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To think my dad is an unforgivable arsehole?

(29 Posts)
SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Tue 02-Jul-13 18:32:56

We don't have a great relationship anyway and I have very little respect for him after a lifetime of being let down and him generally being selfish and self-serving.

His girlfriend of about 2 years has a 4 week old granddaughter who has just been diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. Understandably their whole family is distraught and very worried while they wait for the baby to have all the tests to determine the extent of any organ damage and put together a prognosis.

I have only met my dad's girlfriend - let's call her Beverley - once but she seemed lovely and I joked to DH afterwards that I liked her an awful lot more than my dad. She has taken over the sending of birthday cards to my children because my dad always forgets and generally we've had much more contact from him since she's been on the scene to remind him that his family does actually matter. They had both been working abroad until last month when they moved back to the UK because "it's about time family took precedence over work" (my dad's actual words in an email to me).

He just rang to tell me about Beverley's granddaughter, and while we were chatting, he went on to say that while he has every sympathy with the family and what they're going through, he does feel that this is the sort of thing Beverley's daughter and her husband need to deal with on their own. Apparently you just can't live your life through grandchildren and he & Beverley have lives of their own to think about too.

I am disgusted to be honest. He insinuated that he was fed up with Beverley for going to stay with her daughter to look after the other children while the baby is in hospital and stated explicitly that he didn't want to "get too involved".

What the actual fuck? I've always known he was a total dipshit but does he have no soul whatsoever? If any of MY children were that poorly, I would want my mum right by my side as support and a shoulder to cry on, not to mention the practical input of looking after the older children during hospital visits. Furthermore, I know my stepdad would be the one insisting that they are there for us, nothing is too much to ask, etc.

Who actually says shit like that about their family?! He really expects his girlfriend to take a step back from her daughter at a time like this?

I was so shocked on the phone that I didn't say anything, just made my excuses and ended the call. I wish I had the balls to email him and say I am so sickened by his attitude I want nothing more to do with him.

I don't think IABU but I would really appreciate an outside perspective on this.

Yeah he certainly sounds like an arsehole.

What is he like as a dad to you and a GD to your children?

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Tue 02-Jul-13 18:40:41

He is barely involved in our lives anyway, AKissIsNotAContract. I see him maximum once a year. We email or talk on the phone once a month. The kids don't remember him between visits and even on photographs have to ask me who he is.

So this is more like the final straw rather than the only reason then.

I cut my dad out of my life just over a year ago. He isn't invited to my wedding and he won't ever meet my children. I can honestly say I don't miss him or feel any sense of guilt.

Do you think you need to email him with a reason or just stop contact? If he's not that involved in your life it may take him a while to notice if you stop contact.

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Tue 02-Jul-13 19:06:03

I want to email or write to him. I want him to know how despicable I think he is. He's sailed through life, leaving a trail of emotional destruction in his wake and never bothering to feel the slightest bit of remorse.

Scruffey Tue 02-Jul-13 19:11:27

I'd encourage Beverley to dump him. These sorts of men can be charmers and Beverley is wasting her life with him and may not know it. He's a prick, won't change.

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Tue 02-Jul-13 19:13:51

I don't have the means to contact Beverley unfortunately. I've only met her once so any communication other than that has been through my dad.

She is very big on family though so I imagine me cutting my dad out of my life - and saying why - would raise her concerns enough to reevaluate her opinion of him.

He's never managed to hold down a relationship unsurprisingly.

Scruffey Tue 02-Jul-13 19:14:47

Don't write to him. He won't accept it and will turn it on you.

If someone is unreasonable like he is (over such a long time), you cannot suddenly expect them to be reasonable because you wrote a letter. It will to do any good and will just get you more grief. You seeing him once a year sound like a good arrangement for you - you haven't actually cut contact but he is irrelevant to you. Win win.

coronalover Tue 02-Jul-13 19:20:31

What an utter git. YWNBU to cut him out but agree with Scruffey. I hope he repeats what he said to you to Beverley and she dumps his ass

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Tue 02-Jul-13 19:20:43

If someone is unreasonable like he is (over such a long time), you cannot suddenly expect them to be reasonable because you wrote a letter.

I agree entirely, and that's why I've always held back from pointing out the error of his ways in the past. My mum has told me over and over again to tell him how his various actions have impacted me and my brother throughout our lives, but I said there was no point because it wouldn't achieve anything.

I just can't help but feel that by saying nothing, I am condoning his disgusting attitude. I want him to know how abhorrent I find it. I don't expect him to change or even care, but I want him to know how low my opinion of him is.

Optimist1 Tue 02-Jul-13 19:23:28

Agree with Scruffey about not telling him. I'd hope that Beverley's good influence might extend to him re-thinking his attitudes towards his family and being in their lives through good times and bad. (Wouldn't hold my breath though!)

aldiwhore Tue 02-Jul-13 23:16:57

I don't know, I'd probably tell him, in the knowledge it wouldn't change him, but at least it had been said... I guess it could be cathartic for you.

Not sure if that's wise, but perhaps it's not a case of him needing to be told, but rather you needing to tell him.

What a selfish cock.

