I'm so mad... and sad right now...

I'm so mad... and sad right now...

MO-Survivor

Greeter
Staff member
Man, this last week has been hard.

I grieved the passing of @Darren White last week. He was so full of love - especially for adult survivors and the abused boys living inside them. I think he would have done anything to rescue those boys in us because he quite literally tried to rescue some boys he was held captive with and paid for it dearly for the rest of his life.

Then, last night, I logged onto Facebook and saw a post by the wife of a friend I have known since Kindergarten. She was making a positive tribute to her husband and that's what I thought her post was at first. He and I moved elementary schools in 2nd grade together, went to junior high and high school together, and he even lived a floor below me in the same dorm in college. We played youth football together in the 5th grade, and had a year together playing youth baseball as well. He and I reconnected on Facebook years back. This friend was not a survivor of abuse that I know of, but was a hugely positive influence on many, many people; on everyone who knew him. He died earlier this week of colon cancer - and never let on that he was even sick. He left behind kids who are still in school. He died way too young at 55, and had so much more life to live. I cried when I realized her post was actually a tribute to him because he had died 😭 I'm still tearing up about it.

Before I found out last night about my friend dying, I had decided to be bold, and so I texted my father asking him about the abuse incident when I was 3 years-old. I asked him to tell me what he knew - if he really wanted to help me - and asked some specific questions like: how many times did that happen? where did it happen? who was the man I was "shared" with? His response wasn't helpful, but it wasn't terrible either. He said he doesn't remember doing anything before we moved to our new house when I was 5 years old. But admitted that he might have buried any memory of anything younger. And that he thought there might indeed be something to it because of his own sensitivity earlier this year when he texted me some odd wording about looking forward to being together and "sharing" me with one of his friends. So, his response was actually okay - even though I didn't learn anything new.

However... after he got my text yesterday he apparently turned to my mom and asked her if she could think of anyone it could have been who might have done something like that to me (omitting the active role he might have played in purposely leaving me with another man - knowing what would happen). My mom asked him if she could reply to me - and she actually replied quicker than he did :( Grrr.... Talk about getting on the denial train. She wasn't just on the train... she was driving it. "No - it couldn't have been anyone." She went down the list of friends, neighbors, acquaintances, etc. - all within the context of me at home under her watchful eye. She said she knows she missed a lot (given my father was abusing me under her nose), and was desperate, I think, to try and quell any possibility that I could have been abused under her watch at that young an age.

I responded with the few things I did know - that something did happen at that age, that my feelings and body memories are really big. I mentioned an acquaintance that has come to mind, and I explained that it didn't happen at home. I also threw out the possibility to her that it could be my mind was creating a picture of "good dad," "bad dad," and it was my father and not someone else.

She quickly responded - shooting down every possibility. Away from home - she only thought of vacations and not all the places in the city we lived in. And nothing could have happened then. And the acquaintance I mentioned - it couldn't have been him because, "He was a very straightlaced Lutheran" and "didn't even like us," which we all know means nothing (they had a son a year younger than me who I recall being drawn to when we were only a little older). Sure, she said... I went to preschool at age 3 for one day and refused to go back - but there was only a woman there. And ended by saying that maybe my memory is playing tricks. When all else fails - make sure and call me crazy with a faulty memory, right? And then she texted something after that - changing the subject completely.

There were many things I wanted to say, but instead told her she was trying way too hard to discount every possibility, even though I had even given her another possible explanation. And that we should drop the topic. I hadn't asked her about this in the first place! She said okay, but had to try and drive the nail in even farther - with just one more text to make sure I knew there was no validity to any of this.

