Usher’s Stepson Reminds Us That We Divorce Spouses, Not Kids

UsherMothers have to have empathy for other mothers, and right now my heart goes out to Tameka Raymond. She was already going through a tumultuous custody battle with Usher and even though I’ve never been through one of those—particularly not with a gajillionaire superstar with the favor of celebrity in his corner—I can piece together the emotional heaviness she’s been carrying around as a result. Breakups can be hellish at every angle.  

Then, just like that, the details of what they were squabbling about swiftly took a backseat more than a week ago when a jet ski accident left her 11-year-old son, Kile, ostensibly brain dead and dependent on life support. That’s the kind of tragedy that eats a hole in a mother’s heart. I can’t imagine that she’s had time to think about anything else, including her divorce settlement, as she is forced to grasp the reality that her baby boy is no longer going to be a part of her life.

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But, as a show of goodwill, Usher called her and conceded some of the finer points of the divorce decree they’d been batting back and forth, which was a nice gesture given the circumstances (and, let’s be honest, a strategic legal move since his ex will almost definitely have the sympathies of the court). She didn’t accept his offer outright—clearly she’s lucid enough to hold her stance, even in grief—so the parting pair will still have to hash details about custody of the two sons they have together and all that good stuff. (She has five boys altogether; three from previous relationships.)

According to sources, Tameka may be forced to take Kile off of life support as early as August because she can’t afford the medical bills she’s accumulating to keep the child alive. Now this would be the time for Usher to step in and help his ex. It’s not his obligation, particularly after what was shaping up to be a nasty breakup. But in this matter, in the big, do-the-right-thing book of life, he’d be earning his blessings. After all, he played stepfather to at least the youngest two children Tameka had when they got together, and he’s reportedly pretty torn up about Kile’s condition.

As a mom, I can see why she’s not ready to give up on her son. In Minnesota, a woman diagnosed as brain dead after she had a massive cerebral hemorrhage was stripped of her breathing tube and sent home to die, only to make a full recovery. A British teen injured in a car crash made a miraculous health comeback earlier this year, even when four doctors declared him brain dead and therefore hopeless. It’s possible.

Tameka’s been soliciting prayers for her son. I’ve been praying. And even if you’re not really into the whole God thing, it can’t hurt to send up a little thought about him, just in case the power of corporate prayer yields an amazing change and his own miracle recovery story. At the very least, let’s send positive thoughts her way to be able to handle whatever is meant to happen.

How long would you leave your child on life support if they were declared brain dead?


Image via David Berkowitz/Flickr

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