In his own words.

I want to share an email with you all. This is an email that was sent to me the day my father lost it with me in his car. The day he drove me home from a bachelorette/hen party and interrogated me in the car. The day he bullied and screamed at me that I was a selfish, inconsiderate daughter. The day I saw him last before he revealed he had terminal lung cancer.
This is his actual and very revealing email to me later that day. In many ways he seems to come across as polite but look deeper and you can see the truth in his meaning. It is a critique for all intents purpose. He really despised me didn’t he. I was thirty years old when I received this email.
Babitago
The computer can play the COPD DVD as you suggested and I have managed to watch some very useful information.  I have been quite ill since last 6/7 weeks including yesterday and today and out of mental weakness I, like any other father, sought some assistance from a daughter.  I should not have been so harsh with you when you refused  point blank as I also realise that you are not that strong either to offer a helping hand specially with some tasks planned ahead.  I withdraw all the harsh words I said out of frustration and would like to let you know that except momentary lapses (these are bad, there should not be any justification for them) I always love you and you can ask me for anything I can do for you, I will do them gladly and do not expect anything in return.  It is also useful to remember that human beings can never live exclusively for themselves by themselves.  To be strong and face all the problems of life successfully each of us need a reliable, committed and faithful circle of people around, that includes spouses and blood family to prop each other up at a time of need.  You will realise these more as you grow older and wiser.  Also, it’s worth noting that friends are here today gone tomorrow, being many years on this planet I have seen that they are mostly ‘fair weather friends’.  You cannot rely on them as much as you can on your father.
I am going to get a SATNAV and will gladly drive you to Harlow.
This letter do not carry any anger or malice.  You do not need to reply to this but if you do I hope it will be a nice one.
Lots of love.
Daddy xx

2013: A review January – March.

Ten more days to go until the first day of 2014. Once again, another year of my life has flown by and I am looking back on quite a year. This time however, I get to look back and share it with a new group of people: my WordPress followers, readers and fellow bloggers. What a year it has been. Lets look back together.

JANUARY

On the 6th of January, I decided to begin a blog on WordPress. It was a dangerous and risky decision. It would expose a life I had hidden from many people for over fifteen years. It would reveal truths some people would rather not know. It would portray a man (who many trusted) to be an evil, ruthless, callous and hurtful father who destroyed his daughter’s soul. It would be my story, a story that provoked people I had not seen for years. People who felt it was necessary to “warn” me and give their advice. They made it clear that I should keep my personal life “private” and that I might “hurt people”. I made it clear back that I had not set out to hurt anyone. It was much more than that. It was closure. It was freedom. It was truth. It would be a chance to speak and finally be heard. It would be the best decision I had ever made (bar leaving him of course).

FEBRUARY

On the 4th of February I celebrated five years together with David. We set our anniversary from our first kiss. It was a moment that changed my life. Gone were the men who used me and took advantage of my loyal nature. A new man had walked into my life. Little did I know that day he would make me as happy as he does now.

During this month, I received an abundance of support from old school friends and past colleagues about the blog over Facebook. I was taken aback from their kind words and blown away by their words of encouragement. It meant so much to know that there was no judgement, that people could see into my past and believe it, acknowledge it and most of all – accept it.

MARCH

I celebrated my 31st birthday on the 2nd. David took me to a South African restaurant in Central London for dinner. It was decadent and adventurous. I felt a little out of my comfort zone but enjoyed it nonetheless. Unfortunately, the food didn’t sit well within me and after a day I began to have horrific stomach pains. Within moments I was nauseous and lying over the bathroom toilet. I thought I had food poisoning but it was a severe case of gastric flu. The week after my birthday was spent at home ill. To top it off, my virus passed onto David who joined me for most of the week holed up in bed. Well Happy Birthday to me!

On WordPress I recounted the triggers that remind me of my father and his abuse. Fruit, movies, plastic knives and forks, making beds and self-help books were the entries I made in March, they continued into April with Furniture stores and Toothpicks and table manners. These triggers still happen. If I see certain objects or hear a particular piece of music, if I visit a particular place or even hear a phrase he might have said; it propels me back to a specific time where life was frightening and upsetting every day. I become emotional very quickly and find it difficult to calm down. A panic attack can be the worst reaction to one of my triggers.

