My Not-So-Wicked Stepmother

Modern Family

My Not-So-Wicked Stepmother

Illustration: Juergen Dsouza/ Arré


was 14 when my father remarried. It was less of a shocker than it probably should have been, but we vulnerable kids from divorced homes tend to shrug such things off. Also, I wasn’t really allowed time to be apprehensive, since my father, from whom I inherit my horror of confrontation and potentially uncomfortable situations, never introduced S as someone he was dating.

The first time I met S, was at a restaurant she ran, where my dad and I often went to eat seafood. She had a big smile and asked me if my father had actually bought me the purple jeans I’d asked for. A naturally suspicious child and wary of people knowing my business, I’m fairly certain I replied with an expressive grunt and shoved more food in my mouth.