My dad is the worst dad ever. He doesn't spend time with me, and he always yells at me. It was my birthday, and I didn't get anything. I have so much anger I just want to explode every time I see him. What should I do?

Answer

Oh, my friend, unfortunately, you are just one of many, many children with 'the worst dad ever.' I truly understand why you are disappointed and angry, especially if he doesn't make a special effort on your birthday. However, unfortunately, we are pretty much stuck with the dad we get. Can't trade him for a new one (unless your parents get divorced, and your mother remarries, but that's a completely different story.)

The question is really what you can do about the anger you feel you want to release every time you see him? The good news is, it is possible to manage anger. Let's talk about that.

You have to accept that your dad is a dud. He's not the father you'd like to have, and we both know he's not likely to change. You can't change him, but you can change yourself.

This might sound kind of heartless to anyone with a doting, loving dad, but I'm guessing you'll understand exactly what I mean when I say I want you to care less about him. Don't care so much and you won't get so angry.

There is really no point wasting time and energy obsessing about what a disappointment your dad is. Instead of worrying about not spending time with him and not getting gifts from him, just try to ignore him. I know he's probably going to keep yelling at you from time to time, but don't give him the power to upset you. Don't expect him to do fun things with you, and don't expect him to be your greatest supporter.

To be perfectly honest, you can become a brilliant and successful adult without having a perfect dad. Of course, it would be nice to have one, but if that's not your reality, you'll just have to work with what you've got. I'm guessing you have other relatives who might help fill the gap if you give them a chance.

And there's a never-ending list of other things you can focus on, instead of your dad. Take up learning a musical instrument or writing songs. Play a sport, or join a drama group. Read a gazillion books and one day become a writer. Throw yourself into schoolwork and study, and achieve something brilliant career-wise when you are older.

You'll make lots of friends over the coming years, and some of them will no doubt be older folk who become like a 'father figure.' When you're old enough to have kids of your own, there will be other men in your life who can be like a loving grandfather figure.

There's no point being angry. If you can't work 'with' your dad, just work 'around' him. Then, when you're an adult, you can leave him behind you and let him reflect on all the mistakes he made while you were growing up. Lots of adults have good relationships with their mothers and very little (or nothing) to do with their fathers. Mind you, lots of happy and successful adults have nothing to do with either of their parents. Get on with living your life and keeping one eye on the future. Your future can be great. Don't let your dad spoil that. You need to make the decision today that you're going to be a happy adult, despite having a dud dad as you were growing up.

Updated on May 8, 2018

Original Article:

I Hate My Dad—Trouble at Home
By LongTimeMother

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