I knew this question would pop up eventually and, in all honesty, I was hoping I’d be able to avoid it for at least 10 years until I would eventually be asked.
The conversation started when I commented that Holly had the same nose as Alfie, but he was interested to know more.
“Who’s eyes does she have mummy?”
I think she has Rob’s eyes.
“Who’s eyes do I have then?”
I think you have your dads eyes.
And there it was. That question.
“Oh no, is she my half sister?”
I was gutted. Although I hadn’t planned on lying to Alfie, I just wasn’t expecting it.
Of course due to the sensitive type which is my child, he cried. He cried thinking that Holly wasn’t his ‘real sister’ and he takes so much pride in his role of big brother.
It’s a hard situation to be in and I’m sure most children wouldn’t be phased, or perhaps even understand the meaning of half siblings or why.
But Alfie is a smart kid, he picks up on the simplest of things and it doesn’t take much for him to engage an understanding.
I never wanted him to feel left out – Holly has a mummy & a daddy at home, all Alfie has ever had is me.
Although it’s never bothered him, I believe it will do in the future the older he gets.
I always knew I would have slight anxiety when it came to having a second child specifically because of this reason.
I’d never want Alfie to feel as though he has no connection to Holly just because they have different fathers.
“You and Holly have such a special bond Alfie, because you were both inside mummy’s tummy”.
Our family does have it’s own strange dynamics – but it’s what makes us unique and whole.
Holly may even ask the exact same questions as to why Rob isn’t Alfie’s dad, why Alfie doesn’t see his dad.
Whether or not Alfie knew there was some different relations when him and Holly’s relationship was concerned – until that moment, I don’t think he had realised.
No matter what, siblings, half siblings, step-siblings, we are a family.
I love knowing that although Alfie now has the understanding of half siblings, but he doesn’t seem phased.
He doesn’t seem phased because despite not sharing the same relations, he is a part of Holly and she is a part of him.
Alfie’s desire to compare his characteristics and unique looks stems from not having another parent to compare himself to.
This has caused him the excitement of comparing himself to Holly and is so happy when he notices small features which identify him.
To watch them laugh together, smile together and play together, gives me a sense of relief knowing throughout the constant daily struggle of mum guilt and the am I good enough? question circling around in my head.
My children know the meaning of love, half siblings or not.
The term ‘half’ does not determine their relationship.