Dear Blog – A Year in Reflection
Behind closed doors and family secrets ….
“Rory, our father has breathed his last breath – he is dead.” My sister told me at 15.03pm 18th October 2018 via Facebook chat. It was that simple, there was nothing fancy about it – no fanfare, no drum roll, no trumpets blaring … it was simply ‘He is dead.”
It made me think of that line The king is dead, long live the king! Except there was nothing kingly about my father.
He had been dying of cancer since officially June of that year, having been diagnosed with an aggressive liver and bowel cancer the previous month. It took him hard and fast and he was dead within five months of that diagnosis.
Leading up to his death he had been bitter – understandably, he was dying, his life had been cut short in his eyes and YET – l have to ask myself had it? Had his life really been ‘cut short’ by the cancer or had he already died long before 2018’s strike on his physical self? I personally would say my father in essence died in 1998 and lived a shell of a life in those 20 years – he merely existed.
He lived with no true purpose – he lived to a certain degree for his daughter and her children, he lived for his grandchildren, he lived to spite life – he lived to spite others – he lived without living and loving. But that is not life, not a life worth living, but still he lived that life. That was his life, that was my father’s life. A sad lonely life lived without love and without the love of the woman he loved.
It has taken me a goodly amount of time to come to terms with aspects of my father – not with his death – l hope that his essence is living in a better location than his life lived and if there is nothing after death – then it doesn’t matter now anyway does it? His pain ended when he died at 3.03pm 18th October 2018.
My father had been an arrogant bastard when he was alive, l loved him not for his behaviour, but l loved him because he was my father and the only one l had ever had. I knew him to be my dad and for good, bad, ugly and worse – he was still my dad. But l don’t miss him and l certainly have not grieved his passing.
I am speaking no ill of the dead, what l say now is truth, l told him these things when he lived and because of my uttermost honesty with him, we never saw eye to eye on many subjects and we became estranged because of it.
l forgave him for his sins towards me, his brutal behaviour not befitting a father to his son, because the weight and burden of carrying bitterness around is too heavy to simply have for your entire life – it was easier to forgive him – but that doesn’t mean l forgot those sins, those l will never forget – they are a legacy l will carry to my own grave – but they are carried not with bitterness, but purely as tales that make up for some of the darkness of my life. I am done giving them air to breathe – l was released of that burden at 3.03pm 18th October 2018 and their life died with him too, finally l can rest the nightmares.
No one dies happy from dying from cancer, but some choose to make peace with their life – towards the end my father only partially adopted that belief and tried to make amends with his ex wife my mother, but she is an extremely bitter woman herself and perhaps for good reason? They were married for thirty years and would have been divorced for thirty years ironically this year 2019. They loved each other once … but that once is now in a million pieces.
He beat her black and blue on many occasions when she was married to him, cost her pregnancies caused miscarriages – there is no denying that my father was a Jekyll and Hyde personality and the only ones who do know that are his actual home family – we are the ones that remember and do not forget his aggressions.
Although even that is not totally true …. my sister maintains she remembers none of his violence. His own brothers and sisters alike never mention his aggressive behaviour or violent temper outbursts from when he was younger – but they knew him from a different perspective. They chose to not believe his temper tantrums as a father and or husband…..
………..Behind closed doors and family secrets l guess.
My mother could forgive and move on now and still even after his death she refuses to. “You don’t have the right to forgive him Rory!” She told me earlier this year. “That’s God’s job!”
“No mum, that was my personal responsibility for my own release – so l could move on. I haven’t forgotten, but the reason l am not grieving him is because l am not carrying any guilt or venom towards him. In order for me to feel this release, l had to forgive him. God can do whatever god wants with dad. But for me to continue with my life – l did what l needed to do.”
My father partially apologised to my mother for his cruelty towards her … partially … a full apology went to the grave with him. He didn’t really say sorry for anything, because he always believed himself to be right, so to say sorry would mean he was wrong .. my father was wrong on so many levels, but was never wrong!
I had no clearly defined plan on what to write here for this post …. it is all free flowing based only on what l am feeling here , today, now a year on, a year in reflection – how do l feel – how did l feel – is my life any different?
