To my father – RIP.
I did not truly know my dad until I was an adult.
He was a good man – being a good man, he give me the gift to see that violent men make a choice to destroy lives. He gave me the gift not to hate all men – just to be wise enough to be wary of them.
I know on the few occasion as a child and young adult, I would let myself love and trust my dad.
But how could not be that vulnerable and reach out to him – when all I knew was when I let go and show I was human to men, I throw into a trash-heap.
I had learnt from very young that men saw me an object to fuck, that men would be nice and then smash me down – all I knew of men was they were playing with as a cat plays with a mouse.
I was had learnt through bitter experience to not trust men.
To trust my father could not happened when I living with my mother, or when I was inside the sex trade.
It was too much for me to bear. I was too fragile – so had to survive to be hard and cruel to my dad.
Only, I could never stopped loving him – and more important, he never stopped loving me. My dad was confused and full of grief at my behaviour – but he never give up on me.
My dad was a rock I refused to know.
Only as a child, I wanted him to read to me, I wanted to ride on his shoulders, I wanted to watch football with him, I would dance to Louis Armstrong and the Beach Boys with him.
Inside my fear and hurt – my love for dad was always there.
Only I could not understand why he left me, and sent me back to my mum and stepdad – back to sexual violence, back to neglect, back to knowing porn. Why did he always abandoned me?
As an adult, I can see he had no real concept of how much abuse I was living was.
He was a man who wanted to believe in the best in others – he hated that even one child was abused, he would cry at the news, would pray and raise money to stop such violence.
In his compassion, he did not want to believe his daughter was living in hell.
I know when as an adult, I told about some of the violence done to me – he went into deep shock, he was furious with my stepdad, and it made him very ill.
It was then it was clear to me he had never abandoned me – just did not know or understand that humans could abuse me so much.
In that moment, I learnt to forgive my dad, and in forgiving my dad I was at the beginning of the road of forgiving myself.
I could not know my dad when I was embedded in the sex trade – I could not know myself, I could not see there was a tiny minority of good men, I could not give or receive non-sexual communication.
I saw my dad and his family – but I was distanced, I would start fights for no reason, I was violent, I locked myself away, I was as cruel as could be to his wife and son.
I was self-destructive – so I had to hate all those shown me a glimpse of real love and wanted to care for me. I had to hate – for to have love would make too vulnerable and may kill me.
Only my dad never give up on me – in many my anger and hate made him love me with more passion and care for me with his own fierceness.
He had no idea what was wrong with me – a teenager going off the rails, maybe coz I had dyslexia, he know I was anti-social – it was beyond his imagination that his daughter could be a prostitute.
But then again, I was in deep denial of that myself – I made it that I screwed by many violent men, I never saw their faces, or had a name for what had happened.
I could not say anything to my dad – when I had no language for my own experiences myself.
Also he was a man – and at that time I knew every man saw me as a fuck-object – so to speak of that would make him use me.
I was full of self-hate – I knew I was dirt, I decided I deserved all the violence done to me, I knew not to build a relationship with my dad for I would be dead soon.
Only for unknown reasons, I never died – and somehow I exited prostitution, and built a secure and safe life with a real future.
It was then, I was able to grow a father-daughter relationship.
We reach to each other through our love of history, our love of London, our love of Hollywood, our love of books, our love of football, our love of travel.
We got to know each other as we read bits of the papers over breakfast, as we listen to 60’s music and jazz, as we went to the theatre and art galleries, as we walked in Cornwall.
We had peace with each other as he bear-hugged me, as we watched Poirot on TV, as we laugh over supper, as I spoke to him on his past.
As an adult, I was proud to finally know my dad.
He died too soon – but he is deep in my heart.