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The Real Stories of Children from Reorganized Families: Growing Up Between Love and Neglect

  Regarding reorganized families, the news that often appears in the newspapers is inevitably about some “child abuse incidents”, which is undoubtedly deepening people’s stereotypes about reorganized families.
  ”Family with Children” presents a reorganized family that is so perfect that it is close to utopia. However, in public perception, indifferent relationships in reorganized families are the norm; children living in reorganized families are neglected and abused, which does not seem to be the case. Small probability event.
  Children are forced to be “involved” in their parents’ marital crisis, pushed around by their biological fathers and mothers, and then rejected by their stepfathers and stepmothers. These children are often labeled as having “low self-esteem,” “fragility,” “isolation,” “sensitivity,” and “coldness.” “Selfish” label and become an outsider in the “happy family”.
  What is the real situation?
  American sociologist William J. Goode mentioned in “Family”: If we want to understand the impact of marital dissolution on children, we cannot just compare the two extreme types of happy families and hostile families, we also need to do Understand the impact of death, divorce, separation and abandonment on children.
  What really hurts children is the divorce and remarriage itself, the family relationship that has already been in crisis, the tense and repressive environment in the reorganized family, or the unknown risks that the new family may face?
  Family reorganization is no longer a “hidden corner” and the parties involved need to be seen.
  The following are the stories of four children from reorganized families.
“As long as mom is happy, that’s fine”

  My name is Lin Yi, I am 19 years old.
  My parents were separated when I was in the second grade of junior high school. After my college entrance examination, they officially divorced. I lived with my mother, and soon after, my mother started a new family. Now I live with my mother and stepfather. In the eyes of outsiders, we are a happy family of three.
  There has been a very popular term in recent years called “widowed parenting”, and my childhood perfectly fit all the connotations of this term.
  My biological father was away on business for a long time, and his workplace was only four or five hours’ drive from my home. My mother once proposed moving to live with him, but this proposal was rejected by him.
  To be honest, I am the most unhappy when my dad comes home. I still remember that every time he came home, he would play Landlord and turn up the sound of the game very loudly. I was doing my homework in the room, and I could clearly hear “airplanes” and “bombs” even if the door was closed. Every time he comes home I ask my mom when he will leave.
  My dad has a bad temper, and so does my stepfather.
  On the second day of the Lunar New Year last year, we were going to visit relatives for New Year greetings, but my family didn’t have a car, so we had to take someone else’s car. My mother asked me to take a car with my stepfather, and I said I didn’t want it. I wanted to take a car with my mother. My stepfather got so angry that he smashed the New Year’s gift on the ground until it broke into pieces. He also dragged me home and cursed me in a very unpleasant way.
  ”White-eyed wolf” is the word I heard most from him.
  But my stepfather didn’t give me a lot of financial support. Since I went to college, he only paid my tuition for one year, and I still have to take out loans for this year’s tuition. His arrival did not improve the family situation. My family is still the one that is looked down upon the most by relatives. All his efforts were self-motivated. He thought he was paying for me, but I didn’t feel it, but he successfully moved my mother.
  I am willing to endure all this for my mother, as long as my mother is happy.
  In order to support my family, I found a tutoring job during college. My student’s father fulfilled all my imagination of a father.
  He is a limousine driver, relaxed and funny, and our relationship is like a friend. He would talk to me about his experience playing “Cross Fire”, discuss the latest movies released in theaters, and even analyze the storyline of “The Three-Body Problem” with me… He simply doesn’t look like a middle-aged uncle in his 40s.
  I do envy those complete families, especially after I experienced the misfortunes of my original family, single-parent families, and reorganized families. When I was working as a tutor, I would often put myself into their family, imagining that I was also a member of the family, but I knew very well that I was just a college student tutor, an outsider.
  But in their home, for the first time, I felt the respect I deserved, the respect that comes from home.
  I have always believed that the further away I am from my stepfather, the less influence he will have on me. I hope that I can leave this home as soon as possible and not come back for a few years, but whenever my mother asks me: “If you don’t go home, don’t you miss your mother?” ?” I didn’t know what to say.
“Our relationship is like roommates”

  My name is Weining and I am currently in my third year of college.
  My parents divorced when I was three years old, and my father left the house for my custody. When I was about 4 years old, my father remarried. That year, my father and stepmother gave birth to a younger brother. He is 10 years old this year.
  I have always envied the feeling of “home”. It happened to be my birthday a few days ago. My mother was traveling with her remarried daughter, and my father was taking his younger brother out to compete. I was the only one at home. Although they promised to make up for this birthday for me, so many days have passed. Since then, no one has mentioned this matter, as if I never existed, and I don’t want to ask them “why” because I can already imagine the answers they used to excuse me.
When I was working as a tutor, I would often put myself into their family, imagining that I was also a member of the family, but I knew very well that I was just an outsider.