When he died, l felt relief, l cried with relief not for him, l have only ever shed perhaps two maybe three tears for the man who was my father and only then, thinking on what was lost, of a relationship that could have been so much better – but he chose to dedicate his time to my sister and her children.
I was too different to him, l didn’t fall in line … l was not bought with money like she was. I knew him from before, l knew who he was, l knew what he was all about – I KNEW my real father. Not the pretend man he made others think he was, or bribed financially and paid for my sister to believe in. No, l cried and sighed because an overbearing weight had been lifted from my shoulders – l could start to live again, l could start to really be me.
I made a promise to myself – l would dedicate a year to my father’s work, his words … l would get to know him properly or at least try to see if l had him pegged wrong and l was doing him a great disservice … the man who in 1998 upon receiving the words below for Christmas merely grunted. It was the first and only poem l ever wrote for my father – 1998 was the year that my father really died.
There are no books to guide,
Simply said it is the loving inside,
That makes the day,
Different to all the others,
And that l know it to be there,
…to their Sons and Daughters,
When moments are tough and sad,
And times feel so damningly down,
You remember that simplicity …
….Just call me
…knowing that, my smile reappears ,
And l lose my frown.
© Rory Matier 1998
I had tried for years to try and bridge the gap between father and son … but l was never going to be and would never be his daughter, he and l were a business arrangement. Here l am in 2019 a year after his death and writing a post to his memory – l have no father son photographs of any concerning quality – because we didn’t share that time together. We were two people that just happened to be related by blood. In the 12 months since his death and the 10 months since reading his words have l learned anything truly new about him?
Yes and no, and yes, but nothing – that new.
Did l? Did l or have l , learned anything new about my father? Have l done him a great disservice, did l have him pegged all wrong? Was he NOT the bastard from my childhood and had he turned into a pussycat?
… Well for starters l have to say that my father was NOT just a bastard in my childhood that behaviour continued into my forties and that even now is still less than twenty years ago….however there were only a few that knew of that side to him … because my father was a chameleon in so far as he could change his skin to reflect what he wanted. My father started to live one big lie. Because the lies were easier to live than the truth which he lived everyday.
My father met and fell in love with a French lady in 1991. They were a couple until 1996 and then they split up – they did so because she wanted him to give up his children or l should correct that statement – she wanted him to spend less time with his daughter and her children. She didn’t want him to stop seeing his daughter or the grandchildren – she just wanted him to spend less time with them. In the later 90’s my father was spending considerable time with my sister – helping her out – he would say he was helping me out financially, but that never happened it was always my sister.
His French lady wanted he and her to start a family she was younger than he and in her world her biological clock was ticking …. but here is the other thing and in addition to everything else … this is the actual truth of my father and his French lady.
To everyone else it was easier to say that Jeanne wanted dad to spend less time with his daughter and her children, this wasn’t untrue but it wasn’t the whole truth. The whole truth is that dad didn’t want any more children – he just wanted a relationship. He never wanted children to begin with despite saying he did to my mother when they married – he said these things to basically please her – to come across as normal. Because the one thing that my father and l do share is a distinct lack of ‘normality’ – yes, yes ‘define normal’, l will clarify – my father sat somewhere on the spectrum of autism – l do too with my Asperger’s syndrome – that’s the normal l refer to.
My father was never a people pleaser per se – he was a himself pleaser – it’s what HE wanted in life – always what he wanted. His entire life was about him. Strangely enough l would say my sister inherited that trait from him … l certainly didn’t, l inherited people pleasing traits from someone … or worse l learned them for survival.
I did inherit a love of words from him and creativity from my mother … so not all bad.
But the sadder fact is that my father didn’t ever want children he didn’t want me, he didn’t want my sister – fact – truth and yet – NOT! Do you see the living the lie and the truth together pattern here? Dad did want my sister and me and not just for normality – but for status of normality but also he wanted to be seen as a father to prove to those who said he couldn’t do it that he was doing it … but there are no individual books on how to be a particular parent to your particular children.
What dad really wanted was his children to remain young all the time – and he didn’t really enjoy their growing up time from 0 – 3 and a half – but from that age to a more controllable age of say eleven – yes, dad wanted his kids to be aged 3 – 11 only and stay like that forever.
