The other day my dad said something to me that I've been unable to stop thinking about. He insinuated that I should be grateful to him for not providing anything for me while I was growing up and while I was struggling through college, taking a full class load and working at whatever job I could find. I should be grateful for that because I had to work hard for what I have and therefore I value it more. Which is true, I do value what I worked my ass off to achieve. But you know who absolutely does not get to take credit for that? The man who refused to pay any child support while I was growing up because he spent all of his money on whatever drugs he could get his hands on.
Yes, I had a hard life, like a lot of other people. And I am stronger for it. I know this. But I will be damned if he somehow makes himself out to be a good father because I didn't end up pregnant at seventeen or stung out on meth like half of my high school. If there is one thing that he absolutely is not, it is a good father. I can hear him now, protesting that he did his best and he loves me more than I know and things like that. To which I say, so what. I guess trying his best involved drinking himself into oblivion and getting high whenever he had the chance. Not to mention managing to not show up for any significant event I wished he'd gone to, or ever coming through with things that he promised. Which probably has a lot to do with me not knowing how much he loves me, since I never saw a trace of it.
"But he's still your father," you say? Well I say again, so what. Just because he and my mom had sex and oops here I am, that means that I am obliged to forgive every one of his shortcomings with a shrug and say "But he's doing his best..."? I do not agree. I owe him exactly nothing. Whatever time and energy he spends trying to convince himself that his monumental failure as a parent was actually better for me so that he can assuage his own guilt, will be exactly that. His time and energy. I am done being so angry that I can't see straight. I am done letting someone have such a huge negative impact on my life.