I have learned a great deal from all of this over the past couple months:
  • My dad sent something last month and had some of the history of things wrong (not a surprise). He thinks we had a family meeting about the abuse where he told my sisters - when I was 12 (my younger sister would have been 5). Ummm... no. And there's never been a "family" meeting - unless I'm not considered part of the family. When my younger sister was 19 he told both my sisters with my mom there, but I wasn't there. So, no... I had to live with the secret of it all until I was 17 - and he had no accountability to be forced to stop when I was 12-17 except for me (which obviously wasn't much), and he did something when I was 13 as well (he said he may have, "relapsed")
  • If he had told my mom when I was 12, it would have been horrible. My mom would have likely said the same thing to me she did when I was 17: "Sweep it under the rug and move on," and that she didn't want me to talk about it again. I felt so alone as it was - and that would have made me feel even more alone. I might have even been suicidal as a teen if this had happened
  • And if I had been the one to tell my mom at age 12 or age 17 instead of my father, she likely would have denied it altogether like she was doing last night. The defensiveness and self-protection she's been displaying - desperate to believe she didn't fail to keep me safe - would have likely been on full display. And then, like so many here, I would have been fighting just to be believed. I would have not been just alone, but gaslighted more than I already have been
  • I think my father has a lot going on subconsciously under the surface. He's very manipulative, although I don't think he is actually aware of it. Him asking my mom last night what he did... he knew exactly how she would respond. And I'm sure it's why he asked her. He knew she would protect and take care of him - especially after what she's probably been saying and expressing to him the last month about me (lots of anger and angst). My sister described it well last night, saying they have a, "strong, protective codependency."
  • My sister has been the one bright spot through all this. Learning all this has been very hard for her, and she hasn't attempted to step into the fray with all three of us. While my parents know she knows in general about things (from the 1995 "family" meeting - without me), they don't know she knows everything. She's a little surprised they haven't probed at all recently, but I told her there is no way in hell they want to probe or get into things with her too
Essentially, I told myself a lie my whole life, "We're different. We aren't the stereotypical family coping dysfunctionally with sexual abuse." Nice coping mechanism, eh? But we are not different. We never have been. Ugh.

And even more ugh.... I have to mow the yard today. Mowing has become a drag - the sensory deprivation from the noise causes my brain to think on overdrive. And inevitably it's always about all this shit. My emotions go on quite the ride while I'm mowing. Oh well.

Thanks for reading.
 
Mo loss is tough Darren’s passing was a reminder to me how I keep alot of good people at arms length instead of attemting to cultivate a deeper relationship.

Mo I hope you are able to mow today wo being over thoughtful on stuff, I have a mowing playlist of songs that keep my brain occupied and some would say uplifted, but mostly afloat like a life jacket.

Thank you always for your openness, my sbuse was from a friends dad who made me watch as he abused his son and then included me his son abused me to but my heart has always been forgiving of my friend in that situationfor he was a victim to.

Appreciate you shsring your very brave and a hero here to me.
 
I get the feeling of swinging between anger and sadness, especially when dealing with family. I wasn't abused by my parents, but they had similar reactions when I told them as a 19 yo adult, safely out of their care. They were 'shocked', said they had no idea. But my mom caught me on a gay hookup site (Manhunt) at age 15, and watching gay porn several times before that. I got sent on a business trip with my dad overnight after one such incident and he never mentioned any of what had happened during that trip. It was always avoidance and denial. I was known as a crybaby and bedwetter as a child, and had a bad lisp. I was constantly lectured about how men don't cry instead of any sort of curiosity from them as parents. That being said, they are still my parents. I find myself doing things that remind me of them at times, and not everything was terrible growing up. So yea, can definitely swing hard between the two emotions.
 
My sister described it well last night, saying they have a, "strong, protective codependency."
First of all thanks for the link to this post.

I really don't know if I'm qualified or sensitive enough to really express my feelings about this chapter in your life. I'm sorry if I'm off base because you know I never had a real father and mother.

I lived by a next-door neighbor from 3-9 and was abused by them since I was 2. When we moved when I was 9 I was trafficked till I went into the USAF. When I got married at 26 when they talked to my wife they said I was a very sensitive and well-behaved child. They talked about me doing well in high school and they were so proud to be my stepparents. When we would see them there was never any mention or hint of abuse as a child or being trafficked when I was 9 or that I left home when I was 13. I paid with my little ass for four years so I could get a high school diploma. I flunked out of college.

