I remember sitting in the dark after the police left. I was in shock. He really was dead. I stared into the dark and I don’t think a lot of thoughts went through my head for those 6 hours until the sun rose and the day started.
My father tried to kill himself the first time – as far as I know – when I was 25. He had tried a few times since then, but it seemed he always either did it when there were people around him or he made sure that someone would find him.
I wrote and cancelled my clients and knew that it would be a while before I could go back to being a psychotherapist and coach. Right there, I was just a girl who lost the father she never really had.
When our parents can’t master the parenting job, we will always long for that unconditional love that we should have had. A part of us will hope to get it – that some day, our parent will wake up and say “Oh no! I failed my child! I must change and be a wonderful parent right now and listen, laugh and hug, so my child feels loved and we can have a real connection.” – with narcissistic parents that rarely happens, because one of the traits of narcissists is that there’s nothing wrong with them, it’s everybody else.
My father really wanted a family. His own childhood was full or violence and addiction and there’s no doubt my grandmother did not know how to parent. How could she have taught him? She could only pass on what she knew and my grandfather grew up in a home with a sadistic mother and a father who fled the home every chance he got, so he didn’t parenting skills to pass on either.
At 7am I was ready to eat something and did some breathing exercises (You can find them here: https://visiblehearts.com/get-help-online-now/)
Then the phone rang. I jumped and gasped. For a moment I was sure it was going to be my father and he would be MAD, yelling at me as usual, scorning me for believing his practical joke. I gathered myself and picked up.
It was a journalist – the first of many.
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