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the unknown sister

Scenario #1
    The day before the Daughter leaves the country for further studies, the Mother sits down and has a heart-to-heart talk with (more like "to") the Daughter. Among other things, the Mother "confesses" that there had actually been three children in the family - the eldest is NOT the Son, but actually a girl who hadn't survived for too long after being born. In the Daughter's 18 years of life, this is the first she's eveer heard of having had a sister.


Scenario #2
    The surviving Son and Daughter know that that they are "missing" a sibling because the Mother gets all choked up every time the subject of children comes up. The Mother will always state that there were three children born to the family, but one didn't survive.


So, how *should* parents inform surviving childern about a "missing" sibling? Or should they be informed at all?

I've seen the above two ways, and I don't think one way is necessarily "better" than the other.

Scenario #1, it came as a huge surprise for the Daughter, who had never [consciously] suspected anything like that in the family history. The Daughter was struck by the thought of how badly it must have cut her Parents when, when she was much younger and perhaps as a result of being the subject of her Brother's bullying, she'd beg her Parents for an older sister. Had that request for a sister been her subconscious' way of trying to get the truth out of the Parents' mouths? Did the Daughter's Older Sister even have a name? And while most of the time the Daughter runs with the "default" programming of "i just have the one brother", occasionally some older-sister-related thoughts would run through her head at random times throughout her life.

Then again, the surviving siblings of Scenario #2 may be not just aware, but perhaps all TOO aware, of the "other" sibling's absence. Or "presence" - depending on how the Mother deals with her grief, how she treats the surviving Children despite/because of the grief... Will the survivors resent the place the "other" has in the Mother's heart? Or will they from early on appreciate that life is short, nothing can be taken for granted, and they should treasure the time they *do* have on this earth?

Yeah, for some reason I'm dwelling on this today. Hope your day also contains some introspection, tho perhaps a tad less morbid.

Comments

  1. Esposo actually has a third older brother, who died in infancy. Because he had multiple birth defects (and I'm not about to ask my MIL to elaborate on that), both my SIL and I have had 'extra' monitoring of our pregnancies, not that we weren't(aren't) being monitored, but it's that whole close family history thing.

    Esposo was of Scenario #3 - he knew about this older brother, but older brother was never really mentioned. My MIL is more of a stoic than a sentimentalist.

    The idea of an infant being born, dying, and not acknowledged in a family depresses me extensively. I think all people deserve remembrance. But then, I'm not big on 'protecting' kids from the harsh realities of the world, rather I think they need to know the truths and how to deal with it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow. The first option seems pretty harsh. Telling her the day before she leaves? That would put me in such a haze that my trip would be ruined. It almost strikes me as copping out.

    My mom found out from a drunk aunt that she has an older sister who was put up for adoption. My grandmother still does not know that my mom knows. She doesn't know how she'd take it. And my mom won't try to find her sister until after my grandmother dies. She doesn't want the sister to find her real mother and risk ensuing any havoc.

    ReplyDelete
  3. hi paul,

    u know my second child passed away after 41 days kan? her name is sabrina. both danial n sarah knows about her coz we often go to the cemetary together.

    my family doesn't talk about her for fear of getting me sad and I hate that. It's important to me that people acknowledge her as my daughter.

    on a lighter note, glad u got there in one piece.

    ciao cin cau

    nana

    ReplyDelete
  4. Whatever scenerio(s) they are, we just need to acknowledge the fact of what has happened, accept it with grace, deal with it gently and move on.

    It’s easier said than done……yes, but we all know that nothing is permanent in this world. Every family has a history. All we need to do as the days pass us by to appreciate what we have, hold onto our living loved ones and pray for those who left us for Heaven. Life is short, yes, but one must be able to stand tall for what has passed and is to become…..

    Trying to change our loved ones’ attitudes to meet our expectations is/are beyond redemption to our human kind! This I realized!! We do not actually need to think of the past by “WHAT IF?”…questioning ourselves for things we can’t change….. BUT one can change his/her destiny (only if one decides to take the risk(s) and face the consequence(s) what may come…..

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi a very nice Site! Click the link "Brasilien in Weggis"


    http://weggis06.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete

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