However oddly enough tiny humans don’t remain little forever and they get bigger and grow up … then dad would get bored because they became much harder work! So having gone through that once with my sister and myself – he didn’t want to do that again – he wanted to have a relationship with a woman, a bed partner, a cook, a travel partner and a housekeeper and someone who was somewhat candy to the eye and looked good on the arm. That’s what he wanted.
So now we are dealing with more truths … Jeanne didn’t know that later bit about him and started to catch on when she also asked him to spend less time with his daughter and , and the bombshell that he didn’t want more children when he had specifically told her that he did.
Did l learn all this from paperwork and administration? Did l know all this before hand? A mixture of both – l read my father’s paperwork inside out three to four times, all his emails, all his letters between everyone he ever knew, his stories and of course his books. His so called works and words of fiction … but you may recall … from my father l inherited words and from my mother ‘creativity’. I also have and had pockets of my own creativity because l developed them as a youngster when looking to escape the madness of my childhood, l used my creativity to escape into a different world – a colourfully vibrant world where my teddybears spoke to me, where there was no shouting or violence and where everything and everyone was happy.
My father didn’t have his own pools of creative imagination, what he did have was prompted imagination and trust me – there is a difference between the two. So my father’s books, his ‘autobiography’ and the so called fiction books never strayed far from just being works of his own mind, his own angers, bitternesses, upsets and disappointments with his life. He never moved on, he could never move on …
But there is something else to add to this mix – dad could afford to lose his son, because the two of them were estranged from each other, plus his son knew the man behind the pretense and that wasn’t something he wanted but he couldn’t lose his daughter and the grandchildren, and the request from Jeanne was quite possibly a bit extreme. So he would have argued the toss with Jeanne and battled for a compromise of equal share… but one of the women in his life didn’t want equal share … because that would have meant that the Will, the money and the Estate may not have been split up between his children, but been left to Jeanne.
My sister couldn’t have that … my sister never liked Jeanne and expressed it often … she was always able to manipulate my father, her daddy. Jeanne and my father split up in 1996 he would say that Jeanne wanted different things to him and that she wanted him to have nothing to do with his children. The rumour would circulate that Jeanne was a money grabber – who started that? Not me and not my father…..
He was still in contact with Jeanne in March 2002 although it was not two ways – but only because of him wanting her to act as the French/English translator to his manuscript Footsteps of the Father which was written between 2000 – 2002.
I remember reading the letters between them between the years 2000 – 2002 – in that final year, she finally told him to STOP sending her money – since 1998 he had sent her 9 cheques totalling nearly £7000, she had sent every one back to him. She only kept the payment cheques for translation work – after all, her actual career is translation. That didn’t read like a money grabber.
In 1998 she had told him she had met someone else that he was her age and that he wanted a family and had meant it, and that they were trying for children, they were to marry and have an actual family.
That was the truth and yet my father still didn’t grasp that and continued to stalk Jeanne for another four years by which time in 2002 she had a child of her own. She stopped responding to his letters in 2000, but he still wrote to her and his last letter was 12th March 2002 – he never wrote to her again.
In 1998 l remember my father telling me that Jeanne had a child of her own, and that as far as he was concerned his life was over. I don’t have the copies of Jeanne’s letters to my father they were all hand written notes … but my father typed all his to her. Below is the second to last letter he sent to her it pays mention to the final novel of my father’s l am currently displaying Allez Les Reds …
7th July 2001
I suppose, as usual, I am wasting my time. I never know if anything I send to you ever gets to you, or whether it is discarded by your parents, either read or unread.
I hope you are well and happy, in whatever you are doing, and that your family is also in the best of health.
I was tying up the rose bushes a day or two ago and I ran out of string. It was from a little container which, the label informed me, had contained 55 metres, and had been made in France. So, the little box of string which you brought into our relationship ten years ago, in better days, finally ran out. I kept the little ‘fiche’ and put it in the photo album. While cleaning out the bedside drawer, I found the enclosed piece of paper with Tessa and Tony’s names on it. They were scheduled to go to Jersey with us, and I suppose they did. They are still ‘bisouing by the tails’.
The plastic Tigger and Shere Khan, which you bought for me, are still active, and accompany me everywhere I go in the world, to keep me safe. So, ‘les trois tigres’ are still around even if Mme la Biche is not there to write to.
