Dads are important to kids growing up healthy. Living without a dad is tough. Experiencing a dad who hurt you is unimaginable. Please know that your heavenly Father loves you beyond words.
Many girls grow up with fathers who were absent in one way or another.
Others have loving, involved dads. If you are among the girls with fathers who were there for you emotionally, physically, and spiritually, you are blessed. You probably enjoyed a wonderful Father’s Day last weekend, and I’m happy for you.
When Fathers Wound Their Children
Others — me included — have father wounds.
Some dads slapped their young ones or punched them. This is criminal. They should go to jail, the sooner, the better.
Other dads slipped into their daughters’ rooms under the cover of darkness and did unspeakable things. This is sick. Beyond sick. If this describes you, you are not at fault for his sin. He is.
Some dads left the family. Divorce, separation — these legal terms fail to capture the pain of a dad’s absence.
Or maybe — like my dad — your dad was there physically but absent emotionally.
The Effect of AWOL Dads
I cannot begin to describe how much my dad’s emotional absence confused me and set me up for depression and anxiety as an adult. Thank God, my early 30s ushered in an intense time of healing. I found the strength to forgive my dad. He never asked for forgiveness. I gave it to him anyway. I had to. For my sake.
He truly didn’t realize how much he hurt me. He didn’t intend to.
Back then, I needed to know he loved me, that I reigned as his princess.
But you know what? Years ago, I decided years ago to follow the apostle Paul’s instruction, “forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead” (Philippians 3:13). What is ahead for me is heaven. My “now” is loving my kids as best as I can, together with my husband, because this is God’s desire. Mine too.
Now my dad and I have a great relationship. I cannot explain the reason why. In my heart I believe it’s God’s healing.
He phones me. I phone him. (He hasn’t joined the ranks of Facebook. . .yet, and doesn’t know how to text.)
We have deep conversations, silly conversations. You may know this bible verse: “I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten” (Joel 2:25).
This is what I’m experiencing in my relationship with my dad. What the locusts ate, God has given back.
Do you have a dad story you’d like to stare? Feel free to contact me.