Father’s Day 2021

I have not talked to my father since 2016. He was verbally abusive to my brother and his family, and I gave up on trying to rebuild a relationship with him.

My parents separated when I was 14. It was a peaceful break up. Having said that, knowing what I now know about psychology and trauma, I am quite certain that the impact of his relationship with me, my mom, and my brother, had fundamentally affected us.

At the same time, knowing what I now know about psychology and equanimity, I should probably learn to move on and forgive. I am trying.

He had a terrible childhood. His Dad, my Grand Father, was violent, abusive, and short tempered too. My Dad learned his worldview from him. My Dad wasn’t evil. That’s just how he understood the world. He was as confused as one could be. It’s not his fault.

At the same time, it is unlikely that he would change, given his age and his circumstances. Knowing what I now know about psychology and development, to hope or expect him to evolve into my view of the world is irrational, unproductive, and just wishful thinking.

It doesn’t sound right to leave it as is. I am struggling and I often wonder, would I fair better if I fix my relationship with him? Will forgiveness bring me peace? For the sake and health of my own family, should I try harder to fix my relationship with my father?

Yesterday I watched the movie “The Wisdom of Trauma.” What stood out from the movie was the question “What’s the teaching?” Gabor Maté believe we ought to consider this question constantly- “shit happened- what’s the teaching?”

What’s the teaching?

I now have a vivid understanding of what “breaking the cycle” means. I am clear on how I can stall the generational pain. I was passing the suffering onto my kids unknowingly. My worldview, my values, my understanding of parenting, my way of coping with shame and fear, were seeded unconsciously by what I experienced with my parents. Many terrible things have happened. Somehow I survived; Somehow we survived. Now I have more clarity of what’s going on. This clarity has shown me the responsibility I have as a person. I vividly believe I have the responsibility to break this cycle and reduce the hurt in this world.

What’s the teaching?

Why do I want to fix “him?” Because I want to feel that my understanding the world is “correct.” If my worldview is correct, then his worldview and his actions must be “wrong.” Therefore he needs to be fixed. I should fix him, because that’s the best way to convinI am “right.”

But is that true? Do I need to fix him? Is it possible that his role in the journey of this particular path of existence is to get me to evolve and craft the next path of existence? Perhaps he existed so then I get to finally adjust this minuscule path of existence in the grand universe of collective existence?

What’s the teaching?





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