The other animals still keep the faith, Peco, Timotei, Toby and Toffee, our dear Lovejoy and his constant companion, Eugenie, and in the living room, Jumbo, Maxie, Shoukran and Edouard. There are many new friends, all those beginning with ‘T’ are, quelle supris, tigers. There is Tzar, Tolstoy, Tajah, Tarquin, Tickles 1 and Tickles 2, Tella, Tike, Tamara and Tarzan. There is also Tigger1 and Tigger 2. Shoukran is now married to Shoukrana, and they have some new friends in Rudi and Randy, whose cousins I hope you still have. There is also a Jeanne, who is, what else, a biche.
I have just come back from France, my second visit this year, and I enclose a couple of little things. I will be going back in September to buy a holiday home, insh’allah. As you can see from the enclosed account, the score is now at 924,000FF, and by September will be at a million, which was the target.
I shall do it, buy the second home in France, because I said I would, and because I want to live part, and perhaps eventually all my life there. But it is hollow. Without you to share things with, everything is hollow, and nothing, house in France, money, travel, cruising in the West Indies, hiking in the Himalayas, interesting jobs, the book, nothing can or will fill the hole.
I envy you your apparent ability to close your eyes and ears and mind to everything. I wish I could do that. I cannot. I still love you and always will. It is like a prison sentence, for life. There is no release date, no parole, no time off for good behaviour, and increasingly there is a realisation that death will be the only release, and travelling the road the only prospect.
I am still trying to get the book published, and occasionally get a word of encouragement, like the attached. It is all a bit Catch 22, in that you need to have been published before they will publish you. Allez les reds is going well and is now up to 11,000 words on its way to 80,000 to 100,000. It too is dedicated to you.
The black clouds of depression are rolling up again, I can feel them at my shoulder, as in 1997 and 1999, and the storm will surely follow. Perhaps this time it will win, and at least the journey may be shorter.
Take care, remember I love you, and should you ever need anything, there is a tigre out here.
When l was younger and lived at home with my parents and sister – l lived each and every day in fear of my father, but equally my mother. My father for his almost daily violence and unusual behaviour and my mother for her erraticness, violent episodes and her explosive anger .. l didn’t know when young the term chalk and cheese and it was only in my mid forties that l really came to understand just how annoyingly different my parents were to each other. THEY should never have married, but they did, they did supposedly for the right ‘joint’ reasons … the thing called love and they shared ‘dreams’. They wanted children, they wanted to start a family, they wanted to travel and they wanted to escape the confines of their own family and the United Kingdom.
My parents did just that…..
My father was a Metropolitan policeman in London having left Northern Ireland as a Patrick Brian, but joined the London police as a Brian Patrick – because he was ‘ashamed of being classed as Irish’ and so he started to lie about several things – mostly family and religion [Catholic] in the very early days .. he was never Irish, he was British.
My mother was a ‘Sally girl’ or rather a Salvation Army girl …… living in London, from a broken home. Yes she had parents, her mother and her father. Her father was considerably older than his wife – a WWI veteran who had been mustard gassed and was never the same again. Mum had spent most of her younger years in foster care because her parents couldn’t afford to look after her.
Both of my parents wanted to escape from something, so when they met, each one was in love with a different perspective – mum was in love with dad’s sense of adventure and the lies he told, that she believed and didn’t know and of course as she would often say ‘Well he was a looker, wasn’t he?’. Whilst dad was in love with mums incredible ‘French’ looks and her free spirit.
They married 1958 and then l came onto the scene in 1963 with my sister arriving in 1968. In 1965 the three of us set sail for Australia and would become known as Ten Pound Poms …
Ten Pound Poms is a colloquial term used in Australia and New Zealand to describe British citizens who migrated to Australia and New Zealand after the Second World War. Wikipedia
As a couple my parents WERE in love and they were so from 1958 – 1965, after this my parents started to fall out of love with each other. I highlighted WERE because in the later 70’s and 80’s both of my parents would yell at each other that they never WERE in love with each other ever!
Life at home as their son was tough from as far back as l can remember which is for me personally, l can remember days from 1966 vaguely and pretty well from 1967 and better from 1968 so from 3 – 5 years old. It’s ironic, l can’t really recall what l did two days ago with any detail but with clarity l can remember 50+ years ago – the medical profession tell me that is my Asperger’s – the gift of autism.
