Monday, October 4, 2010


When I was a kid, I had an imaginary friend. His name was Johnny and I loved him very dearly. I don’t remember when he looked like or any of his specific attributes: I just remember sitting on the steps to our very first apartment, when I was about 3 or so, and talking to Johnny, who sat beside me in the way he always did.

Because of this, and because of that tidbit you often hear, that kids with imaginary friends have a high IQ (and yes, that serves as extra assurance of my credentials as a blogger), I have always sort of hoped my kids would have an imaginary friend.

They never have -- until now. Except it’s not an imaginary friend that my daughter has, but an imaginary sister. Betsy.

Betsy is not the kind of imaginary person that you talk to, like Johnny. She’s not good company, or a trusted sidekick. Betsy is the kind of imaginary person you talk ABOUT. And when I say talk about, I mean blame. Betsey is an imaginary sister scapegoat. Here’s how we came to discover her:

“WHY did you rip the head of that babydoll?”

“Betsy told me to.”

“Who’s Betsy?”

“She’s my sister.”


All I know is, Betsy must be Seconda’s sister by another mother, because I do not claim that girl as the fruit of my loins, imaginary or otherwise. To be frank, Betsy is a bad influence.

Where Seconda is mischievous, Betsy is nefarious.

“Uh oh . . . Betsy broke Primo’s Lego creation ON PURPOSE!”

Where Seconda is free-spirited, Betsy is unhinged.

“But Mommy! She forced me to draw a picture with your lipstick!”

Betsy has serious impulse control problems.

“I HAD to run down the street because I was chasing Betsy!”

Betsy has a lot of opinions about things and they all fall under the “I hate it” category.

Heavens to Betsy, that girl is one bad apple.

I am currently filing paperwork to have her excommunicated from the family.