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15 June 2013

An Open Letter to my Baby Daddy this Father's Day

from Cleveland Heights, OH, USA
Dear Father of my Child,

I hope this finds you well. Happy Father's Day!

Oh, you haven't had a chance to properly celebrate Father's Day? I'm sorry.

I really am sorry.

My son has, though. We celebrate with my father every year and also with my grandfather.

They are both around. They both have always been around. They have been able to celebrate it for many years.

He was looking forward to celebrating with you this year, also.

My son didn't have a father, and still maybe doesn't have a father, until last November, when after your nearly three year hiatus, you decided to contact me because the guilt I warned you about finally caught up with you.

But now, you've drifted into the shadows again, and despite my best efforts to coax you back into our lives, you've declined all invitations.

You're busy - I know. You have school and work - both very important as you struggle to reclaim a more normal life. I can sympathize. I work fifty hours a week and have a nearly three-year-old in my custody full-time, who happens to yet remain fatherless on his birth certificate. I know how quickly time gets eaten up.

I have a card for you, colored and signed by my son. He's anxious to give it to you. I wanted to mail it, but you couldn't confirm your address for me. It will be waiting should you decide to revisit any sort of involvement. I am sorry we didn't get you a gift. Money is a little tight, especially since you haven't been able to assist. The six months you were able to help was great, and I'm still appreciative. My son, although unable to really say it, thanks you, too.

I hope your day is filled with whatever it is you need. You don't like to celebrate holidays. Unfortunately, holidays aren't really about just you. Sometimes when you have a child, you have to grin and bear it and just learn to appreciate that they like having an additional reason to share a little more love with you or appreciate you.

But you wouldn't know that. Or, if you do, you disregard it.

I understand that your childhood was awful. I know. I am sorry that you had to bear all of that.

Instead of propagating that same story to this young man, my son, whom you are half creator of, you have the opportunity to amend it and find closure yourself.

Approximately 27% of children in the United States live with only one parent. I'm not certain how many are in the same situation we are in - abandoned, not once but seemingly twice now - but the number of children, now 1 in 3, being raised without a father is staggering.

Do you know what a father means?

Aside from the duties you have already fulfilled with your chromosomal donation, a father is a support to their child. He loves and nurtures them in a way mothers cannot do alone.. at least, not easily. A father is on a team with his child'd mother - ensuring that the child is kept safe, kept healthy, and raised respectably, through assisting emotionally, financially, and through involvement. Sure, I'll throw footballs and baseballs around with my son; I'll drag him around to soccer practice, take him to boy scout meetings, all that jazz. But you should want to, too. We do not need to "be together" to raise this child together. You just need to show interest and devote a small amount of time with some regularity.

Maybe this year can be the last you celebrate alone. I did my due diligence and more, even after you very hurtfully dogged me on Mother's Day. It's possible this is all the result of a grave misunderstanding, but as you remain unreachable by any form of communication (maybe I'll try a carrier pigeon next), we haven't had a moment to clarify the situation.

Happy Father's Day.

Hopefully this year will be the time for you to start to be one.

Sincerely yours,

Your Baby Mama

2 comments:

  1. Ah. Powerful. Thank you for sharing.

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  2. Hope he comes around. It's such a loss for your son if he doesn't, and also for him. Oh, what amazing things he misses...

    Dagmar
    Dagmar's Home

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