Popping the emotional cork off of being raised fatherless…

… I had absolutely no intention of writing about fathers five days before Mother’s Day but what choice did I have after having seen this video in a friend’s facebook feed. I forgot how growing up without a father used to really piss me off.

For every mother or father that is not directly involved in their child lives there sits a confused, angry child who grows up believing they are unlovable. Why don’t they want me? Why doesn’t mom or dad love me enough to be here, right now with me?

I know now that my dad wasn’t around for complicated grown up reason that I can sort of understand. But still.

You can give excuses and rationales for certain behaviors, but at the end the day the message is still the same… I didn’t think, care, or love you enough to put my own personal bullshit aside to be a good parent to you.

Plainly.

If you are a parent right now and are not involved in your child’s life you might as well call that child up tonight and tell them that because that’s what they are hearing from your actions.

I didn’t think, care, or love you enough to put my own personal bullshit aside to be a good parent to you.

Go ahead, say it. Own those words. Accept responsibility for them. Let them sit in your mouth like hot rocks. Swallow them and let them slide down into your belly. Carry them around with you like a painful lump. Like your child does everyday. Every.Single.Day.

I don’t care what kind of family drama or circumstances exist, there is nothing is this whole wide world that would keep me from my son. And if you are reading this and feeling a bit judged right now it’s because you are being judged. Harshly.

Maybe your young child doesn’t have the understanding or vocabulary to express the level of hurt your absence causes them but I sure do. And express it I will.

Mother. Father. I don’t care which. Both parents leave. I know that. But what you don’t know is the emotional maelstrom du merde you leave in your wake. So let me fill you in.

I grew up fatherless and spent my entire young adult life as a teenager and women looking for love and validation in other men. And that is exactly what it sounds like.

Is that what you want for your daughters? Do you want your sons to be angry young men?

Whatever it is you have going on your lives, it’s not ever going to be more important than your child. Ever.

Watch that video a few more times till it starts to sink and then get your head straight. Do right by your children and stop perpetuating a cycle of neglect in the generations that will follow on after you.

Thankfully, my father and I have an amicable relationship now. The past has been forgiven. Not forgotten, because some hurts… well, as you can see, still elicit strong emotional reactions. But we are both adults now and realize you can’t ever take back the past, just learn from it and move on. Heal and move on. I’m blessed he’s in my life now and involved with my son and that’s a blessing I count every day.

Parent’s, love your children. Be there and love them.

About Katrina Fernandez

Mackerel Snapping Papist

  • Elisabeth

    I live this every day with my daughters – eight years after their father threw us out, they still give him chance after chance hoping that one day he will come through for them.

  • http://rosarynovice.stblogs.com/ Augustine

    I always thought when I read in the Bible that sins span 7 generations that merely hyperbolic language was being used. That is, until I myself became a farther and could see myself repeating my dad’s sins and my son repeating mine. It was quite a chilling realization, but I’m glad I did. I could not change the past, mine or my son’s, but I could change our future and my grandchildren’s.

  • http://theramblingsofacrazyface.wordpress.com/ Leticia Ochoa Adams

    Yes, a million times YES!

  • Maggie Goff

    POWERFUL. Thank you.

  • Eugene Edward Yeo

    And tell them you love them. Every day.

  • Peter

    I am sorry for you pain.

  • echarles1

    My daughter and I spend a lot of time together, mostly just everyday stuff. I look at her sometimes and think how boring I must be, or how uninteresting it is to go grocery shopping with me. But I remember doing all that stuff with my parents and even if it wasn’t always valued by me at the time I remember it all 40 years later. It mattered.

    • Kristen

      As Russell says in the movie “Up” in reference to his absent father:

      “I know it sounds boring, but I think it’s the boring stuff that I remember most.”

  • LisaTwaronite

    Okay, I’ll say it:
    “I didn’t think, care, or love you enough to put my own personal bullshit aside to be a good parent to you.”

    But how exactly do you define “personal bullshit,” anyway?

    I am 100% responsible for my kids growing up, at least for a while, with a father who lives thousands of miles away from them — I could have kept the family together, if I had moved with him. But I chose not to.

    What kind of family role model would I have given them: That the mother is always the one who makes the sacrifices and follows around the father, time after time, wherever his job happens to take him — uprooting the kids in the process and dragging them along for the ride.

