On May 21, 2004 (almost 10 years ago) my life began a new chapter, I took the road less traveled and it’s been a helluva ride since day one. On that day almost 10 years ago I gave birth, something I never thought I’d ever have the chance to do, and the moment that boy and I met eyes I have been a mother. MOTHER. A hugely overused but under appreciated word that is given away too freely. But the gifting of the word MOM doesn’t come close to the blatant kidnapping and molestation of the word “Father” by men better off described as a DNA Donation Wagon. My son has started to refer to this person as “the other guy“. Max doesn’t talk about the other guy at all, which drives me a bit crazy because I am the kind of girl who wants things opened up and fixed. His therapist says that he will talk when he is ready, but I can’t shake this feeling that because this other guy is a quitter there now exists a hole in my son’s heart that can’t ever be filled by me no matter how hard I try. I am so angry, so resentful at this other guy for what he is doing to my kid that it is eating me up. But, I read the books and I follow the advice of others who tell me to purge these feeling elsewhere, to be honest with Max but to let Max find out for himself what kind of man this other guy is. I’ve tried for 10 years to get the other guy to see what his actions (or lack of them) have been doing to my son but it falls on deaf ears. I can’t fathom the kind of person who would abandon and neglect a child who so obviously needs him. I am ashamed I once loved someone like that. This is the letter I hope my son will write one day, it’s what I hope he feels in his heart.
Dear Other Guy,
I forgive you. I just want you to know that. We haven’t spoken since I was 15 and I haven’t really missed you either. That’s because I have the most amazing family ever. You know my Papa, the one who always wiped my tears when you were’t there. The one with the kind face and the blue eyes and the best smile ever.
I know you were not ready to be a dad and that your parents ruined your chances of ever knowing what a child might need so it’s ok that you weren’t there. I forgive you. All those years we never saw each other. But it’s ok because by you not being there you gave me the chance to have the best Mom, Papa and family ever.
It’s funny because I don’t hate you, people presume I do and say that I should. But the funny thing is they don’t even know about you unless I tell them because I don’t talk about you. I don’t have resentment towards you because I never really needed you.
If I saw you now, I wouldn’t have much to say to you because we really don’t have much in common. I would say “I’m sorry”, I’m sorry you missed my high school graduation, sorry you missed my first girlfriend and didn’t get to see me get into MIT to study my passion of architecture which you didn’t even know I had, I’m sorry you didn’t get to go to Florida and see Micky mouse with me when I was a kid, I’m sorry you missed every birthday party I ever had. I’m sorry you weren’t there to see me become a Bar Mitzvah. I’m sorry you didn’t get a scan picture when my wife and I found out we were having our own little boy. I’m sorry for all the fathers days and holidays and birthdays you missed because you would of loved them. Because I know now..that you needed us more than we needed you.
But you weren’t there and I might never get the chance to see you or say these words to you. That’s why I am writing this to you now.
You chose to be an absent parent. That is why I don’t call you Dad. That’s why you will always be known as the other guy.
It’s good to be back writing again. Max wants to become a part of this journey and I can’t wait for you all to hear his story, in his own words. He is a true miracle. God bless you all – Mindy