The purpose of the Distant Dad Project is to provide hope and inspiration to men that want a more connected relationship with their daughters.

I Have Been Suicidal a Number of Times Although Here I Am

Hi Gordon… Thank you so much for our conversation a bit back...  after my conversation with you I mentioned I would share about the feelings I struggled with having an absent Father in emotion and ability.  Heartbreaking... painful… and lead me to a life that included the inability to TRUST! 

My father was an unstable Alcoholic who was completely unavailable in every aspect. His body was present although nothing else.   It left me with a life of destructive behavior...  anger… misunderstood love...  poor financial decisions. I used men to fulfill the emptiness...  he was never proud of any of my accomplishments and nothing was ever good enough...  I ran in circles trying to fill the emptiness in the wish to be loved unconditionally...  did not know how to give it to myself.

I am sharing with you this pain because maybe I need to ...  I suppose if I had a dad who was available and aware then I may have not had to go through such a life of destruction... who is to say??

Keep in mind my Father was struck with severe manic depression... alcoholism... co-dependency and a high degree of denial… never once did he apologize for any pain and destruction he created because he said it was not his fault… he has mental illness so he was not held accountable... I have not spoken to him in very very many years... I sought a College degree to help me understand his disease and I still don’t.

The question you asked I will answer the best I can... my interpretation of being “present” is to engage... to show up when you say... to make good on your word... to smile and be patient... to believe her when she says what is going on... not judge her decision making but to give guidance within them.

I am clean and sober now for many many years... a college grad and living in South FL near the beach. Not sure how and why I am healthy today but I am… and I have a great puppy who I have so much love and endless patience for... I chose to not have children because I did not want to take the chance of inflicting ANY of my internal pain on them... I have been suicidal a number of times although here I am...  Gordon... this is very well more than you expected although again…  not sure why but there ya go!! :)... Maybe I just needed to get real!!   Blessings...

If you correct your mind, the rest of your life will fall into place. -Lao Tzu

~ Annette (South Florida)

But What if My Daughter Won't Communicate With Me?

Do Not Judge if What You Are Doing is Working by Her Actions