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Sometimes the internet is full of suck

My mom and I moved away from South Carolina when I was about 3. I guess. I was a little too young to remember and she’s probably in the bed so I can’t check this particular fact. But when we moved away is not nearly as relevant as that we did and the events that followed.

She eventually married the man I came to know as my dad. He brought me medicine and Sprite when I was sick. He took me to softball games and came to my school musicals when Mama was working nights. He made me clean my room. He walked me down the aisle at my wedding.

Whatever his flaws may be, he’s my Daddy.

So today, my biological father, the donor, friend requested me on Facebook, and I am all perplexed and feeling like my 17 year old self about this.

(See? I told you sometimes the internet is full of suck.)

How, you may ask, did he find me?

Because my Nana, his mother, has made sure to keep in touch with me. And because I have an older sister. His daughter from a previous relationship. She and I have kept in touch over the years, which now includes Facebook.

Up until I was 17, part of me had always wondered about my biological father. I’d always wanted to throw the “you’re not my father!” in the face of my step-dad whenever he reprimanded me for something in the melodramatic way that only bratty teenagers in movies do.

But I never did that because in my heart I knew those words weren’t true.

I was a senior in high school when my sister asked me to be in her wedding. We–Mama, Daddy, me, my little brother, and my friend–made plans to attend. We made hotel reservations. I bought my dress and had it altered. And one Friday night after a football game, we took off, Daddy driving.

Mama, my friend, and I headed out for the wedding that Saturday evening and the butterflies in my stomach were on crack. I remember scanning the audience at the church looking for him. And I didn’t even know what he looked like, so that was a futile attempt. But I knew he was there and I knew that he knew who I was and that was discomforting.

At the reception, my friend and I made our way through the buffet line and back to a small table by the wall. Soon, Mama followed, and with her was a man not much taller than she was with a small plate in one hand and a something-and-Coke in the other. They sat down at the table and I concentrated on my food.

I don’t remember the conversation, but I remember being an observer as Mama and this stranger talked old times and old friends. I’m actually not sure he even spoke directly to me the entire time he sat there with us.

Later that night as we were getting ready to leave, he came up to me, and I, in my too-tall heels, towered over him. He gave me an awkward hug and pressed a cocktail napkin into my hand.

He whispered, “I really do love you, you know. We’ve got some catching up to do.” And then he was gone. Or I was gone. Or we were both gone.

I looked at the napkin and on it he had scrawled “DAD” and a phone number.

I folded it and put it in my little purse and we left.

Once we got back home, I was faced with this dilemma of what to do. Here was the phone number of a man whose only contribution to my life had been half of my DNA. And he had dared to call himself my “dad.”

It was then that I knew that I’d never say those words to my step-father. Because it was then that I stopped wondering about my biological one. It was then that I realized that he’d had all the opportunity in the world to contact me over the years and it was never my responsibility, as a child, to seek a relationship with him.

So I lost the napkin. But maybe not the anger.

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In Memoriam - Finding Walden

Thursday 8th of August 2013

[…] He raised a daughter he didn’t have to raise. He did it all when a lesser man didn’t put forth the effort. […]


Sunday 27th of November 2011

I know I'm late commenting on this post. I'm not even sure why I felt drawn to your little neck of the woods to read tonight, but I'm so glad I was.

I dated the same guy all through high school. I even married him & have 2 boys with him. But shortly after giving birth to kid 2, I left. There are many reason that I won't get into here, but the shortened version is he was immature. He was not ready to be husband or a father.

He kept in touch with the boys sporadically after I left. It was mostly so he could keep in touch wtih me. Once I made it clear we were not getting back together & I remarried another guy, he was totally out of the picture. It's been almost 5 years with no contact & I got a facebook message asking to reconnect with the boys.

My oldest is almost 15 and can count on one hands the number of times his bio dad has been in his life. So now, I'm struggling with encouraging the relationship & seeing if the guy has really changed or being a mama bear & telling him to shove off.


Monday 24th of October 2011

I love you sweetie! It's good to know that whatever flaws daddy may have he is still your daddy. Why lord I tell him all the time, all men are idiots (no offence John) I married their king! It's wonderful to be married to a man that has a GREAT sense of humor. As for your biological father, well of course that's your decision. He did have something to do with you when you were little and we lived close by, but when we moved it was like we MOVED off the face of the earth. You know me, I was the type that didn't want the hassles of it's my weekend or my summer or my....etc. I didn't ask for child support, and certainly didn't need a man. Why we as women tackle any task set before us just to see if we can do it before we ask a man.....and most of the time hey we can do it! I love you and whatever your decision is, it's yours to make. Your sis turned out okay having grew up with her father, but somewhere down the line I just wanted more for you, and look at you, you are courageous, beautiful, strong, loving and I could say much more. If I haven't told you lately, I am so proud of you!


Monday 24th of October 2011

He is. And is he flawed? Sure. But he was there, you know? So that counts for something.

And I know we moved away and I know you moved us because you knew we deserved and could do better. But I still fault him for never reaching out all those years. For just giving up.

Love you, Mama. I am who I am today because of you.


Monday 24th of October 2011

Oh, Miranda - that's so, so difficult.

I get downright angry with my mother when she lays the guilt on, if I don't call when my schedule gets busy . . . because these phones work two ways. But, that's because 3 or 4 days go by and we don't talk to each other. A lifetime? Wow. It's really difficult to wrap my mind around just how selfish the sperm-donor's act was.


Monday 24th of October 2011

I mean, WE moved away, but HE still could've picked up the phone, you know? Or sent a card or a letter or something. It's just this totally bizarre thing to have him know about me and me know virtually nothing about him.

Sorry for the guilt trips. :/


Monday 24th of October 2011

How do you read my mind?

I had to face my dad 2 weeks ago when my uncle/ his brother passed away and I have been struggling writing the post about it. I have honestly started and stopped and typed and deleted about 2 billion times since I saw him. I didn't know what to say or do when he hugged me and my kids were introduced to him by my deranged aunt and I'm still dealing with that as well b/c my anger is and will always be there I think. Thanks for posting, maybe one day (soon?) I will actually finish mine!

One question: Did you accept the request?


Monday 24th of October 2011

It's really one of those situations where you're all mouth-hanging-open and drooling on yourself because you just don't know what to do.

And no, I haven't accepted it yet. It's still sitting in limbo.

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