You see, my father had some form of autism – when l was younger l was classed as a hyperactive child and troublesome – what is basically the forerunner to ADHD today, but so too did my father – except like my ‘social graces’ were either spanked out of me or attempted to so too were my father’s by his own parents. To be odd is not normal and society demands normality and straight black and white thinking, not irregular thoughts and thinking.
From the later sixties my father’s odd behaviour was becoming too much for my mother – she liked his quirkiness when they courted but after ten years on and his frustratingly almost childlike behaviour were proving too much, plus he was a very vain and selfish man who liked to gamble, flirt and drink – things my mother didn’t approve of. He also liked to take the flirting into the bed chambers of other women.
In a nutshell, my parents together was a ticking bomb – they were never suited despite loving each other – but my father loved my mother and the style of my mother from when they first met. He loved the innocent French look she possessed. Over the years he would always love that look – but hated everything about her physical self and towards the end of them as a couple he almost wanted to kill her daily. It was mutual for them both – my mother worshipped the ground he trod till the later sixties, but started to fall out of love because of his strange unnatural behaviour….
You see, in order to truly understand my father over this last year, l have had to really read everything … his diaries, his letters, his books, his emails, his notes, his scribbles, his, his, and more of his everything…. but where l could, l also read the letters between my mother and him, and his true lover [Jeanne] and him to better understand the man perhaps l never knew or wouldn’t let his own son know.
My mother says l am too forgiving of that man, my father … and says l don’t have the right to be that way and yet l wonder if she includes herself in that statement? In order for me to get on with my life, in my forties l had to find a way of forgiving my parents … rightly or wrongly, but l think rightly – l loved them both – but neither of them were 100% angelic, l mean none of us are … l am not, nor is my sister, but l am NOT the devil incarnate … so in order to keep loving them equally l had to forgive them of their actions and their behaviours.
It wasn’t easy – l wanted to have nothing what so ever to do with either of them in my mid forties – my life had caught up with me – the memories of my childhood had caught up with me – but l took time out and debated that everyone is allowed to make mistakes and should be forgiven …
I confronted my father and said ENOUGH to his bullying! I spoke to my mother and also laid some ground rules down with her. I told them both that as their son, l was tiring of their ways and their behaviour and that they needed to STOP using me as their go between because it was mentally destroying me and l was inches away from walking away from their lives… forever. So they had to find a way of either forgiving each other or having NOTHING what so ever to do with each other ever again, but to stop bullshitting me anymore. They had officially divorced in 1987/88.
I knew the truth – l knew their truth – l knew my parents and they had to stop lying to me about who did what and when and where because l already knew that – they had shouted it at each other for my entire childhood – they had violently expressed that during my childhood – they were both guilty of using both my sister and me as emotional shields for their lies. My sister and l were mentally brutalised by both of our parents … but l had broken several times anyway with not just the bullshit of my parents, but with life – l just needed support mentally and they couldn’t do that that well.
I requested this of my parents when l was 45  – that is 11 years ago now – did they agree to it? Yes they did. Did they uphold it? No, they didn’t.
I found a small entry in one of dad’s folders reference to this ‘confrontation’ he and l shared when l was 45 it simply read ‘”That’s the second time my son has disappointed me and taken his mother’s side!! There’ll not be a third! 98 was bad enough! He seems to do this every decade! He has no idea about that woman, she is pure evil! Thank goodness his sister is more understanding!”
But that was my father through and through, instead of simply acknowledging that it wasn’t just him, but also my mother to blame for their behaviour – it was easier to blame my mother because his son did not have the right to say that to him and he was never at fault.
In 1998 when l awarded my father the poem he grunted, and side viewed me as was his way – we were discussing his life and he didn’t like what l was saying. He had split up with Jeanne two years previously and was still upset about it all, suicidal. He made a pact with me and said if he was suddenly no longer there, l was NOT to think him a coward … l told him to stop that line of thought .. that he was still a young man with regards moving forwards, and whilst l above many could sympathise with lost loves – he had to try and get on with his life!
“You don’t understand, you are so like your mother! So judgemental!” He yelled.
“I am not being judgemental dad, l am just trying to help you that is all!” I answered honestly.