After 37 years of hiding the first 24 years of my life from my wife and family, my past ambushed me and I've been here since 2011. When I tried to bring up the subject of what the neighbors were doing to me my stepmother flatly denied that I ever lived by the neighbors and there was never any abuse - I was lying. When I tried to hint about being abused since we moved, and I went to high school - They denied any abuse and said I was a good student and graduated with high marks. I didn't flunk out of college but rather I dropped out and joined the USAF against their wishes. I was called delusional, making up stories, and now lying about how they gave me a very good life.

My stepmother never called for help or assistance about her disabled husband getting very sick and not calling for help. My wife just happened to be over at their apartment and sensed something was wrong with her husband and called me up. I called paramedics from work and within 10 minutes their apartment was full of EMTs and two paramedics. They got him to the hospital and cleaned up and I came the next day with my wife and kids. His wife was sitting in a chair in the corner of the room.

I had my wife and four of my six kids in the room when he coded. Five nurses came running into the room and sent my family out. Two minutes later the nurses came out. She told them not to resuscitate him. (her husband for 80 years). I didn't bother with her anymore and my wife and kids took care of her until she called APS (Adult Protection Services) and blamed me for not helping her or taking care of her husband. They put her in a home, and I never saw her again. I got reports from the home that her health was failing, and they were sending her to the hospital. I got reports from the hospital and listened to how her ship kept taking on water till it sank. My kids took care of the burial, there was no funeral. I tried over the years to connect but it never happened. (Personally, I don't know why I even tried.)

I tried for years to help them become part of my family, mainly for my grandchildren's sake. No matter how I tried to have her be included in my family, it just never worked.

My question MO is how long does it take and how much anguish does your family have to take before the ship takes on water and disappears?

I know that you had a much different and better relationship with your parents than I did with my stepparents, that's why I have to know if I'm wrong with my post. I would never want to interfere in your life or relationships but I cry seeing you going through all this anguish
If I'm off base or being or being too sanicle please tell me and I'll remove my post.

I'm sorry you're still going through this.

Jeff
 
(((((MO-Survivor)))))

I'm sorry to hear about your friend and I too am still at a loss of words at the loss of Darren

"We're different. We aren't the stereotypical family coping dysfunctionally with sexual abuse."
I've kind of told myself that about my own family my entire life

Mowing has become a drag
A few years back I bought myself a set of those ear muffs that have the radio built in - I can crank tunes while I mow - it has made the chore a whole lot more relaxing
 
(((MO-Survivor)))

I feel for you as you deserve answers to questions and not avoidance which sadly seems to be the norm with the adults back then who knew things.

Loosing two people who were a part of you life in such a shot time frame can bring up a lot of emotions especially with your friend from school at his age and leaving kids behind. You are a very compassionate person which seems to be true for everyone here. The abuse to me I think show how increased our compassion level, maybe cause we were craving it for ourselves.

Essentially, I told myself a lie my whole life, "We're different. We aren't the stereotypical family coping dysfunctionally with sexual abuse." Nice coping mechanism, eh? But we are not different. We never have been.
You are not alone here. Did the same in a way but for me I pushed out all the abuse and dysfunction and in my mind believed we were this great “normal” family. It was not until I move out of the house in my early 20’s did I start to see the dysfunction in the entire family, both sides. Abuse i still had that compartmentalized somehow.

I had decided to be bold, and so I texted my father asking him about the abuse incident when I was 3 years-old. I asked him to tell me what he knew - if he really wanted to help me - and asked some specific questions
You have done a lot in reaching out to your family in particular to your father. It sucks he wont give the answers. I have done this with my mother and she avoids her part and deflected to my grandfather and said how she was having a difficult time with my father at the time. Not what i was asking. I have told myself to give up that I will not get the answers to the questions I have. However I still catch myself at time in particular when in a depressed state wanting to reach out and ask her stuff. It is hard to let it go.

