Truth Serum for My Father

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Truth Serum for My Father

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Truth Serum.”

My heart was broken by my father.  My memories about my father had always been wonderful.  He was loving, kind, funny, and gentle.  I would remember how gentle he was when removing splinters from my hands. Although not one for physical affection, the look in his eyes when he looked at me was as good as any hug.  We laughed together often and usually it was at each other and ourselves.  Much time was spent together bicycle riding through the neighborhood and playing badminton in the back yard. Other special times together including art lessons using the John Gnagy Learn to Draw Kit.  Dad would also make his delicious ice cream shakes and sodas for me on hot summer days.  Oh, how I loved and adored my father.

But then, in my thirties, the flashbacks began.  First, they were about the newspaper boy and his friend who had sexually assaulted me repeatedly on my way home alone from school.   Then, they were about my father. How I had finally told him despite their insistence that no one would believe me or else would  blame me.  The attacks by the boys stopped after I told my father.  But, the flashbacks were not done.  They continued. Now, I would climb the stairs into the attic when I would feel myself having that strange trance feeling that would precede the flashbacks. And then I saw the unthinkable.  My father had sexually abused me.  And threatened me into silence.  My sweet, wonderful father was a part-time monster.  I fought so hard to not believe these flashbacks.  How could the man who so gently removed my splinters defile me? My father loved me, how could this be?  After several months of these returning memories I finally confronted my father over the phone.  He not only denied everything, but called me a lying slut.  His voice in that phone call was not that of the good father, but that of the bad, threatening father.  If I had had any doubts they were extinguished now.

We have never spoke or seen each other since.  I have never fully mourned my loss of him.  I have been struggling just to survive and function each day and raise my son.  But I have cried this morning as I have written this.  The prompt for today was “who would you give truth serum to?”  My answer would be to my father.  And its not to get him to admit to the abuse.  I don’t need that.  What I want to ask him is “Are you sorry you abused me?”  and “Do you miss me?”  I want to know that he has remorse.  That all my love was not completely misplaced.  Or, maybe that the love I perceived was not all a lie, but was real.  I know the abuse was real, but what about the love?

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10 thoughts on “Truth Serum for My Father

  1. My experience from treating incest offenders is that they don’t/won’t believe they have caused any harm. That’s basically what my book’s about. That you want his love suggests that you may be well along the road to healing.

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  2. This brings tears to my eyes too. I have struggled to reconcile my own memories of my father joking, playing around, camping with us, and the memories of abuse. It’s made it much harder to believe those memories. I wish you could get those answers you seek, that you could know that he lays awake at night, filled with remorse, wishing he could make things right with you, missing you, but unable to find the courage to bear the consequences of admitting what he did.

    I see you have already been sent hugs, but I’m sending some extras now.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I relate to this in a huge way. My father did not directly abuse me but he allowed so many others to do as they wished with me as he looked away. I had him on such a pedestal for so long and like you, I wonder if he misses me or if he is sorry. I also know in my heart he knows everything that went on. I’d like to hear him say it. I am so sorry for your experience. It is truly heartbreaking.

    Liked by 2 people

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