My husband lost his wife to cancer 3 years ago and while she was sick he recorded tapes of her reading to their son as well as many videos. My husband reads to his son every night and decided to ask his son if he wanted to listen to one of the tapes of his mommy reading to him. He agreed and started to listen but broke down crying hysterically that he missed his mommy. It was very heartbreaking to see him so upset. I am not sure that it would be a good idea to play these tapes until he is ready. I must also explain that he does have severe ADHD and is always very emotional and manipulative. He knows what to do to get the attention, good or bad, to those close to him. I believe his emotions this evening were very true and not part of getting any type of attention but I am concerned with continuing to let him listen to these tapes. I am not sure if it will help him or not. I have pictures of him and his Mom up in his room and we talk about her freely and he doesn't get upset. He has been through therapy and did very well and they felt that he did not need to continue. Should we continue to ask him or let it go until he asks? It's very heartbreaking and as a new step mom I am not sure how to help.
Let him listen to the tapes. Those are some of the only things he has from his mother.
My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.
she obviously made them with the intention that he would grow up with them. A tape of her reading a childrens story to a 15 yearold seems not fair to what she left for him. Let him listen to them. Even if it is sad. That is his mother and it is totally ok for him to cry and miss her so much.
I think that his father should let your step-son lead the way by asking for when he wants to listen to the tapes. You can both let him know - clearly, no manipulations on your part w/re: to his perfectly natural tears upsetting you - that it will be his decision and that you will honor his decision as to when he would like to hear his mother's legacy/gift to him. And plan to keep that promise. And plan to be there for him as he grieves.
Incidentally, how did you come to the conclusion that your step son's ADHD and his 'always being very emotional and manipulative' are somehow connected? Frankly, framing him as *always* being very emotional and manipulative is a troubling sign. You may need to get some help if this is how you're perceiving this child entrusted to your maternal care; I'm sorry to be so blunt but it sounds like you resent him. Are you getting professional supportive counseling for the difficult task of being a step-mother to a child who is still grieving the loss of his mother? It could be very beneficial.