Growing up without a father in the family, and being raised by an independent mother has made me grateful for the people in my life, especially my mother. The journey of how a young adolescent’s life was impacted growing up without a father will be explored within this lifespan essay.
Growing up without a father, I have faced many challenges and obstacles in life. I grew up with no emotional connection to a father and have never experienced the love of a father. The absence of my father in my life also held a huge impact on my developing life as an adolescent. It also affected my academic success in my education. However, it also made me realize that my mother, despite being a single parent, had struggled but was also more than enough to take care of our family.
Growing up, it has always been just my mother and me. I never really grew up with a father, or any fatherly figure in my whole life since my father bailed on my mother and me when I was just beginning school at 4 years old. He worked as a representative of the ASPA company in Alaska. I guess on the work trips he met another woman who he thought was worth spending the rest of his life with, that he just came back, packed his bags, and left just like that. I never even saw him after that anymore. I wasn't able to get to know him, didn't get to find out what kind of food he liked, the TV shows he watched, or even if he ever loved me and my mom. I don't remember ever writing him Happy birthday or happy Father's Day cards. I don't even remember the feeling of his arms around me, I was too young to remember ever feeling the sympathy of his love. To me, he's a mere memory, a nightmare that never seems to fail to come into my dreams and haunt me.
I can't escape him he's everywhere, every father I see with his family having an outing at the beach, in every couple that I see holding each other on the street. I see them and can't seem to figure out just what I did wrong to not deserve that kind of love, the love from my father.
I start hating every father I see, just because I will never have what other kids are having with their fathers. I guess my own past experience with my father has altered my perception of fathers. I now perceive fathers as a figure of evil because of the bad history I have with my own. This exactly ties to psychology because my growth and perception of fathers were altered by my past experiences with my own. Growing up without a father has had a dramatic effect on my relationship with men. From the moment my dad stepped out the door that day and out of my life so did my hope for love, at that very moment he killed my longing for a DAD and nothing can ever change that and no other man since then has made me realize that “there will always be better days ahead.''
I've spent my whole life searching for someone who is able to fill the void that was in my life, someone that will love me like my father never had, and never will. Growing up without a father, I think that has made me more feminine than I should have been. Since it was just my mother and me, growing up with her around me might have affected my mind that as you can see, I am more feminine than ever. As much as I don't like to acknowledge it, but we all know i was born a male, but growing up I have become more feminine than ever, and even grew an interest in my own sex or gender. I've always been optimistic and eager to give my love to any guy who wanted because undoubtedly, I have grown to be very beautiful; hoping that they'd give it back, but all that got me was a shattered heart and stressed out thoughts. I was a lure for bad boys, the kind that would treat me like trash and then just leave me, like my father. Often times I wondered why I would fall for the heartbreakers and not the sweethearts but now I know it was because I had nothing to compare it to, my dad never showed me how I was supposed to be treated by the dominant sex. He was never there to set an example for what a gentleman should be. I guess growing up with him missing in my life, I was never prepared to experience the world seeing how he would go about the world. I've gone through so many relationship problems in high school that I was honestly growing tired of relationships. As one failed relationship followed another I buried myself in my school work and avoided romantic situations. I was happier that way, no guy, no heartache, no problem, or at least I thought. I would make up excuses for why I shouldn't go out with my friends that asked me to go out and purposely set my schedule to be super busy so that no one else would be able to find an excuse for me to get out of the house. My father going missing has really impacted my growth as an adolescent not only physically, but also psychologically.
According to research, Growing up without a father figure has a profound effect on children that lasts into adulthood. Adolescents need a father figure to learn how to be a man. Without having this influence in their lives, boys are at risk of growing into men who have problems with behavior, emotional stability, and relationships with both significant others and their own children. These studies suggest, that adolescents growing up without fathers show side effects which include: Low self esteem, Negative behavior, Difficulties bonding, and emotional distress. I think this research is very accurate on so many levels because I have gone through these myself due to not growing up with a father.
Growing up and developing, I have always believed that I am not lovable, and am not deserving. I have developed the belief that missing parents are bad signs or a curse, and I do not know why I used to believe that having a bad curse is through genetics. I, growing up with just my mother has shown that having low self-esteem due to a missing father is accurate and true because as I have mentioned before, I have lost my way being a male because I had no one to show me how to be like one, so I was very unsure of how to grow up to be one, thus having such low self-esteem.
I honestly do not know of any negative behavior that has emitted from me since my father left, however I can actually think of some possible things that can happen to a developing adolescent as they have lost their fathers. You see as there is no one to advise the young adolescents as to what to do and what not to do, they start doing all things possible to cope with life. And sometimes boys connect with their fathers than their mothers.
As a developing male adolescent, of course, I needed my father to help me navigate my way around the world. Not only to find my way, but to also tell me how to deal with situations and issues the world throws at me. You see without a father as my guide, going about the world will be extremely difficult. This is because sometimes a child is more comfortable sharing his or her problems with his father, than with the mother. And in some cases, a father can sometimes give advice that sits well and comfortably with a child than the mother. However, without a father to do this job, a child can be very confused and may stress more, plus anxiety and depression.
Not only was growing up without a father affecting me psychologically, but also my outside performance regarding my education. As I have mentioned before, memories of my father haunt me every time I see someone with his/her father. At school, this is a sight I really do not like to see and honestly looking at such activity would always bother me and ruins my day. I never had what everyone else had. For every other child, they had both parents attending award ceremonies, something that has never happened to me. Of course I had my mother, but then since she was a single parent, sometimes she had to sacrifice showing up to my award ceremonies at my school due to important meetings. I understood why she had to make such decisions because she was the sole provider for our household. Therefore it was understandable for me whenever she unexpectedly doesn't make it. This also affected me in so many ways, especially in my mind. I started having negative thoughts that since my mother would not make it, I started not caring about what goes on in my school life because of that mindset. I also started feeling horrible for myself. Sometimes i felt that my mother doesn't care much about me, that I started slacking off in school, and also started distancing myself from her and the world.
My father bailing on us not only affected me, but also my single parented mother as well. With my mother being the only parent taking care of our whole family, resting was very short and she barely had time to spend with me helping me with homework and everything. Day and night this woman has worked 2 jobs, just so I would not have to cry wanting something, and so I wouldn't lack anything that I needed through the finances. We were all okay until my mother slowly got sick. With so much stress on her mind and so much burden on her shoulders, she gradually got sick.
Overall, my father leaving may have affected my family in negative ways, but it has also shone some advantages on my life. Yes, of all the things I listed, anyone would think that it was always negative things that have happened to me, but there were also some advantages. With all the negativity that has happened to me, I grew to be grateful for my mother. Whenever i sit down and actually think deeply about the sacrifices and things she has made for me, she went out of her comfort zone to make sure that I do not go hungry. Of course my mother was a single parent, she had to spend more time working than spending it with us. But that made me realize the value of my mother in my life. I am forever grateful for her, and that she is more than enough to play both roles in our small family.
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