I Needed a Father, Not a Friend

“Anyone can have a child and call themselves “a parent”. A real parent is someone who puts that child above their own selfish needs and wants”-Unknown

Hi dad, it’s me, your baby girl.
When I came into your life I had hopes and dreams.
I hoped for happiness, acceptance and understanding.
I hoped for peace, warmth and stability.
I hoped you would hold my hand as I grew up.
I hoped you would be there when the sun set for me and the light behind the clouds seemed forever lost.
I dreamt you would be my hero, my knight in shining armor.
I dreamt you would be my father, my confidant my mentor.
I dreamt you would be my teacher, my guide and light of my life.
I dreamt you would lovingly show me how to mature into an adult.
I dreamt you would accept me through my most rebellious days.
I needed you to teach me how to stand on my own.
I needed you to teach me to own that space in the world that’s solely mine.
I needed you to teach me to live up to my responsibilities.
I needed you to teach me appropriate speech and behavior.
I needed you to teach me how to stand up for myself.
I needed you to teach me boundaries and how to protect myself.
I needed you to teach me how to be strong.
I needed you to teach me right from wrong.
I needed you to be there when my life fell apart.
I needed your support and understanding through my darkest days and nights.
I needed your comfort and love when I fell into the abyss.
I needed your tenderness and understanding when there was none.
I needed you to save me from my darkest demons and scariest monsters.
I needed your encouragement, your praise, your recognition, your honesty and security.
I needed you to believe in me and my potential.
But most of all, I needed to you to show me that I matter to you.
Not because of what I do or what I wear or what I think or my choices.
I needed to know that I matter to you because I’m you’re little girl, through think and thin.
I now know that you couldn’t be that person for me.
I know you had a hard life, but you were still my dad and that responsibility never changed.
You weren’t there to teach me to ride a bike, how to tie my shoes or show me how to do math.
You weren’t there to ask me how my grades were or if I ate breakfast before school.
I know you were happy with your life, your job and your other wife and kids.
I know I struggled not to succumb to the darkness, the loneliness, the solitude and the silence.
I taught myself right from wrong, good from bad and stood up for myself.
I gained my strength all on my own, and you can’t take credit for that.
I now understand that you craved the happiness, attention and self-fulfilling needs of yourself.
Just as I so badly hoped you would care for me.
Dad, now that I am an adult, that little girl inside of me still needs you to be my hero.
I still wish I had a Dad, not a friend.
I still wish I had you emotionally, not just biologically.
But, how can I explain to you how it hurts when you now reach back to me now without acknowledging the pain, the hurt and void you gave me?
When you’ve thrown me to the curb?
How can I show you that without accountability, there can be no healing?
Your damage has caused deep internal scars.
And as I carry your grandchild, I reflect upon your duties.
I reflect upon your failed attempts and disappointments.
How can I show you that our relationship mirrors that of a friendship, not what a daughter really needs.
How can I show you that as much as I love you and as much as I would to let you back in
I just can’t…completely.
I still need to be unconditionally loved, accepted, praised, encouraged and supported.
I still need my boundaries to be considered and respected.
Dad, I do understand your struggles and now and your wants, needs and desires.
But that gives you no excuse to exclude the job of the father you’re supposed to be.
I wish this baby in my belly will know his/her grandfather.
But sadly, probably never will.
I wish you wanted to know your grandchild.
But your pride won’t let you.
I cannot subject my child to your pain, like you have so often caused me.
The damage is unknown to you, you cannot see.
I wish for you the healing, hope and clarity that I found.
I wish you for the strength to withstand the tests we face in life.
I wish you the strength to be a man and handle a hurtful situation like a man.
I wish the peace you so desperately crave and the love that’s gone missing for so many years.
I love you dad.
Although you can’t love me.
At least the way a father should love his daughter.
Or at least the way I wish you did.

