My mother suffered hunger, emotional and physical abuse from her family, and extreme poverty. I was born premature and had to stay in the hospital for three months because otherwise I would have died. My mother would have to walk two hours to the hospital to see me everyday. 5 months after my birth, my mom met a gang member, who physically abused her after she became pregnant. Due to this my brother was born disabled. When I turned three, my brother's father decided he didn't want a child that wasn't his. My mother feared that he would abuse me while she was at work; Often when she wasn't there, he'd push me down a flight of stairs...we lived on a 4th floor. For my safety she sent me to my father, not knowing he would neglect me there. He was too busy two-timing two women to pay any attention to me. To this day I am still somehow traumatized because I was not only neglected by him, but his family didn't know how to take care of me. They fed me food I was allergic to, exploited my mother monetarily, and even shaved my head because they thought my hair was too tough to manage. I felt unwanted wherever I went. My mom had to proposition her life with her abusive husband because she got a call from her father saying that when they went to visit my father, they found me so skinny, I practically looked like a walking lollipop. They said I barely ate, and when they served me food I could eat, I'd wolf it down. They lied to my mother about taking care of me properly. My mother wanted to confront my father, but again, he chickened out, and sent his niece to talk for him. That was the last time they ever saw each other, partly because he wanted nothing to do with me, and wanted to enjoy his "youth" first, he was 24-26, my mother was 20-22.
Last November, I went into a depression and bashed to my mother about my father. Ironically, my grandmother called my mother saying my father's niece stopped by looking for me. My mother asked her about my father, also for a phone number. We found out he was in England. My mom called him, talked to him for a few minutes, and passed the phone to me. I hesitated for a moment, and then talk the phone. On the phone, he cried, and asked if I knew I was his father, because on my birth record he is not the one who registered as my father. My mother's uncle registered as my father to save her serious problems. But here's the thing that ticked me off, the next thing he said after that was the hopefully I can make him some papers, so he can come to "America" and be with him. And I had to sponsor him. We talked for an hour after that, and I learned a whole bunch of things. He married his wife so she can make him a British citizen. Eventually she did, but on a vacation found out he cheated on her.One day she broke his passport and removed his citizenship as revenge. Also, his niece told him to wait until I was 18, so I can make him some "papers", so he wouldn't have to financially take care of me. He was told I would understand because he was still my father. I had a responsibility to him, and family is family, you are supposed to help those you love, yada yada. I told him that if he wanted to see me, he'd have to pay the flight to England, because it would be preposterous that if in 18 years he was unable to do anything for me, that I'd have to pay my own trip to see his royal mess. He said he honestly hoped I turned out a boy because he thought "a man would never betray his father". Look who's talking.
In December, I went to visit him. The trip was long but very comfortable. I got to stop in Iceland, and found it funny to be the only "brown" person in the whole plane. When I arrived we took a train to his home. His wife gave me a warm welcome. A few hours later we sat in the living room, talking about our lives. Somewhere in the discussion, he said he thought my mother was "uglier" than he was, god knows why, and thought I wouldn't be able speak English. He was surprised I could speak four, and even more that I was "cut-throat" smart as his wife said and "gorgeous" as his grown step sons would say because he said my mother was "so ugly". I showed him a picture of my mother to "refresh" his memory so he could stop sullying my mother, and he, and his wife's family were beyond shocked to find my mother is not as hideous as he described, but very beautiful. His wife said I should thank the lord that I was not raised with a man like him, because I would have been a very different person today.The trip was great, the Manchester area and all the cities around it being stunning. His new family was very kind. As a person, he was very annoying, every other time I felt sad about being there. I felt like I was being toyed, and that feeling has not changed long after I left ten days later. We kept contact until May, when I hit a plateau, and he was bringing the subject of my sponsoring him every other day. His niece arrived from his home country and contacted me. She and her daughter were kind to us, but I had this ominous feeling I was being used. I found out from him and his niece, through little talk between three ways, that his family had advised him to not contact me until I was a "legal" adult, especially his niece. On top of that, after I supposedly sponsor him, I have to help his other family members, which I must say, the family is HUGE. It would take years and thousands of dollars to get them all here. I would never be able to help my mother retire, or save enough to live my life the way I want it. It would be all for them, and their issues.Worse still, he wanted to control my life and tell me what I should major in and where and who to live with. I would not be able to have a boyfriend while I had my own apartment because he would live there; it is beneath me to be disrespectful if such a thing would happen. He said he wanted to beat his cousins in his home country, who are professionals in their own right, so they can stop calling him a gold-digger and irresponsible. Since they never been to a "America" and don't have the connections to do so, he said this would make them "shut their traps". I never felt so low, so bad, so...disappointed. I haven't talked to any of them since early July.
This month, I celebrate the one year of discovering my father, and it feels bittersweet. One part of me is happy that I found him, and I finally know what he looks like. Another feels angry because he abandoned me and let others advice him instead of his doing his job as a man and a father. There's the fact that he is trying to use me. Another feels guilty for ignoring him from July onwards, and the fact that he has no other children and is now "suffering" in his home country again. Also for his mother, who desperately wants to see me. He told me that besides his father, she was the only other person who told him to do the right thing. His father died berating him for not doing something worthwhile. He told my father that he was his greatest disappointment. He left England so he could see my mother again after she went to visit her family on vacation. He tried to "persuade" her to leave my step father for him. My mother was disappointed that he'd stoop so low and surprised the he hadn't made something of himself in almost 20 years. She figured since he had no other responsibilities, he'd have ample income to take care of himself. He also told her he wanted to have children, and only with her, because she is the woman his family has ever taken a liking to. Also because she is attractive, and according to him the children will look like me, will be complimented on, like I was when I was a child. He said my mother was the only woman of "quality" that ever payed him mind. I felt sick and so did my mom.
My mother gave this advice: To trust myself on the inside. She says while I have a lot of growth left to do, I have to know what I want. While I didn't have the dream family with my father, she said I should strive to make my own in the future. To not sleep with a guy unless I am sure and use protection, despite what the guy says, even if I am taking birth control. To not allow guilt eat me alive, and give off my life for others who did not care for my welfare. She made that mistake with her family, and they barely contact her for anything other than money. She said she could have been in a far different situation if she hadn't given them all of her savings. She barely has anything to retire with. If I want, I could help him, but to give him no more help after that. I don't know when I will call him again, probably before his birthday in March, because I need to figure my life out.
Still, I feel I have a new reason to rise up and have a new meaning in my life. I want to be everything my father wasn't, and one day show him what he missed. I already know he was not worth my tears, my grievances, my pain. I hope to meet a man that can give my kids at least love, if nothing else. I did not need my father's money, but I needed his support and his love. How is it that my mother delicate hands held up my brother and I while my father's very large ones barely held on to me? Unbelievable.
If anyone has a bit of advice, feel free to give it. They will be welcomed. I hope though, that my advice helps you as well.