Hard to process

Hi all, I’m new here to please bear with.

In June this year I had a text from my brother telling me our dad had been found dead . A brief back story now…I didn’t see dad much when I was growing up. I remember seeing him occasionally on the odd weekend when he used to pick me up and take me out for the day etc, but that stopped when I was quite young and then all contact was lost. I was always told by my mum and my gran that he couldn’t be bothered/didn’t want to see me. As a child I accepted this. I was then always told he was a waste of space and he was always made out to be a monster by my mum and my gran. My brother wanted nothing to do with him either (half brother)

Anyway fast forward to this year, the news came as a shock. I was talking with my partner at the start of the year about how once we had a car back on the road and I had recovered from my broken elbow, that we should try and find him and rekindle a father-daughter relationship. This never happened because of Covid :sob: and then I got the message from my brother.

A couple of weeks past, no one told me of any funeral arrangements, it wasn’t until after that I had contact from my dads sister (my auntie) in America telling me she had sorted everything. Anyway a week or so passed and we exchanged some emails, and it turned out dad had kept a lot of things, photos, solicitors letters court letters etc, all relating to him having regular access to me. His neighbours bought the box over to me and I spent a great deal of time looking through all these documents and photos. Even copies of letters he had sent to me, but I never received as a child, explaining why the contact suddenly stopped. He wasn’t the monster they made him out to be. Delving further into the paperwork I found child psychiatrist reports…mum tried making out I was always mentally disturbed when I came back from visiting him and that I didn’t want to go. According to the report it was the opposite. I wanted to spend time with my dad, but was scared to say so to mum for ‘fear of upsetting her’
It’s something I’ll never question her about, as even now, she wants nothing spoken of him.

I’m really struggling to process all this information though. And I keep beating myself up for not trying to find him sooner (turns out he was only living a short drive from me, and that I play in his village brass band :woman_facepalming:t3:) he lived alone and was struggling. He had brilliant neighbours who looked after him and made sure he wasn’t alone at Christmas etc

The coroners report states he had a fall down his stairs and broke his neck resulting in instant fatality, again something I struggle to come to terms with - if I had got in touch sooner maybe I could of prevented such a thing by getting relevant help for him around the home :woman_shrugging:t3: His inquest is happening on Monday coming. The scattering of his ashes is happening this weekend.

I keep having the most horrendous vivid dreams of him, dying, but his face is mixed between other loved ones I’ve lost (like my gran and my aunt) and living family (like my youngest children who are 3 and 4) all these dreams take place in my aunts house. These images haunt me during the day and I’m struggling to cope with it all. I can feel my mood has dropped greatly, I no longer find enjoyment in cooking or playing/learning my music etc and my patience is very thin with the children. I know I should probs my seek help from my GP but the process of getting an appointment is very hard at the moment :woman_facepalming:t3: I thought maybe talking here might help, or if someone can offer me advice if they’ve been in a similar position?

I have no experience of what you are going through but I didn’t want to read and not comment. I am so sorry for your loss, now and as a child.
I came on this forum after my Mum, who was my best friend, suddenly in February. Loss and grief is so complicated. Xxx

Hello Vishan, welcome to the site. I hope you get some responses from people in a similar position. I came across your post by accident as I normally visit the Losing a Partner forum.
You have given a very clear picture of your sad situation. It is terribly unfortunate that you never found your father, having come so close without knowing it. It is also sad to realise that he would have wanted you to find him.
My wife (who died suddenly six months ago) was upset about her father/daughter relationship. He died many years ago, but shortly after our wedding, her mother and father separated. She was never able to reform a relationship with her father because of the wrath of her mother and aunt, both of whom she was close to. She always felt that gaining a relationship with her father meant losing her mother and aunt. Such a horrible choice!
You will continue to have a lot of unanswered questions but all you can do is to take a little satisfaction in knowing that there was a bond there and he didn’t deliberately abandon you, as you may have initially thought.
You may wish to consider counselling through the Sue Ryder site. It is free and you can have six sessions by video link.
Take care and stay positive.

Hi Vishan, I know a cousin of mine was in in exactly your position regarding family lies in the past. After an acrimonious divorce the children were told by their Mother that their Father wanted nothing to do with them. I know for a fact that he sent maintenance every week and paid off all his ex-wife’s debts despite the fact that she was the one that had had committed adultery and left the family home to live with her lover. Christmas presents had not been passed on to the chilren. This continued for many years until another relative got hold of the letters that had been sent to the solicitor begging for access and the truth finally came out. Two of the children are now in touch with their father but it has been a long sad road for everyone.

Hello Visram
Im so sorry for your loss.
Have you tried counselling?
Cruise is good ive been with them
I know everyone is different.
Greiving is difficult enough and made worse by the coronavirus.
I lost my dad this year was devestated still am & lost my mother in law also
I didnt get to see my dad when i was younger long story
Take care
S47

Hello, I’m very sorry to hear about your father. I am going through something very similar but not the same. My dad passed away 2 days ago and we didn’t have a great relationship and I kept wanting to reach out to try to sort it out and never did and now I feel as though I’ve missed the chance and I feel extreme guilt and regret and sadness. Please message if you would like to talk. Sending love

@Vishan

I’m so sorry for your loss. I can’t say that I have been exactly where you have been - no one can. But perhaps if I explain my story to you, you can take some comfort from it.

So, the similarities between your story and mine lie between the relationship between my mum and my dad. I lost my Dad suddenly last year. I was 26, and he was only 64. Like you, growing up my mum made out that he was the devil, the worst thing, and if I ever spoke highly of my Dad it would be met with comments like ‘well go stay with him then’ or would share some awful untrue information like ‘why would you love someone who beat up your own mum?’. Growing up, my mum used to tell me a lot of lies regarding my Dad and their relationship. My mum told me that my Dad never wanted anything to do with me, that when she was pregnant he had poured a bowl of boiling soup over her belly to try make her have a termination, that she had to move back in with her mum because she was fearful of my Dad and needed the extra support because he never gave her any. This was all totally and completely untrue. My Dad also fought with the courts for shared custody over me and finally when I was in school, my Dad was granted visitation every Wednesday after school and every second weekend. It was never enough for my Dad who was the only one who ever told me things like he missed me when I wasn’t around, how proud he was of me and how much he loved me and our quality time. I know all this because I too, also found all the courts papers at my Dads, the letters he had wrote to my Mum when she went home asking how she and I was doing and when he could see me. My Mum had always made out that her and my Dad were pretty much a one night stand and she didn’t have much feelings towards him. Also untrue. I think the reason why she felt the way she did was because she probably loved my Dad and was heartbroken because he didn’t want to pursue a relationship (he’d always been a bachelor) and was pretty bitter over the whole thing.

I suppose my main point to you, is that there’s nothing you could’ve done to change anything. Even being in my Dads life with his poor health, I couldn’t force him to do anything. He was very much stuck in his own way and was happy the way he was. I know it’s very different stories between us but I just felt the strong urge to tell you that. The relationship between my mum and I is very strained as I hold so much resentment for the way she treated my Dad. Maybe it’s important for you to try have that conversation, of course it will be hard.
Try let go of the guilt and remember how much you meant to him - he wouldn’t have kept all that stuff otherwise.

Thoughts are with you, my inbox is always open.
XO

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