I cannot wait to see the father in my husband that I will never and have never seen in my own father.  Does my “father” even deserve that title, “father”?  I think not.  He’s always been more of a friend than a father.  Telling me things that are better left unsaid, confiding in me in ways a daughter does not want to hear nor even put into her imagination.  Disturbing things, awkward things…even to the point of him accidentally sending me photos of his you-know-what.  Accident or not…a father should know better.  He supplies drugs to my 16-year-old brother, and condones the use of his ex-wives house as a drug shop.  It’s quite sad, if you ask me.  I’ve always been forgiving, understanding and tried my best to love my father for who he is and what he has brought to my life.  But what exactly did he bring to my life?  What benefit did he provide?  He didn’t “raise” me.  Mom did.  He wasn’t “there” for me.  Mom was.  Was he there for my first day of kindergarten, first grade, middle school, high school or college?  No.  Was he there to teach me how to ride a bike, swim in the pool or tie my shoelaces?  No.  Thank goodness for my sister, she showed me the ropes.  Did he teach me right or wrong, ask me how school was going, or make sure that I didn’t get my little heart broken?  No.  What did he provide?  What did he do?  He provided weekly installments of child support to my mother.  That’s what he did.  And he, quite frankly, believes that was plenty enough.  He did his “deed”.   He’s the “father of the year.”  That money only helped mom pay for bills that he left her with when he walked out on our family.  In addition, he feels the dire need to remind me that General Motors has always provided food on the table, and a roof over my head.  And that my Honda purchases are putting him in the tin can, causing his retirement to run out and putting us “Americans” at risk of losing “everything”.  I beg to differ.  He supplied HIS house with food.  HE supplied a roof over HIS head.  While he lived in a nice big house, with an addition being put on and 6 cars, motorcycles, four-wheelers and campers, my sister and I struggled to make ends meet with mom.  Living in a trailer park, with barely any food, no cable, no phone, no washer/dryer and no father.  My mother did the best she could from the minimum wage she was making at her job.  So buying a foreign car does not make me feel one ounce of the guilt he so often tries to make me feel.  My husband works for a Japanese company and if it weren’t for them, we wouldn’t be where we are today.  We wouldn’t have a nice house, I wouldn’t have made it through nursing school and we wouldn’t have two new cars (one Honda, one Acura-oopsey), and a sweet little baby on the way.  It just would not be possible.  But that’s beside the point, something he and I will never agree on.  But that is okay.  Because he has walked out of my life, yet once again.  Disowned me as his daughter.  Hates me beyond words.  Says, “he doesn’t care if I’m pregnant, it doesn’t change anything.”  So my question is, how do you claim to be father when you so easily throw your children to the curb?  Why am I the parent to my parent?  Why do I have to tell him what is right and what is wrong?  I feel like I’m the educator.  He is the child.  He decides to disown his own daughter because I won’t stand for his disrespect, his foul mouth, and his actions of selfishness.  Yet, I’m very forgiving-I drop things easily.  He, on the other hand, his feelings are so “hurt” that he would rather just throw his daughter out of his life.  Like my husband says, “what kind of grown man calls his daughter is 3-4 in the morning crying his eyes out, saying he wants to die because his girlfriend of two months broke up with him?  He’s supposed to be your ‘rock’.  He’s supposed to be a man.  He’s supposed to be a strong man, showing an example for his daughter.”  He so often feels the need to play the “poor me, my feelings are hurt and it’s all about me” game. Why is he like this?  For reasons unknown or for reasons like an obsession for a woman, sex and the dire need for self fulfilling pleasures.  I’ve come to terms that he is just ill.  He’s a narcissist.  I remember sitting in mental health lecture during nursing school and learning all about the personality disorders.  I remember hearing about borderline, impulsive, narcissistic, and dependent.  And I remember thinking, “Wow, this sounds like my dad.”  “Oh my gosh, this one sounds like my dad”.  “Wow, this one sounds like him too!”  It made learning about mental health that much more interesting because I found the desire to dig deep into why my father is the way he is. But there is no answer. He just is this way.  And there is nothing I or anyone else can do about it.  Sadly, because I suffer from anxiety and don’t allow him to knock me down (by standing up for myself), I’m pinned as the problem.  My anxiety is to blame.  I’m the issue here.  His happiness, above all, is all that matters, period.  But, like my husband says, him not wanting to be a part of my life, can very well be the best thing for our child.  Why would we subject our child to someone like that?  We won’t.  What’s done is done and I’m walking away.  Hurt?  Yes.  I will always ache from the emptiness he’s left in my heart since I was a little girl.  I will always yearn for that father figure, not the friend.  But it brings great ease that I am such a strong independent woman, that his actions, make me stronger, wiser and more attentive everyday.  It teaches me what to do and what not to do as a parent.  So, I thank him for that.  For teaching me what I do NOT want to do to my children…and what I will never, ever say…ever.  So thanks dad.

This is my life. My blog. And I will do with it as I please. I will rant. I will rave. I will be honest and forthcoming. If you don’t like it, don’t read it. I don’t live my life full of regrets. In fact, I don’t have any. I stand up for myself. I know right from wrong. And I don’t tolerate disrespect (even if your sperm contributed to my being). No one is an exception. I will not be treated like I owe you anything. In this life, you have to work at everything. And if there is no effort, it just simply won’t work…period. There comes an acceptance stage in life where you reflect back and realize that the life you were given wasn’t rainbows and butterflies. And you have two options. You can let that eat you up inside and define who you are or what you’ll become. Or you can learn from it. Become resilient. Take it as a lesson of what you won’t do down the line of life and in your own little family you build. It can make you stronger if you let it. And that’s exactly what it did. Luckily, my life experience has opened my eyes to how BS will be raised and loved. And I can tell you with certainty, that there won’t be two more loving, more giving and more caring parents on this planet like Bobby and I. Our needs are gone now. And now it’s all about this little life I get to mold and raise to be a phenomenal little human.  I want to be a role model for my child.

Do you have something you wish your dad did or didn’t do?

2 thoughts on “I Needed a Father, Not a Friend

  1. ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC…..I’m in tears. You hit the nail dead on, It was like a walk through my childhood retold in 10 minutes…It really is sad that that is how he really is.
    I’m also glad that I was able to help you mold into the person you are today..I remember teaching you how to ride a bike, to this day..its crazy!
    Honestly, you should write books..I really do. I think you would be an awesome author..I felt like I was reading pages from a dramatic novel..lol!!
    A little piece of honest truth..A++ ❤

    1. Thanks Rach! I knew that when I was editing it that I was speaking for the both of us. It’s seriously all the truth and sadly he just doesn’t care nor will he ever change. BUT, I’ve moved on. My life goes on. I’m proud of us for where we are considering our circumstances. Love you! xoxo 🙂

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