I have two half-sisters. Except, I hate the term “half-sister” (or “half-brother”). It has always made me sort of angry, maybe irrationally. I know technically it is a term to describe what my sisters and I are – but it’s not a term you will ever hear me using to refer to them by. They are both my sisters, full-bodied and everything! I don’t see half a person when I look at them, why should I refer to them as half a sister?
I think it’s the connotation people seem to have when they say it. It always comes out like “Oh that’s just her half-sister”, flippant and dismissive, like being a half-sister doesn’t matter as much as being a full sister does. Granted I don’t have a full blooded sister to compare with… but I like to think I wouldn’t love her anymore, or my other sisters any less should she exist.
None of us share a father (which is not a comment on my mother, we are all very far apart in age, she was married to my father, and had extensive relationships with Kelly and Becca’s father’s before having children with them as well – thinking them “the one”.) Kelly was born when I was 6 1/2 years old, and we grew up together. Just the three of us – mom and her two girls. Maybe that’s why I take such an offense to the “half-sister” term – maybe it was just my upbringing. We didn’t have a whole lot growing up, but we did have each other, and we had a lot of love.
As I have mentioned in a previous post, my sister Becca is 20 years younger than I am. We did not grow up together – heck, at the age of 7 she’s very far from being grown up anyway. I’ve been living on my own ever since she was born. But I don’t feel any less about her than I do Kelly. My 7 year old sister and I are very close in fact, even though we live about an hour away from each other. So it just goes to show, even though we are apart from each other a lot, the bond of sister is very much strong!
So, maybe I’m just irrational with my hatred of the “half-sibling” term. I don’t really know. I do know that half-sister, full-sister, adopted-sister, friend-who-became-a-sister… it doesn’t really matter. We may not share dads. We may have different aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents on one side of the family. We may have different heritages and features. We may not look a thing alike. None of those things matter – because we are still family, and we are still sisters.