To play devil's advocate, there's no chance that he was simply talking the old school Very British party line of giving Beverley's dd 'privacy'... this was the done thing oh about 2 centuries ago? Only you know your history with you Dad, so I'm guessing that this isn't the case.

HildaOgden Tue 02-Jul-13 23:35:44

He is continuing his life-long habit of selfishness and self centred-ness.

Fuck it,write him a letter and get it off your chest.Don't engage in any response: he will either blame you or try to justify his actions (and he genuinely won't be able to see where you're coming from,selfish people don't have the empathy skills).

It won't change him,it won't 'wound' him....but at least you'll have had your say.

Wylye Wed 03-Jul-13 09:57:51

I think you should send the letter, and quote him in it, so he doesn't just write it off as you being touchy.
My half sister told our father what she thought of him and he dismissed everything she said, saying she was over emotional and shouting. Nothing got through.

ReindeerBollocks Wed 03-Jul-13 10:06:03

If the baby is diagnosed via heel prick (which at four weeks old is likely) then there won't be any organ damage at this stage. However a diagnosis like this initially makes your whole world fall apart - And it can take a while before the parents can fully come to terms with it.

I'm sorry to say that your father sounds like a narcissistic arsehole. This is not about him and how it impacts on his life - but it could be useful. CF may or may not affect this babies life greatly, it's too early to tell, but at least your father has shown his true colours early on leading Beverly to leave him sooner rather than later.

If you want to cut him out of your life that is up to you. His attitude seems cruel and rather selfish, and maybe it's time to evaluate how your relationship with him is, and whether or not you get any benefit from it.

Any chance you could send Beverly a card? Say anything you want to say to her, maybe give your details, then cut contact with your father.

Sparklysilversequins Wed 03-Jul-13 10:15:25

Oh I'd email him and tell him what's what but be prepared that it will only be for YOUR benefit, he won't care. I'd advise him to shape up otherwise Beverley will be shipping him out and at this stage of life combined with his nasty personality it's unlikely he will attract anyone else half decent.

littlepeas Wed 03-Jul-13 10:36:37

My dad is like this - he finds anything outside of his immediate needs and wishes a huge effort. We had a family crisis when my dd was a baby - she had a rare congenital heart defect that went undiagnosed for 5 months, during which time she was very poorly, and culminated in surgery. My parents didn't call us to see how we were, etc, and I've since learnt that this was down to my dad telling my mum to leave us alone and that we'd call them if we needed them. Luckily my mum makes an effort to be involved with us - if it were down to my dad we'd never see them! He basically set us free at 18 and makes a big point about us being allowed to get in with our own lives (by which he means us leaving him alone to live his).

No advice really - I just let him get in with it as I don't want to start falling out with him and making it awkward for my mum. I doubt your dad's girlfriend will drop her dd on your day's say so - perhaps tell him gently that you would want your mum's support in this situation and he needs to accept that his gf will be with her dd - I wouldn't tell him you are appalled.

HormonalHousewife Wed 03-Jul-13 10:45:24

I wouldn't think that anything you say to your dad will make any difference. He is set in his old fashioned ways and frankly I'd be surprised if the letter would make a jot of difference to him.

But this is not just about him. Its affecting you and you are clearly a compassionate and thoughtful person who has empathy with another family and a child going through emotional turmoil and I think you should let your father know your thoughts.

So therefore I would write the letter to your dad.

Write the letter but don't reply to his replies (as I bet they'll be more of the same old rubbish). Might not be the most adult solution but you'll feel better and at least someone will be challenging his disgusting attitude/outlook.

Being selfish usually means you feel justified in whatever BS you're peddling so unfortunately he probably won't ever feel remorse for his actions.

Still, he could do with being pulled up on it regardless...

(with any luck, you won't have to have as much to do with him hmm feel so bad for his GF though. When my DS was diagnosed with clubfoot my mum was my rock and was just as concerned about her flesh and blood as I was. How anybody can expect a decent mum to pull away at a time like that is so far beyond me...)

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Wed 03-Jul-13 11:15:50

Thank you, everyone. I'm writing a letter this morning but haven't decided whether to send it or just use it to get my thoughts down on paper. I spoke to my brother last night & he suggested using his tactics of just avoiding our dad's phonecalls! It's worked for him for a couple of years now!

HildaOgden Wed 03-Jul-13 11:39:28

Write the letter,and sleep on it for a couple of nights before you post it.Avoid all phonecalls then.

SueDoku Wed 03-Jul-13 12:41:23

Good tip Hilda - when I write things down to get them out of my system, I always keep the lettter for 1-2 days, then edit as required before sending - it saves quite a bit of argument.
I'd go with Reindeer's idea of dropping a note or card to Beverley, just to let her know that you're thinking of her and her family even if your Dad isn't and that she has your sympathy. I think that she'd probably appreciate the thought (and it will show your Dad's actions up for the selfishness that they are).

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Wed 03-Jul-13 16:27:56

Well, it's written. It's calm and logical, but still pretty damning. I really want to send it but I'm holding off in case that's the rage talking. I want to know I feel the same once I've calmed down.

Sadly I don't have Beverley's contact details or even know her surname to be able to send her a card. That's a real shame because she is lovely and I would like to show some support.

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