A Letter to my Legal Father

Following our first meeting on August 17, 2013, 10:30am at Hy-Vee

Dear Jack,

We met again after 35 years of not speaking. Your motivations are clearly still self-centered and selfish. You didn’t recognize me because now I understand my full beauty and it shines through. You are seeking your real child, your true child in my sister Tammi. You sounded so disappointed that I was not her. My only good memories of you are up to the point where I was 7. I remember being your “grease monkey”, under the hood, tom boy, pony rider, adventurer, hunter, dog trainer, lover of the outdoors. A completely and fully confident, joy filled child. I cherish those memories when I was still innocent and naïve. That is what I seek now to preserve for other children who have been protected from the cruelty of the world and their families.

Since you must talk on – clearly all you have to say is far more important than what anyone else around you may add – you failed to receive my perception of childhood.

We talked about Tammi. You accused me of always picking on her. Mom would tell me often how excited I was to have a little sister while she was pregnant and when Tammi was young. I remember doing all I can as long as I could to protect her and stand up for her, at least until she became a teenager. You said I was a good sister until she was about 6 months old and then I started picking on her. Tammi was always a favored child. You were the adult in the equation. I hope you will entertain that your bias in treating her as a favored child contributed to how I treated her in your eyes? What you describe is jealousy. I will answer that question from my perspective based on the information you provided. You said that mom was pregnant with me by someone else. That is believable as she always had a twinkle in her eye when speaking about one of her class mates. She provided me a sister, dark haired like you, vindictive like you, I see why you can fully believe she is your child.

That explains the taunting I endured by her about being the outsiders child. What you failed to understand on blessing me with this knowledge – and it was a blessing even though you intended it to hurt me with the way you presented it – harshly and with malice “Didn’t your mother ever tell you?” [pause] “I’m not your real father. I’m your legal father.” With that knowledge, you set me free. I have no more obligations to you. No moral obligation to care for you as you age and become decrepit, to provide end of life comfort to you, to assure you do not suffer. You have released me from the biblical obligation “to honor my father”, to care about you. It is no longer my responsibility to assure that your wishes are carried out in your will. No obligation. No inheritance. No guilt. Your words which were intended to shock and harm have set me free of any guilt. I am completely free of you with that knowledge.

You then later tried to take credit for my musical talents, so which is it? Am I your child or am I not?

I believe in my heart that you have created a story in your mind that I am not your biological child in order to justify the abuse and intended sexual exploitation that you had planned for me and that (Thank God) mom had the fortitude to save me from. I don’t think Tammi was ever in danger, you see her as your child and incest is not acceptable. You proved to me that you have some integrity. You showed me that you are capable of loving and caring for your family. It is still a mystery why your actions never followed your words. I have always wondered why, by extension that did not include me. I think your abuse of me was a way for you to further abuse Mom for her trapping you in a marriage neither of you wanted. That’s how you see it. She trapped you by getting pregnant while you were dating. You are incapable of accepting responsibility for your errors, even acknowledging what you’ve done to destroy my self-esteem and her independence. We (Mom and I) are a lot alike-loving, giving, caring. I forgive you. I have excelled in spite of you. I am an amazing and beautiful creation of God. Protected by Him. Loved completely in all my humanity and humility and pride and sin. I am a child of God. I am the King’s daughter. He is the Father to whom I run now that I understand the blessing and the knowledge gained from endurance.

You are the reason I viewed my value as a person in my body until my 40’s. You have no way of comprehending what you created in me. You said it yourself “your mother weighed over 200 lbs. There is only one way any man would be attracted to that. She was (a slut) a loose woman who put out for any man she met.” YOU are the abuser. She told me after your divorce about what you would do to her when we were locked outside to play. You told me the story of making her run home from Grandma and Grandpas – she told that you made her run home from town. It doesn’t matter how far – that was abusive. You are a hateful, evil, possessed individual. I remember you worshiping at night over the steel pile. I remember my dream of a cloud enveloping me that I had repeatedly as a child. That dream came to me about 10 years ago while I was in church and then I knew that was how God protected me from more abuse than I had already endured by shielding my eyes and my ears from hearing you with her at night. You know what you did. I don’t want to know any more than I already do.

Let me scream on the rooftops to you: You were given the privilege of being my father on earth. A father’s job is to love and protect his children and any children who are under his guard whether they are his or are not his. You are not fully a man if you are not protecting any and every child under your care. I was given to your care and you exploited it. You said you believe in reincarnation. I am praying for forgiveness for you. To be reincarnated is to return to earth and give penance for the sins you committed in this life. Where does that leave you?

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