You Deserved a Better Father (2nd Ed) | Cokesbury
Want to help us catch more reposts? Click the report button and include a link to the original post! Every child deserves parents, but not all parents deserve children. Also, teachers who they see at school every day. You never know if Billy has lost his mom, dad, or both mentally, physically, or emotionally and needs a parental figure in his life. No one cared. Teachers at the time, just saw me as a troubled kid who couldn't be helped. Maybe it was true. But it sure didn't feel like anyone tried. Eventually a guidance counselor went to bat for me a few times to keep me out of jail.
Fathers deserve a lot more recognition for the role they play
He helped turn my life around a bit and all he did was just show up when I needed him. Turns out I didn't need much else. I grew up hanging out with a very troubled crowd. My guidance counselor never once gave me advice that I can remember.
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I didn't need to be told how to be a good person. Or taught right from wrong. But none of that means the person trying to figure it out is a shit person, they are doing the hardest thing possible: Trying to figure out life without guidance from those who have done it before.
Life, Off Script
They need a hand up, some advice from someone who cares, and just to know in general that someone cares; not a kick out the door. I've written this before. There are also so many things that a teacher or guidance councilor can't teach. Things like how to deal with strong emotions, how to cope with failure, how to deal with loss, etc. Only someone who is involved in a child's life for many years can be there to teach the little person how to be an effective human. I didn't have that. I was blessed with intelligence, so I didn't struggle with grades and didn't get into much trouble, but my life went into flames and crashed all around me when I started to run into those issues of failure, stress, and loss.
I didn't have the skills to cope, so I turned to a chemical solution, and it destroyed my life for a time. Dude we might have lived the same life. Things were perfect for me growing up til my folks died when I was 19, heroin ruled my life for the next 5 years.
That term makes the average person think they are a mental health professional. Then at least everyone would know that we have ZERO mental health services in most public schools.
My mom died when I was 14 and my dad got all caught up in "moving on" with a new woman right away. Even with my older sisters when my mom was alive, he turned into the shittiest parent between the ages of Needless to say, we didn't have the best relationship.
At one point, he contacted my English teacher to tell her to fail me. After my suicide attempt, he accused my favorite teacher of trading me drugs for sex. Truth is, that favorite teacher singlehandedly kept me showing up to school at all. His classes gave me a reason to be there, a reason to get out of my house, and a reason to live.
I'm now in a career set forth by that teacher. My mom died when I was 11, and it wasn't until I was older that I realized how lucky I was that my dad stepped up the way he did. He basically put his life on hold to raise me and keep things normal for me. Hearing stories like yours always helps my perspective, because my dad easily could have just decided to move on with his life and keep me as an afterthought.
But instead he kept me front and center until I went off to college. Even now, I'm in my 30s and live miles away, but we still have a great relationship. This hits me right in the heart, because instead of going to bat for me they put me on antidepressants that were too strong and made me haze out. I WISH someone had stood up for what I wanted and needed rather than what they thought would fix the problem. My mom died when I was 11, and it wasn't until I hit my 20s that I really realized how much my dad did when it was just the two of us.
He basically put his entire life on hold until I went to college so that my life stayed normal. When I got older I realized how differently the whole thing could have played out. He easily could have just done whatever he wanted and left me as an afterthought. Hey, my kid is that age right now and I guarantee that some of the teachers he has right now are literally changing the course of his life.
So, in all seriousness, thank you for what you do. A few teachers and an amazing guidance councillor made the world of difference in my life and at least a few of my friends, probably more.
Their mandate was to teach and yet they did so much more, and I am so grateful and hope they know what a difference they made. And teachers should be paid more, and trained appropriately, to be in such an important position. I intentionally make myself available for that sort of thing.
BUT- it pisses me off to no end the double standard the public sets. One of these days I am going to quit teaching and become a non profit owner or something for youth outreach- where I can help kids and also tell their parents to fuck right off. Yup, my mom was an alcoholic who slept all day, and stayed up all night drinking. My dad was working, but it was my older brother who made sure I made it to school and such or my dad.
But the secretary at my elementary school was the main woman in my I bonded with. Shed always ask me about my school and outside activities, take interest in things with, if i got sick in school which happened quite a bit for me growing up she'd keep me in her office and rub my back and reassure me till my dad or brother got off work to get me cause my mom wouldn't answer the schools calls. Teachers and authorities at school really have an impact on kids at school. Lol my son is going to the same school i did growing up now and that same secretary is still there.
He tells me how she talks about me being a kid there and how she helps him personally with some school and such. Shes a great lady. Honestly without my teachers and profs I'd be in a very, very dark place rn. Cutting off your parents is no easy feat. But the more adoptive parents there are, the more people there are stepping up to replace other parents that don't deserve their kids.
You Deserved a Better Father
One of my favourite arguments for gay marriage is that it increases the number of married couples that might want to adopt. I totally agree with that.
Takes a special kind of person to be a parent, more than just biology. It's very sad. Something being difficult or expensive isn't a reason not to do it. And sure, it's not for everyone again, some people don't deserve kids, and some people don't want kids. But we do need more. Now, I'm a big fan of making the adoption process easier and cheaper.
I'm living in a foreign country specifically to gain residency here so I can adopt my child as only residents can adopt, and she is my little girl. But if people just look at the concept of adoption and say, "huh, that seems expensive and I don't know if I'll be approved" and stop there, nothing ever changes. Instead, look for ways to change that. Help adoptive families fundraise, or babysit for free so they can work. Lobby for some of the country-specific costs to change, where you are.
Support bills that would benefit adoptive families. There are so many ways to help make that issue less significant. And of course, in the meantime, do what you can.