How to stop talking to your father. With a smile.

Laugh or you'll cryThere’s no need to stop smiling! Father’s Day should be a time for happiness and sunshine, barbecues and laughs. Unfortunately, for a lot of us, we have to deal with abusive fathers and what they did – or still do – to us. While I would love to ignore creepy, negative people, I still have to deal with them, and I believe there are a few of you who must as well, and so I’m here for you! Keep a smile on your face, keep your dignity and good spirit, but remove the Crazies.

A brief background on why I like to help
My father was physically present, but emotionally absent. He allowed my mother to be a mediator between himself and his daughters, and because of that our family was torn apart. My mother – a sociopathic narcissist – lied to him about our thoughts and actions. In return, he beat us. This placed her as the head of the family – exactly where she wanted to be.

“…if you showed a sign of independence as a child they took it as losing control, they must have absolute control.”

The family friend who wrote that in an email to me was absolutely correct. And even now I’m shocked how accurate his words were. I had a choice: live a suppressed life according to abusive, unstable people, or be happy and be what numerous teachers and coaches knew I was: intelligent and very capable.

So after years of therapy, I’m finally at peace and live a very happy life. With the exception of Father’s Day. It’s a constant reminder of how my father was absent during the times we needed him the most. Fathers should be authoritative and help steer the direction of the family. Instead, he handed-over authority to an unstable, manipulative mother. And even to this day, he allows my mother to fabricate untruths about anyone who attempts to dethrone her.

Because of this, I’ve had to completely disconnect myself from my own family. I found it extremely difficult to do, and every Father’s Day that passes is a reminder that I’ve both done the right thing as well as exactly how alone I am in regard to having a family.

Weak people gather like vultures at a carcass.

If you’re struggling with an abusive father and desperately want to disconnect, these things helped me. I’ve done the following:

1.) Completely cut ties
After years of limiting communication, I finally completely cut ties. I block phone numbers, I block email addresses and I do not give out my mailing address. The psychos in my family needle people until they give in (unfortunately, it has worked on aunts and uncles who have heard entire stories of our abuse).

I refuse to bend. Abuse is still abuse. Even after trying to “work it out” with my parents, they still continue to create fresh ways to destroy their children. As one sister pointed-out, “If it was just that event years ago, I would have forgiven. But they continue to try to hurt me, and for that I’ve had to get them go.”

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2.) Donate all items from the abuser
I’ve had to donate all memories including clothing, sneakers, shoes, gifts, furniture, jewelry. Basically, I’ve had to create an entirely new life for myself.

Ask yourself, “Who do I want to be? Who have I always wanted to be, but couldn’t because of abusive dipshits?” Think of it like this: there are a lot of people out there who will be thankful that you’re giving away dressers, beds, armoires, earrings, necklaces, photo albums.

This is a war, my friend, and you are going to win. You will be happy.

3.) Put away photos
Old photos are in a box in my closet. I don’t take them out unless my son asks about our heritage. That’s it. Other than that, the box stays where it is. I don’t marinate in old memories because it causes negative energy. I don’t need that. As a collective experience, you want to stay as positive as possible – seeing images of a destructive time in your life will not help. Put them away and keep them there. The only reason I would not completely destroy the images is if you need to send one to a lawyer for an Order for Protection. Hey – you didn’t choose this life, they chose it for you. All you can do is work your way out of it the smartest way possible.

4.) Do not respond to shenanigans
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to email, reply, or post about how insane my abusers are. There’s gobs of articles and proof on the internet alone about how their actions are insane and possibly illegal.

But responding will only continue the flow of negative energy.

So while it’s clear that these people thrive on negative reinforcement, negative attention, you will not. In order to end the bullying you’ve got to ignore the bully. I find this infuriating because – to others – it looks like the bully is correct if no one corrects them. But ultimately, you can’t reason with a crazy person, and that’s what they are – crazy. So don’t waste your time on them. You’ve already given enough of yourself to their insanity.

5.) Embrace the fact that your father is a putz, and that you’ll have to do it on your own
This is difficult for me because I don’t think it’s that hard to be a good dad. And so the shock is constantly there.

“Why couldn’t he…”
“Why didn’t he…”
“Why won’t he…”

But I try not to marinate in the disappointment of it. I’ve found other people whom I love to show me what good fathering is. I watch them, embrace them and accept the fact that the universe put me in this position to learn something. And so I shall. And so will you.

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-1Yos

You’re old if…

A quick browse through WordPress and I was left thinking, ”Omg… Am I old??” Between yesterday and literally right now, a few things have happened that are making me downright cringe. If any of these have happened to you, you could be old! (Ignore typos — I’m dictating this via Siri while trying to not kill myself on a treadmill! Tnx!)

