Father I’m stumbling again

My life

Is in pieces…

I used to go to bible study every week and see my friends…
I pored my my life into my marriage and its in shambles..
My children are all gone..
I spend most of my time alone..
This is an email I received from my mom this morning. My heart is broken for her. I can’t imagine why everything she loved and built her life around has been taken away from her. I can’t understand why my dad doesn’t love her anymore. She’s no different than she was. She is such a beautiful, talented, wise, kind, and caring woman. I don’t know why he can’t even try.
It breaks my heart because those angry feelings start rising in side of me again. I can see the anxiety that I grew up with.
I can see my dad yelling whenever I made a mistake. I can still feel the painful hurt of realizing I can never be perfect enough for him to love me.  And somehow that’s the worst thing of all. My father. Who I admire so much. It kills me that my best will never be enough. And my mom’s best. And my sister’s best.
But then I can see what a good father he was.
He grew up in a family with so much sadness and instability. He was beaten and yelled at, and never looked after, or cared for. I can see the pain in him that still lingers, and I hate it because he isn’t the type of person who will talk about it. So how can I be mad at a man who has been through so much, and given me and my sisters a safe home–even if it wasn’t perfect at times?
I feel so heavy. I can feel all the confusion and anger, and frustration and sadness weighing down on me. I can feel my mom’s pain as acutely as I feel my own. I can feel my father’s pain. I can feel his depression. I can feel his anger. All welling up inside of me.
What can I do? I have learned that I shouldn’t take on their sadness and try to fix it. People have told me I am not responsible for it. But I can hear so many people crying. I can feel their sadness. Isn’t it heartless if I don’t even try?

17 thoughts on “Father I’m stumbling again

  1. Aw, wow, that’s so tough to read. I think all you can do is be there… for your mum… for your dad… to love them and make sure that they know that. Obviously, you’re not responsible for this but that doesn’t mean that you don’t feel the pain deeply, or that you don’t feel some of the responsibility. Know that it’s not your fault and try to be supportive and open with the people that you really love.

    • I think you’re right. Thank you for saying that. I find it hard not to take responsibility for how people feel. But this isn’t my fault, so all I can do is tell them both I love them.I think the main thing i need to work on it being open. me and my dad have never had an open relationship and now it seems to be deteriorating all together. I think the only way for us both to have a relationship again is to be open and talk. so thank you so much. I hope my dad will want to and accept me when we do have those conversations. Thank you for your support!

      love emma

  2. I guess it’s hard to distance yourself and not take it on when it’s your own parents. Probably the only thing you can do is to listen and be emotionally present, right?

  3. I agree with beautifulorange, this post was really difficult to read. You write so beautifully and poignantly, you really allow your readers to share in your pain. You should keep writing, it’s so therapeutic to get your words onto a page and I’m sure this blog is helping hundreds of other people at the same time. Writing is such good therapy.

    • Thank you so much. It is hard to write about this stuff. But I do hope that it will provide clearity both to myself and to someone else who might be going through something similar. I think what beatifulorange touched on was something that can help in any realationship. That in order to be accepted and loved for who you are, you have to be open. And I haven’t had the courage to do that till now. I hope I will be brave.
      Thank you! you are so kind

      love emma

  4. Half the battle is knowing your parent’s history. You know what your dad to live through. Your dad may not have received the help he needed to work through the abuse, so he’s doing what he saw even though he knows it hurt him he felt. Not making excuses for his actions, but could it be that he does not know a more healthy way of handling his anger and hurt? If they are open to it, counseling might be of benefit for your dad and for your mom. The most important thing is that you know that you are not the cause of his pain. Continue to love him and your mom, but do what you need to take care of yourself first.

    I’m sharing this with you because I’ve been in similar parental situation with my mother. I spent years wondering what I did wrong with no answers until I was fortunate enough to find a wonderful therapist. The right therapist can unlock so many doors. I finally accept that she was and still is grappling with her childhood abuse and none of how she treated me was my fault. My world opened up and got brighter when my therapist helped me realize that. I wish the same “brightness” and healing for you and your family.

    • wow, thank you. I really admire you and am thankful to you for sharing that. I find it so hard to battle the feelings of anger towards him and then sadness at what he has experience that it can get so confusing that i just want to shut down and not think about it. that’s why i wrote this. i thought it would help to just finally say it. That it’s hard. I am overwhelmed with amazment at your story and i wish only good things for you and your family. I hope for healing my family as well. Thank you so much! you have truly brightened my feeling towards the situation. I need to forgive and love.

  5. I agree, beautifully written and painful to read. When I think about other people hurting and wonder what I could or should do..or should not do…It is truly hard to know isn’t it? I think about what I wanted/needed in my lowest times. I didn’t want pity. I just wanted people to care, and show that they cared, by listening to me. Just listen, I didn’t want them to give advice, I wanted them to trust me to work it out. Just sit by my side and be my friend. Perhaps, that is what your mother needs–no advice, no pity, just caring and listening.

  6. Romans 12:15, “Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.” You don’t have to fix it to love on and hurt with someone.

  7. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18 We all have to do our own work. You have to do yours, your mom has to do hers and your dad has to do his. We cannot help others until we are strong enough in Christ to stand under the pressure of fear, guilt and shame. Be strong, dear one. Find help for yourself so you can point to help for your mom.

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