March was the month where a colleague questioned my “motives” for writing this blog. She accused me of taking “revenge” on my dead father. That it was unkind and unfair to do so. It surprised me that she could not empathise with my situation nor could she understand my reasons for revealing my truths. I was annoyed by it. I did not feel I should have to justify my choices and actions to her. She did not know my father. She had not met him. She only had her morals and principles and values to go on. I have morals. I have principles and values too. That is an important part of why I decided to do this, because of my values and principles. I would not be following them if I hid away and “forgave” him for all the hurt and pain he caused.

Dead or not, the truth will always shine through.

Pregnancy pressures.

David and I have been married now for 18 months. We made a conscious decision that we would try to enjoy a bit of our life together before bringing in a new life to share ours with. These last 18 months however have not been the most enjoyable and life has thrown almost every stress our way. We are under pressure and exhausted. Career, home and family have all played their part in this. The thought of a baby joining this stress is unheard of to me. 

My husband is broody. People all around us seem to be falling pregnant. His family and friends are having the kind of experiences he longs for. The only problem is that he has a wife who wants to wait. I’m not saying forever. I just want to feel right. Not in circumstance, but in myself. I’m sure I’ll know when that will be. 

I’ve always wanted children. I love them, hell, I even work with them! However, surprisingly, in the last few years I have even questioned whether or not I could see myself as a mother. 

It’s only been 14 months since I’ve been free. I feel like I should focus on myself. Of course I get the habitual comment, “you don’t want to leave it too late!” or “it’ll be your turn next!”. Nightmare. Give me a chance! It’s quite a private subject to interrogate someone on yet people target you if you’re married and ‘childless’ with free will.

I suppose it is expected.

I just hate the pressure, it only adds to the stress and I doubt having that will help conceiving!  

Still afraid to tell the truth.

I bumped into someone today on the way home from work. It was a pleasant surprise to see them as we hadn’t met up for over a year.

She asked after my father (she knew from a brief conversation late last year that he’d died) to see how I was feeling. I said I was coping when she asked if it was “difficult”.

Yes, it is ‘difficult’ but for the opposite reasons that you are thinking of. Yet, this is not something I would ever dare to say out loud to most people. I am still too frightened to admit the truth about my father.

It doesn’t help that most people I have come across either have a loving relationship with their dad or their father is the most caring individual in the world. The other thing that doesn’t help is if their dedicated, loving father has also passed away.

Whilst I’m silently screaming with joy and relief, their world has been torn apart. To even mention that somewhere, in the big wide world, there are actual men out there terrorising their children, abusing and demoralising them, mentally ripping their hearts to pieces. It is unimaginable for these people to perceive that any father could set out to deliberately hurt or wound their child. My father was one of those men. He lived life torturing me. He gained enjoyment from seeing me suffer. The emotional scars that filled me were his sadistic rewards.

This is why, in certain situations, I have to gloss over the truth.

I can’t be open and honest in case it upsets them or worse, they question me. I think I hate that the most. I do not expect to have to defend myself to you over a man you have never met. A man that has scarred me for life. Just because that lowlife was graced with the title – FATHER, it never actually made him one. He was never a father in any sense of the word.

Since starting the blog, I have been questioned, judged and even interrogated by friends – new and old, colleagues and even total strangers.

It happened. He did it.

I should not have to justify my abuse.

I want to feel free to tell the truth.

The boss of me.

I have to be honest here. I lack majorly when it comes to standing up for myself. If questioned, I feel backed into a corner. I hesitate, show anxiety, panic and doubt myself if questioned in a bossy way. My father was so demanding and his level of questioning was always challenging towards me. He made me feel like no answer would satisfy him and that nothing would appease the situation.

When challenged by my peers now, I react similarly to the way I did with my father. I do not like to be bossed yet I respond well to clear and respectful orders or requests. I notice it the most in a working environment. No matter where I have worked through my career, it has always been the same. I appreciate being talked to not talked at. I appreciate communication and cooperation. It makes for an easier life. I am not good at second guessing or acting on assumption, I like to know in advance and feel prepared for something. Of course, this doesn’t mean I can’t be spontaneous. I just leave that for the other parts of my life. At work however, I want to know where I should be and what I should be doing. 

My father was always the boss of me. 

He gave himself that role and I allowed him to have it.

Thursday will be an important day with an important post. It will be exactly one year that I watched my father’s body be cremated. It will be a time to look back on what I consider to be the most surreal moment of my life.

It was a hellish day, an upsetting day and most of all, a very revealing day.

It was my father’s funeral.