My father was a tyrant. He was a bully. He was mean and cruel, vicious and without remorse. He belittled and ridiculed us, he beat and raped us. He did not do his God given duty as a father. He failed to uphold the primary directive for a parent. He did not protect his children, he instead caused them harm.
He is old now, and the courts consider him too old and frail to stand trial, but his children are free. We were able to give testimony, we were believed, and we were given back our sanity. My whole life I thought I was not worthy, that I must have done something wrong, that I must have been fundementally flawed to cause this treatment, and must surely be overindulging myself in my despondence, after all, he always claimed he never did anything wrong. If what he did wasn’t wrong, I must have been my own cause for feeling bad. I felt guilty because I felt so broken, I blamed myself for my pain. My blame might have destroyed me, or my drug or alcohol use, or my other self destructive behaviours may have, I think I survived myself only by the Grace of God. And now, I carry no blame. He hasn’t been punished by the courts, but now he knows without a doubt that what he did to his children was wrong.
When I was fourteen I went home from school and he stopped me in the kitchen. He hugged me, pressing his groin against me, then he put his right hand on the side of my right boob and said to me, “this is how I used to cop a feel of your mother when we were going out.” Something clicked in me then and I looked him in the eyes and said, “get your f-ing hand off me.” His eyes widened in shock, his hands dropped, and he took a step back. Before he could say a word I took a step forward into the space he had just vacated, got in real close, looked him right in the eyes again and very quietly but very firmly said to him, “if you ever touch me again, I will kill you.” His face went blank with shock, he turned on his heals and walked away.
He never tried to touch me after that.
You know the really crazy thing about it all? I loved him still. All I really wanted was his love.