Ok this will sound terribly selfish but my abusive father is dying and I just want it over with.

He was a terrible person. Abusive, cold, mean spirited. Honestly he never did anything kind to me. He’s a classic sociopath. Now he’s dying. It’s ugly. He’s still the same person- mean, cruel, demanding.

I’m seeking advice for how to deal with all the past emotions coming up again. I thought I buried these when I was 20 and left home for good. And the guilt I feel for nothing feeling anything and for wanting him to die frankly.
Is there something wrong with me?

12 COMMENTS

  1. My grandmother was pretty abusive growing up and I could tell you in details how I was physically and verbally abused, but this is about you and how you want to deal with it.

    My personal experience with this:

    When she laid on her death bed, I felt nothing but sadness in my heart for her given that she was laying there frail and helpless as she was closer to death. The last words I said to her were: I forgive you.

    It was such a freeing feeling letting go of that anger after all those years, but also because I finally understood where she came from and how she became how she was as a person through her formative years.

    She was a victim of abuse as a child, forced to marry at a young age, especially in the middle of war. Her life consisted of taking care of 9 kids, and putting them through school all by herself without the help of my piece of shit of a grandfather.

    Forgiveness is a powerful thing, and I’m not asking you to forgive him — you could even be as petty as you want in how you want to handle this, and I won’t fault nor judge you for it. I do ask that delve deep inside of you and ask yourself if this is something you want to carry for the rest of your life. If you choose to be angry, that is okay too.

  2. I hate my dad. I can’t wait until I hear he’s dead. If anyone in my family asked me for emotional support, I’d tell them to fuck right off because they gave me none while he was abusing the fuck out of me as a kid. There’s nothing bad about it. Fuck them.

    ETA: I feel no shame. I feel no guilt. I am not worried about my sanity. I know that I am still capable of loving someone (I am married now). If someone I loved and cared about was passing it would make me sad. When my dad dies I won’t miss him. I won’t be present for it. I won’t even speak to the rest of my family who supported him all these years at my expense. They can all eat shit.

  3. Accept your emotions for what they are: involuntary feelings based on past experiences. You don’t need to feel guilty about them. They are there for a reason.

    The question now is what do you want to remember about yourself when you look back on this difficult time. It sounds like you wish better for him than he has been and than he has experienced. It’s sad that he has run out of time to become a better, happier person.

  4. Experienced the same feeling as you’re going through with my father. There’s nothing wrong with feeling the way you do. As others have suggested take care of yourself and provide emotional support to those who you care about in your family. It’s will be a “relief” not “guilt” for you when he’s gone.

  5. I guess if I was in your position, my biggest worry would be regretting not being able to get closure with my father. What I would say is something along the lines of “I’m sad we couldn’t be closer but I forgive you.”

    I think that expresses your feelings that you do want to have a dad, a father figure who loves you but he just wasn’t it.

  6. Support your mom and try to talk to him before it’s to late. I did that my dad actually died holding my hand and I never regret being the better man about it.

  7. If you want to really get over it, tell him how he made you feel. Let it all out. Seriously. Once he is gone you will never have that opportunity again. If you’re going to dig up skeletons, make him see them.

  8. As all (most?) LGBTQ people realize, we get to choose our family. Genetics are soooo overrated.

    So, was this man part of your chosen family? Doesn’t sound like he was. Essentially consider his dying just like you’d consider a stranger’s dying. Don’t care either way.

  9. You owe him nothing. There is nothing wrong with you and the reaction you are having to his imminent demise. Feeling guilty about it is likely playing into the last set of manipulations and head games he is running before he meets his end. If you can, cut ties and walk away.

  10. Remember the guilt spreaders that are saying you will miss him have never been in your shoes. F them and the abuser. Help your mom. Live your life and care for others that need care and haven’t hurt you.

    My Dad didn’t physically abuse me but his boyhood friend did. My Dad provides financially but made it very clear money and others were way more important than me. Unfortunately mom is gone, oldest brother just died and that leaves me…I feel your pain.

  11. My father and I hated each other. He was an emotional abuser. He had a stroke over the summer and pretty much lost alot of body movement. He was over it and killed himself. I was a little sad but mostly happy that my family got rid of this toxic person. I felt like you. Felt like I should be super sad and everything yet inside I was just happy/relieved that I no longer had to go home to him. It’s okay to feel like you do. It is a good thing that your abuser is going to no longer abuse you. That is what you need to look at. Be there for your family and obviously don’t be like yay he is dying. Just know that your life is getting better.

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