03 December 2008

love you dad.

Picture this:
You're 5 years-old and your Dad comes home drunk and starts throwing shit, yelling and beating on your Mom for no reason at all - something that occurred more than it didn't. While you grow up, you see that he's around, but not around ... If you get my gist. You see him frequently & he spends time with you, takes you places, but financially, mentally and somewhat physically, your Mother is struggling. She is struggling to put you through a private Elementary/Junior High School. Suddenly at the age of 11, your Dad decides to move to another state with his new wife. So not only is he not around, but he is still not helping your Mom. But she manages to put you through Elementary, JHS, High School & College.

You're an adult now and although you don't see your Dad too much, you speak to him often but you speak to him with so much sincerity and affection - as if he wasn't abusive at one point in his life and as if your Mother wasn't struggling, crying, & complaining about how hard it was to support you by herself - amongst other things.

My question is: Where does this deep-rooted love some girls have for an incomplete father come from? I'm not saying they shouldn't love him, but some people resent their absentee parent. Is it because a child is incognizant to the direct & indirect pain a father sometimes causes a mother? Is it because most absentee parents spoil their kids? Is it because a child knows her father's love is genuine but sometimes their priorities just aren't in order? What about the dad's personality ... let's say he is one of those Cliff Huxtable funny, easy-going and fun to be around dads.. do you think that clouds judgement, leading a child to grow up never seeing through the smoke and mirrors act?

What about when mom and dad speak like they are best friends ... Does it mean she forgot or forgave? Or both?

I wanna know if anyone experienced this or has some sort of reasoning for why this is -- I know there's some psychology behind it, as there is with almost everything else.


Pana said...

Very Good Post...Yes some ppl feel resentment, or their parents lack of understanding or remorse for what they have done or didn't do.

Beautifully.Conjured.Up said...

I can relate. My father was never abusive to my mother, but he wasn't there for me as much as he should have been. As I got older, our relationship got better, but it will never be what it needs to be or what it should have been.

Even though he has done some messed up things, I still love him and care about him. I will admit, when I was younger, you couldn't say anything bad about my father to me...weird, since I only saw him once a month. Now that I'm older, I really don't care...I guess because I'm grown, and living my own life.

That is a very complex issue with me...that disturbs me, especially when I date/get into relationships...I might do a post about that.

Tamina said...

Well on the portion of a "child knows her father's love is genuine but sometimes their priorities just aren't in order" - thats the thing I'm still going through with my dad as he is the live-in dad with the "distant -dad" qualities. See the mess is- he never had a dad so when he had us he didn't know how to appreciate his wife and kids-and still struggles with not being able to raise us the right way and leaving the financial burdens to our mother-provided he gave us a roof over our heads-as women we know what we dont have to put up with -our mothers are from the old school they just "put up with the shit" and turned the cheek. We had no shoulder to lean on and no male guidance- granted for me i searched else where for this love that i lacked-and i forgave him over and over for the neglect -alcoholism and abuse he endured on my mom-but as a woman now I realize that it scarred me and Im trying to grow out of my bitterness toward him because of it.
Its real for girls when we look to our dads by the way we see the Cliff Huxtable on TV -we're jaded and optimistic about that relationship for ourselves.
For me it sucked cuz he lived right down the hall from me -so he might as well had been in an another state-sad but true. He cant raise me now im grown and the time for that has passed. Forgive and Forget right?

Vegas International said...

Children do not learn things on their own. They learn it from adults, and as a child you saw that(abuse) and you grew up you realized that it was wrong. The troubling part is that now that you know it was wrong and realized that it happened so frequently, it has become justifiable. It further became justified after your mother behaves like nothing happens. So, why would you hold a grudge or think poorly of the person if the person the attrocities actually happened to acts like they didnt happen.

You are a product of what you see, and what you have experienced, and even though you might not think an abusive relationship is what you want you can prob justify it some level and forgive it. Thats what you have with your dad, its a relationship of forgiveness and excuses. Actually, its less about your dad, and more about the relationship of your parents. Your mother moved on, so did you!

Peggy M. said...

Pana - thanks a bunch.

BCU - I can relate too, that was my reason for posting this. And like you, when I was a kid, you couldn't say shit 'bout my daddy, lol ... he was my everything, I guess I was oblivious. Smh!

Tamina - "he is the live-in dad with the 'distant -dad' qualities." What?! That sounds worse than him actually not living with you, as in my case. I don't know how I'd react to that. Like you're right here, but you're not really right here?? Ok...

Yeah, growing up, I seeked to fulfill my void elsewhere too - but it wasn't a good idea in my case.

Yep, forgive and forget I guess.

Vegas - great points. I know I did a lot based on my mom's actions, and if she was ok and moved on, why the hell would I hold a grudge??? But I'm sure if she was sour about it, and I saw this growing up, I'd be too.

Dina said...

Very interesting post!! I can relate somewhat...See my father falls into some of the category’s mentioned and like your mother, my mother became both the mother & father who sacrificed everything to ensure I had it all.

However, here we are 31 years later and my father is honestly trying to build a relationship between us but the question that continuously runs through my head is do I even want a relationship with Gordon (I personally feel he's not deserving of being called DAD). It feels very weird to interact with this man who didn't live in a different state, who had the option to always see & speak to me, who's family always kept in contact with me over the years....I don't know, its just hard to accept him as MY FATHER after all this time...I guess with time it will become easier, sadly I don't see it that way.

Unlike everyone else, I could careless how my father was talked about because in my eyes, he didn’t care about me so why should I care about him. I feel with daughters and fathers, the bond between the two are totally different than father and son!!! A father is the sun and moon in all little girl’s hearts and they can never do any wrong…A daughter also wants to do anything to please her paternal parent whether the maternal agrees or not.

Like Vegas pointed out, children learn based on their parents actions towards situations and when either parent is sour towards the other in front of the child, then yes you can definitely expect that child to pick up the same behavior as well as learn to choose whose side to be on (these kids nowadays are wayyyy smarter than what their actually given credit for). My advice to parents today is to always maintain a positive relationship with each other for the child’s sake!!! Everything we do and say molds our kids, let them grow to form their own judgment on the parental relationship….Trust majority of the times, if either the mother or father is a jerk, the child will definitely see it for themselves!!