“Fuck off, you have no idea what l am going through! Jeanne has had a child!! My life is over!”
“Then see this as a sign, that it simply wasn’t meant to be and be thankful, you didn’t want more children anway?!”
“Not the bloody point!”
I left that day and my father and l didn’t talk for a few years properly after that, at least not until 2002. It was never a relationship of any quality, there were no fishing trips or shared holidays, no quiet dinners – although after 2002 things seemingly improved marginally. But dad was always pissed off with me because of that 1998 conversation when l had been blunt with him and he had wanted truckloads of sympathy which you don’t often get with me…well not in truckloads anyway!
My sister and my father had always been remarkably close, l mean why wouldn’t he be close with her – she gave him two grandchildren whereas l had awarded neither of my parents any…
My sister Jenny and dad, and the children became inseperable like a mini family – they did everything together and frequently holidayed together – she became the relationship of sorts he never had complete with hand them back kids. Did any jealousy start between my sister and myself? Not from me… l tried to touch base with my sister for years ever since my marriage in 1994 – but she didn’t want to know me. With my divorce in 2008 my sister at that point wanted nothing what so ever to do with me and more so that began in earnest when my father and l had a second disagreement in 2008.
My father and l had only had two holidays together one in 1984 in the spring in Greece and Hadrian’s Wall in 2006 – both didn’t travel as planned in so far as father/son bondings. They weren’t terrible BUT the 2006 one was not good, as l was a very different person to my sister. In 2007 my sister and l ironically started our own divorces from partners and he chose to side with her and help her through her terrible divorce … l wasn’t even afforded any kind of emotional support – but that was the relationship between father and son.
From 2007, Jenny and her children did incredibly well through my father and especially his finances. Still no envy or jealousy from my neck of the woods. In 2008, my father and l had another very frank discussion. In addition to him still moping about with regards Jeanne and her just getting on with her life – he was still moaning about my mother [she was no different regarding him] – my parents hated each other and instead of saying anything to the other one or just shutting up – l was being roped in everything and 2008 for me was a very tough year as was.
I was still recovering from the 2006 bipolar diagnosis which neither of my parents cared for, going through an extremely acrimonious and costly divorce of my own and l had just been diagnosed with Asperger’s and in addition to that my own partner of the time had just lied about being pregnant and had a drug and drink problem and had not just lost our child, but had deliberately set out to hurt me by pretending there was a child in the first place.
I was fast and furiously nose diving into a serious depression and was aggressively self-harming. Neither of my parents were bothered with that and were still either complaining about a woman who ten years previously who had a child and moved on with her life or one was complaining about her ex husband being a prick who didn’t care about the mess she was in financially!
So in 2008, l told them both to and l quote ‘Fucking grow up! You are NOT the only people in this world going through problems, either sort your shit out or just shut up and leave each other alone and for fucks sake leave me out of it or you’ll lose your son!”
Neither of my parents were happy, but they agreed to the terms ….it didn’t last long – all of 2 years and by 2011 they were back at each other’s throats and l was nearly at breaking point but this time living in a forty foot metal box with my two dogs slowly going insane and becoming a recluse!
But in 2008, things changed – my father spent more time with my sister and didn’t really want to acknowledge me as his son – in fact he tolerated my existence – ‘yes’ he loved me, but he loved his grandchildren and daughter more. He lavished thousands on them, bought them houses, cars, education. At this point – my sister and l were not talking and would NEVER talk again until 2018 when my father was dying with liver and bowel cancer….
My father and Jenny became even more inseperable between the years 2008 – 2015 when a rift occured and he came to realise that his daughter was not just a manipulator, but also a money grabber and he also realised that his daughter was and had become a bully … and she was his bully.
In 2015 a strange thing happened, a very, very strange thing. My father sold the house that Jenny lived in and bought her a smaller one as the children no longer lived with her and she didn’t need the bigger house. He then awarded me out of the blue £25,000. Well l was astonished and thankful, he said that he had made some terrible mistakes in life and wanted to try and make amends for them. Would l let him? I answered honestly
‘Stop being a prick and just be a dad and l’ll be happy. You don’t need to buy me, you just need to care!” He bought my sister at that point a £75,000 mortgage and told her that there would be no more money from him to her, she was on her own … he had helped her for too long and now she needed to stand on her own two feet as he wanted to enjoy his life and ‘move on’.
