The following testimony is a letter to an irresponsible and absent father, a letter to try and understand why he doesn’t take his role seriously, to the point of stepping out of his own children’s lives.
A seperation or a divorce obviously marks the end of a love story, wether beautiful or not, between two people. Some will cherish the good memories and leave on good terms, others will find it more difficult and find themselves facing a stormy breakup. Doing things the right way doesn’t come easy, and it doesn’t always end up including respect and goodwill. But when it’s not only a couple, but a family that goes through a seperation, things are bound to get more painful. Especially for the children. But what can you do so that for one of the parents, a seperation doesn’t rhyme with the absence of his/her children from his/her life? Why make your children suffer by walking out of their lives?
Letter to an irresponsible and absent father : Why doesn’t he take his role seriously?
Doesn’t “family” mean anything to you?
We both agreed on a seperation. There have been no lies, no infidelity, no secrets. This seperation was our last chance to avoid hating each other. At the end of the day, I don’t think there ever was a more ill matched and incompatible couple as ours. I don’t know why we got so bogged down in this mummer’s farce of a story.
I don’t know exactly when you changed – or maybe you have always been that way deep down and I just didn’t want to see it. And when I finally opened my eyes, it was a steep fall.
I guess that in your own way, you share the same line of thoughts. The woman I was didn’t live up to your expectations. We haven’t been able to love each other enough, to love each other truly enough to overpower our differences. Differences that then became permanent sources of tension.
Even if for a time we have believed. Enough to go on the adventure of family life. But it’s by becoming parents that the gap between us slowly widened. Because our idea of what family life should be definitely isn’t the same. Neither are our priorities. And that unfortunately explains what is happening today.
Leaving your wife shouldn’t also mean abandoning your children.
We’re done, you and I. For good.
But why, in your mind, does leaving your wife also mean leaving your children? Why walk away from their lives? Why forget about them?
It’s like if by closing the book of the story of our couple, you also decided to turn your back on your children. Children you have wanted. That you claim to love. Yet you push them aside, and forget them. You don’t call nor visit them.
Why walk away from them when nothing is forcing you to? You’re just not interested? Selfish? Is it to punish me? Or because you have better things to do in your new life?
Don’t you see that you are making them suffer by acting that way? But also that they are angry at you? What do you expect? I have defended you for as long as I could, believe it or not. I have never been an obstacle in your relationship with them. But how could I continue to take your side, to lie to them when you in fact have no excuse?
You are past defending. Don’t act surprised if in turn they avoid you. You can’t afford to forget them like that, to disappear from their lives and then hope to come back one day like nothing happened. You left your children at the same time as you left me. Why? Do you even realize the extent of your actions?
Nothing prevents you from being a father, so why not be one?
To think that so many fathers fight to see their children, and that you don’t do a thing…
I have never been opposed to joint custody, only you failed to ask for it. I would never have said no if you wanted to see them more than you had to, but a weekend once in a while or the holidays seemed to be enough for you.
Read also : Inspirational father’s day letter
My number hasn’t changed, my door has always been open for you to talk to your kids, to come see them – but no. Weeks can go by before you call them. Your weekends or holidays with them are always cut short. You are never available, never present.
When they come home, they are frustrated, sad and sometimes angry. They don’t understand. And neither do I. If it is me that you are trying to hurt by doing this, do you realize how twisted that is? Isn’t the love you bear them stronger than your pride and misplaced ego?
Granted you wanted to build yourself a “single’s” life again. And not “burden” yourself with their presence. But does that mean you have to forget about them altogether? Erase them little by little from your life – or suddenly – depending on the intensity of your existential crisis?
So many fathers fight to see their children, in today’s world.
There are so many belligerent, unfair or heinous mothers. So many miserable and lonely fathers, so many children robbed of both their parents.
Nothing was imposed on you. You can choose to see them whenever you want. You can decide to be part of their lives. But you don’t see things that way.
Little by little, you decided to exit your children’s lives for no reason. When nobody forced you to do so.
What kind of father does that? Consciously, knowingly and with impunity? Who can make his children suffer and still call himself a father? No one.
They say that a father isn’t he who gives life, but he who gives love. That anyone can be a father but that it takes a special kind of man to be a dad. I agree with that. Life gave you the gift of being a dad, but you were content with being an absent father.
I have asked you enough, begged for them. For them and for you. It’s over now, and it’s your loss. You can struggle with your conscience if you have one.
You are their father but beware, keep up the good work and you’ll no longer be their dad.