To The Dad Who Didn't Have Time to Love
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To The Dad Who Didn't Have Time to Love

An open letter to the dad who was too busy

To The Dad Who Didn't Have Time to Love

Dear Dad,

As your child I have loved you unconditionally. I know that sometimes I can be a little dramatic and throw a few fits here and there, but I have always loved you regardless.

I wish I could say the same for you.

I don’t have that many memories of you from my childhood, besides seeing you leave in the mornings at breakfast for work and coming home at 9 pm before bedtime. Most of the time you were on business trips, 200 days out of the year every year. I still remember how you’d greet us cheerfully every time you came home, but I can’t seem to remember you much besides that.

I know you attended many of our school plays and events, but I know how much effort Mum had to make in order to drag you there, as you were always in a relationship with your phone.

I know it’s not fair to criticize you for working so hard for our family. I know that when you grew up you and your family had nothing, and that you were risking everything in order to make sure that we would always have all the things you never did when you were younger. I know you were working for us because you cared.

I also remember all the dinners we had where you entertained your colleagues and clients. My sister and I were always dressed well and knew how to carry long conversations from a very young age, your little puppets you used to show the world that you were a family man. It’s a shame you didn’t know much about us besides the fact that we were your children.

As we grew older, we learned how to converse with you better. You were no longer the stranger living in our house. You became our friend. You’d call us here and there, to wish us happy birthday and to bring us gifts from your trips away, and we really learned more about each other instead of just knowing you as “Dad”.

No one saw that divorce coming. Mum just wanted you out. You retired to come back to try to be a family, and instead you were cast out of your own house.

I thought you had abandoned us. But once I started to visit you, we became the closest of friends. I would visit you twice a year because I wanted to make sure you were doing well, and I supported you through this difficult time. I always made sure to tell you that you were doing great, that you were always successful in everything you did and that you would be able to accomplish anything you set your mind to. Whenever I called, I knew I could count on you to answer. Even if it was in a meeting with hundreds of people. If I had known this was the only time I would ever have with you, I would have lived every minute to the fullest.

I even supported you dating again.

I thought you meant it when you said that you would put your daughters first, that if we didn’t like your girlfriend that you wouldn’t want to be with her. I truly believed you were the father I had always hoped you to be.

I wish I wasn’t so blindsided when I realized that all you wanted to do was put her first. I should have realized it when she wanted to take you on a trip to celebrate your birthday after knowing you for less than half a year, when I was trying to come spend it with you. Or the 10-day vacation she wanted to take with you in that short time I was trying to visit you when you were home. I should have known.

I should have known when I told you I wasn’t fond of her and you told me that it was your life, and that if we criticized her that we were pushing you farther away from us.

It was never about the gifts that you gave me, or that she told you she could tell I was “spoiled”. That was your way of trying to show us in the only way you understood how to show love. But what you didn’t know is that love isn’t always about gifts. It’s about spending time. All I have ever wanted was time with you.

I should have realized that you were only pretending to care, that maybe you were just trying to put on a good show for everyone.

Instead, you broke my heart. I should have seen it coming.

But please know, Dad, that I still love you despite everything.

I just wish you knew how to love.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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