08 June 2007
Whenever a friend of mine shares a problem with me, I would imagine myself in the same situation. I would usually try to look at things the way I think my friend would. I would write about it. And, sometimes, I would write as that friend, meaning I would write the thoughts of such friend, based on the things s/he shared, as if they were my own. A few of my close friends know this about me and one or two would usually expect me to write as themselves whenever they share problems with me. One of them even told me that my showing her the piece I wrote, as her, about something that was bothering her helped her. She said that it was better than getting advice, which, according to her, can sometimes be stupid. Oh-kay.
I have a good friend who just recently shared with me how she felt about being her father’s daughter with “the other woman.” I’ve always admired this friend of mine for her strength. She’s the type of person who’s always happy and confident. A lot of people say she’s sunshine personified. She’s always the life of every party she goes to. It is very seldom that we’d see her sad or angry. And, she’s the type of person whose happiness is totally contagious! I never really thought that, all her life, that very confident disposition has always been just a front.
This is for you…
My story is one for the books…
The “other woman” is more often than not “the bad guy” or the home-wrecker. She would always be seen in the bad light. Nobody likes a person who destroys a happy family. It doesn’t matter if the married man she got involved with was the type who would stop at nothing in pursuing her. It doesn’t matter if the family that she’s supposed to be wrecking was already wrecked even before she entered the picture. It doesn’t matter if she struggled, with all her might, to stop herself from falling for someone whom she knew she had no future with. It doesn’t matter if she was hated and treated badly by everyone around her. All that matters is that she’s a home-wrecker and she is bad! Thus, she deserves to be hated, to be punished!
I would know because I am her daughter.
Whenever the subject of extra-marital affairs came up, I would try my best to stay calm. I don’t know, but, sometimes people can be very insensitive. Even my friends and cousins would talk about cases of extra-marital affairs ruining families or, more often in my circle, making families stronger. They would talk about “the other woman” as if she was the worst and stupidest person in the world. They would talk about her children as if it was their fault, that they wanted things to be the way they were, and as if these children had any choice or say about anything. They would start calling “the other woman” names. They would map out the lives of her children who, in their stories, would end up no different from their mother. They'd forget that they were talking about me.
I’d pretend not to hear.
It’s difficult being the daughter of “the other woman.” There are a lot of things I see or hear, but I’d have to pretend I don’t see or hear them. Being part of a very judgmental society like ours, I need to show that I am strong. I need to show that I am happy. I need to show that I have no problems. I need to be confident. I need to face everyone with a huge smile on my face. I need to make everyone feel how thankful I am that they are willing to accept me. I owe them, don’t I?
When night comes, reality sinks in. I cry myself to sleep and wish I had a choice. I wake up in the morning and try to think happy thoughts. A new day starts, I need to smile.