This letter begins without a greeting because, let’s be honest here; when have I ever greeted to you as my ‘dad’?
I’m writing these words to you because I fear they would remain unheard if they were to leave my mouth. You tell me, almost weekly, that I can come to you and talk if I have any worries or concerns. I appreciate the gesture but, it doesn’t relate to my own feelings towards you.
Talking to you has never been easy. I know you mean well, that your intentions are good and I know that you do care. It’s just your reaction that scares me; leaving me suppressed inside; fearful of saying another word, in the belief that it will only rebound back of you like all of the others.
We all accuse you of asking too many questions and showing an unhealthy amount of worry and concern for situations but, I wish you would just accept and try to consider some of the things we’ve been saying for many years.
I’m afraid of you and I always have been. You never complemented or praised me as a child and you were anything but supportive towards any ideas I had after finishing school, unless they were your own. Each time I want to venture out to try and to explore something new (like a job), my mind tells me not to, as you’ll only be on my back questioning my decision; almost demanding me to reconsider and do approach it in the way that you see as being most appropriate.
My childhood memories relate to the pain of being smacked on the bag of the leg, sometimes leaving a red mark from your hand. You were always stressed and angry; always arguing with mum. It wasn’t easy to live in a house with you and those memories have stayed with me ever since.
I need my space. I need to breathe. You need to let me go so that I can find my own way through life and, the same goes for my sister as well. I’m not going to walk away and forget about family. But, if things stay as they are then, I’m not going to grow or develop in to anything.
I appreciate that you want to be a better father, perhaps to make amends for mistakes in your past. But, I’m sorry, I’m not looking for that. I’ve grown to be quite independent in the last few years and, as often as I do say this, I really am old enough to look after myself and have been for a number of years. There’s no need to you to phone every night or to randomly pop in, without warning whenever it suits you. Sometimes, it feels as though you haven’t accepted the divorce; as if you continue through life expecting to settle back in to our lives again.
I don’t expect you to immediately accept a word of what I’ve written here but, I hope you will at least give it some thought.
Your son [I’m very tempted to add ‘in name alone’ or similar here…].
EDITted to add – I realise that this letter isn’t very ‘mindful’ and that I need to ‘own’ several of the statements I have addressed. This is only a rough, first draft, written rather spontaneously from scratch this evening, after struggling to get my thoughts on to the screen over the weekend. I feel I’ve covered most of the basic issues that I wanted to get across. All thoughts and suggestions are welcome. 🙂