Anger in the Wrong Places

Has anyone ever just felt so much anger towards someone, but deep down, you know it’s not their fault? Deep down, you know they don’t deserve the magnitude of anger you’re feeling?

Lately, I’ve been feeling angry at my dad. Why?

Well, obviously, it’s because since my mom passed, he’s shown more relief than he has sorrow. This is a man that less than a week after his wife’s death said, “Oh, is your sister still crying over that?” To be fair, they had a very rocky relationship. My mother clearly loved us but clearly resented him for all his pestering and refusing to give her her space.

Obviously, it’s because the house is a mess and he makes no effort to maintain it. And when I point out spills that occurred several days ago, he tells me to clean it. Excuse me, I haven’t been here for weeks!

Obviously, it’s because all he can talk about is how sad he is me and my sister are not religious, and we’re not going to pray for him when he dies. It seems the only reason he wants us to be religious is because he’s scared he’s going to go to hell, not because he actually cares about us. And, my mom would’ve never done this! She wants us to be religious because she wants us to save ourselves, but she never pushed it because she knew how it made us felt.

But…could that be it? Is that why I’ve been so moody lately?

Maybe I’ve been so angry at him is because it feels like I’ve lost the only parent that truly cared about me. The only parent that felt like a real parent. My dad was the typical, brown partiarch of the house, the breadwinner, but he was not around much. And I have good memories of him, but they’re from when I was so young. At least a decade has passed.

My sister put it best when she said that he just feels like a stranger. Yes, he’s my dad, but he just seems like this man that demands too much out of us without giving much in return. He’s just there. It’s so hard to have a conversation with him because I can’t talk about my life without him turning it to religion, and even if he doesn’t, he can’t reply or contribute. All we can talk about is the grades I’ve been making. And that’s a conversation that lasts for 5 minutes, maximum.

So, maybe I’ve been angry because he isn’t my mom, he can’t provide me what I got from my mom. I didn’t talk to my mom as often as I should’ve, but I could have conversations with her about her thoughts on religion, family, anything really without her reprimanding me.

So, maybe I’ve been angry because it’s a saddness manifested in anger. A saddness that I won’t get those things again from a parent.

And that anger is unfair to place on my dad because, simply, it’s not his fault.

If you’ve read this far and aren’t my sister, I wanted to say thanks for reading. I didn’t really expect anyone else to read this. But, it’s been more therapeutic than anything, to the point I’m ready to interact with my dad again.