Daddy’s Little Girl

My father and I at a bbq when I was a year old.
My father and I at a bbq when I was a year old.

I woke up this morning knowing exactly what I wanted to talk about today but not knowing how much of it I wanted to put out there. As much as I talk about my personal life as it relates to dating and self-esteem issues, I tend to stray away from talking about my family. It’s a sensitive subject for me especially when it comes to discussing my father. My father and I have a strange relationship. I grew up in a 2 parent household but my mother was the breadwinner and my father was the one who depended on her for everything. As intelligent as my father is (he can tell you a million things about UFO’s, African-American and European History and Psychology) he never applied himself and seemed content with just getting by in life. Growing up, he rarely ever complimented me on my accomplishments but was quick to criticize and/or put me on punishment if I did something he didn’t like or approve of. He would make jokes about things at my expense and although I loved my father, we were never particularly close.

As I grew older, I started seeing the burden he placed on my mom because she started being resentful towards him. My father could always find a way to turn a situation around and make himself look like a victim. He did it to my mother and he started doing that to me when I finally had the nerve to defend myself. I started becoming resentful towards him because he was so dependent on my mother (and sometimes me) for everything. We would argue here and there but last night was one of those explosive arguments where insults were thrown and I started feeling like that defenseless little girl that he used to yell and insult. I snapped and said things that I meant but wished I could have stated differently instead of letting my anger get the best of me. I had a hard time falling asleep last night because of what happened and I thought to myself “Why do I let my father get to me knowing he is the way he is?” The answer I came up with is that he was the first man in my life that disappointed me and I don’t think I’ve ever really let go of that.

I always felt like nothing I ever did was good enough. As a child and teenager, I was the smart ,quiet girl who didn’t date or go to any social events. I was labeled a “good girl” and everyone just knew I would be successful. I did have some slip ups along the way but I started getting my life together, graduated college and started pursuing my dreams of becoming the “Internet Oprah” Although my dad tells people about me and what I do, I never felt like he really cared much or was genuinely happy of the accomplishments I made. He seemed to focus on the things I haven’t done: “You still don’t have your license” “You still haven’t graduated college (this was before June of last year) and I felt like I could never win so I just stopped trying. I always talk about living your life for yourself and not trying to please others but I would be lying to myself if I said that my father’s approval didn’t mean something to me. I guess at the end of the day, I just wanted to be Daddy’s little girl. We have a lot to work on in our relationship but getting to the bottom of our broken relationship and why I feel the way I do is the first step and hopefully he is able to take that first step in the near future as well. I hope that  one day I can be as trusting towards him as I did once upon a time.

Thanks for reading.