Mowing has become a drag - the sensory deprivation from the noise causes my brain to think on overdrive. And inevitably it's always about all this shit
So much alike. I find sitting there on the riding lawnmower my mind seems to drift in the childhood which can create a vicious thought cycle that can be depressing, triggering or both.

A few years back I bought myself a set of those ear muffs that have the radio built in - I can crank tunes while I mow - it has made the chore a whole lot more relaxing
I need to do this both to keep my mind off stuff plus protect the hearing I have.
 
So much alike. I find sitting there on the riding lawnmower my mind seems to drift in the childhood which can create a vicious thought cycle that can be depressing, triggering or both.
I need to do this both to keep my mind off stuff plus protect the hearing I have.
I gave up cutting grass. EZE PEZE
 
I had decided to be bold, and so I texted my father asking him about the abuse incident when I was 3 years-old. I asked him to tell me what he knew - if he really wanted to help me - and asked some specific questions like: how many times did that happen? where did it happen? who was the man I was "shared" with? His response wasn't helpful, but it wasn't terrible either. He said he doesn't remember doing anything before we moved
Another dead end - I'm truly sorry MO

I also had a bad memory as a kid - "I don't remember" was never far from my lips
 
MO - hey buddy... I'm sorry getting the answers you've so wanted isn't happening the way it ought to. Our problems concerning our fathers seem to be just about opposite. My dad has recently been hinting to my sister that he really wants to see me... but I simply can't right now - and I'm running out of time (he's 83 now and his health is failing)... anyway - I just want you to know you're in my thoughts. I'm always happy when I see you've replied to a post or a PM... Take gentle care.
 
Hey guys… thanks so much for your thoughts, feelings and responses. I’ll write more tomorrow, but I have read and love all you’ve said. We drove all day to visit our daughter for the week. Have a good night!
 
Peace Out✌️🤟

Drive carefully
 
Man, this last week has been hard.

I grieved the passing of @Darren White last week. He was so full of love - especially for adult survivors and the abused boys living inside them. I think he would have done anything to rescue those boys in us because he quite literally tried to rescue some boys he was held captive with and paid for it dearly for the rest of his life.

Then, last night, I logged onto Facebook and saw a post by the wife of a friend I have known since Kindergarten. She was making a positive tribute to her husband and that's what I thought her post was at first. He and I moved elementary schools in 2nd grade together, went to junior high and high school together, and he even lived a floor below me in the same dorm in college. We played youth football together in the 5th grade, and had a year together playing youth baseball as well. He and I reconnected on Facebook years back. This friend was not a survivor of abuse that I know of, but was a hugely positive influence on many, many people; on everyone who knew him. He died earlier this week of colon cancer - and never let on that he was even sick. He left behind kids who are still in school. He died way too young at 55, and had so much more life to live. I cried when I realized her post was actually a tribute to him because he had died 😭 I'm still tearing up about it.

Before I found out last night about my friend dying, I had decided to be bold, and so I texted my father asking him about the abuse incident when I was 3 years-old. I asked him to tell me what he knew - if he really wanted to help me - and asked some specific questions like: how many times did that happen? where did it happen? who was the man I was "shared" with? His response wasn't helpful, but it wasn't terrible either. He said he doesn't remember doing anything before we moved to our new house when I was 5 years old. But admitted that he might have buried any memory of anything younger. And that he thought there might indeed be something to it because of his own sensitivity earlier this year when he texted me some odd wording about looking forward to being together and "sharing" me with one of his friends. So, his response was actually okay - even though I didn't learn anything new.