  My younger brother is often criticized by his father and stepmother when he does homework. Although it is not a good thing to be lectured by parents, I am full of curiosity about this experience, because the state of the three of them is like real “life”. I witnessed the whole process of this younger brother from birth to ten years old. He grew up with his father and stepmother. I was like a bystander, observing everything in the family from a third-person perspective. I always blended into the family from time to time. , and sometimes pull away.
  Our relationship is like roommates.
  My grades in elementary school were not good, and an exam in junior high school overturned my father’s view of me. At that time, there were more than 2,000 people in the school, and I was among the top 100. Since then, the whole family’s attention has been on me. At that moment, it seemed that my value was discovered by the family. In order to maintain this feeling of being cared for, I have been studying hard. A good result is a tool that helps me create family value.
  I also occasionally wonder if they pay attention to me because of my good grades. In the third year of high school, the days when my father accompanied me were the first time in many years that I felt accompanied by my family: my father woke me up in the morning, urged me to go to bed at night, and prepared three meals a day. He would ask me how I was feeling today and whether the food was to my liking… After my senior year of high school, I dared to admit that my father’s love for me was unconditional.
  For a long time, I was caught in a tug-of-war between my endless desire for my family’s approval and my fearful doubt of its authenticity. Gradually, I felt relieved. I no longer felt like an “orphan”. Now I am very happy. This family has given me a lot of free space. We trust and support each other. We are relatives and friends. They listen carefully to my opinions and I feel safe to speak up.

  Every year on Father’s Day and Mother’s Day, I always order a cake for them.
“I don’t think marriage is important”

  My name is Du Jing and I just graduated from college.
  When I was 10 years old, my parents divorced and I chose to live with my mother. I remember, the first time my mother told me that she wanted a divorce, I almost collapsed. She saw that I was very emotional, so she had to lie and say she was joking. Although I understood my mother’s thoughts at the time, I couldn’t imagine life without my father.
  But it turned out that it was actually quite good without him, and it seemed to be even better than before.
  My mother and I lived together for 7 years. When I was 17 years old, my mother told me another piece of news that was equally difficult to accept: she was getting married. Before she made this decision, I had met her marriage partner many times. I was naive at the time and thought they were just in love, but what my mother meant was: we should live together as a family.
  She talked a lot with me. Sooner or later, I have to leave this home and have my own life. My mother has always hoped that I can grow up to be an independent person and truly live apart from her. She will gradually grow old and need someone to take care of her. My mother got married so that she can have someone to support her in old age. .
  I know my mother has made up her mind, and no amount of persuasion will be of any use. But I only have one condition – don’t call him “Dad”, just call him “Uncle”.
  When they first got married, I felt very bad because my mother seemed to pay more attention to my uncle’s feelings. The principle of “uncle first” was vividly reflected at the dinner table – I grew up in Jiangsu and Zhejiang and rarely eat spicy food, while my uncle is Hunan people especially love spicy food. During that time, my mother often cooked some very spicy and strong-flavored meals, which reached a level that I couldn’t accept. I told my mother many times that I didn’t like these dishes, but my mother told me: “My uncle also likes to eat it, and my mother also likes to eat it. You must practice your taste.” One night, my mother drove to pick me up
  . There were only two of us in the car, and I talked to her seriously about it. That night, my mother handwritten a long letter of apology and placed it on my bedside the next morning. She didn’t communicate with me that morning, but asked my uncle to send me to school. Thinking about it now, I still admire my mother’s way of handling it. Since then, my mother has also been very concerned about my feelings and tried her best to be “even in a bowl of water”.
  The year I was about to leave home for college, my uncle’s biological son moved in with us. I am a freshman and he is a sixth grader. We are not related by blood, and our relationship is not close. When I first met him, I loved puzzles. I warned him not to move around when I left, but he still secretly played with my puzzles and made a mess. I didn’t control myself and hurt him, but it seemed to scare him.
  That incident became the trigger for the deterioration of our relationship. Maybe his biological mother also instilled in his brother that this family would not accept him.
  Over time, our relationship faded. Although I also realize that I shouldn’t lose my temper with a child, and it is indeed my fault, but I don’t care whether my brother likes me or not. I really don’t regard him as my biological brother, and my relationship with him is not important. .
It’s like I never existed, and I don’t want to ask them “why.”

