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Old 07-18-2014, 08:52 PM
 
108 posts, read 95,009 times
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A few days ago I came face to face with my father who I hadn't seen in more than a year since my parents divorced. We haven't been on speaking terms for a long while for the way he has acted towards us (long story). We live in the same city, a large metro, but I don't know where exactly he's living these days.

So I ran into him at a shop the other day. I think he recognised me first because he was already starring at me when I saw him. I just looked at him for a few seconds and then ignored him. He looked like he was about to speak to me before I turned my back.

My mother says I do as I wish but she thinks I should have at least aknowledged him out of politeness because he's no stranger. My brothers say they would have ignored him as well.

Is someone else estranged from their father?
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Old 07-19-2014, 01:42 AM
 
47 posts, read 61,183 times
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I was never on good terms with my father, and for a few years didn't know where he lived. Don't know what I would have done in your situation.
Your 'long story' of family history I'm sure a is complicated one; and how you experienced it is unique to you. Even your mother and brothers don't have exactly the same feelings about it.
Not knowing how serious the rift is, it's not good to make a definite answer by 'long-distance.' However, I would say that if YOU in your own mind, seriously have any impulse to acknowledge your father, I would act on it, even if it doesn't lead anywhere. You'll at least know you tried.
After many years I ended up being caregiver for my father in the last years of his life. Not to say we were ever really close, but I did my best and have no regrets.
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Old 07-19-2014, 02:32 AM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
16,263 posts, read 10,264,987 times
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I think the question is how do you feel about your actions?

As PhillySue points out-we don't know the whole story. Even those that do (mother and brothers) would have acted differently from each other.



I'm guessing that, since you're posting the question here, you're having 2nd thoughts. Don't trip over what's behind you.
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Old 07-19-2014, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Southern California
5,408 posts, read 8,105,644 times
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If he did any of the following, then I probably would have ignored him too:

abuse - physical, sexual, constant emotional

womanizer - had affairs on your mom constantly & especially if he turned his back on you kids & didn't give a flying fig about you

anything else in which he totally wanted nothing to do with you.

NOW, if he made his mistakes, but in the past showed remorse & genuinely wanted a relationship with you again, then maybe you could have at least said HELLO & find out where he's living.

How guilty do you feel right now that you turned your back on him when it looked like he was about to speak to you?
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Old 07-19-2014, 12:12 PM
 
108 posts, read 95,009 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forever Blue View Post
womanizer - had affairs on your mom constantly & especially if he turned his back on you kids & didn't give a flying fig about you
This was basically what happened. He never made an effort to be with us because he thought "Oh well their mother takes such good care of them, why bother?". He preferred to spend his time in the company of other women and was always finding reasons to fight with her.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Forever Blue View Post
How guilty do you feel right now that you turned your back on him when it looked like he was about to speak to you?
It's not exactly feeling guilty but we never had an honest conversation (it's impossible to believe anything he says). It's hard to be completely indifferent to him because we had contact for so many years, even though it wasn't good.
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Old 07-19-2014, 12:18 PM
 
108 posts, read 95,009 times
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Originally Posted by PAhippo View Post
I'm guessing that, since you're posting the question here, you're having 2nd thoughts. Don't trip over what's behind you.
I guess I'm ok as long as I don't see him. I wasn't really expecting to find him there. There's no way we can pretend we don't recognise each other.
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Old 07-19-2014, 12:21 PM
 
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Do you think he loves and cares for you? Can you get past your anger about what he did as a man to see what he can offer as a father?

It seems to me you would benefit greatly from a father figure in your life.
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Old 07-19-2014, 12:25 PM
 
108 posts, read 95,009 times
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Originally Posted by zentropa View Post
Do you think he loves and cares for you? Can you get past your anger about what he did as a man to see what he can offer as a father?
I doubt anyone who has done the things he did to us cares about anyone. He might have a bit of a guilty conscience (if he even has one) but it's well deserved if he has.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zentropa View Post
It seems to me you would benefit greatly from a father figure in your life.
Why do you say it? I've known many people who never had a father and are perfectly fine.
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Old 07-19-2014, 12:34 PM
 
16,801 posts, read 14,444,532 times
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Originally Posted by ThermoMan View Post
I doubt anyone who has done the things he did to us cares about anyone. He might have a bit of a guilty conscience (if he even has one) but it's well deserved if he has.
You can't assume that. He has his own story, maybe you should ask him to honestly tell it to you. Then you can make a judgement about whether he is of value to you.

Quote:
Why do you say it? I've known many people who never had a father and are perfectly fine.
So have I. But they are not you and I am talking about you.
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Old 07-19-2014, 12:43 PM
 
108 posts, read 95,009 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zentropa View Post
You can't assume that. He has his own story, maybe you should ask him to honestly tell it to you. Then you can make a judgement about whether he is of value to you.
I think he's coming face to face with the consequences of his actions. He knows nothing about our lives, he's going to have a grandchild that he'll not meet, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zentropa View Post
So have I. But they are not you and I am talking about you.
So why do you say I would benefit from one?
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