Relating to the ‘rents

Another post topic taken from the list, again in no particular order. This one is day 3 on the list if anyone is keeping up. Topic at hand, describe your relationship with your parents. It’s no secret on this blog that my parents divorced when I was about three years old and both have remarried. That leaves me in essence with four parents, so I’ll describe my relationship with each one.

My mother

Mother’s Day was this past Sunday and I did a post about her so you can see just how imporant she is to me. After my parents split, she got sole custody of my brother and I so I grew very close to her. She was strict without words–my brother and I hated to disappoint her because she’d pretty much stop talking to us outside of the necessary stuff when we messed up. She held extremely high educational standards for us, which I’m grateful for to this very day. As a teenager, I hated her standards so I acted out in ways that I won’t go into right now, just to assert my independence. Eventually seeing her disappointed in me took hold and I got it together. As a young adult I think she struggled to see me as an adult so she made a big deal about me being her baby. She had grown so used to caring for her children that when I left the nest she felt like she wasn’t needed anymore and thus tried to baby me to death. By the time I hit age 25 or so, she started treating me like an adult and we started talking about things on a more grown up level. I realized that we have similar senses of humor and she’s not ashamed to ask me for help with things like picking a new car or buying a computer. We’re very close now and do a lot of learning from each other. I’m grateful for that. We talk just about every day or at least every two or three days, even if it’s just a text to check in. Some of my friends have toxic relationships with their mothers (a post for a different day…I’m an opinionated woman you know) and I’m glad to have that openness with her. She’s recently started reading this blog and I still say the same stuff I’d say before…not censoring cuz my mama’s lurking. *waves* Hey mama!

My stepdad

My mom and stepdad have been together for just about 18 years, and got married after 4 years together. I was a very young teenager when they got together but I never felt threatned by his presence or any resentment toward him. I call him Daddy and he calls me his daughter. Matter of fact, some of his friends don’t know that I’m not really his biological daughter. He moved upstate with my mom from NYC a year or so before they got married and he took the step to ask me, my brother, and all of his kids how we felt about them being together long term. His concern for our feelings was great. He gave me advice about dating and taught me the ways to spot a player (thank you, Daddy!). Now he and I are just about as close as me and my mom. He has made it a point to always let me know that he’s not trying to take the place of my biological dad, but for reals…Daddy raised me, and Daddy is who I danced with at my wedding. I’m his youngest and a girl, so he’s very protective of me which is a nice thing to experience. When he comes to visit me and D, he always has to do something like prune our hedges or mow the lawn or fix a broken window screen just so he can put his “Daddy stamp of approval” on things. ❤ that man.

My father

Well, ain’t much to say ’bout it. He’s been a spotty presence in my life, not always beneficial, and not always honest. Until I was about eight years old he used his opportunities for regular visitation so we were fairly close. But then he moved and he stopped calling as much, started forgetting birthdays, and yeah…being the typical child-support paying, phone-it-in kind of father. There are some things I was angry about with him, but I’ve let forgiveness in so I don’t lose sleep at night over it. He made it a point to come to my wedding, but it may have caused more ruckus than necessary. He has a young son and when we talk on the phone, he makes a point to tell me thta he’s trying to be a better father to his young son than he was to us. There’s supposedly an older brother that none of us have met but he doesn’t speak about. My mom apparently made sure he sent the child support payments until they finally started coming back marked ‘return to sender’. It’s hard for me to sum up our relationship in a small space, so I’ll maybe get it together to explain in more detail. All I can really say is our relationship isn’t bad, it isn’t good, and I’m okay with it.

My stepmother

I’ve met her a few times, spoken with her on the phone maybe three times. I’ve heard a few stories. However, I don’t know this woman. “Harpo, who dis woman?”, is what I say to myself when people mention her. Only on a technicality (her being married to my father) is she my step mother, cuz lawd knows she hasn’t done any mothering for me.

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