Father’s day has always been a hard day for me, since I’ve never really had a strong relationship with my father. And now, I don’t even have any contact with him. So, Father’s day has been more of a reminder of my brokenness than any kind of celebration.
However, I’ve recently became content with how my relationship (or lack thereof) with my father is, which has made Father’s day, let alone any day, not brutal. Here are principles I’ve followed, which helped me to be content with not having a father in my life.
Don’t harbor bitterness towards him.
I was angry at my father for a long time. I didn’t let people know, so I kept it all to myself, bottled up. However, in the past two years, I’ve accepted the person he is and understood that the responsibilities of being a father was too much for him to handle.
He tried the best he could and his best wasn’t nearly good enough and I’m okay with it. Therefore, I’m no longer angry at him. This doesn’t take away the hurt he has caused me, but it does put my pain into perspective, which helps me to have a peace about my life.
Realize that your poor relationship with your father helped you become a better person.
I used to hate how my life had turned out without having a father around, but then things changed when I started to notice how my poor relationship with my father has actually helped me. It motivated me to be a better friend, a better son, a better boyfriend, and a better overall person. God’s in control and He allowed your father to be absent for a reason, and that reason is to mold you into a stronger, more empathic, more loving person.
I wanted to make sure the mistakes of my father didn’t become the mistakes of myself. For example, he has an angry problem, so I make sure to not ever let my angry to led me down a path like his. I also make sure to be more loving towards people, be open about my problems instead of bottling them up, and so forth. I saw what he did to me and my family and I strive to not make the same mistakes. This has helped me to become a better person.
Don’t focus on how you didn’t have a father.
I used to constantly think about how I didn’t have a father when I needed him most. Father’s day was a day where I continually told myself that this day wasn’t for me. I also dwelled on feelings like these on holidays like Christmas, Easter, and even my birthday. However, dwelling on that didn’t solve anything. I had to let go of being a victim and embrace the person God has molded me into.
I now focus on how I did have father figures along the way to help me when I needed help. To be clear, these father figures don’t come close to fulfilling the hole my father’s absence has left me, but these people do help me to realize that I did have people who loved me and stepped into my life when they didn’t have to and they helped me. My father figures have been my two older brothers and my grandpa. They combined to be the main male role models in my life. I am a better man because of them.
I focus on what I have, not what I don’t have. I have incredible men who stepped up to help me. I’m forever grateful for what they did for me. They did not fulfill the hole my father left, but they did show me that I have men in my life who I can depend on.
Don’t be upset with people who have a strong relationship with their father.
I didn’t grow up with my father around. It was rough and I tended to have resentment towards people who had a strong relationship with their fathers. For example, my cousin, Brandon, and I have been best friends for our whole lives, but I had times when I resented the fact that he has an amazing relationship with his father.
I remember how Christmas’ seeing him playfully wrestle with his dad, which made me quietly slip away to the restroom, where I silently cried. It was too much for me that day. I wondered, “Why does Brandon get to have his father and not me?”. This wasn’t fair to Brandon or even me.
You should be happy that others have a good dad. You know firsthand how painful it is to not have a father, so you shouldn’t wish that upon anyone. I know you probably already know this, but it helps to be reminded. The world needs more attentive and encouraging fathers, so you should be happy when you see them