    Sure, there are lots of advantages to changing schools, living in different countries, learning from different experiences, etc. – but believe me, it gets old. There comes a time when kids want to stick around, and not say goodbye again to friends they’ve made. The kids themselves wanted to stay put this time, even though they miss their father terribly. But there’s Skype, there are visits, there is hope that after a few years of this, we’ll all live in the same country again.

    So it’s my “bullshit,” and I OWN it. Sometimes — not always, but sometimes — stability is more important than physical proximity, and all we can do is hope that we’ve chosen the best of all the shitty options, and that the kids are old enough to understand that we tried.

    • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

      “What kind of family role model would I have given them: That the mother is always the one who makes the sacrifices and follows around the father, time after time, wherever his job happens to take him — uprooting the kids in the process and dragging them along for the ride.”

      That of a faithful wife who understands the need weak men have for support? That of a mother who loves her family enough to keep them together no matter what the cost?

      Better yet, what the heck was wrong with asking their father to put the needs of the FAMILY ahead of the needs of COUNTRY and CAREER?

      • LisaTwaronite

        Your key words there are “no matter what the cost.” When the kids themselves got old enough to say, “We don’t want to move overseas again,” then it seemed to me that the “cost” of keeping the family together wasn’t worth it. (It was very different when they were small, which is why I quit my jobs and uprooted everything to follow him on his last two postings, and then back.)

        Also — you know from a different blog comment thread that my partner works for his country’s government, and finds meaning and fulfillment doing this. If keeping families together under one roof at all times was the most important goal, then parents wouldn’t be able to serve in the armed forces, or work on oil rigs, or do scientific research on site, or do any of the many other jobs that require extended absences. Maybe some of these jobs are worth doing, and some are not — it’s up to individual families to decide what works best for them.

        • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

          ” If keeping families together under one roof at all times was the most important goal, then parents wouldn’t be able to serve in the armed forces, or work on oil rigs, or do scientific research on site, or do any of the many other jobs that require extended absences. ”

          That is correct. Those jobs should be restricted to single people, to minimize harm to the family, which is, after all, the bedrock institution of the entire culture.

          Or at least was.

          I for one blame war for one big reason why for so many, the family isn’t a bedrock institution anymore. The destruction caused by wars of invasion and by “extended absences” of one or more parents from the household, has now raised an entire generation of Americans who don’t seem to know that parenting requires sacrificing job opportunities for children.

          • LisaTwaronite

            So you’re in favor of certain jobs being “restricted to single people?” Once that starts, where would it end? Should parents be required to stay out of the workforce completely for a certain number of years, to stay home with young kids? And since only women can lactate, should mothers be required to stay home to breastfeed?

            Once you start making strict “requirements” as to who should do what job, under what circumstances, it’s easy to go down a slippery slope leading to the kind of rigid society I’d never want to live in.

          • defiant12314

            yeah certain jobs should be restricted to single people, yes mothers should stay at home and nurture their children. When I’m in Church on Sunday and I see lots of wonderful parents who make great sacrifices for their children then my heart stops at such beauty and wish that I was one of their ‘little monsters’ (as Ann affectionately refers to her brood).

            You boomer parents want it from the horse’s mouth? Divorce HURTS, it F**K**G hurts the kids, it especially hurts young men who don’t learn how to BE men, as a result they bottle up their feelings until they explode !!! hence the Fricking problem we have in the west with angry young men who nobody bothered to teach properly, you wanna cut crime, cut government welfare spending, government interference and cut down on anti-social behaviour. A big step would be repealing no fault divorce, getting rid of so called ‘gay marriage’ and once again enshrining the family as the bedrock of society

            IF it weren’t for Fr. John Mary (aka Nazareth Priest) or Fr Edwin Gordon (RIP) I don’t know WHERE I’d be. Maybe I’d have ended up in a ditch with needle marks in my veins, maybe I’d have have ended up in the ICU with alcohol poisoning, maybe with a knife in my belly for ‘disrespecting’ someone, COS I WAS SOOO ANGRY. But I was fortunate, there are many young men out on the streets who are not so fortunate to have good Godfathers

            So take your silly, prissy, ME FIRST attitude and shove it up your jacksie, you deprived your children of their Father because you forgot (if you ever realised it in the first place) that Marriage is about sacrifice not personal convenience, my sister and I managed to blunder through somehow until I found the two Fathers but its not a life I’d wish on anyone

          • LisaTwaronite

            I would like to hold a mirror up to your comment, because it is entirely about you, and has absolutely nothing to do with me.