  Now, just as my mother expected, I have a boyfriend who loves me very much. I hope to leave my parents and find my own life. After witnessing my parents’ marriage, I feel that marriage is not important. I am afraid of the high-trust intimate relationship behind marriage. I do not believe that such a relationship really exists, because people will change. Even if he is very good now, but What about 10 or 20 years from now? I have no idea.
  If I am really lucky enough to meet that person, I would love to enter a family with him, and pour the love that I have no chance to experience into our children without reservation, giving him a perfect home.
“Just a hint of sweetness fills the air”

  I am Manlin, I am 30 years old and have a family of my own.
  When I was about 4 years old, my mother met my stepfather. My mother tried to make me accept this sudden “father”. They tried to make me call him “dad”, but I couldn’t say it out. I couldn’t get over the hurdle in my heart. It took me two full years to accept him. Before I was 6 years old, I always called him “uncle”. Before marriage, he was very good to my mother and cared about me. When I was 6 years old, I suddenly wanted to call him “Dad”. It was after I changed my name that my mother officially decided to get a marriage license.
  So there were two more people in this family: my stepfather and his son, my brother.
  To be honest, the feeling of a reorganized family is completely different from that of the original family. Unless the parents live a very transparent life and can treat each other’s children as their own, it is almost impossible to achieve this step. I felt from beginning to end that my stepfather did not regard me as his daughter. My brother also believed that my mother never loved him. This estrangement will accompany us throughout our lives. My brother has longed for maternal love since he was a child, and I also hope to receive father’s love.
  The reality is a mess.
  When I was a child, I liked to climb on adults for kisses and hugs. I would always climb on my stepfather, but whenever I did this, he would always throw me away hard and let me fall to the ground. I was still ignorant at the time and didn’t know that he hated me, but my grandmother would tell me: “Don’t ever climb on him again. You see, you have been thrown away by him, you know?” At first, my grandmother supported my mother’s remarriage
  . , it was not until many conflicts broke out in the family that my grandmother had to admit that my mother’s second marriage still failed. I have always believed that the relationship between husband and wife is a kind of cooperation, but the cooperation between my mother and my stepfather is not smooth and unhappy. When I was young, I had doubts about my mother’s choices and advised her to divorce. She should have had a better life, but this sudden man ruined everything.
  My mother understood these principles, but she also understood the stigma a woman who had been divorced twice would bear in that era. In the end, she chose to endure it.
  When I was 19 years old, my mother passed away, and I completely lost the harbor that could give me support and strength. It was also my mother’s departure that allowed me to truly see this family and my stepfather clearly. My mother was one of the first local business people and accumulated a lot of wealth. Because of my mother’s power in the family, my stepfather and brother were very polite to me, but after my mother left, they immediately turned their backs on each other.

  In all these years, my stepfather has only done one thing that moved me. We have a lot of valuable old tea in our family, each piece worth tens of thousands. After my mother passed away, these properties belonged to my stepfather. He originally wanted to leave these teas to my brother, but my brother was too lazy to make them. He couldn’t stand it anymore, so he used the suitcase. Fill it up and fly to my workplace to deliver these tea leaves to me. I was doing business in Beijing at the time. Before he left, he asked me if I still had any money. I told him that I still had enough money, but he insisted on giving me a thick wad of 50,000 yuan. I couldn’t hold back my tears and ran outside the house and cried for a long time.
  The next year my business was not doing well and the store was forced to be transferred. I planned to open a new store and needed 20,000 yuan in rent. I really couldn’t afford the money, so I asked my stepfather to borrow it, but he refused to lend me these two dollars. Ten thousand dollars. However, he invested in many stores for my brother in his hometown, and even wanted to transfer the only house my mother left me to my brother’s name.
  That was the first time I felt cramped in life.
  I have never wanted to believe that our relationship was so superficial, even full of suspicion and calculation. But after my mother passed away, my stepfather’s attitude towards me took a turn for the worse, making it impossible for me to live under the same roof with him. Embarrassment is the only way I can summarize this father-daughter relationship.
I felt from beginning to end that my stepfather did not regard me as his daughter. My brother also believed that my mother never loved him.

  The lack of father’s love gradually turned into a desire for love, and I realized that I needed marriage, because such a stable and intimate relationship made me feel at ease and gave me enough courage to resist the fear of loneliness. He gave me love and helped me mend the rifts of childhood trauma.
  Just like Ma Dong said: People who are very bitter in their hearts can be filled with just a hint of sweetness.