A Letter To My Father

Amber Brown
7 min readSep 26, 2020

You failed me. You’ve also failed yourself. You wake up every morning, you go to work, on Sunday’s you go to church, and you lie to yourself every step of the way.

I do not hate you. Neither do I despise you. I have forgiven you but I will never forget.

How do you go to church three times a week, Sunday service, Tuesday Bible study, Thursday Bible service, and continue to be in denial?

With your hands you were suppose to protect me from the outside world. You were suppose to cover me with everlasting love. Kisses and hugs were suppose to come from you but it came from the devil instead.

You tell me that you don’t remember those things that happened to me. You said that you probably remember some things…. why do you lie?

Is it to hide who you were? Does that suit comfort your flesh because you hide it well. You remind me of this quote: “People remember what they want to remember.”

So, let me remind you of what you watch happen to me:

1. You watched me pee and poop in a bucket:

I was eight or nine years old when we stayed in oceanway. You had built a new living room to add on to the house. Within that living room you built a exercise room with a glass door. You and your ex wife, my stepmother, made me sleep in there and my bathroom was the bucket I had to pee and poop in. You use to sit in the living room watching tv, in that blue recliner, you watched me do it and you thought it was normal.

2. You hit me in the face because I wouldn’t eat breakfast

Oooo, this one you definitely remember because you brag about it all the time. Like I said, people remember what they want. One morning you woke me up at six in the morning on a weekend. You told me to come to the table to eat. I was tired and I didn’t want to eat. I sat there next to you with my food in front of me, in refusal. You became so mad you slapped me in the face. I was 14, that was the first time I stood up to you. I was ready to fight you back. You laughed at me and said: “That’s what I’m talking about.” As if it was ok to do those things to me, as if it was ok for a young girl to take a hit from a grown man, as if it was ok to fight. You brag about it to everyone, to show them how tough I am now as a woman. But no dad, my fighting caused me to almost kill people, it got me locked up, it also made me hit people that I loved the most. Should I tell you thank you? NO…but I bet you remember that.

3. You said you were going to beat me because I was trying to play with you

One day, we went to therapy. This was when I was tossed in foster care and the court had ordered that we take counseling. We sat there with a white lady, and I remember I had simply placed my foot next to your work boots to see how small my foot was compared to yours. After the meeting you pulled me to the side, looked me dead in my eye and said: “Listen, you bet not ever play with me like that again. You understand me?” I nodded my head, holding back tears because I didn’t understand how something so small could make you so mad.

4. You made me stand in a corner every day all day and you made me squat until I couldn’t no more

It could be for the smallest thing. I would get in trouble at school, or I would forget to do something at home…. it didn’t matter what it was, you and my stepmother would make me stand in the corner and squat all day and night. Everyone was allowed to sleep while I stood there, sometimes butt naked, in a corner and if I fell asleep, I would be beaten.

5. You called me ugly

I remember, one day I was sitting in the dining room with you and I sat on the floor. You were reading that day, and for whatever reason, you looked down on me and said: “You are so ugly, do you know that? …. I cried. I still remember it freshly in my mind, like it was yesterday. From that day forward, I could never love myself. I hated my hair, my nose, my skin…. everything. I was between seven or nine years old when you told me that. Every compliment that I got from a boy was a sexual invitation for me because sex was more beautiful than my face. You caused that. Just for the record, I was twelve when I lost my virginity.

6. You drove passed my foster home everyday and never visited

It was on Soutel Road, right next to Harbor View. You stayed 10 minutes away from me. I was in a group home with about six other girls. There was a lady I use to call Auntie. Anyways, this is when you had that red truck that I loved so much. I use to play outside and ride my bike and I would see you drive by. Almost every day I use to see you. You never waved or looked my way.

7. You ate my cupcakes on my birthday

It was my birthday and I thought everyone forgot. Except for my bus driver. She gave me a full set of colorful cupcakes. You should have seen the look on my face! I was so happy. She was so thoughtful to do that. When I came inside the house, you took my cupcakes from me, locked me in my room and the next day I came out, I had seen that all my cupcakes were gone.

8. When my best friend’s Uncle called me a Nigger..

You did nothing. You did absolutely nothing. I pushed his son because the little kid spit in my face, his dad got mad at me and his daddy, tall white fat man called me a nigger right to my face. I called you to come pick me up and I thought you would stand up for me. Maybe fight the guy since you always hit me but you didn’t say a word. That was my eleventh birthday by the way. You should’ve brought me a cupcake.

9. The demon in my room

Unfortunately, you told me this story but I believed you. In that same home in Oceanway, you gave your life to Jesus. So, you use to go around the home and throw holy oil around the house and pray. You were in your late 30’s and you started to make some changes in your life. You said, once you came to my room to pray, you heard a demonic voice that said get out. You were so scared that you left me in there. The reason why I believed you is because I use to be scared to sleep in there. I would run into the living room, those were the days when you didn’t lock me in my room, but I use to run and tell you how scared I was to sleep in there. I was eight and I could sense something was terribly wrong in that room. I’m happy I didn’t die and I’m happy you never told me until it was already to late.

10.My car broke down in the a different city during a arriving hurricane

Did you come to save me? NOPE! I was so terrified. I called you and you told me to find a way. Thank God that I did but what if I didn’t? You left me there in the middle of a hurricane. I still wonder if you felt bad but you probably don’t remember that either.

11.You watched as my ankles got tied up and locked me in the closet

You watched me hop around with my ankles tied while being butt naked…. I confronted you and you said: “Yeah, I probably remember that.” I know that you remember. Why are you in denial?

I could keep going… but those was the main points that destroyed my childhood. I forgive you although you never said you were sorry. You always told me that your choices affect other people. You were right. I don’t want to blame you but I am… I am blaming you for being a horrible, God-awful father. I have treated people badly because of you. Hurt people hurt people. Not anymore…. this stops today. I will overcome this and I will not self pity myself. I forgive you …. I hope you’ll learn to forgive yourself too.

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Amber Brown

For starters, writing is the golden ratio. For the ending, I write about all my secrets, feelings, and poetry.