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Step-mother 继母

发布者: katy | 发布时间: 2011-3-13 08:44| 查看数: 3639| 评论数: 0|

I've often felt that “step-parent” is a label we attach to men and women who marry into families where children already exist, for the simple reason that we need to call them something. It is most certainly an enormous “step”, but one doesn't often feel as if the term “parent” truly applies. At least that's how I used to feel about being a step-mother to my husband's four children.

我总觉得“继父继母”这个词是对那些与已经有了孩子然后又家庭联姻的男女们所贴的标签,这么叫原因很简单:我们总得管他们叫个什么。“继父母”与“父母”有一个“继”字之差,让人难以真正感觉到“父母”这个词的适用性。至少,我刚做我丈夫四个孩子的继母时,感觉是这样的。




My husband and I had been together for six years. Although over the years, we all learned to adjust, to become more comfortable with each other, I continued to feel somewhat like an outsider. There was a definite boundary line that could not be crossed, an inner family circle which excluded me.



我和丈夫在一起六年了,虽然这些年来大家已经学会适应对方,让彼此相处得更舒服一点儿,我还是有点觉得自己是个外人。我们之间总有一条无法逾越的界线,他们那个家庭小圈子总是把我排斥在外。

When the children moved away, we contacted Cyberspace in order to maintain regular communication with them. Ironically, these modern tools of communication can also be tools of alienation, making us feel so out of touch, so much more in need of real human contact. If a computer message came addressed to “Dad”, I'd feel forgotten and neglected. If my name appeared along with his, it would brighten my day and make me feel like I was part of their family unit.



孩子们搬出去住后,为了和他们保持日常联系,我们联上了网。具有讽刺意味的是,这些现代化工具在加深联系的同时又疏远了关系。它让我们前所未有地感到失去了联系,感到更加需要人与人面对面的真正接触。如果电脑信息是发给“爸爸”的,我就有种被遗忘、被忽视的感觉。如果后面加上了我的名字,就会使我一天都感到愉快,让我觉得自己是家里的一员。

Late one evening, as my husband was asleep and I was checking my e-mail, an “instant message” appeared on the screen. It was Margo, my oldest step-daughter. As we had done in the past, we sent several messages back and forth, exchanging the latest news. When we “chat” she wouldn't necessarily know if it was me or her dad—unless she asked. She didn't ask and I didn't identify myself either. After hearing the latest volleyball scores, the details about an upcoming dance at her school, I said I should get to sleep. Her return message read, “Okay, talk to you later! Love you!”



一天深夜,丈夫睡着了,我查收电子邮件时,屏幕上出现了一条“即时信息”。这是我最大的继女玛戈发过来的。像从前一样,我们互发几条信息交谈最近的新闻。平时我们“聊天”时,她不必知道另一端是我还是她爸爸——除非她特意询问。这次她没问,我也就没表明身份。听她谈了最近的排球比分和她们学校即将召开的舞会的细节后,我说我要睡了。她回复信息:“好的,下次再谈!我爱你!”

A wave of sadness ran through me as I realized that she must have thought she was writing to her father. She and I would never have openly exchanged such words of affection. Feeling guilty for not clarifying, yet not wanting to embarrass her, I simply responded, “Love you too!”

一阵悲伤在心间掠过,我意识到她一直以为是跟自己的爸爸聊天呢。我和她从来没有公开地相互说过这种深情的话语。我为没有澄清自己的身份感到内疚,但又不想让她尴尬,就简单地回道:“我也爱你!”




I thought again of their family circle, that self-contained, private space where I was an intruder. I felt again the sharp ache of emptiness and otherness. Then, just as I was about to return the screen to black, Margo's final message appeared. It read, “Tell Dad good night for me too.”



我又一次想起了他们的家庭圈子,对于那独立的私人空间,我只是个闯入者。我又一次感受到了那种深切的痛楚,寂寞寥落,与他们格格不入。然而,正当我要关机时,玛戈的最后一条信息出现了,写着:“请代我向爸爸说声晚安!”

With tear-filled eyes, I turned the machine off.



关掉时电脑,我热泪盈眶。

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