More than you may have wanted to know.


And now for something completely different.

Anyone reading for any length of time knows that I have struggled with whether to ‘maintain’ my ‘relationship’ with my father. I debated putting ‘father’ in quotes, but we’ll leave it for now. A couple of weeks ago a friend who reads this blog emailed me to ask what he had done, why our relationship was so screwed up, etc. She/he also said that they were trying to decide on the whole moving forward or calling it quits thing.

Since I’ve started blogging about this issue, I have been amazed and saddened by the number of people who have seriously screwed up relationships with their parents. I look at my own children and hope  that we never face any of these issues.

Fine, my kids might be embarrassed by me in front of their friends in another 10 or 15 years. Sure, they’ll want to roll their eyes at the way I do things. That’s all normal, that doesn’t bother me.

What is abnormal – though ‘normal’ to me – is that my father didn’t acknowledge my birthday. That doesn’t bother me so much (though that fact that it doesn’t bother me bothers me, if you get my drift), but what sickens me is that he didn’t so much as drop a card in the mail for Snort and Coconut’s first birthday.

Mixed with the horror of how anyone could not actively love my children is a relief. I want him out.

When my sister was a baby and I was about six, my mom tried to leave him. He put a loaded gun in his mouth – in front of me – and said he’d kill himself if she left. I have no memory of this.

I do remember the cruel mind games, the screaming, the hitting. I remember what the sound of my mother being pushed down the stairs is like. I remember the alcoholism, I remember him leaving us to live with other women. I remember how it feels to catch your father in the act of cheating. Somehow I think these are things I will not forget, though I know of other instances like the one with the gun – my mind cannot, or will not, recall them.

I told my friend about a few of these things, and a couple of nights after writing the brief email, I had a hellacious nightmare. He was chasing me, like a murderer in a horror flick, and I knew he meant me great harm. Worst, he’d been holding Coco by the head, and I grabbed her and ran seconds before he snapped her neck.

I won’t go into detail here. Much like the abuse that was my every day experience in childhood, those things don’t serve a purpose in this entry.

All bad dreams aside, all instances of recalling things beyond imagination aside, I can say my true nightmare is picking up the ringing phone one day and hearing my father’s voice. We’ve only recently stopped screening calls, but I rarely answer the phone.

My advice to my friend? One, follow your gut. Two, no decision is irreversible.

I wish mine were.

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5 Responses to “More than you may have wanted to know.”

  1. mamacrow Says:

    I am truly sorry you experienced all this. I’m truly sorry your father exprienced a life that led him to behaving like this.
    For me, there is no debate – no contact, no ‘mantaining’ anything other than as much distance as possible between him and you, and the rest of your family.
    But then I come from an entirely different set of experiences, so my reaction is going to be different, I guess.
    Big squishy (((HUGS)))

  2. Sara Plays House Says:

    My husband hasn’t spoken to his father in fifteen years. For very different reasons, but still. It doesn’t bother him, he’s moved on.
    For whatever reason, it seems the women in my life who have troubled relationships with their fathers have a MUCH harder time with letting go. It hurts them, no matter how much their father has hurt them and deserves to be cut out.
    Anyway, all that to say–you’re definitely not alone.

  3. Violetsouffle Says:

    Hugs. So sorry youre haunted and pained by someone who was supposed to love you unconditionally. You’re not the same kind of parent as you’re father though and have no reason to fear such a relationship with your children. You are an active, engaged and perpetually living mother. You are wonderful. I hope you find
    Lots of peace in your choice.

  4. Katie B. Says:

    *hugs* My father is verbally and emotionally abusive; call it 2/3 of what you’ve had to deal with. I speak to him as little as I can manage; we all do. I don’t blame you at all for choosing not to involve him in your life! You are not him.

  5. M Says:

    I haven’t spoken to my father in over ten years. I finally was able to cut him off after I had my own children, for fear that he would abuse them too.
    Reading your post made me wonder if he was BPD? I have just always thought of him as a “psycho.”
    I keep a blog of my experiences as well.


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