You’re tired of hiding Muffin-Top.

I mention muffin-top in the list of things that need to be done after a break-up. Working-out and getting in shape is necessary! I’ve noticed that when we’re happily single — just as when we are happily in a relationship — we tend to ignore the muffin-top. Only recently have I actually thought, “You know what? I’m so freaking tired of trying to hide the muffin-top.” This is more of a tenacity thing than a desire. It’s the constant struggle in that passing of time that reveals my oldness.

I’m old.

You don’t care if a cute guy walks by.

Because they don’t. The gamut of good-looking men has shrunken significantly to the point where I don’t even look anymore. And if I do see someone who’s good-looking, chances are they’re married, gay, or a dick-pic-sender. So I really stopped looking. Completely.

.albumtemp-5You can’t get out of bed in the morning.

My grandparents woke daily at four in the morning! I’m not sure if that was an Italian thing or an 85-year-old thing. Either way, that’s not me, because I can’t get up in the morning. I hit the snooze button three times before the alarm in my head starts going off. But then again, it’s because I can’t go to sleep at night — there’s too much to do. And this is where being old comes in. From cleaning the kitchen to taking my night class and getting my son to bed. There’s way too much to do. I remember being in my teens and 20s, getting to sleep around nine, 10 o’clock at night during the week. No more. Now its midnight every night — without fail. I’m old. And I’m tired. LOL

You hate exercising.

I used to love exercising. I’d strap on sneakers and run through town. Now it annoys the shit out of me. I don’t know if it’s because I feel my ass going up and down every time I jog, or because it takes up the time that I need to get everything done during the day. Either way, exercising and I are currently not friends.

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The good-looking guys don’t look at you anymore.

I was blonde. I was in shape. I am not anymore. Nobody cares. LOL. If you have to verbally talk about how good-looking you used to be-you’re old.

You have a child. And your child says you’re old.

Your little peanut says you’re old. A.) Your “little peanut” is now 16 and B.) can accurately articulate the biological reasons for why you are old. Your child asks “Are you really gonna wear that?” and grabs your muffin-top. You’re old.

You can’t wait to get to work because that’s where your friends are.

When we were younger, our friends were outside of work. We’d leave work and go to the bar to laugh and have fun. We’d hang out at their homes. We didn’t go to work to see close friends because we hadn’t worked there 20 years. Yet. It just doesn’t happen unless you’re old. As time passes, our friends get married. Have kids. Their houses “are a mess.” Everyone starts saying things like, “let’s meet at Starbucks — you don’t wanna see my house, it’s a mess right now.” So you see less and less of your childhood friends, and more and more of the folks at work. And quite frankly, want to get money so that we can pay the bills. We’re old.

We have no idea who North West is.

I used to think Northwest was a direction. Now, apparently, it’s a child. I’m old, and I don’t care, I don’t care about celebrities–they don’t pay my bills, they don’t raise my child, and they don’t beat up the obnoxious PTA mom when she posts what her pretty princess is wearing to the fifth-grade prom. I’m old. And I don’t care. Lol

If you said “Yes!” to one of these, join me in a virtual hug. We worked hard to get here. So embrace it. And our muffin-tops.

Xoxo

-1Yos

I’m a living example of what people can go through and survive

Years ago my husband and I were seeing a marriage counselor. After one particularly grueling session, my husband stormed out and left the therapist and me to finish the hour alone.  When the session ended and I started to make my way to the door, she stopped me. “I don’t usually do this,” she said, “but in your case I’m making an exception: I don’t think you are safe living with him and I suggest you get out as soon as you can.”

I already knew that. Although he wasn’t an avid jail-attendee, my husband was criminally-savvy enough to not put his hands on me, but typically chest-bumped or threw household items instead. Several times I would shield myself with a laptop while running out the front door of our apartment.

At one point, his own friend said, ”You know he’s an alcoholic, right?”

BitmojiI planned and executed the escape with the help of my closest friends, both packing and moving possessions in what I called an “a’ la Sleeping With the Enemy style,” – and later, the ultimate result was nicknamed “The Evacuation.”

”You’re the strongest person I know,” a friend said.

”Therapy,” I replied, ”And I’ll be damned before I let an abusive alcoholic who can’t even control his own life to turn my baby and me into a stereotypical cinematic drama. I refuse to lay down and play victim!”

I did it with friends. Not one family member helped. I was in shock. Depressed. Saddened. Angry. And scared. But I did it. And I’m glad I did. And I would – without hesitation – do it again.

Don’t let anyone control your life to the point where you’re in fear every day. If I can do it, so can you.

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-1Yos