Hey everyone! Let’s take a trip down memory lane. Some of you may remember my good friend Amy and her summer dilemma regarding her father (read Amy’s Summer Dilemma – What Would YOU Do?).
To sum it up, Amy had a situation with her father during the summer and in the end, she decided it would be best to not visit him when the summer was over. Well, Amy needs our help once again.
After the situation occurred during the summer, Amy decided to write her father a letter in order to express her feelings to him.
At first, Amy’s attempted letters were ruthless attacks, offensive language and resulted in lots of tears. Amy then changed her mind about writing a letter since she was expressing too much negativity. But then one night, she had a sudden inspiration.
She wrote a two page letter to her father.
The letter took her a total of 3 hours to finish.
After writing the letter and mailing it, Amy’s dad called to speak with her sister, Sarah. After the conversation, Sarah informed Amy that their father said he had not opened Amy’s letter, nor did he plan to.
Amy felt like an idiot for convincing herself that her time and effort spent writing this letter was going to pay off. She wanted to express herself in a peaceful manner, letting him know how she had felt and that she loved him.
But now, she felt even more upset.
After weeks went by, Amy was able to brush it off and focus solely on her summer camps and song writing.
The summer ended and the new school year began. Amy began conversing with her stepmother. One day, her stepmom called to share the big news.
Amy was going to be a big sister.
At first she was extremely excited and started mentally planning out the baby shower, the cute little outfits she could save up to get for her little sister. And then it hit her like a bus.
How was she going to see the baby, and help with the shower, if she and her father weren’t speaking?
After coming to this realization, Amy found it hard to be excited about the new baby. She decided not to worry about it too much and figured this situation with her dad wouldn’t drag on forever. Eventually, everything would be okay.
Well, months went by.
One evening, Amy volunteered at Sarah’s concert. And Amy’s father attended. When he approached the entrance way with Amy’s stepmom, Amy felt her dad didn’t acknowledge her and so Amy didn’t acknowledge him either. Her stepmom was happy to see her and expressed that.
After some time went by (they had to wait outside for a period of time since the concert was already in progress)…
“So, you’re not going to say hello?” Amy’s father was now interested in speaking with her and insisted on doing so, but Amy was in the middle of working at the entrance way. It was not a good time to talk, Amy needed to stay focused and she expressed that.
Since that evening, Amy has felt confused. Why would she be the one to initiate conversation after not hearing from him? Now she was ten times more confused.
Amy has asked many of us for advice and the responses are typically, “He’s your dad.”
Amy couldn’t take it anymore and recently, she lost it.
“My dad? Of course he’s my dad, but has he raised me? Does he support my dreams or does he only care about himself? He has been to only 3 out of my 13 performances, and 1 out of the 5 concerts! And it’s not like he was out of town for all of them. He doesn’t even know me! I’ll bet if I asked him what my favorite color is, he wouldn’t know the answer. I’ll bet if he asked what I wanted from Starbucks and I said “the usual” he wouldn’t come back with the right drink. All he’s ever done is told me what I’m doing wrong and who the heck is he to talk?! But you know what, it’s okay. We have to learn from our mistakes, right? And now I know how NOT to treat a kid.”
Amy is going through a really rough patch right now. She feels like her dad doesn’t care, that he never has.
Her letter was a way to get him to listen to her – without him yelling at her – in hopes to validate her feelings and understand why she wasn’t ready to visit.
As much as my friend pretends that she is fine, it’s easy to tell that she’s not okay. She’s hurting.
I know in time this experience will make her much stronger. But right now, she’s not there yet. She needs encouragement and words of wisdom.
If you were in Amy’s situation, what would YOU do? Do you have any suggestions or words of advice? Please share in the comments below, I know she would really appreciate it!
Until next time!