However... after he got my text yesterday he apparently turned to my mom and asked her if she could think of anyone it could have been who might have done something like that to me (omitting the active role he might have played in purposely leaving me with another man - knowing what would happen). My mom asked him if she could reply to me - and she actually replied quicker than he did :( Grrr.... Talk about getting on the denial train. She wasn't just on the train... she was driving it. "No - it couldn't have been anyone." She went down the list of friends, neighbors, acquaintances, etc. - all within the context of me at home under her watchful eye. She said she knows she missed a lot (given my father was abusing me under her nose), and was desperate, I think, to try and quell any possibility that I could have been abused under her watch at that young an age.

I responded with the few things I did know - that something did happen at that age, that my feelings and body memories are really big. I mentioned an acquaintance that has come to mind, and I explained that it didn't happen at home. I also threw out the possibility to her that it could be my mind was creating a picture of "good dad," "bad dad," and it was my father and not someone else.

She quickly responded - shooting down every possibility. Away from home - she only thought of vacations and not all the places in the city we lived in. And nothing could have happened then. And the acquaintance I mentioned - it couldn't have been him because, "He was a very straightlaced Lutheran" and "didn't even like us," which we all know means nothing (they had a son a year younger than me who I recall being drawn to when we were only a little older). Sure, she said... I went to preschool at age 3 for one day and refused to go back - but there was only a woman there. And ended by saying that maybe my memory is playing tricks. When all else fails - make sure and call me crazy with a faulty memory, right? And then she texted something after that - changing the subject completely.

There were many things I wanted to say, but instead told her she was trying way too hard to discount every possibility, even though I had even given her another possible explanation. And that we should drop the topic. I hadn't asked her about this in the first place! She said okay, but had to try and drive the nail in even farther - with just one more text to make sure I knew there was no validity to any of this.

I have learned a great deal from all of this over the past couple months:
  • My dad sent something last month and had some of the history of things wrong (not a surprise). He thinks we had a family meeting about the abuse where he told my sisters - when I was 12 (my younger sister would have been 5). Ummm... no. And there's never been a "family" meeting - unless I'm not considered part of the family. When my younger sister was 19 he told both my sisters with my mom there, but I wasn't there. So, no... I had to live with the secret of it all until I was 17 - and he had no accountability to be forced to stop when I was 12-17 except for me (which obviously wasn't much), and he did something when I was 13 as well (he said he may have, "relapsed")
  • If he had told my mom when I was 12, it would have been horrible. My mom would have likely said the same thing to me she did when I was 17: "Sweep it under the rug and move on," and that she didn't want me to talk about it again. I felt so alone as it was - and that would have made me feel even more alone. I might have even been suicidal as a teen if this had happened
  • And if I had been the one to tell my mom at age 12 or age 17 instead of my father, she likely would have denied it altogether like she was doing last night. The defensiveness and self-protection she's been displaying - desperate to believe she didn't fail to keep me safe - would have likely been on full display. And then, like so many here, I would have been fighting just to be believed. I would have not been just alone, but gaslighted more than I already have been
  • I think my father has a lot going on subconsciously under the surface. He's very manipulative, although I don't think he is actually aware of it. Him asking my mom last night what he did... he knew exactly how she would respond. And I'm sure it's why he asked her. He knew she would protect and take care of him - especially after what she's probably been saying and expressing to him the last month about me (lots of anger and angst). My sister described it well last night, saying they have a, "strong, protective codependency."
  • My sister has been the one bright spot through all this. Learning all this has been very hard for her, and she hasn't attempted to step into the fray with all three of us. While my parents know she knows in general about things (from the 1995 "family" meeting - without me), they don't know she knows everything. She's a little surprised they haven't probed at all recently, but I told her there is no way in hell they want to probe or get into things with her too
Essentially, I told myself a lie my whole life, "We're different. We aren't the stereotypical family coping dysfunctionally with sexual abuse." Nice coping mechanism, eh? But we are not different. We never have been. Ugh.

And even more ugh.... I have to mow the yard today. Mowing has become a drag - the sensory deprivation from the noise causes my brain to think on overdrive. And inevitably it's always about all this shit. My emotions go on quite the ride while I'm mowing. Oh well.

