to not understand how a 'father' can walk away from his children.(52 Posts)
Yes, I have posted a few threads about my quest for 'sanity' and my father's abandonment is something I have gone over with a counsellor but I still don't get it.
How can a father bring up a child until they are 6 years old, love them, play with them, put them to bed etc, then just walk away having no contact with them for over 30 years and expect the adult DC to run to them with open arms and 'forget about the past' taking no responsibility and completely refusing to discuss it. Especially after said DC was left with a monster of a mother and suffered years of physical and emotional abuse at her hands and that of their 'new daddy'. I used to dream of my 'real' father rescuing me but he never came. I have always felt that there was something inherently wrong with ME as he left me and my mother hated me!
He has now washed his hands of me after ONE meeting, some phone calls and some emails as I can't seem to get over the past and he 'does'nt want to go there'. He does'nt seem to get that I need to understand the past before I can get over it! He brought up another woman's DCs while having no physical or financial contact with me at all. I asked him what he remembered of me as a DC (what time I was born/what I weighed/what I liked/what kind of a DC I was etc as my mother has never told me) and he refused to answer and cut contact. He told me I need professional help with my 'issues' which I am well aware of and have had, total irony or what.
AIBU in feeling entitled to feel anger and disgust at him and not just slip into loving long lost daughter mode and pretend everything is alright now? I know anger is not healthy but it is surely completely normal to feel it in this situation.
I don't think that the majority of Fathers would have this ability...I think Fathers who do this kind of thing have personality disorders of some kind.
YANBU to feel disgusted...you should think about counseling to recover.
It is not only fathers who abandon children. My "dear" mother left me on Paddington Station age 7. My Dad picked me up 1 hr later. I never saw her again. I feel your pain and I am now an OAP
Sadly my dad married a woman from hell but I survived and guess what I like myself!Left home @ 18, nursing, And adopted 8 needy children. Don't let your past ruin your happiness
2old2beamum - wow. You are just amazing..!
OP- sorry, clearly your dad was not what you hoped he would be. It hurts, but some people are just incapable of being decent human beings or accepting responsibility for their actions.
Good news is, it seems you're on the right path. Anger is fully and totally appropriate. Clutching at contact with the inadequate prick would not. (Sorry, harsher language than I might normally use, but I am tired and sad for you.)
YANBU to feel "entitled to feel anger and disgust at him and not just slip into loving long lost daughter mode and pretend everything is alright now."
Of course you are not. I'm so sorry you've had such a rough deal. He doesn't deserve you.
I wish I could understand it op. My mother and father abandoned me. My ex has abandoned our child. Unfortunately there are some people incapable of putting others before themselves. I've learned to accept it and had lots of therapy. I'm quite a balanced person now. You will move on from it. You have every right to feel confused and angry.
I'm so sorry OP. I just don't understand it either. The person upthread who said these people have personality issues has hit the nail on the head, I reckon.
My ex has never had anything to do with DS. I just don't understand it. I'm having counselling to try and deal with it, and my lovely counsellor has described him as 'damaged'. I think she's right.
Agree that he has a personality disorder. You cannot hope to understand why he abandoned you because his brain is wired differently to yours (he is lacking basic emotions such as sorrow, remorse, empathy etc).
So, re your understanding in order to gain sanity: it's more a case of understanding that he has something wrong with him rather than understanding his actions.
Also re sanity, I think that it is important to accept that he will never ever be the father you want/need, even as an adult. He will always be a bastard.
Sorry about your situation. Anger and disgust are perfectly appropriate emotions so don't worry about that.
I agree with spottyparrot.
Imo, there are many people who, for whatever reason, don't actually feel emotions or attachment like you and I do. They have no empathy, remorse or sorrow. They don't regret previous actions that may have hurt someone else's feelings. They seem to go through life aspiring to achieve self serving goals, there always has to be something in it for them IYSWIM.
You are possibly confusing your father with a man who possesses empathy, love and attachment because of how he treated you until you were 6.
What happened when you were 6 btw? What led to your father walking out of your life?
You have been through so much and you shouldn't have to have done. The people who were supposed to be responsible for you weren't. You are certainly right to feel angry and I would too.
