Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The bubble has finally burst!

For those who have been following my blog from the beginning, you would know that my relationship with my dad has been strained since my teenage years. He couldn't stand me because I would always stand up for my mum. We hardly spoke though we lived under the same roof. The only words I would hear from him were vulgarities. My mum used to tell me that he was the one who chose my name because he was very much smittened by its pronounciation and meaning. I was amused or shall I say tickled by the fact for as far as I can remember, he rarely addressed me by the beautiful name that he lovingly chose for me. He would only shower me with vulgarities. Disturbing names that have emotionally scarred me, till to this day. I'm not innocent either. I have even raised my hands on my dad on several occasions due to the constant verbal and physical abuses he put my mum through. I am not proud of my actions but that was the only way I could defend my mum from his torments. That's all I knew at the age of 8. In my 32 years, I've only caught my dad sober on a few occasions. But to our pleasant surprise, after a volatile family intervention last June, he changed for the better (so we hoped). He stopped drinking and for once, we got to experience the beauty of having a father figure in our lives and for my mum, a husband and a companionship she has been yearning for the last 40 years. Yes folks. They have been married for 40 years. We were on cloud 9 and we couldnt ask for more. Even his counsellor was very pleased with his changes. However, after 8 months of bliss, the bubble has finally burst. He has reverted back to his binge drinking. He is now back to square 1. Will he ever change? I dont think so. Not anymore. Not after all the chances we have given him so far. If he had truly loved us; if he knew how much emotional damage he had caused all of us all these years; if he appreciates how we were readily willing to forgive and forget the past and give him a chance to reprise his role as a dutiful father and loving husband, would he even have had the slightest inkling to revert back to his vice? All I have learnt from this sombre awakening experience is that my dad is a saddist who gloats over his loved ones miseries. He loves seeing my mum breakdown. He loves playing mind games with her. Simply put, he loves seeing her miserable. He knows for sure that if she is miserable, that would make us, the kids, devastated. He hates seeing us, his own flesh and blood, happy. He doesnt want to help himself or us. Do I hate him? No! I sympathise for him. He needs help. The question is how can we help someone who doesnt want to be helped? It shatters me and my brothers into pieces when we look at our mum these days. She has made so many sacrifices for us and our 'darling' father. Doesnt she deserve peace and bliss in her life? How much longer must we endure this? Why must we go through this vicious poisonous cycle all over again? Why was all our happiness short-lived? The special father-daughter bond that I had shared with him for the last few months has finally turned into a mirage. So much for getting a chance, that too after 32 years, to experience what it is like to have a loving father in your life! For all you beautiful souls out there who have doting fathers, cherish them; treasure them cause I would die for such a golden opportunity.

"Dance With My Father" by Luther Vandross

Back when I was a child, before life removed all the innocence
My father would lift me high and dance with my mother and me and then
Spin me around till I fell asleep
Then up the stairs he would carry me
And I knew for sure I was loved
If I could get another chance, another walk, another dance with him
I’d play a song that would never, ever end
How I’d love, love, love To dance with my father again
When I and my mother would disagree To get my way,
I would run from her to him
He’d make me laugh just to comfort me
Then finally make me do just what my mama said
Later that night when I was asleep
He left a dollar under my sheet
Never dreamed that he would be gone from me
If I could steal one final glance, one final step, one final dance with him
I’d play a song that would never, ever end
Cause I’d love, love, love To dance with my father again
Sometimes I’d listen outside her door
And I’d hear how my mother cried for him
I pray for her even more than me I pray for her even more than me
I know I’m praying for much too much
But could you send back the only man she loved
I know you don’t do it usually But dear Lord she’s dying To dance with my father again
Every night I fall asleep and this is all I ever dream


  1. It is truly unfortunate about your father. My father was an alcoholic who is still on the road to recovery. He made some of my childhood memories too awful to think about. I see that we have a lot in common in this area. In a way, I'm kind of glad I'm not the only one. Although, for about 4 years now, I have been getting used to my brand new Dad, because he has changed considerably. It is still not going to be normal between the two of us, but it is better and I have some hope. He picked out my name I thought it was odd you mentioned that. Also, rarely do I remember him calling me by my name as well. I feel your pain and then some. At a time, I wasn't even sure if I wanted him to walk me down the aisle when that time comes..

    Thank you for posting this. You are so brave and so strong to have posted something so emotional. I feel for you, I am sorry that he has gone back to his old ways. I hope there is at least some small glitter of hope left for your father...he doesn't know what he's missing. =)

  2. Karla,
    Thanks for sharing your painful memories. I'm happy for your dad and you. Looks like he has now earned the right to walk you down the aisle :). My dad did not even utter a single word to me on the eve of my wedding day... let alone my big day.At least I should be grateful that he did not drink on that day and create a scene cus thats what he exactly did during my brother's wedding reception. Thanks again :)

  3. I had a childhood full of drama myself. Mine wasn't an alcoholic, but he did have his vices. I just don't think he knew how to be a father...and he was also in the Vietnam War, so I think that effected him. Its easy to forgive/forget when things are ok, but if he utters one sentence that reminds me of how he was in the past, I am transported back into feeling anger/resistance toward that...and I find I'm on the verge of punching his lights out(though I never have done that). I don't think my dad would even know how to wash his own clothes if my mom ever left. These days, he's on meds, so they've mellowed him out...but if he wasn't on them, he'd be a case. I don't have any advice, only know that you're not alone in wishing for a father who was there to nurture/love/be an example. I remember the rock band Nirvana had a song lyric, "I tried so hard to have a father, but instead I had a dad." It's hard to know how to feel, or how to relate to things sometimes...because so much energy was used up on emotional stress. Thank you for sharing and being open. We can all learn from each other.

  4. I wasnt aware that this post of mine is going to open so many can of worms. You guys are resilient souls. And yes we can all definitely learn from one another.One thing for sure though,I've stopped wishing for a father.If it happens it happens.If not, I will just look back at the last 8 months and be grateful for the beautiful times we had shared. Some souls do not even get to experience even that. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your candid and touching input :)

  5. Hi ~ Thank you for leaving a kind comment over at my place! We have quite a bit in common - blog names are similar, our hearts were broken by our fathers repeatedly, and we are the fierce protectors of our mothers. I love your writing style - very comforting, soothing and reflective. Writing from the heart touches the soul. Take care.

  6. Thanks Deb :). I sensed the similarity when I visited your blog too. As for writing from the heart, not only does it touch the soul but it also heals it along the way. Thats what Im experiencing now and its very therapeutic.


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