Father’s Day isn’t as complicated for me as Mother’s Day, but it’s not without it’s caveat.
My father didn’t actively participate in the abuse my mother dished out, but he also didn’t do much to stop it either. My therapist has called it “passive abuse” which in essence is what it was. All the excuses of “well it’s just your mother” etc etc were hurtful in a different way, although at a somewhat lesser degree than the direct abuse from my mother. While it’s less difficult to “celebrate” my father’s roll in my life it’s not something I want to pass on to my children.
It took a while to come to terms with it, but in essence Hubs and I are orphans building our own family systems and legacies from scratch. We both came from broken homes with boat loads of abuse cycled down through the family. We’ve done our best to break that cycle for our own children, but in doing so we’ve somewhat alienated the rest of our families. It happens when you begin to grow and mature beyond the pain and broken coping mechanisms.
Doing this, while over all positive, has left a void of influence in our lives. Most people when raising their own children bump into a situation that crosses new territory and think to themselves: “what would my parents do?” And if you have a healthy relationship with your parents that’s a wonderful thing! In my case, as I look back and think: “what would my parents do?” the answer is often unhealthy which leaves me nowhere to turn for advice outside of the communities I’ve built for myself, or books, or other figures of inspiration.
The search for this inspiration has taken me some interesting places over the years. Humanity is inherently flawed and no one is perfect, but my little collection of wisdom and tiny moments patch-worked together has become/is becoming a solid foundation for my children.