Sunday, December 11, 2005

“I Want a Brother” & Trying to Explain Half Siblings

Yesterday and again today my son stated he wanted a brother. He knows he is the big brother to his sister but he wanted a [little] brother. When I asked him why, he stated that since he is the big brother there should also be a [little] brother. He also stated that he wanted a brother to hold and love and that his sister is now too big. Part of this may have resulted from our family visit to my sister's house and her two daughters, who are cousins to my kids (not in blood but by family) and his seeing their large doll collection (including American Girl and Bitty Baby).

I took this as another opportunity to review that he and his sister are here due to the help of a donor. I also reminded him of the photos we saw in the NY Times (Nov 20th) of the children and teenagers that were related through their common donor. I thought that if I then drew out our family on paper and then showed him graphically (stick figures) that the donor may have helped other families I would be better able to show him that there may actually be other children who are here due to the help of this same donor. I tried explaining again what a half sibling is but this time he did not seem either to get it or be interested.

He was having more fun naming the fictional children on our pad. So at the current time my kids have 5 mythical half siblings with the following names: From Family # 1 (a heterosexual couple with four kids) boys Fred and Fud and girls Ted and Tud. Yes, we read a lot of Dr. Seuss. From Family #2 (a choice mom with one child) a girl named either Did or Didi, I wasn’t sure what he said. At this point he was giggling so much that the issue was no longer the point but the silly names were. We had a ball laughing which was a lot of fun despite the lost opportunity

He still wants a brother. I had no intention as part of this exercise to tell him that he and his sister already have one known half sibling, a little girl. Maybe someday he’ll find out he has a half sibling that is a boy but for now he only knows to ask us if we’ll have another baby to get him a brother.

[As an aside financially we could not even think about another child and we don’t really want to go down the road of having three where one is always the middle child etc].

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