Thanks for reading.
You where heard
 
Thank you always for your openness, my sbuse was from a friends dad who made me watch as he abused his son and then included me his son abused me to but my heart has always been forgiving of my friend in that situationfor he was a victim to.

Appreciate you sharing your very brave and a hero here to me.
Thanks @Sawyer49. I thought about your response and these kind words while I was mowing and they really helped.

I’m sure I’ve read it before, but did you ever talk to your friend about the abuse? I’m glad you could be empathetic and understanding of your friend. He was a victim and not a perpetrator. His father was.

I wasn't abused by my parents, but they had similar reactions when I told them as a 19 yo adult, safely out of their care. They were 'shocked', said they had no idea. But my mom caught me on a gay hookup site (Manhunt) at age 15, and watching gay porn several times before that. I got sent on a business trip with my dad overnight after one such incident and he never mentioned any of what had happened during that trip. It was always avoidance and denial. I was known as a crybaby and bedwetter as a child, and had a bad lisp. I was constantly lectured about how men don't cry instead of any sort of curiosity from them as parents. That being said, they are still my parents. I find myself doing things that remind me of them at times, and not everything was terrible growing up. So yea, can definitely swing hard between the two emotions.
@jonmark411 - thanks for voicing your understanding of the emotional swings we have. And yeah - crazy, isn’t it? The reactions of most parents even when the abuse wasn’t in the family isn’t a response of care, concern, or understanding. Their focus immediately shifts to themselves and an attempt to shield themselves from not doing their job of protecting us. I wanted to say to my mom, “This isn’t about you mom. You have certainly been affected, but you weren’t the one abused!”


First of all thanks for the link to this post.

I really don't know if I'm qualified or sensitive enough to really express my feelings about this chapter in your life. I'm sorry if I'm off base because you know I never had a real father and mother.

I lived by a next-door neighbor from 3-9 and was abused by them since I was 2. When we moved when I was 9 I was trafficked till I went into the USAF. When I got married at 26 when they talked to my wife they said I was a very sensitive and well-behaved child. They talked about me doing well in high school and they were so proud to be my stepparents. When we would see them there was never any mention or hint of abuse as a child or being trafficked when I was 9 or that I left home when I was 13. I paid with my little ass for four years so I could get a high school diploma. I flunked out of college.

After 37 years of hiding the first 24 years of my life from my wife and family, my past ambushed me and I've been here since 2011. When I tried to bring up the subject of what the neighbors were doing to me my stepmother flatly denied that I ever lived by the neighbors and there was never any abuse - I was lying. When I tried to hint about being abused since we moved, and I went to high school - They denied any abuse and said I was a good student and graduated with high marks. I didn't flunk out of college but rather I dropped out and joined the USAF against their wishes. I was called delusional, making up stories, and now lying about how they gave me a very good life.

My stepmother never called for help or assistance about her disabled husband getting very sick and not calling for help. My wife just happened to be over at their apartment and sensed something was wrong with her husband and called me up. I called paramedics from work and within 10 minutes their apartment was full of EMTs and two paramedics. They got him to the hospital and cleaned up and I came the next day with my wife and kids. His wife was sitting in a chair in the corner of the room.

I had my wife and four of my six kids in the room when he coded. Five nurses came running into the room and sent my family out. Two minutes later the nurses came out. She told them not to resuscitate him. (her husband for 80 years). I didn't bother with her anymore and my wife and kids took care of her until she called APS (Adult Protection Services) and blamed me for not helping her or taking care of her husband. They put her in a home, and I never saw her again. I got reports from the home that her health was failing, and they were sending her to the hospital. I got reports from the hospital and listened to how her ship kept taking on water till it sank. My kids took care of the burial, there was no funeral. I tried over the years to connect but it never happened. (Personally, I don't know why I even tried.)

I tried for years to help them become part of my family, mainly for my grandchildren's sake. No matter how I tried to have her be included in my family, it just never worked.

My question MO is how long does it take and how much anguish does your family have to take before the ship takes on water and disappears?

