Saturday, December 24, 2011

Day 14 of Freedom: July 14, 2011

Last night and today have been extremely painful for me. My stomach burns almost constantly from the pain. Today I wrote my dad an unsent letter where I told him exactly how I feel about his vicious, calculated, and intentional brutality against me. I felt this overwhelming sense of both anger and sadness. I was crying for a while, and I was so overwhelmed with emotion that I did not have the energy to write to my mother and grandmother in addition. I feel an overwhelming sense of hurt about the way my dad has treated me, and this emotion is surfacing along with the trauma of my unhappy and abusive childhood.
Today I was able to be a friend and mentor to Rachel’s kids Tink and Ceci and that gave me a lot of consolation. And also I hugged poor Isabella, 12, who came home from seeing her mother Maria in a mental institution in tears from shock and pain. But I am going through this overwhelming sense of loss and pain and grief. It is really hard to live with the knowledge that your own father hates you and never loved you and basically has wished you ill and evil from practically the moment you were born.
My stomach burns from the grief of knowing what my father has done to me. My soul is rent into a million pieces by shock and grief and loss. I suppose I am going through a process of mourning for the father I never had.
It is really devastating and heart-rending to come to terms with the fact that your own father hates you so deeply to the bottom of his heart and soul, to know that basically he wants you to suffer for his own pleasure. It is in some ways almost so horrendous that it is hard to believe because no father should ideally wish the kind of total destruction upon his daughter that my father seeks for me.
Once again I am crying because I find this almost too hard to accept, almost too much to bear. I guess the sadness comes from knowing that I have loved my father all my life, but he has never loved me with even one inch of his soul. The tears are now streaming down my face as I write this. I think what I am feeling is more of an overwhelming sense of sadness more than anger even. I don’t think I ever really allowed myself to feel an overwhelming sense of sadness about my dad’s abuse.
I feel inside again like a six year old little girl who is craving her father’s love -but who now finally understands that her father has never loved her, can never love her, and never will love her. I remember staying up late every night when I was six years old to wait for daddy to come home - and now I realize it was all a waste because he never wanted me in the first place.
It hurts to know he would have loved me so much more if only I had been born a boy, if only I had a penis. He rejected me from birth due to something entirely beyond my control, something that a feminist writer once called “the Original Sin of Being Born Female.” It was almost completely due to my absence of a male organ that my dad hates me so very deeply.
In truth I know he also verbally abused Jason as well, at times calling him “worthless”, “idiot”, and “moron.” But I think that despite this verbal abuse, he at least felt something like love for Jason. He spent all night every night helping Jason go through the challenges of dental school and then periodontal fellowship, and then he spent $600,000 or so to buy Jason a dental practice. Oh, and when Jason was unemployed for a year after completing his dental fellowship, my dad paid back his loans for dental school and fellowship. I can only contrast his willingness to spend $600,000 on a dental practice for Jason with his refusal to buy me an apartment and conclude that he loves my brother for being male and conforming to a standard career path and hates me for being female and for being unable to fulfill a standard career path.
It is quite clear to me that my dad doesn’t care what happens to me, that he has discarded and abandoned me almost entirely. After all, he is retiring in a year without making any provision to continue supporting me or buy me an apartment although he knows fully well that I won’t be financially self-sufficient in a year. In some ways, though, I am better off without my dad’s financial support, because I know that it comes at the price of a lifelong experience of intentional brutality, cruelty, and abuse. My dad treats me like a garbage bag and a punching bag because I have not been able or willing to fulfill his expectations for me, that is to hold a job in an office or, even better, to get married to an abusive husband and raise abused children just like my mother has done.
He finds the idea of a strong, free woman who believes in her own dignity, humanity, and equality to be extremely threatening and upsetting, like a deliberate affront to his manhood and male identity. For him masculinity depends upon systematically terrorizing and brutalizing the women under his control - and most of all on breaking their spirits so thoroughly that they are willing to accept almost any level of toxic emotional abuse that he can dish out. He considers it his right as a man to treat his female possessions like garbage in exchange for financially supporting him. I think he is unable to see the woman as having any dignity, humanity, or identity of her own. He thinks men exist to control and brutalize women, and women exist to serve men and to accept their subordinate role to men. The man’s role is to keep the woman “in her place” through a systematic and intentional program of terror and control, and not to allow the woman to ever experience any feelings of freedom or dignity.
He has dreamed of crushing me for my entire life because I rebelled against him at an early age and refused to accept his terms of engagement. He likes women like my mother and grandmother who kowtow to men and who accept their inherently subordinate position under male control. He likes a woman who accepts his abuse - who stays in her place, who doesn’t challenge the automatic and absolute nature of male authority over women. When I left him, he was very angry about losing control of one of his female objects and possessions. He was mad that his victim had run away and told him to get lost and that she doesn’t need him. He was angry that she told him she refused to remain in a dependent and subordinate position in relation to him anymore, which meant that he could not get pleasure out of battering her anymore.
I think he was filled with a mixture of anger and joy about my failure at the office setting. His joy was knowing I couldn’t function in an office; thus, he knew I couldn’t support myself financially and thus I was financially dependent on him. He liked having me financially dependent upon him because that meant he could have the pleasure of terrorizing me to keep me under his control. On the other hand, he was also upset at having to support me financially because that cost him money. He wanted in the end the best of both worlds from his point of view: to have me partially financially self-sufficient so that I was not a total burden to him financially but not sufficiently self-reliant economically that I could actually fend for myself in the economic realm. He knew instinctively that if I could ever free myself financially from his control that I would also be able to free myself emotionally from his control as well.

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