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#438342 - 06/16/13 04:10 AM Father's Day
Jude Offline


Registered: 08/09/12
Posts: 1489
Loc: New England
For those of us who had negative experiences with our own fathers, ranging from absence to abuse, Father's Day is an event we'd rather skip altogether. I have just one happy memory of my father. I must have been less than 5 years old, one summer night, laying on a chaise lounge with him in the backyard, looking up at the moon. He was telling me about the man in the moon and singing some little song about it. His strong arm was around me and I felt safe and loved...like I mattered. I never felt that way with him again.

With my own children, I wanted to out-father him. I wanted to be present for them. I wanted them to have memories of me like that ONE I had, but many more of them to look back on. I started out with the best of intentions, but as I sank into depression, alcoholism, and worse, those intentions went out the window. I became my father. The father no one could count on. The one that embarrassed them, that they couldn't bring their friends home because of.

As I've recovered, I've been able to make amends to them, to try to forge new realtionships with them. Its always an uphill battle to repair the damage I've done in my life, at the same time that I'm trying to repair the damage done to me.

So in my world, Father's Day isn't about me, its about my kids. Its about trying to be the best father, guide, teacher, preacher, etc. that I can, even at this late stage. Its about giving them memories of us together that will make them feel safe, loved....and like they matter, long after I'm gone. They deserve that. I hope that its never to late to be a dad.

Jude
_________________________
"But now old friends are acting strange,
they shake their heads, they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained in living every day
....it's life's illusions I recall, I really don't know life at all. "
Joni Mitchell

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#438343 - 06/16/13 04:23 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: Jude]
Jacob S Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/01/13
Posts: 592
The concept of healthy fatherhood is like a tale from a distant land for me. Like stories of platypuses and kangaroos to someone who has never seen them. It sounds incredible but so unlikely. I'm glad it does exist. Nothing in my own experience would lead me to that conclusion, so I'll just have to believe other people when they say it does happen. My health issues (physical and mental) make it unlikely that it'll ever be a good idea for me to be a parent. My own father wasn't my abuser but he was an emotionally/mentally sick man who couldn't or wouldn't connect me with on any level. People told me for years that if I had a bad relationship with him, it was my fault and I just needed to "honor" him more.

So long story short, yeah: I'm skipping Father's Day this year. I'm glad you have been able to find a new meaning for it.
_________________________
Like a spent gladiator
crawling in the colosseum dust
who can count on his remaining limbs
all the people he can trust.
Like the one who stands behind him
cheering him on
Estatic when he stands defiant,
wild with abandon when he's gone

just stay alive.
do whatever you need to.
you are worth it.

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#438348 - 06/16/13 08:03 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: Jacob S]
LonelyFarmBoy Offline


Registered: 06/08/13
Posts: 23
Loc: Nebraska
Fathers Day is one of the hardest days of the year for me. I never knew or had a father. In school everyone would make cards for their dads and I'd feel so left out. I had no one to give mine to. I still feel that emptiness deep inside me even today. Maybe that's why I fantasize about men. Some of you have become like a father to me on here which is nice. But I crave the real thing. I always have since I was a kid. So to ne who is a dad I envy that. To ne one who has a dad I crave that. Happy Fathers Day Dad whoever u are.

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#438349 - 06/16/13 08:25 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: Jude]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3322
Loc: somewhere in Africa
yup, i've always HATED Fathers Day - reminded me that i'd lost my real father and that the step-one was abusive - in so many ways.
today was a surprise - when my wife said "Happy Fathers Day" - my first thought was of myself as a father - NOT of either of the others. THAT was a wonderful surprise - when i realized it. i think it might be progress...
lee
_________________________
As my life goes on I believe somehow something's changed
Something deep inside...
I've been searchin so long to find an answer
Now I know my life has meaning
Now I see myself as I am, feeling very free...
When my tears have come to an end I will understand
What I left behind: a part of me. Chicago


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#438350 - 06/16/13 08:26 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: Jude]
newground Offline
Chatroom Moderator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 10/11/11
Posts: 749
Loc: michigan
hey lonely
thanks for the wishes, but I feel like I need to share one thing my dad was in the house, he went to work and all did his dad thing I suppose but it was so much like he wasn't even there. i try to not share too much about him because well, it hurts me. and I feel the same longing that you do. I have made a life and raised two kids now,with the goal of being the father I wished I had,
at least as much as possible. my dad was not my perp,he was just a man who lived in our house. and I so wish I had been able to have with him what I have with my kids. I know its not the same as just not having a dad at all man I would never make light of your pain, I just thought maybe let you know you are not alone.
_________________________
Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee. let me then tow to pieces, while still chasing thee, thou damned whale! Thus, I give up the spear!"
Herman Melville

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#438351 - 06/16/13 08:33 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: Jude]
newground Offline
Chatroom Moderator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 10/11/11
Posts: 749
Loc: michigan
Oh my, I just went to my face book and found this posted on my wall im in tears i dont know if I should post it here but so many have said like me they try to be the dad they didn't know heres hope:

