Consider the Lilies..: The odd one out..   

Aug 31, 2012

The odd one out..

I come from a blended family..  My mother has three children (my older sister, older brother, and myself) and my stepfather has one child, my younger stepsister "Sue"..
From the moment my mother married my stepfather, Sue became her target..  She was horrible to Sue and because my mother was horrible to her, my siblings and I were also..  We treated her terribly and my mother encouraged it..
Growing up, Sue lived a miserable life at home..  She was given the most difficult chores (including cleaning up after MY dog), she was yelled at by all of us, and put down constantly..  We ridiculed her, we were hurtful to her, and even ignore her on the school bus and in hallways at school..

Nothing she did was ever good enough for my mother..  My mother picked at her, looked for things to blame her for, never spent any time with her, refused to show her any affection and never praised her for anything she did well..  Usually when she did something well, she was accused of trying to 'impress her daddy' or accused of trying to make the rest of us look bad..  And believe me, the rest of us didn't need any help doing that..
Sue would go to her father when my mother was mean to her and my stepfather would confront my mother..    I remember listening to several arguments between them about her..  He would accuse my mother of picking on Sue, and my mother would deny it and accuse Sue of trying to come between them..  Then when my stepfather wasn't around my mother would be even harder on her..
But after a few years my mother wore him down..  It got to the point where he would just tell Sue to stand up for herself, or to try harder not to give my mother a reason to be mean to her..  Eventually Sue stopped going to her father at all..

You see, my mother was jealous of Sue..  Sue was not her child, she was her husband's child..  Her husband loved Sue first..  So my mother did everything she could to make Sue look bad to her husband..  She did everything she could to make Sue look bad to us, to her friends, everyone..  Everyone believed that Sue was the problem..

Sue could have done what many children do when they feel unloved..  She could have rebelled, run away, got mixed up with the wrong people..  She could have become defiant and made my mother's life miserable..  But instead she chose a different road..  She made it her goal to become everything my mother didn't want her to be..  My mother didn't want her to be successful, or happy, or loved..  My mother wanted her beaten down..
Sue rose above it all..  She did everything my mother demanded of her without complaint (it still wasn't good enough for my mother)..  She got straight A's in school while my mother's children failed and all dropped out of school at 15..
She stayed home and studied while my mother's children partied and slept around..

She went to college while my mother's children married in their teens and divorced 5 years later with nothing to show for it..  She went to law school while my mother's children partied more, became addicted to drugs and alcohol, and struggled financially..  She graduated, became an attorney, and works for a judge on the Idaho supreme court..  She married a wonderful man, has 2 beautiful children, and owned her first home at the age of 24..  I'm 38 now and still renting, so is my sister, and my brother is probably jobless and living under a bridge somewhere..  I am also not a lawyer!

When Sue was still a teenager she stopped looking for love and approval from her father and stepmother and found it from the parents of her best friend..  Basically she found a new family..  They gave her everything we did not..  Support, encouragement, and most of all love..  Now when she goes 'home' for the holidays, she goes to their house..
Sue is successful, happy, and truly is the best of all of us..  I can't begin to say how much I admire her..
But my mother is not the proud mother of this wonderful, successful person..  Someone else's mother is..

So why am I writing about this?  I guess I'm writing to tell you that no one has to be the product of their environment if their environment is a bad one..  So many people today are unhappy, angry people who live like victims of their upbringing, blaming their childhood or circumstances for their behavior and failures..
But it doesn't have to be like that..  You can rise above it..
You can either believe what others say and think about you and wallow in your own misery and prove everyone right about you, or you can decide that what they think simply doesn't matter..

It's what God thinks that matters..  And God thinks you're wonderful!
God created you for a reason, He created you for a purpose, a great purpose!  People may look at you and see a failure or a screw-up, but when God looks at you He sees His beloved child..
If others refuse to see you the way God sees you, that's their shortcoming, not yours..

So be the person that God created you to be..  Not not the person others expect you to be..


  1. Such a fantastic, honest post! I come from a difficult background and by God's grace i am in the process of breaking free from that. It is so easy to allow our beginnings to define us, but you are so right - these things that we go through don't need to hold us back from being the person that God intended us to be! Thank you for opening up your heart and sharing this :-)


  2. I'm glad you liked it.. Thanks for visiting :)

  3. Love your honesty!

    Hi! Stopping by from MBC. Great blog!
    Have a nice day!

  4. Wow sis. My heart goes out to Sue. I just knew you were going to say that eventually she took her life. But God raised her from death into life! Praise God!

    I hope that your relationship has been restored with her and if it hasn't I pray it is some day.

    Thanks for your honesty. It encourages me even more to be who I am and not who others think I should be. You rock chica!

  5. Awesome post Ren! So true, yet so hard for many people to believe.

  6. So I am reading your post "I Can Relate" and you mentioned this post...I had to drop it all and come read. Wow! Talk about an over comer! I'd say that God blessed your step sister with a good friend. I'm glad that they were able to step in and fill her heart with love and encouragement. And you, you are pretty amazing too. To gain so much understanding from such an experience is pretty awesome. I hope that your words will encourage others. :)

  7. Thank you! She truly is an inspiration.. Thanks so much for commenting!

  8. Looked to like this and couldn't find it so I will tell you. What honesty and courage, what inspiration! The Lord truly was providing for Sue. May he bless you as you share.


Love your comments! Thanks so much!