If I am introduced as, “this is so and so’s stepdaughter” one more time this week, I think I am going to scream. I could not tell you how many times I have been introduced in this manner in the past few days. However, I can tell you that the last time I heard it today was just about all I could stand.

No, I do not hate my step-mother. She is a very sweet, patient woman who has put up with more than most people would. For most of the time I have known her, I have called her mom.

What bothers me about all of this is that my identity is not defined by who my parents or step-parents are, but rather by who I am. I do not believe that it would have gotten under my skin as much if someone had introduced me as, “This is Kylee Jones,” and allowed the other person to draw the connections themselves. It would not have even bothered me for them to say, “This is Kylee Jones, so and so’s step-daughter.” At least then I would have been given an identity of my own before being associated with another person.

Maybe it all goes back to my father trying so hard to replace my mother. Maybe I just have a problem with being defined by someone else’s name. I don’t know, maybe it’s both. All I really know right now is that it bothered me a lot.