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I sacrificed my child

 
Would you choose your new husband over your child?
By Masanda Peter

Pic: Shutterstock

Article originally in Parent24
Parenthood is definitely not easy but it’s not too bad either. Some time back I wrote an article stating that if a man wants to marry me then they will have to take my son and I, we’re a package. My feeling is that my child shouldn’t feel that I chose the new man over him by leaving him to stay with relatives. I was approached by children who said to me they actually wished that they had been left with their grandparents than to be part of a “new” family where they never quite belonged.

The child that did not quite belong

Noxolo says: I was 6 years old when my mother got married to my step-dad. The weird thing for me was having a dad suddenly. I never lived with my biological father so I never knew what it’s like to have a daddy before I met my step-dad. I initially felt like I belonged until I found out that my step-dad is actually not my biological dad then I start watching the treatment I was getting. When I got a hiding I felt like he did it because I was not his child. I then started to resent living with them.

I feel that I sacrificed my child

Mrs Khumalo came into her marriage with her son and he’d been an only child for nine years. Her husband had six other children all from different mothers. The environment was different and her husband was not a warm friendly person and at home the child was used to his uncles who were very close to him and loved him. He suddenly found himself with step-brothers and sisters and he went into a shell.  It was difficult for him to adjust and he would shut himself in his bedroom.

In all of these changes he was even forced to change his surname to that of the step-father and that killed his spirit. He was told to call him daddy since all other children called him daddy. He kept this pain for 8 years and only said these things when she got divorced from her husband. Only now does she see that ex-her husband forced her son to call him dad and also forced him to change to the surname and lied to her saying that the son has asked to do these things, she was not aware of all of this.

She realises that her son never liked her husband but he would grin and bear it to please her. He saw that his mother loved her husband and didn’t want to break her heart.  “I really feel that I sacrificed my child”. Her son told her that he feels he had missed out on a lot of things because of his mom’s marriage and they are now going for counselling. The son is slowing getting back to himself but it’s a process and clearly he has been hurt and many things happened during her mom’s marriage but he is on a road to recovery.

Forgive us so we may forgive ourselves


I know that we want the best for our children and I am sure the parents thought that they were doing the right thing but seems like they were wrong in this case. We never know how much we hurt our children by our actions, our “good intentions” but we do sometimes. I hope that they can forgive us and we can also forgive ourselves.
 
Read more by Masanda Peter


Disclaimer: The views of columnists published on Parent24 are their own and therefore do not necessarily represent the views of Parent24.


Would you choose your new husband over your child?

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