Ah, I’ll start with my blood, my actual family.
Family has been on my mind a lot lately. I am an only child, and growing up, I often felt very loved by my mom and dad.
And then, the summer I turned 16, my dad filed for divorce and left me and my mom.
My parents had been married for 19 years.
When my dad left, there was no court-ruled visitation. Since I could drive, I drove the 2 hours to see him on weekends when I wasn’t working. Within one year, my dad was married to a woman who was in it for money.
A year after that, my dad was divorced again.
The relationship between my dad and I has, for the most part, been good on the surface. But there have been underlying control issues that I’ve pushed under the rug for years.
And on Thanksgiving Day, that rug was peeled back when my dad blew up at me for not replying a text message within one hour.
Currently, my dad and I aren’t speaking. I’ve spent the weeks since Thanksgiving wondering what I did to make my dad hate me—his only child—so much that he can’t even see my face or speak to me.
But I don’t know if that’s something I’m meant to understand.
The relationship with my mom is good. We are closer than ever. But it has not come easy—we went our own year without speaking, and it was one of the most difficult times in my life.
There are times when I have to remind myself that your “family” doesn’t have to be relatives. And although my relatives do have strengths, I often consider my friends to be my family, because that’s really all I have.
I too come from a broken family. My parents divorced when I was 6. To this day I still don’t know the whole story of why my parents got divorced and I don’t care to because I think it would make me hate my Dad.
My Dad and I weren’t close until he started dating his current wife (I was 19 or 20). I hated his second wife, her son, and going to their house. I thought my Dad had anger issues, and I think he did until he divorced her. When I was little and in my teenage years my Dad made me do all the things he loved, like ride horses and play on go karts. <— How terrible, right? I’m such a brat. Now I am super close with my Dad, I can talk to him [and my Stepmom] about anything.
My Mom and I have always been close in the sense that we hang out a lot. But I have never been that open with her about my feelings because I always thought she wouldn’t understand, as I get older that is changing. My Mom raised me as a single parent and brought me up in a “tough-love” kind of household where I usually got whatever I wanted. Does that make sense? She’s a very strong woman and is honestly probably one of the best people I know. She is the type of person that really would do anything for anyone.
I’m lucky enough to have 2 parents that help me and are very supportive of everything I do. But like Lucky, my friends are my family too and those are the people that I feel know me the best.