“I’m really proud of you”

Are five words I have never heard from my parents. 

My father never saw anything I did as an achievement. I never made him proud. He saw me as “scum” and “fungus” so how could I ever make him proud? I tried; constantly. At home with chores, making sure I was focused and met his demanding standards, sometimes I attempted to outdo them, I rarely succeeded. Even if I did, he always found something to attack. There was always room for wrong.

I would go out of my way to cook for him, often creating exciting meals for him to try. This would only led to criticism however. 

“There isn’t enough salt in here is there?” or “Is this all you’ve made?”

I just couldn’t please him.

If I landed a good job his only comment would be, “Good”. 

‘Good’ for god’s sake, that’s all I got! 

My mother, growing up, only witnessed my sister’s achievements and my lord were there hundreds of those (!) Her achievements were flaunted and put on exhibition – mine were neglected and buried. They weren’t anything in comparison to hers. 

My mother has praised me on my ability to deal with things. Although I would class myself as sensitive and in touch with my emotions, I would not call myself emotional. My sister was and is emotional, allowing her feelings (especially negative) to control her actions although in no way would she ever describe herself as this. I tend to look at situations more calmly. I always have done. It just helps to cope.

I’ll never know if my father was proud of anything I did. Perhaps it’s better that way.