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Dear Dad

Dear Dad,

I don't know if I should even call you Dad. You don't deserve the respect that the title comes with. I hate you. And no, that isn’t an exaggeration. You literally make me feel like the smallest person in the world; you make me feel worthless. You make snap judgments and jump to conclusions. You accuse me of being too critical though you’re harsher on people than seashells on baby feet. Children need roots and wings. But you took my roots and tied them in knots with your caveman hands and with all your negative, hurtful thoughts. You’re stunting my wings as well. You scream at me and push me around for no legitimate reason. I don’t understand why, though. Is it because I’m like Nathaniel? Is it because I’m not? Is it because he's a boy? Maybe you hate me because I want to be a journalist, or an actor. Maybe you hate me because I’ll never be the engineer you want me to be.

I went to Chrissy's house today and her Dad was there. He was really nice. He never yelled at her or hit her. He asked her what she wanted to eat and didn't get mad like you do when she dropped her cup on the floor. Chrissy's Dad told her he loved her and even hugged her. That night I dreamt that you were like him. You picked me up and hugged me and told me you loved me. You took me to the park and pushed me on the swing. You let me choose what kind of candy I wanted at the store. I woke up and then I cried. Why can’t you be like that anymore?
You are poison and out of your mind. That's why I don't talk to you. For every word I say to you, a corkscrew shaped bullet shoots into my soul, turning and turning and churning and making me sick with guilt and anger. And when I die they’ll open me up and mark the cause of death as ‘lies.’

Honestly, you scare the s*** out of me because I know I’ll be like you. I’m argumentative, like you. I’m technical, like you. I’m pre-disposed to be an alcoholic, like you. Speaking of which, you missed four years of my life because you were drinking. You missed my state-wide spelling bee, you missed when I almost died rock climbing. You forced me into depression for three years. You overlooked that your own son came home high for his whole high school career. You missed that his room smelled like pot constantly. You missed four of my birthdays. I don’t even know who you are.
You're not daddy. You're that horrible man who calls himself my father. And you know what, I'm not sorry about what I've said to you. You deserved it. But I don't wish h*ll fire or pain on you. I don't wish harm on anyone, even those who deserve it. Some day, when you are very old and I have flown away on my feeble stunted wings, you will pause and reflect upon your life and maybe possibly you will realize what your parents did to you by being cold and hard and that you’ve done it to me too. But I will rise above and I will break the chain and perhaps I’ll accept your apology.

Goodnight, Daddy. I miss you.



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