            I’m glad you found peace.

          • defiant12314

            I was illustrating from my own life how fricking divorce, hurts kids, perhaps your visual preceptors need a good clean,

          • LisaTwaronite

            Oh, excuse me, then.

            I thought, “So take your silly, prissy, ME FIRST attitude and shove it up your jacksie, you deprived your children of their Father because you forgot (if you ever realised it in the first place) that Marriage is about sacrifice not personal convenience…” was directed at me.

          • defiant12314

            oh it was, believe me, you are a very selfish women who cannot seem to understand that I was illustrating my points from my own life experiences to form the basis on which I am judging you.

          • LisaTwaronite

            Ah, that’s what I initially thought. Yes, indeed, that’s why I said, hold up a mirror — your comments are all about you and your life, and do not apply at all to me and my family’s circumstances.

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            “Should parents be required to stay out of the workforce completely for a certain number of years, to stay home with young kids?”

            Yes.

            “And since only women can lactate, should mothers be required to stay home to breastfeed?”

            YES!

            “Once you start making strict “requirements” as to who should do what job, under what circumstances, it’s easy to go down a slippery slope leading to the kind of rigid society I’d never want to live in.”

            I know. And it’s exactly the type of rigid society I miss. A chaotic society is much harder to deal with than a rigid one.

          • LisaTwaronite

            Of course there’s nothing wrong with your personal preferences, and you are free to live your life as you see fit — you can choose a spouse who wants to stay home to breastfeed, and concentrate on the home front. There is nothing stopping you from living the way you choose — so therefore, there is no reason that I should be stopped from living the way I choose. And my choices do not include being mandated to stay home to breastfeed!

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            “Of course there’s nothing wrong with your personal preferences, and you are free to live your life as you see fit ”

            Not entirely, no. And chaos in the home, soon leads to chaos in the market, which of course naturally leads to chaos in government and a loss of moral order.

            “you can choose a spouse who wants to stay home to breastfeed, and concentrate on the home front.”

            She did. Runs a home based business too- a daycare for mothers not as lucky as she is.

            “There is nothing stopping you from living the way you choose”

            Except the criminal behavior of children raised with absent parents, the lack of a common morality in business and government, and a genocide I’m guilty of forced on me through my tax dollars. And to top it off, I get insults about being a breeder, and my intellectually disabled child has to put up with bullying and hatred because he actually has parents that are still married.

            ” so therefore, there is no reason that I should be stopped from living the way I choose. ”

            Yep, that’s what they keep telling me. And in the mean time, the original idea of family as the basis for society gets more and more lost, and the culture wars are won by eugenicists, and a whole new generation of children is abused and neglected.

          • LisaTwaronite

            There are generalizations, such as the ones you make, and then there are individuals. Children aren’t necessarily “abused and neglected” simply because their parents work fulltime outside the home, and all sorts of families can give them the love and support they need, to grow up healthy and strong.

            The author of this blog post is a single mom herself, which I’m sure she believes is not an ideal situation. But I’m also sure her son isn’t on the path to being a criminal.

            As for mandating women to stay home with small children, I don’t think it’s a good idea to give up the potential contributions that all the female doctors, lawyers, musicians, etc. give to the world.

            And just as you face insults about being a “breeder,” I face judgement about being a selfish woman who broke apart my family (even for just a few years). And yet both of us continue to do what we believe is best — right?

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            I never said he was on the path to being a criminal.

            I said he wasn’t learning how to be a father.

            I’d rather give up the contributions of the entire world, to have intact families again.

          • $1028912

            No, actually, you referred to “the criminal behavior of children raised with absent parents.”

            I work outside the home, but I do not consider myself an “absent parent.”

            And those of us without fathers present in the home have to make sure our kids have other fatherly role models in their lives.

            Also, I think our definition of “intact families” is going to differ. My own family isn’t “intact” in that we don’t live together, but my partner and I aren’t divorced and we make a big effort to stay in close contact. It’s not ideal, but I think we’re doing okay — though I expect you to disagree.

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            Actually, perhaps I don’t.

            This might explain my thoughts better:

            http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/2012/05/i-am-unfit.html

          • $1028912

            Oh gosh….I just read your post that says, “Liberals, get this through your thick skulls.To Orthodox Catholics, all sex outside of monogamous, lifelong marriage with no divorce, is a form of rape.”

            You, sir, are an extremist!

