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#451761 - 10/30/13 12:52 AM Pseudo Mom
Still Offline

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 7011
Loc: FEMA Region 1
Posting here in F&F because it seems to have that positioning.

Because my mother had Polio long before I was born, my arrival required domestic help every hour of daytime. There was a revolving door of women whom it was said I bonded to and then they would leave. This happened repeatedly and apparently not all were nice people. (Mom was not the hipster shown in the TV segment)

There were two women whom were occasional staffers on an ad-hoc basis. Eventually, she and one other became more and more permanent. I really enjoyed them, though I clearly remember at about age 4 remembering pain with "falling for anyone." They had hands in dealing with me until age 5. Then I was on my own.

About two months ago, I was on FaceBk and saw the last name of Tammy (fake name). It was associated with someone much younger than I, but I asked if he was related to her. He claimed to be distantly related but had no contact with Tammy ever in his life...but knew OF her, as she is famous in the Boston area. He found contact info for Tammy and sent it on to me.

Here she was' still alive...a pseudo-mom whom knew me and my first 4-years+ of life. She knew the house dynamic, my mother, my father (volatile by then), my sisters (one deceased by then).

I wrote to her and got an immediate reply. She had wondered what ever happened to me and my family. I had seen her on TV in the 1980s, being profiled for raising 400+ un-placable babies for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. She was the call of last resort for Child Services. She would sit up 24-hrs with the crack and cocaine babies. She would take the violent, suicidal and general messes caused by adults. By then in the State, illness had to be organic to institutionalize these kids.

Her letter back explained a LOT of painful events in both lives (her's and mine); Some I never knew about.

I called her tonight. We talked for about an hour.

I can't go on with much more right now. But needless to say, she had been through some stuff. Now that she's too old to be raising babies, she now volunteers in a Massachusetts prison as a sort of bible counselor. She calls the prisoners "her boys," and they call her "mom."

She gets calls from all around the country and world from her foster-babies who are doing well. Some are rocking this world!

#451766 - 10/30/13 01:15 AM Re: Pseudo Mom [Re: Still]
Esposa Offline

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 811
Loc: NJ
Celebrating a supporter! Of course it fits here wink

This post reminds me of a study I read once - it was one in which the team was trying to quantify the components that produced resiliency in children who had less than perfect childhoods - and they focused on those that had been physically and/or emotional abused.

They said that one of the biggest contributing factors to resiliency was this "pseudo" caregiver - that, even though not the parent, was providing an essential element in the early life of that person. "Tammy" sounds like she was yours wink

#451774 - 10/30/13 02:14 AM Re: Pseudo Mom [Re: Still]
Still Offline

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 7011
Loc: FEMA Region 1
Yeah...she was a formative person in my life.

She was shocked at my memory.

I recalled that: During her lunch break, and when my mother would be taking her mid-day nap, Tammy and I would watch To Tell The Truth, and she would always share her tangerine with me.

BTW: I did not disclose to her.

#452655 - 11/06/13 03:18 PM Re: Pseudo Mom [Re: Still]
sugarbaby Offline

Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 382
I have a lot of foster & adopted cousins so the idea of a parent being someone other than the biological parent is very natural to me. She sounds like a wonderful woman. smile

I had a kid in my care recently (for a day) whose mom had passed when they were young. I did my best to fill her shoes for that day.... and I hope I did her proud.


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