Sunday, 19 June 2011

Happy fathers day? Not

Spare a thought today for all those, for whom Father's Day has a very empty ring to it. Fathers are not all good news. My generation for instance had missing fathers. Mine was in the army. By the time he came home for good he was a stranger. This was not his fault. There was a war on. But the relationship between us never grew into a loving one.
He failed to get a job that he wanted and instead worked long hours breaking up pig iron in a foundry.
After working in heat all day he needed a drink. End of story really. The stranger became an abusive, intolerant person who seemed to be always drunk.
My brother, my mother and myself spent years in fear of this man. His mood swings were dramatic. And if he had no money for drink he would raid our piggy banks, our purses or take our things to sell.
I wish I could celebrate a loving relationship with my father but I can't and I know there are many others who are in the same boat.
When my father finally killed himself he did us all a massive favor.
RIP dad. And I really do mean that. I hope he really is at peace now. My brother and mother are both dead and I am a happy fulfilled woman. I just can't remember him with any affection even though I can see how and why it all happened.
For all the others who have had similar experiences I salute you and hope the healing process is at work in you as it is in me.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


  1. The Church here had a howler on the 'Welcome' slide - Happy Father's Day! Errant apostrophe....

    I used this to make the point that on Fathers' Day in Church we first of all remember our Heavenly Father whose love is perfect rather than the imperfect love of our earthly Fathers.

    My Dad was a long way from perfect too but I know what a good Father should be because of God's love for me - and pray for His help, not only to forgive my own Dad, but also to be a better Father to my own children.

  2. Thanks for that! A timely reminder to watch where I put my apostrophes too.

  3. Jean, as you tell your story, I share something of my own father. He was a bully and ignorant. We did not have a childhood, but were imprisoned in a life of drudgery and fear. I left home as soon as I could, joined the army and never, ever returned, except for his funeral.

    Our mother had abandoned us when I was 4 years old, and we were all taken into care, where we remained for 5 years, relatively a place of safety, but not a happy one. The idea of care in the 1950's differed a lot from that that obtains today. I was separated from my siblings and we were subject to a strict discipline regime, where corporal punishment was a regular feature of our life. Looking back, I can see that this was preferable to what followed when we returned home.

    When my father died, he suffered long term from diabetes, which caused him to go blind and to suffer amputations on both legs. He ended up in a vegative state and died in hospital of pneumonia. I was away so my siblings made the funeral arrangements, while I attended the funeral, I could not bring myself to pray for him. I was still so angry with him, and my sisters are still angry, more then 25 years after his death.

    It was many years later before grief, even for a bad man, hit me and caused me some issues, which thank God, are now resolved. I light a candle for him every week and pray for his forgiveness. I think that I have forgiven him, but I know that if he were still alive, I would have been unable, as you are not able to celebrate a loving family relationship with him.

    It's really sad.

  4. I really thank you for sharing that. It sounds terrible and I am sorry to hear it. My father did wallop us all and as my brother was dying he apologized for never standing up for me. It had tormented him the whole of his life. The saving grace for me was my parish priest Bill Vanstone who was more of a father than my real one was.
    My faith has saved me from the worst consequences of it all and I do forgive him now as I have tried to find excuses for what happened to us all. On e again thank you. I know how much that cost you to write. I'll pray for us both and all the rest of us unknown but real.