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            Yes, I am. And proud of it. The Roman Catholic Church has 2000 years of research in how to live the right way. I don’t see anybody else coming close, except maybe the Buddhists.

          • $1028912

            Some Buddhist extremists are just as scary as Christian extremists — but some of them seem to have it right. (My partner is a cradle Buddhist, though not devout.)

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            At least the buddhists have the history behind what they do- lived experience. I can’t say the same for most varieties of Christianity- certainly none of the Protestants do- and very few other religions. Hinduism maybe, or Zorasterianism. But any way of life with less than 2000 years of history does not attract me, not enough data yet to say if they are good or evil, and given the sure reality of Original Sin, most of what mankind comes up with is evil.

            That is one of the major reasons I see the American experiment as a failure- because the entire concept denies the history of how mankind evolved to live. EVERYTHING modernists want to “liberate” themselves from is good in an attempt to create more evil.

    • Barbara

      I know this I am getting in deep with this. But reading what you have written has just pierced an angry boil in me and I really should say this to my own mother, but: How dare you?! You had no right to auction off your children’s happiness in order to pay for your own. That thing that boomer parents tell themselves “aww, the kids are alright. If I am happy, they’ll be happy” is a goddamn lie. The kids will maintain a facade of happiness in order to keep peace, because having their stable universe upended once they will do everything to avoid having it happen again. But they will do it by swallowing and burying their own feelings until they don’t recognize them, while their resentment eats away at them slowly and makes committed relationships almost impossible. It took til I was in my thirties to even recognize how much pain my parents amicable divorce caused me. And my dad still continued to live in the same city.

      • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/thecrescat Katrina Fernandez

        “That thing that boomer parents tell themselves “aww, the kids are alright. If I am happy, they’ll be happy” is a goddamn lie. ”

        Af*ckingmen!

        • Barbara

          If you quote that on Facebook, please don’t tag me. I don’t want my mom seeing it. The whole thing is too messy.

          • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/thecrescat Katrina Fernandez

            I won’t.

        • LisaTwaronite

          But that does work the other way: If the parents are unhappy, the children will be unhappy, too.

          • Barbara Fryman

            Grown ups are people who work hard to *be* happy even in garbage circumstances. Teaching gratitude through example is how kids learn to be happy. I’m sorry for your divorce, and I *do not* judge your choices in terms of your eternal salvation, BUT, if you choose a person to marry, you choose all of it. You ought not saddle the break up of your marriage to the desires of your children.

            *Leaving because of abuse/addiction isn’t as clearcut, obviously*

          • LisaTwaronite

            I’m not divorced — just living apart from my husband because of his job. So I don’t “saddle the break up of [my] marriage to the desires of [my] children,” and I suggest you read my entire comments before making such assumptions. Thanks!

          • Barbara Fryman

            I completely misunderstood that you were separated for good. Clearly there is more to your story than, “I didn’t want to go again, so when the kids didn’t either, I used that as a reason to leave him.” I apologize.

            The “If the parents aren’t happy, the kids aren’t happy.” statement made me crazy because I have too many peers who use that as a reason to break apart their family. I have had a priest tell me (not in regard to my marriage), that joy is something we need to cultivate regardless of our circumstances. I mostly agree with him.

          • $1028912

            I think to a certain extent that’s true — but on the other hand, I can think of plenty of reasons why some (not all, just some) marriages are better off ending, in extreme situations involving abuse, conflict, criminal behavior, etc. And as I said above…..if the adults are in such an unhappy situation, then the kids are unhappy, too, and it is better to extricate them instead of trying to salvage the idea of an intact family, when the reality of it is not the best option.
            I suppose there are “bad” reasons and “good” reasons for a marriage to end — but this is always going to be subjective, not objective. Even in my own family’s case, where the separation is temporary and due to many complicated factors, there are people who want me to know that I made the “bad” choice, in their opinion.

      • echarles1

        My wife is the youngest child of a divorce. She is of the “it’s better they split up” camp. However, her older sister spilled her guts to me about how painful it all was. The word she used over and over to describe her parents was “selfish.” Her mom even took her to divorced parents social groups where the sister was expected to tell the assembled how great their post divorce life was. The sister hated it but she lied (to the group and I guess to her mom) to please her mom. To this day I do not think her mom would believe the truth.

