Letter to My Father who Gave Me Life, But Never Gave Me Love

· January 28, 2018

What’s your daddy’s name? That’s the fearful and recurring question I have asked myself for years. I never had the chance to meet my father because he abandoned me. However, in this letter to him, I’d rather express the fact that I’m not at all resentful.

Letter to my father

I don’t know how to address this letter since I don’t know your name. I hold nothing against you, you can rest easy. With this letter to the father I never met – if you ever get to read this – I want you to know that I forgive you.

I forgive you for never being by my side, and for abandoning me without explanation. You should know that the pain of not having my father there for me has made me a stronger woman. Thanks to you, I know how to get through difficult situations on my own.

“You crossed my mind today. I don’t know why.
Instead of feeling rage, heartache, or hate;
I found myself smiling a little.
Not because of you, but because of me.
I am a fatherless daughter that survived your failure.”

–Cash–

Even though the void left by an absent father is hard to fill, I forgive you. It’s helped me to value those who have stepped up to take your place. My grandfather, my grandmother, and of course, my mother. She’s been my faithful companion all this time.

While you saw parenting as an option, she made it her passion, even though you left her no choice than to do it alone. She worked endless hours to make ends meet. She came to my school events, and helped me with my homework.
When I needed a listening ear or a shoulder to cry on, she was always there. From the bottom of my heart, I give thanks that she was the one to take responsibility. She’s fulfilled her role perfectly.
letter to my father who abandoned me

My mother has photos and memories of my childhood that you aren’t in. She’s been there during every stage of my life, and she’s proud of the memories we’ve created. She taught me what true love really is.

I forgive the fact that you made my grandfather play the role of father and grandparent at the same time. He’d already fulfilled his responsibilities as a father – in word and in deed – with his own children.

But he did the same for me as well. He taught me not to hold onto anger, but to forgive. Thanks to him, I know that anger only destroys… It never helps you to grow.

Grandpa taught me that not all was lost just because I didn’t have a father. He supported me and helped me to grow up as a strong and self-confident woman.

He also taught me what happiness is, despite not having you around. And one thing he never did is speak badly of you – and I thank him for that.

With his example, he taught me not to suffer for anyone or anything. And he taught me to be thankful for what I do have.

grandfather and granddaughter hugging

I hold nothing against you because grandma taught me to respect others. And she taught me to be a faithful woman that others respect as well.

She taught me not to lie, so that I will not be lied to. And if she needed to discipline me, she would, to help me learn my lesson.

So, with this letter to my father who I never met, I want to make it clear to you that I didn’t need you to grow up. I moved on with my life, went to school, graduated from high school and from college… And I did it all without you.

And thanks to you, I know what kind of man I want – and don’t want – to be the father of my children.

Growing up without you gave me the motivation to look for success and to keep going no matter what. When I look around me, I can see that I’ve been able to create my own family with the people that managed to fill the empty space you left behind.

“You could not be filled with hate and be beautiful. Like any other girl, I wanted to be beautiful. But I was filled with hate.”

-Alice Sebold-

Your absence has taught me that hate never brings good results. So, I’ve learned to forgive. I’ve even learned to forgive you.

Letter to my father who gave me life, but never gave me love.