Dear Stepson

I have not officially met you yet, just a quick hello when your mother let you outside and you talked to your dad. Your sister is pretty awesome and I love her so very much, but I would like to get to know you. I know how it feels, to be lied, to deceived and used as a whipping tool by your own mother. I know the guilt about loving your dad even when everyone in the house is telling you that you should not. I know the fear when your mother and grandmother scream what a rotten kid you are, and then tell you things your dad did that you cannot even trust your own memory because of all the medications and hell she gave you.

I know because I lived it, my own mother kept me alone and isolated for so long. I want to tell you a lesson I learned and it took me so much longer to be able to understand it, you have a lot of people who really do love you, that goes triple for your father. You cannot control how your mother feels about herself and whether or not her self-esteem remains intact, this is something she will have to work out herself and something that she may never do, but realize that it IS NOT YOUR FAULT and you cannot change that. Her shortcomings are hers alone, you are a different person.

She may hold you prisoner in your soul, your emotions and by controlling you, but that does not change how much we love you and pray that you and you alone will see the truth. Your dad was so hurt when your mom encouraged you to tell that lie, and no doubt you were scarred for life. The term is called “False Memory Syndrome” and it is used on kids to get back at exes or as a form of control to believe that no one else could love them, it is repeated so much you start to believe it, and it is all made up.

I think your dad told you once that when you lie it will hurt and come out in the end, it is best to try to tell the truth and doing the right thing is not always the most comfortable, but it is always best to stick by your principles. Your father stood his ground in the face of these allegations and prevailed, never wavered and even proved them false, we knew it was the voice of your mother, and because of that your father does forgive YOU.

Whenever we play and have fun with your sister, take her out to places or dance and laugh, your dad looks sad for a moment and says that there is one person missing from this equation and that person is YOU. Pretty soon I will be your stepmother, I am not your mom (because lord knows we do not need one more of those, right?) but I will be there to support and understand and (yes) sometimes put my foot down where need be.

I know your mom has probably encouraged you to believe that she and her father are getting back together. I will tell you that it will not happen, she has hurt and emotionally abused him so badly that that wound will never heal and now she has turned away one of the things that means most to him in the world. In time he will forgive, but he will never forget the pain she has caused. Your father is in therapy and trying to understand the abuse and turmoil that he has been through.

You are not a rotten kid, just a kid in a rotten situation. Mom-Mom and Pop-Pop love you. I love you. Your Aunt, Uncle and Cousins love you, but most of all your Dad loves you and he knows that somewhere in your heart, despite all your mother has said, you love him too. My own mother prays for you every day, because she has seen the error of her ways and understands that the best way to love someone is to understand that they have capacity to love and be loved by many. Please know that when it seems to be the darkest and it seems like you are frightened, you have a place to go and feel safe. Sometimes our rules seem a bit strict and we wish you to abide by them, but we will never crush your spirit. I want you to be a part of this family, I want to let you know, it is okay to love your dad and okay to let go of the responsibility of your mother’s self esteem and start working on yourself.

I love you


 Bonus Mom

~ by Stepfamily Letter Project on July 23, 2009.

8 Responses to “Dear Stepson”

  1. Actually, “false memory syndrome” – was made up. Look it up.


    Actually I did and I discussed it with leading Psychologists, Social Workers and friends in the field…actually the implanted memories are made up, “retrieving repressed memories” is bad , irresponsible 80’s POP PSYCHOLOGY…AKA: Frued gone wrong…and is CONSIDERED UNETHICAL IN THE FIELD

  3. Here I will even help you out with some material:

  4. An item-cuing directed forgetting task was used to investigate whether women reporting repressed (n = 13) or recovered (n = 13) memories of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) exhibit an avoidant encoding style (and resultant impaired memory) for trauma cues relative to women reporting no CSA experience (n = 15). All participants viewed intermixed trauma (e.g., molested), positive (e.g., confident), and categorized neutral (e.g., mailbox) words on a computer screen and were instructed either to remember or to forget each word. The results provided no support for the hypothesis that people reporting either repressed or recovered memories of CSA are especially adept at forgetting words related to trauma. These groups recalled words they were instructed to remember more often than words they were instructed to forget regardless of whether they were trauma related. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved
    Journal of Abnormal Psychology. Vol 110(1), Feb 2001, 151-156.

  5. And I know you have been on other sites applauding when someone does make a “breakthrough” and I understand that this is your belief that it is false, but the sad fact is you do not understand the situation, the inconsistencies and the fact that the lie could barely be maintained (Rather odd inconsistencies, and “facts” surfaced when the others did not pan out) it was out and out abuse of the system to get what they wanted…no more, no less…As much as I love my field…Psychology is heresay no more, no less.

    I realize that this is not in every case and there is true abuse where the person refused to say anything. But as someone who is a victim of abuse myself I remember it everday, I live with it everyday..there is nothing “Repressed” about it…

  6. All abuse claims are situational. There’s absolutely no point in folks not *actually* involved directly making grand pronouncements about it, because those folks are simply not in possession of all the facts, and they never will be.

    Whether or not “false memory syndrome” or “repressed memory” phenomena are legitimate is a side issue. Memory is malleable. What we *remember* of any given event is generally only *related* to what actually happened.

    In any case, there are myriad other influences (family dynamics, etc.) that a simplistic reading of “false memory syndrome is false” necessarily omits. Humans are messy and complicated. This criticism obsesses over details instead of addressing the larger picture.

  7. Babble Said:

    “Humans are messy and complicated. This criticism obsesses over details instead of addressing the larger picture.”

    I thoroughly agree

  8. False memory fake or not… Bio Moms and their families are NOTORIOUS for brain washing their children with blasphemy about their Step Parents. Period. Sad but true.

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