        • Barbara

          I was taken to family and school counsellors. But I never had the language to really articulate how painful it was, and it seems like the therapists, my parents and their whole generation and culture were busy propagating these memes to keep us from feeling how hurt we were. “If mom’s happy, the kids will be happy” “you can still have a close relationship with your father even though you don’t live in the same house” “some people are just better off apart.” “It’s better to come from a broken home than live in one.” They created a muddy bog of squishy new age psychobabble and weasel words to keep us from recognizing that what they had done was wrong. It was self-centered. It was child sacrifice without the obsidian knives or bronze furnaces. It was clean enough so they could pretend it was good. But it wasn’t, not really. Kids bind parents to each other, and nothing undoes that bind, not divorce and not self-delusion

      • Quittin’ time at Tara!

        Word. And I would rather just have a messy divorce than an “amicable” one. An “amicable” divorce is just a divorce that you lie about. So, not only are you causing your kids to suffer, but you weave a fiction preventing them from expressing pain, so you’ll be spared seeing the pain you caused. EVERY divorce is a mess. “Conscious Uncoupling” is just another name for adults putting kids dead last.

      • LisaTwaronite

        Ironically, your name is the same as my mother’s!

        I’m sorry for your pain, which is palpable.

        I’m not sure you read my comment in its entirety, or you would have noticed that in my case, my children also didn’t want to go with their father to his latest job posting, so I didn’t exactly “auction off [my] children’s happiness.”

        The reason I commented on this post at all was to say that there are other reasons for families to live apart — not all of them involve divorce.

        But it also struck a nerve in my own life, because I’m a single mother by choice (or should I say, by default choice, since my first choice would have been for my partner to switch jobs and stay put). Even now, a year after his transfer, I still have people giving me their unsolicited opinions that they think I made a bad decision in refusing to go with him. And yet, I can’t say I have any regrets, and would do it again in a heartbeat.

        • Barbara

          I’m sorry, I misread your post. I don’t know why I thought you were the one who had left in order to pursue a career. I still very much disagree with your philosophy that personal happiness more important than keeping the family together. Happiness waxes and wanes, and job opportunities come and go. It sounds like your spouse was more interested in his happiness. I honestly wonder why you would nurse the very same philosophy that lead to your family breaking up. I am not totally angry with my mother. I have been in bad places in my marriage and I can empathize with her. What I rage against is that boomer philosophy which puts personal fulfillment above all else. That did as much damage to my family as anything my mom or dad did.

          • LisaTwaronite

            Ha, I agree my spouse should have changed jobs! But in his defense, he has a career position working for his country’s government. As I said in another comment here, he finds meaning & fulfillment serving his country — and it’s a country that has a tradition of lifetime employment (which is changing lately, but is still culturally ingrained). He believes he’s doing the best thing for his family by sticking to his stable, meaningful career — in fact, he would probably earn more money in the private sector, but he thinks some things are more important than money. And now that the kids are all older, he expects them to understand this.

            I’m sorry for your personal situation, it does sound rough. Mine isn’t quite the same — it’s not ideal, but as I said, I think I’ve picked the best option out of all the less-than-ideal choices.

        • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

          I have a real inkling that I should be making the opposite comment. A good father sacrifices his career for his children. I’ve spent *years* unemployed rather than move for my career, because I know the support system for my intellectually disabled child is one of the best in the country right here.

          • LisaTwaronite

            There are many ways to be a good father. It certainly sounds as if you are one.

      • defiant12314

        Spot on

    • Katy Chung

      I don’t think the author of this is saying that physical proximity is paramount to being a good parent. You can maintain a strong relationship when you don’t live together or near each other.

      • LisaTwaronite

        That’s very true — when people have said to me, “So you’re okay with your kids growing up without a father?” I remind them, they DO have a father, and he is a good one, whether he’s at the dinner table or 6,000 miles away.

      • Barbara

        That’s another of those boomer lies. No you can’t. It’s exceedingly difficult and requires a constant effort that gets progressively more and more difficult as the years go on. There is an entropy in relationships as in everything else. When your dad is in your house, the relationship is a natural part of everyday life, and his lived, experienced presence is a guard against that entropy.

        • LisaTwaronite

          I would say, there’s truth to both statements. Maintaining close ties over distance is definitely possible but it is exceedingly difficult, and does require constant effort. And there’s nothing that matches the natural closeness of everyday contact.

  • Katherine

    I just wanted to add that parents don’t need to physically leave to be absent from their child’s life and make them feel unlovable. There are multiple ways to send that same message.