FWIW I agree with LunaticFringe, put it all in a box.
I am so sorry you have experienced this
I am so sorry. Empathy levels vary in people so much. You really deserved a better father and it is only bad luck that you got this man, who is not truly a father at all. But it is not your fault of course - it is his weakness, his loss.
Yes, some people can disconnect and not feel things deeply. Be sad for them, but live well and have a wonderful life, loving your own children if you have them....
DH abandoned by his mother when he was 10. She was in a very unhappy marriage, hearing him talk about his early childhood she was obviously a good mum until she left. Have met her, she dotes on his step sister and her grandkids.
Severe therapy helped - Hoffman process if you can afford it. First you hate with all the intensity in your soul until you have no hate left, then admit you love your mum despite their abandonment and then you forgive with all your heart. The pain lives in you not them, you can change how you feel. They might be able to meet you and you might or might not have a good relationship going forward. Probably not.
DH has sporadic dealings with his mum, but the abandonment has no power over him, almost like it happened to someone else.
I think to love and have empathy you have to love yourself. Maybe people abandon others because of their own lack of self worth, they think how can I give when I am worth so little??
Everyones guilty but no one is to blame.
I think you are totally entitled to feel anger and disgust at your Father for abandoning you. And I think it's quite normal to feel this resentment. But could you try some counselling. You are not the one at fault here. He is.
Great wise point dededum. Something in these men is broken.
Of course YANBU to feel anger. Anger is totally and entirely appropriate and a good way to help us set appropriate boundaries. It would be far, far worse to just slip back into contact and pretend it didn't happen. That would be letting down the child-you (sorry if that's a bit woo). She deserves that you stick up for her.
That said, keep going with your counselling, not for him, not so you can forgive and forget, but so that you can move forward and live well.
it could be anything ,it might be your mum made life difficult and put a stop to access ,he doesnt want to talk about the past , what is the point of dragging it all up,it sounds like all you do is ask him questions,maybe he just wants to get to know the you now ,why cant you accept that and either start a fresh from here or leave it altogether.
Are you the OP's father, likeit? Interesting name.
Posted too soon. YANBU, OP. Anger is a healthy response to how you were treated. You can deal with your anger and with your grief. Somebody has to grieve for that little 6 year old, and 7, and 8, and 9 and all the other ages you were on your own in an unsafe place instead of with a loving father protecting you. It sounds like he does not have any positive contribution to make to your life. Well done for not brushing it under the carpet. You are clearly very strong. A strength entirely your own. I hope you are very proud of yourself, OP.
He owes you answers and if he does not at least attempt to provide them then he's a giant knobber.
But yabu to expect them because giant knobbers who do things like that never like being reminded of just how much a giant knobber they are.
no one knows the whole story , no one knows his side ,you say you met him then emailed and phoned , maybe it was all to full on, he last saw you as a 6 yr old child now you are a 36 yr old woman,maybe he doesnt feel a bond and that has to start a fresh with no dragging up the past, it really doesnt help anyone .
There is no side of the story that could make it right to walk away from your young child, not see them for 30 years and then expect them to be shiny and happy about that and keen to move on. That's just a selfish and self centred person at work. OP, not at all surprised you are angry and hurt. Hope you can get good counselling to help you deal with it.
you need to know all the sides before you can make assumptions about strangers ! there are many reasons things in life happen, your assuming will not help the op,i hope she hears what she wants to hear but she will just get people calling him names , not really helping is it,write him a letter tell him you want one meeting to answer all your questions and then you can decide if you both want to meet again and start afresh without dragging it up every time you meet.
I don't understand it either. My sons are 22,23 and 24. They haven't seen their father for 19 years.
If I am such a horrible person why would he leave them with me and walk away?
I don't have bitterness for him going, marriages don't always work and he wouldn't have gone if he was happy but how can he live, work eat, breathe without knowing his children are safe?
(at one point I had a phone call from the CSA to inform me that he wanted a reduction in child support due to the fact they would all have left school-they were 15, 17 and 18 at that time. He literally had not remembered their ages. The CSA lady laughed with me)
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