I know that you had a much different and better relationship with your parents than I did with my stepparents, that's why I have to know if I'm wrong with my post. I would never want to interfere in your life or relationships but I cry seeing you going through all this anguish
If I'm off base or being or being too sanicle please tell me and I'll remove my post.

I'm sorry you're still going through this.

Jeff
Jeff, as much as we have shared with each other, I don’t think you shared this with me before. Your stepmom denying your abusive neighbors even existed? Wow!

And Jeff - after sharing this, I can tell you that you are 100% qualified to speak to issues with parents. You always have been. It doesn’t matter they weren’t around or close to you. They took you home as their son - for whatever reason - and were supposed to fill their role to give you care, love, and protection. And at their end of life, they expected you to be the caring, obedient son. You are a son of parents. And you have every right to speak into situations like mine. You don’t have to qualify your input to me 😀


A few years back I bought myself a set of those ear muffs that have the radio built in - I can crank tunes while I mow - it has made the chore a whole lot more relaxing
Thanks for this and the other comments, TJ. And with several of you suggesting music while mowing - I may have to try it!

You are not alone here. Did the same in a way but for me I pushed out all the abuse and dysfunction and in my mind believed we were this great “normal” family. It was not until I move out of the house in my early 20’s did I start to see the dysfunction in the entire family, both sides. Abuse i still had that compartmentalized somehow.
Sounds like several of us did this. It was a coping mechanism, I’m sure. Compartmentalization and what my T calls “splitting” of my parents as all good.

You have done a lot in reaching out to your family in particular to your father. It sucks he wont give the answers. I have done this with my mother and she avoids her part and deflected to my grandfather and said how she was having a difficult time with my father at the time. Not what i was asking. I have told myself to give up that I will not get the answers to the questions I have. However I still catch myself at time in particular when in a depressed state wanting to reach out and ask her stuff. It is hard to let it go.
I love that you said, “Not what I’m asking.” The denial and avoidance is to the point they won’t clearly read or respond to the actual question. It’s weird. But those of us who have chosen to attack healing head-on have been slowly introduced to the bare realities. We see more clearly now, and can ask more direct questions. We weren’t always able to do this, and it is a sign of progress and healing.

Another dead end - I'm truly sorry MO
Thanks Jeff. This one didn’t really bother me. I felt like my dad was saying (without saying), “Yes. You are right. But either I’ve buried it so deeply I won’t let myself remember, or I do remember but I won’t tell you. I can’t tell you. I’ve worked too hard with your mom and adding this to the story would ruin all that.” He didn’t say that but the fact he was as open to it being possible was telling to me.

I do feel like this is the last thing. For real this time.

I thought about future holidays while driving. I think I’m okay with seeing people. However, I have now developed a need to not receive gifts from my parents. I haven’t figure out why, exactly, yet. Part of me thinks it may be that I feel, “If you can’t be real and give me the things I really, really need (care, understanding, support, empathy), then I don’t want anything from you. I’ll have to explore this more with my T.

MO - hey buddy... I'm sorry getting the answers you've so wanted isn't happening the way it ought to. Our problems concerning our fathers seem to be just about opposite. My dad has recently been hinting to my sister that he really wants to see me... but I simply can't right now - and I'm running out of time (he's 83 now and his health is failing)... anyway - I just want you to know you're in my thoughts. I'm always happy when I see you've replied to a post or a PM... Take gentle care.
Thanks @Silly. It’s been great getting to know you and I very much appreciate you and your words, thoughts, and sentiment 😀

You where heard
Thanks @Curiouspaints. That means a lot.

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I’m here, 700 miles from home but with my wife and girls. Driving to see our older daughter for Father’s Day seemed like the perfect gift.

I did not get my dad anything this year. And I didn’t feel bad at all about it. He did share Happy FD wishes and I told him even though the father / son thing is broken, I hoped he had a good one too.

Take good care this week gents. I ❤️ the support. Thank you.
 
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