  • Robert Duff

    Awesome piece. I vaguely remember the episode and your take is right on point. I got an eat full from my sisters about our father about him not being there for them and some other stuff involving his treatment of me. Much like what Will said I told them it just made me a better father. For a breif moment I was a single dad but I kind of made sure she stay connected to her mother during that time. In any case, real nice piece and well timed on my case. Thanks.

  • Quittin’ time at Tara!

    Kat, you are reminding me of Cordelia in Brideshead Revisited:

    Lord Marchmain: “Then I went away – left her in the chapel praying. It was hers. It was the place for her. I never came back to disturb her prayers. They said we were fighting for freedom; I had my own victory. Was it a crime?”

    Cordelia: “I think it was, Papa.”

  • Jen

    My husband’s ex does everything in her power to keep him from his son;
    it’s truly disgusting (oh, and by “in her power” I mean, she inherited
    zillions of dollars a few years ago and her mother is a social worker
    and she up and left and moved back home to a state that doesn’t enforce this state’s
    child visitation agreements). He calls and talks to him as often as she
    allows and attempts to see him (unsuccessfully), but really, she drove
    him broke in the child custody battle, and he’d pretty much need to pony
    up $4K, minimum, for a lawyer here to even take the case and then go to court every single time and
    that’s a bit more than a person can deal with. So, you know, it’s not
    necessarily for lack of trying.

    What’s hilarious is, now that the kid is getting a bit older, he’s starting to call her on her BS (she monitors their phone calls and has code words for “get off the phone” or interjects her own comments on matters they’re discussing, like whether they had hamburgers or pasta for dinner or if he went to horseback riding lessons or Boy Scouts on Tuesday–it’s very much “control the narrative” in a manner formerly attributed to Pravda…or maybe MSNBC).

    I have more lunatic stories about her, but I think she stalks me on the Internets. It hurts my husband very much, so it’s painful for both of them. He’s hoping one day he can have a relationship with him when he’s old enough to be a little more autonomous.

    • tt

      And stories like that are why this rant is unnecessarily hurtful. My brother has spent his son’s entire life in your husband’s position. His ex has done absolutely everything in her power to keep their child away from him and no one protects the rights of fathers when that happens. I also know of a family where a very young mother who emigrated to be with her husband was forced out of her child’s life by her husband’s parents. They convinced their son to divorce her and convinced her she had no right to her child. They threatened and coerced her and lied to her about the laws of this country. If she were to read this, these many years later, her heart would be broken over something that was not her fault. Powerful people with money, connections and an understanding of the system conspired to deny a penniless and naive young woman her child. She is not to blame.

  • defiant12314

    I know what its like when dad runs off, even as in my case he remained local and therefore we saw him once or twice a week. I remember I would defend him end over end for years until I finally realised that he was simply selfish.

    Fortunately by chance or providence I met an American Religious Priest (I live in England) who has sort of filled in for the past 4 years. I’ve only spent about 13 weeks in his company (at the monastery) in those 4 years, but he’s shown me more fatherly affection in that time than my biological Father has in nearly 26 years.

  • Charles

    If we all want (another word for “hell”) to dwell in blame-gaming as an expiation for how screwed up all our lives have become, then bring on the zombies.
    Kat, there’s no magic or Christian bullet for making “Is everybody HAPPY?” guaran-freaking-teed in this life.
    And guess what? The symbolic or attested presence of Jesus in the household in a generation of honest believers and practioners of the Faith and Church doesn’t mitigate the next generations’ severest encounters with “shit happens.”
    My wife and I, forty plus years, three great daughters, two grandsons, all loving, but moreso honest, and there won’t ever come a “bread and roses” period that gives respite to the soul.
    Advice? “Tell them you love them everyday.” Not bad.
    Teach them you love them everyday more than your own life, but you (I, they) must love Jesus and His Father even more, much better advice.

  • http://shyanguya.wordpress.com/ @FMShyanguya

    ‘If my father and mother desert me, the LORD will care for me still.’ (Ps 27:10)
    or
    Though father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me.
    PS ‘For the Father loves the Son [...]‘. (Jn 5:20). The ‘why’ of the pain. A child is wired to expect that it is the fruit of its parents’ love and that its parents love it.

  • JohnE_o

    Not forgotten, because some hurts… well, as you can see, still illicit strong emotional reactions.

    I’m pretty sure you meant elicit there.

  • JohnE_o

    Part of growing up is coming to terms with the fact that not everyone is going to live up to your expectations. It’s unfortunate, but that’s life.


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