In today’s society, the relationship between the mother and the child is not always perfect. This was the message of the letter response of Sugar that was published in the web page “The Rumpus” on May 17, 2012 entitled “Dear Sugar, The Rumpus Advise Column#98: Monsters and Ghosts”.
Thesis Statement: Pain is a normal part in a person’s life, but what is important is how we learn from these struggles and make ourselves whole again.
Sugar supports this statement by recalling her sad childhood memories when she and her siblings visited their father, who they had not seen for five years. At that time, Sugar was only 11 years old when she visited his father, new wife and their one-year old baby. This statement clearly indicates that she did not have a father figure while she was growing up. The adherents of her argument state that although she and her father tried to make up for lost time, some of the childhood memories continued to haunt her. Sugar explains this argument during the popcorn incident with her father, when he offered her melted butter in her popcorn and she wanted him to add more of it, and later the popcorn became a sodden mess that ended up in trash. Sugar discusses that the harder she and her father tried to fix their relationship, they only made situation worse. She further, she argued that his father wanted to give her everything she wanted and in return, she tried to get everything she needed and it was way too late for either one (Sugar, 2012).
Sharing this childhood experience became to initial part of her response to the letter sender who named himself “Haunted”. Sugar, is a well-respected and credible columnist of “The Rumpus” and has many followers. This fact can be inferred based on the pleasant comments she received from her loyal readers and followers. Sugar was able to give a good advice to “Haunted” by commending him for being able to withstand his manipulative and verbally abusive mother. Sugar states that despite the pains and sufferings that Haunted had to endure while growing up as a kid, he still stood by his mother because of his great love for her. Research studies have shown that children with alcoholic parents develop trauma at a young age.
In the case of Haunted, seeing his mother struggle with alcohol addiction and depression is a very traumatic experience for a child. At a young age of 13, Haunted became the man of the house and initiated an intervention of his mom to conquer her alcohol problem (Sugar, 2012). Psychiatrist all over the world will recommend this type of treatment for the mother. It will also help the patient overcome her anxiety attacks. Sugar stated that got through a therapy was able to help Haunted search for “deeper understanding of the situation he is into, pursued positive personal paths to grow professionally and to develop mental and spiritual practices to nurture each of those things” (Sugar, 2012).
Sugar argues that to “reach the master level of healing thyself” is the way to make Haunted whole again (Sugar, 2012). Going through the painful experiences Haunted had to go through by becoming his mother’s caretaker after she was diagnosed with breast cancer is an affirmation that he was a dutiful son and that he loved his mother dearly. He endured this struggle until such time that decided pack his bag and leave his old life to rebuild a new one. If he did not leave his mother soon, his own spirit will soon die. Sugar admired him for being able to confront his own addiction and co-dependency issues by joining an organization that will help him in his recovery (Sugar, 2012). In conclusion, Sugar argued she herself had her own issues with her father since he hit her with a belt every time she misbehaved. In spite of this, she was able to forgive her own father and found inner peace by learning to let go off all the painful experiences in the past. Sugar explains that his father and Haunted’s mother are mere fantastical figures of ghosts and monsters in a scary story that should be placed in the proper perspective (Sugar, 2012). By letting go of all the pain and the wounds caused by the past after all years of moving on and processing, will enable Haunted to let go, forgive and come to peace with himself. Sugar believed that this is the key to have the happy normal lives that they truly deserve.
Sugar is a well-respected columnist of “The Rumpus” and is loved by her followers. She writes responses to letter senders in her column and many of her followers admire her sensible advice and words of wisdom about life, love and relationships. The letter of Haunted was only one of the letters that Sugar received from her loyal readers in “The Rumpus”. Sugars powerful response to the letter sender taught him how to face his own fears, and learned to forgive his mother for what he had done to him as a child. Sugar contends that living with a difficult person is the cause of unhappiness, insecurities, and develop inferiority complex. Sugar was able to uplift Haunted by commending him in his decision to leave his mother start a happy a normal life that he truly deserved. The act of forgiving the mother is a sign of courage because he was able to let go of all the hurtful experiences from the past. Sugar, being one of the best adviser/ columnists is qualified to tell Haunted that his decision in all likelihood shall generate the best results. History has shown time and again that it is not easy for children who have been maltreated at a young age by their parents, to easily forgive. However, in the case of Haunted, he accepted his mother for who she was, and pardoned her for things that many people will consider as unforgivable (Sugar, 2012). Sugar was able to appeal to the reader’s sympathies and imagination by leaving them with the reminder that “moving on, being able to process, letting go, learning to forgive and coming to peace” are the most essential values in life. By using the dramatic and emotional language, Sugar was able to make a lasting impression to the readers.
Sugar (2012). Dear Sugar, The Rumpus Advice Column, #98: Monsters and Ghosts. Web. Retrieved on 28 May 2014, from