Absence of Paternal Love
September 24, 2015
As I sit in bed and drink my coffee at 1am in the morning something inside forces me to write. I have been so busy with school, work, and Troubled that I sometimes forget about my blog. The very thing that keeps me strong seems to be becoming last in my life. Not this time. This time I won’t hold in my thoughts. This time I won’t hide behind the mask of my internal scream. All my life I have never expressed myself vocally. I’ve suffered in silence and my only friends were pen and paper because they don’t talk back. I tell everyone I know family or friend, “If you want to know what I’m thinking read what I write.” If you’re not a reader then you will never know my true feelings.
Now that I got that out of the way. . .
I want to write about the absence of paternal love, specifically from a female perspective. Paternal love is important whether there is a son or daughter. However paternal love is especially important to a woman because without it there may be severe consequences.
As most people know I lost my father at 11 to murder, my grandfather at 12 to cancer, and my godfather to heart failure at 14. Recently I lost my other grandfather (my godfather’s dad) to heart failure as well. I come from a large yet small family. Most of my ancestors reside in Louisiana. I have one uncle who lives in Alabama that I rarely get to see. The only immediate family I have left in Houston is my mother, aunt, grandmothers, and two female cousins (one older, one younger). Since I lost my father there has been a missing piece of my heart that I call “paternal love”. The pain never goes away but my faith in God has made it bearable. It took me a long time to realize that although he was gone my life still continues. Paternal love gives a women strength, safety, healing, love, gentleness, and happiness. I say paternal love because sometimes (especially in my case) fatherly love doesn’t necessarily have to come from your biological father. I listen to my friends all the time talk about their fathers and I can’t help but feel sad because I don’t know what that excitement feels like. All I feel is an empty space.
When I lost the last man I had left this year that 11 year old girl came back. The only difference between then and now is my understanding of God’s word. I never knew how strong my faith was until I realized that this time I didn’t let loss limit my life. There are days when I want to shut down. There are days when I want to break down because I can’t handle the responsibility that the men in my family completed every day.
The absence of paternal love is not only essential to family but to relationships. Whether or not a woman has that love she still looks for it in men. We sometimes find ourselves comparing men we date to our fathers. We look for that love and protection from them. It’s not there. No matter how hard we try or how deep we dig no man can fill a spot that was only meant for paternal love.
“A cube won’t fit in a round glass because they’re two different shapes. A man is the cube and the glass is that empty section of your heart. No matter how hard you try to force it, it will never fill the inside of the glass.”
To my men:
Women are fragile but strong. Get to know the background of a woman before you treat her a certain way. Everybody has a story. Everybody has a heart. Not everyone will share that with you but show that you care enough to want to know. Be understanding to the fact that there is something inside of her that is missing and always will be. You may not be able to replace it but you can give her enough love that she doesn’t realize it’s gone.
To my women:
I know it hurts. Stay strong. Remember that there are many ways to love. One type of love may not be there but there are many more to choose from. Don’t lock your heart knowing that the key is impossible to find. Whether your father or father-like figure has passed or was never there to begin with you can still be as strong as you are destined to be.
I write this to you but also to myself. The things I write are mostly things that I tell myself. I share them because I like to think that someone somewhere is reading this feeling as though it was uniquely written for them. It’s like going to church and feeling like the pastor was talking specifically to you as if he knew exactly what you were going through.
Life is like a masquerade ball. We can only see the mask on the outside. . .