Dear dad:
Today is fatherís day, a day to celebrate good Dads, if thatís true than there is no one who we should be celebrating more than you. You havenít just been a good dad you have been the best. Throughout the years I have thought hard on just how great a dad you were, and are. I've thought about how you taught me to have a relationship with Jesus, and how that has made my life bearable, and joyful, and worthwhile. I thought about all the early mornings you get up, and drive to a job where they appreciate you far less than I have always known you deserve. I've thought about how you have been a dad even a daddy, not just a father. I have thought about the gifts of free thinking, the love of knowledge, (and most importantly) humor that you've given me. You have always been present, not just in the sense of placement, but involved in all those little, now, insignificant situations of childhood, as well as in ones of more importance throughout my years. You have always with the help of God (and mom I guess) kept me warm, loved, fed, and safe.
We read a story in high school, about the point where you stop seeing your dad as a hero, and start seeing him as a man. I donít remember the title but I do remember that I didn't know what it felt like, I still saw you as a hero. In fact until recently I've seen you as a superdad and therefore a superman. I thought you knew everything, and could do anything. But when I finally realized that you aren't superman, but a normal human like everyone else, I thought that your achievements were even more spectacular. After all, itís expected of a superman to be perfect, but here is this normal everyday guy being a perfect dad even with all his troubles, scars and hurts. I think that without them, you probably wouldn't be as great as you are now. I've always come to you with my troubles, and because you have had your own, you can help me with mine. Now that I've grown, itís harder to put what I feel into words, probably because we adults tend to try and over complicate our feelings. As children when we are sad we can just say we are sad, but as adults we think it is all so much more deep than that and by putting it in such simple words will somehow lessen what we feel. I pray that you really grasp what Iím trying to say to you in this today and that is that Iím convinced that there has never been, nor will there ever be, a better dad on this planet than you. So thank you Dad, Daddy, Papa, Abba, お父さん and every other way there is to say father.

Happy Fatherís day I love you.

Love: your son
_________________________
Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee. let me then tow to pieces, while still chasing thee, thou damned whale! Thus, I give up the spear!"
Herman Melville

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#438352 - 06/16/13 08:40 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: newground]
LonelyFarmBoy Offline


Registered: 06/08/13
Posts: 23
Loc: Nebraska
Thanks. You sound like a good Dad.

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#438353 - 06/16/13 08:48 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: Jude]
Confuzzed Offline


Registered: 05/30/13
Posts: 39
Loc: South Carolina, USA
Growing up I always had the strangest and most elaborate imagination. Father's Day was just a day for me to exercise and test my imaginative capabilities. I'd pretend my life was normal. I'd fantasize that my dad was there with me instead of being in prison. In these fantasies he was incredible. So loving and playful and affectionate and protective. I felt safe in my imagination. It served to not only connect me with positive, albeit fabricated, notions of my father but it also was a means of escape from my horribly abusive home environment with my mother and step father. I remember being as young as 7, locking myself in my room on Father's Day with a father's day card I had stolen from Wal-Mart and I'd just sit around the entire day running this perfect fantasy through my mind of having a normal Father's Day with a normal father who loved me.

As I got older my imagination began to weaken and I got jealous. My little brother was born when I was 10 years old. He grew up being the perfect son my mom always wanted. I watched him get showered with love and affection and gifts from her and my stepfather. He was perfect in their eyes. For some reason I wasn't worthy of that love. It got to the point where I couldn't pretend anymore. I couldn't ignore the reality that I was alone. And I went from actually liking Father's Day as a 7 year old to hating it as a teenager.

Now that my father is back in my life (probably temporarily...searching for the strength to let him go) Father's Day has a different feel to it. This morning I was actually able to tell my father happy Father's Day. I know most of you won't understand because of the things that my dad did to me when I was little, but it felt good to finally say that to my father. Idk maybe I'm just fucked up...that's probably it. Anyway, I feel like I'm rambling, sorry guys.
_________________________
Aiden

-Nothing haunts us like the things we don't say-

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#438354 - 06/16/13 09:08 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: Jude]
newground Offline
Chatroom Moderator
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 10/11/11
Posts: 749
Loc: michigan
hey confused
you are not fucked up at all in those feelings. as boys we NEED our dads. a step can sometimes do a good job, but it has been proven that there is some kind of biological drive that draws us back to our birth fathers. even when they are not all that they might be. I am glad for you to have the chance to say it man. we all need to... maybe I will today
_________________________
Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee. let me then tow to pieces, while still chasing thee, thou damned whale! Thus, I give up the spear!"
Herman Melville

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#438358 - 06/16/13 09:42 AM Re: Father's Day [Re: Jacob S]
ksequoia Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/16/11
Posts: 92
Loc: NYC
My feelings exactly. And then some, because my old man was the abuser - in every sense of the word. I'm glad I don't have kids. Always wanted them, but knew better.

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