To The First Man Who Made Me Hate Myself
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To The First Man Who Made Me Hate Myself

From your so-called "daughter"

To The First Man Who Made Me Hate Myself
Brianna Gavin

Dear Hugh,

I don't remember the image above being taken (obviously), but what I do remember is having pictures taken and you calling me ugly the entire time. You’re the first man whoever met me, which is quite the coincidence because you’re also the first man who hurt me. Having a father in my life was something that I always felt I never really had.

You were there but you weren’t present. You were a role model for your sons, but you never realized that you were supposed to build a relationship with your daughters at the same time. You were supposed to build a relationship with me so that I could learn how to operate and build relationships with other men that were positive and appropriate.

Because of the hurt that you caused me, I have lived the past 19 years building negative relationships with men and trying to find adult males who could fill the “daddy” relationship role rather than just the male “role model” role. No one can ever do that for me. What hurts the most is that instead of you just being emotionally absent, you were emotionally abusive.

Regardless of the types of relationships that I’m trying to form to replace you, you continually called me meaningless, useless, a waste and showed me how utterly ugly and completely unacceptable I am not only as a daughter but as a human being.

You never have and never will deserve the “dad” title, and you never will be regarded as “dad” in my book. It’s funny that I can have your last name and your blood running through my veins and still not be enough for you, but it doesn’t matter to me anymore. I am moving on from the hurt that you’ve caused me for so long.

I will never forget the painful memories and abuse that you’ve put me through, but I will take the step to forgive you. I forgive you for not being a father, for leaving your daughter and for making me feel bad enough to want to die. I forgive you for encouraging me to kill myself, for enabling sexual abuse a family member did to me for years and for making me hate myself for so long. I forgive you for never being a “daddy” and for never giving me the chance to be a “daddy’s girl”.

I forgive, but I will never forget. You’ve hurt me for the last time and I will never speak to you again. You will never meet my boyfriends, hold my babies or walk me down the aisle. I never want to acknowledge your existence for as long as I live.


A daddyless daughter finally reclaiming her power

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