Just a short article to say ‘Happy Father’s Day’ to all the dads and father figures doing such a great job out there.
On a day when we are encouraged to remember and say ‘thank you’ to our father’s, it is also worth remembering, however, that for many, the day may not be about producing a nice card and present, or visiting the garden centre for lunch.
For many, it can be a day of painful memories, brought to the forefront of our minds by the hype around us.
There can be many reasons for this, and they are ALL valid.
Some of the things which could make today a difficult day for you:
You have recently (or not necessarily recently) lost your father.
- This may be through death. When a parent dies it changes us forever. Of course this can be made far more difficult if the death was premature, or if it wasn’t anticipated, leaving us no chance to say goodbye. The more traumatic this is, the worse the impact it can have on us.
- Loss may be through estrangement. Perhaps this happened many years ago as a child, leaving us vulnerable, and in some way feeling to blame.
For some people, it can be a reminder that we didn’t have the childhood we’d have hoped for.
- Abuse, whether physical, emotional or sexual leaves scars that can affect our lives many years on.
- An ‘absent’ father can impact children, and have further consequences on relationships in later life.
For fathers mourning the loss of a child.
- On a day when children are celebrating their fathers, it can be a painful reminder of the absence of a lost child – whether through death or estrangement.
If, for whatever reason you feel you are carrying around emotional scars from your relationship (or lack of relationship) with your father (or child), however long ago that may have been, please remember, it is never too late to heal.
Especially today, be kind and gentle with yourself, and do whatever you can to show compassion to the part of you which hurts.
Speaking to a therapist, in a confidential and safe place, can also be an opportunity to work through difficulties you may be experiencing now.
I have experience of working with complex bereavement, abuse and relationship problems. Please get in touch to find out more about how I can help you now.