I discovered the next year whilst on a visit to his house, rather shockingly just how much help my father had awarded my sister and both Suze and l were mortified at the money he had unknowingly hinted at awarding her since 2007. In 2016, l spoke with a very upset father who told me his daughter frightened him and she was a bully and he couldn’t ever say no to her when she called him ‘Daddy darling.”
I found this ironic, that a known bully was being bullied by the one person he loved more than Jeanne and more than himself – his own flesh and blood – his daughter. Could l speak to her? I messaged my sister and we had a heated conversation – l told her to just leave the guy alone – in basic terms. That move of mine and my father’s proved to be fatal – my sister had been rumbled, but she had been trained by a master manipulator – my father – and knew how to counter attack and still look innocent.
However, then she attacked my father who in turn attacked me and so in October 2016 my father and l stopped talking again – this time until January 2018 when he called. Four months later he would be diagnosed with the cancer that took his life in October that year.
Handling the estate this year and the inheritance has been extremely stressful … because l have been dealing with a miniature version of my father in female form … good grief! She learned well – Jenny learned the Bullying Legacy from my father who in the end had Karma serve him revenge in his own lifetime…
My father didn’t need to die that way, no one does, no one ever does, he was cruel, he was hard, he was a bastard and he was my dad …. but have l learned anything since this all began?
… Yeah a few things, but if you are looking for a happy ending, sorry there isn’t one.
My father did really believe he loved Jeanne, whether he loved her for the right reasons or that she reminded him of the woman in my mother he used to love, l’ll never know – the 1965 photo of my mother .. is almost a complete mirror image of Jeanne and l always remarked how much she looked like mum, which never went down well. He hated my mother as much as he maintained he loved her. The sadder reality is l think he struggled to understand true love.
My father never moved on with his life after Jeanne, he had lied to the wrong person and she never forgave him and for twenty years he lived with that guilt, but he forked out to my sister nearly £200,000 in the ten years prior to his death in 2019 and that she was in his eyes ‘his property’ – she owed him was a line he always used and why? Because he believed she did, he had given up his Jeanne for her and her children and couldn’t see beyond that stupidity and untruth.
My father was an ardent fan of coercion, bullying, mental cruelty and manipulation – he always wanted an apprentice – he had it with my sister, his daughter, she learned well – too well – she turned the tides on him … she bullied him as he had bullied others and as he aged he couldn’t cope with being bullied by someone he loved.
Karma is real!!
I don’t like saying it like that – but as much as l have forgiven my father and l did so frequently – everyone who ever wished dad ill because of bad dealings with him – or that he would get his own come uppance would be celebrating the fact that his own daughter dealt the final blows to him via the very method he prided himself on.
His books were never going to selll – because he never moved onto a different plot line, all the books were dedicated to Jeanne. Long after they split up, he paid private detectives to track her down and stalk her and with every new publication he sent her a copy – he had ten copies made up all the time so he could prove to people how very much he had been wronged by others in his life. All the characters in his books were his ex wife, ex lovers and his children. Many a time there were only two true heroines Jeanne and Jenny.
l have finally found the closure l was looking for with regards my father – l have had peace of mind since he died. I haven’t grieved or mourned him in the usual fashion – he and l weren’t close – He apologised to my sister for his treatment of her on the day before he died, he partially apologised to my mother – he never apologised to me – l had expected that deep down – l saw him two days before he died, he didn’t recognise me. l discovered quite by accident, when sorting through the administration of the estate, in his private notes dated February 2018 that he was going to try and get closer to me, his son and that he had wronged me but death took him first. I took that as the apology – better late than never. I made a vow to myself in January this year … l would publish my father to my blog …. l don’t regret that … it helped with my own healing – the promise is nearly over.
My sister and l have no communications now, nothing, l didn’t expect anything afterwards … but there is nothing and the next time we speak will be on the death of our mother. Mum and l have closure with dad’s passing, l don’t know about Jenny – she came away from the estate with a goodly amount and from what l now know she did very well financially prior to dad’s death … very well indeed. I guess the only outstanding question that remains is when will karma catch her up?