goes out to you. I am the one who had this conversation with my stepson. It was hard to explain why his parents weren't together and why I was there instead. The most important part to him was that everyone still loved him. "Sometimes grown ups don't get along and it has nothing to do with kids. But look at the great family you have, so many people to love you." Sounds like this will come up again as she processes everything. Reassurances is all she needs.

- Justin said...

Interesting...

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