Daugh­ter dis­cov­ers bomb­shell in mom’s di­ary

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - FEATURES/COMMUNITY - Abi­gail Van Buren DEAR ABBY:

DEAR ABBY: I re­cently found a notebook of my mom’s. On the out­side cover it said, “Dis­claimer: Do Not Open Un­less You’re Me!” Be­ing the cu­ri­ous soul that I am, I opened it de­spite the dis­claimer.

As I flipped through the pages, I learned many things about my mom that I didn’t know, like her faith in God and how the things that hap­pened in her life molded her into who she is to­day. I stopped at the page ti­tled, “The Sum­mer of 10th Grade.” As I read it, I learned the truth about how I was con­ceived. Writ­ten in cap­i­tal letters were the words “I was raped.” It felt like the world had stopped. I had no clue.

I’d al­ways as­sumed Mom got preg­nant at 16 be­cause she made stupid de­ci­sions, but I was wrong. I could never imag­ine how my mom could get through a day with­out look­ing at me as a re­minder of what hap­pened to her.

Where do I go from here? Should I con­front her about it? I have no one to talk to, so I hope you can give me some ad­vice. — CHILD OF RAPE

DEAR CHILD: I’m glad you wrote, be­cause it gives me an op­por­tu­nity to point out that if you hadn’t been wanted, your mother had other al­ter­na­tives. If you had no clue, it’s be­cause you are the daugh­ter she loves, and I’m sure you have been a source of much joy in her life.

If you feel the need to dis­cuss this with her, then you should. Be­cause she left the notebook in a place where it could be dis­cov­ered, she may have sub­con­sciously wanted it to be found.

At 24, I am for­tu­nate to have lov­ing, func­tional re­la­tion­ships with my mother, fa­ther, step­mother (of 15 years) and step­sis­ter. I at­tribute my healthy child­hood to the fact that my mom and dad have al­ways acted as best friends when we’re to­gether, de­spite hav­ing been sep­a­rated al­most my en­tire life.

How­ever, lately I have been find­ing my par­ents’ re­la­tion­ship very in­ap­pro­pri­ate. They have been hang­ing out to­gether of­ten with­out me, and al­most cer­tainly with­out my step­mother’s knowl­edge. I have stum­bled upon sug­ges­tive texts that im­ply a flirty re­la­tion­ship and prob­a­bly more. I don’t know whether these are re­cent de­vel­op­ments or if I have just stopped be­ing naive.

I would never want my step­sis­ter to dis­cover any­thing about my mom and dad the hard way. I es­pe­cially don’t want to see her hurt by be­com­ing a child of di­vorce. Would I be over­step­ping my bound­aries if I asked my mom and dad to spend less time to­gether and re­strict their re­la­tion­ship to be­ing par­ents to me and that’s all? — HURT CHILD-WOMAN

DEAR HURT CHILD­WOMAN: If you ap­proach it the way you have writ­ten it to me, yes, I think you would of­fend both of your par­ents. If you are afraid your step­sis­ter may be hurt if her par­ents sep­a­rate, be there to com­fort and sup­port her, but do not in­sert your­self into what may or may not be an ex­plo­sive minefield.

This may be the way your mom and dad have al­ways re­lated to each other, your step­mother may be aware of it, and you could come across as ex­tremely pre­sump­tu­ous.

Dear Abby is writ­ten by Abi­gail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline

Phillips. Con­tact Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los An­ge­les, CA 90069. To or­der “How to Write Letters for All Oc­ca­sions,” send your name and mail­ing ad­dress, plus cheque or money or­der for $7 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby -- Let­ter Book­let, P.O. Box 447, Mount Mor­ris, IL 61054-0447. Ship­ping and han­dling are

in­cluded in the price.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.