Letter to an abusive father

Subject: Letter to an abusive father
From: Your oldest daughter
Date: 15 Jan 2020

You tell our family, and even people who are complete strangers to me, that you do not understand why I hate you.

Lets settle the smaller piece of that point first. I do not hate you. I hate the things you did to me, to my siblings, to my mother. There is no hatred for you whatsoever. In fact I feel so cold and indifferent towards you that it unnerves me, because that is not who I am. Not that you would know, because in spite of the fact that you like to tell people how horrible and cold and uncaring I am, you don't know me at all. This cold hearted bitch is, in fact, someone who stops a homeless family and buys them groceries. This horrible daughter who, according to you, cares only about herself, sobs her heart out over stray animals if she can't help them. This horrible person often has to fight back tears of happiness when she holds her beautiful nieces and nephews in her arms. You see, I really don't have a lot of room for hatred in my life... never have.

Now, on to the much larger issue. The WHY. You know why. You know damn well why, but since you want to pretend not to... Since you want to literally cry to people and tell them that you don't understand, and in the process of doing so, alienate me from your side of the family, because my only other choice would be break their hearts by to telling them the disgustingly ugly truth, I will spell it out for you.

While most daughters have these sweet memories of their dads, funny stories of the things they did with them as children, fond memories of sitting on daddy's lap, so very different from my own experiences with that particular father/daughter bonding ritual, lets visit some of MY childhood memories. How about the one where we were down in the basement of the house in Riverdale where I am on my knees on the cement floor with tears streaming down my face as you say angrily "Are you going to suck it or not?" That's a particularly vivid one. Or the one when we are in your bed when mom was working at McDonald's, and after a couple of hours of you making me sit in the bed and massage your back and shoulders and ass while you listen to baseball game after baseball game on the radio you decide "I just want to slide the hot dog in the bun, I won't put it in. It's okay because I am not going to put it inside." What about the fact that to this day I still wonder if you molested my sister too, or other little girls, and kick myself for not reporting the abuse long ago? I'll never ask her, because I don't want to hurt her by dragging that out, but I can't help but lay awake at night sometimes, crying into my pillow so that my family doesn't hear the gut wrenching sobs, because I know that you may have, and that I didn't stop it. How about the uncountable number of times you beat all three of us kids with your heavy leather belt. Oh yes, you would start by whipping us on the behind, but when we jumped or cringed away from the blows, as any human would, you would not stop raining down the blows across our backs and legs, and if you were angry enough you would turn the belt around and hit us with the buckle. Do you know what it felt like to not be able to change in the school locker room for PE because I was covered in welts and bruises from the backs of my knees to the bottoms of my shoulder blades, and wrapping around my thighs, to protect you, and keep you from going to jail by staying covered up, because you drilled it into me how badly "our secret" would hurt our family, then failing PE for not participating, and coming home to have you beat me again for the failing grade? I still flinch when I hear the snap of a leather belt. I still tend to shut down whenever there is yelling and angry voices. I still don't handle conflict like a 'normal' adult, I still most often retreat from it, even when I should stand my ground. I know that won't be a surprise to you, you groomed me for that behavior for the first 19 years of my life, but the difference between the younger me, and the one who is looking at 50 years of age right around the corner is that now I eventually can be pushed into taking the bull by the horns if pushed hard enough. Lets talk about that fun little game you loved so much, where you would take out your pocket knife and throw it near our feet and laugh about how much fun it was to "see us dance", with mom screaming in the background trying to get you to stop, and how much joy you got from gleefully telling us that the mayo on our sandwich might just have your snot or semen in it? How about the fact that you used to make all three of us spend hours upon hours rubbing your back while you were laying in your bed listening to baseball on the radio and would kick the hell out of us if we weren't doing a good enough job, or started to fall asleep? I still can't stand to even touch mayonnaise, or hear the sound of a baseball game after all these years. How about the time our parakeet bit you because you grabbed it and wouldn't let it go, so you thumped it so hard you broke it's neck? We could talk about the time you shot my dog right in front of me while I cried and begged you not to do it when he got hit by a car and you couldn't be bothered to take him to the vet... oh, I mean, "Didn't want him to suffer"? While we are on the subject of animals, let's not forget the "fun" trips to your friend's house where you let me play with his fighting dogs that were chained to trees in his yard, while you went around back to make bets on which ones would rip the others apart.

Do you know how hard it was for me to move out knowing I was leaving my younger siblings there with you? Can you fathom what it felt like to watch my mother live with the verbal abuse, the constant cheating... did you think she didn't know? What about what it was like watching you drive her into depression, then get joy from telling people how "sorry and lazy" she was for not keeping a tidy home through the depths of that depression? Or how it felt to see her bite her tongue to keep from angering you because she knew that if she did you would find an excuse to beat the hell out of one or all of her children? No, you would NEVER hit your wife, that would be abuse! Since you weren't hitting her, you weren't abusing her, right?

I could go on and on, but really, what's the point? We both know you will never admit to the things you have done, or the way you treated your family. We both know you would lie like you've always done when someone catches a glimpse of the real you. You will continue to spend your life pretending to be the poor, sad dad who just can't understand why his oldest daughter doesn't call or come visit him when he is in the hospital, and me, I as much as I would like to believe that I would actually stand up to you some day, I will keep being the same "cold, uncaring bitch" who keeps my mouth shut and would rather let my aunts and uncles and cousins believe that I just don't care enough about them to come to family get togethers, so that I don't have to devastate them by telling them the real reason I don't want to spend time around their brother and uncle... let my grandmother believe that's just who I am, no matter how badly that strained relationship breaks my heart, than to tell her that I don't want to be around her son because he physically and verbally abused his children, verbally and emotionally abused and cheated on his wife again and again, and sexually molested his oldest daughter. I'm just heartless like that.