2018-10-11 Hard Truths

Dear Joseph and Lucia,

There have been some things on my mind I would like to get off my chest. At a casual glance at the letters I write to you, it would appear that I’m living a happy and carefree life. Working a dream job and travelling the world with my adopted family. On the surface this is true, but underneath I spend every day as only half a man. The half that is missing is “Dad”. For many years, I was unable to cope with this fact and nearly lost myself to addiction and misery. It was only through the love from Michele and a desire to be a dad that I was able to pull out of it.

Over the course of the last several years, I’ve become acquainted with the term “Parental Alienation”. I strongly suggest you look into it. It is a situation where one parent (usually the custodial one) goes out of their way to demonize the other parent in an effort to gain the children’s devotion strictly to themselves. This is done by constantly saying really bad things about the other parent that casts doubt and fear in the children’s minds toward the estranged parent. I’ve read countless stories of this happening over and over again. The legal system takes a blind eye towards it and only concerns itself with making sure child support is paid (which is where they can make money). The long term emotional effects on the children are significant and can take a lifetime to overcome.

That being said, I would like to provide you with some Truths that might run counter to what you’ve been told:

· Truth: There was never any inappropriate action taken on Lucia when she was young. The medical evidence, legal investigations, and evaluations all show nothing ever happened. I have the documentation and proof to show that if my word isn’t sufficient. The only evidence you’ve ever been provided is repeated stories told to you by your mother since you can remember. Tell a lie enough times and it becomes truth in the mind at least.

· Truth: I’m not actively trying to disturb your life or hunting you. I’ve known where you live ever since your mother left me. If I had wanted to disturb your life, it would have been easy for me to do so at any time over the last 10 years. I’ve chosen to stand back and let you make your own decisions. Any interference on my part would have only confirmed your mother’s accusations that I’m out to get you. You had already been through enough and I haven’t wanted to cause any more damage.

· Truth: I’ve paid all child support that was asked. There have been several periods where I was unemployed due to barely holding on to my own sanity that I wasn’t able to pay. But as soon as I was working again, I’ve made good on all back payments. All totaled, I’ve paid over $200,000 in payments over the years. That is a substantial amount of money. Any hardship you may have endured has only been a result of your mother mismanaging what’s been given her. I’ve never abandoned you.

· Truth: I know where you are now and if you aren’t directly reading these letters, you are at least aware of them. This is the venue which I chose to reach out to you. My words are uncensored, truthful, and meant for you. Given the fact that ANYONE on the internet can read them, they are only directed to you two. As a matter of fact, people all over the globe read them daily. I know who reads the blog, when they read it, and from where they read it. That being said, either you guys are reading it or your friends are. In either case, this is the one letter I want you to read most.

· Truth: I’m an alcoholic. I’m in recovery and have been sober for over two years now. That has been my coping mechanism for missing you. It’s nearly killed me several times, but in the end it does no one any good for me to be drunk and not useful. I’ve had many periods of sobriety over the past years, but have slipped over and over. Most recently, this put me in the hospital with a failing liver and very near to death. I suspect God has tired of my drinking and lifted the desire from me so I can be here for you guys when you finally reach out to me. This is the hardest for me to say publicly, but I owe you the truth.

This all might be uncomfortable to read, but trust me, it’s even more uncomfortable to write. I urge you to consider what I’ve told you and compare with an open mind to what you’ve been told by your mother. Ask your friends or priest about what I’ve said. Get other people’s opinions. Shine a light on this. If you are a friend of Joseph’s or Lucia, find a way to share this letter with them. Print it out and let them read it.

And now for something totally stupid on my part, but necessary. I know you guys likely don’t use the internet so giving you my email address has been futile. So here is my phone number: (214) 317-2461. If you call, my phone won’t answer since it’s an unknown number, but if you text me, I’ll get it and respond. You can ask me any question you like and I’ll answer to the best of my ability. If you are a friend of my children, I’ll do the same. If you are a stranger, please be respectful and don’t try anything stupid like pretending to be them. That would just be mean and wrong. I’m not doing this lightly.

And as always, I’ll wait for you guys. I’ll work hard to be the best man and father that you deserve. Please take a step outside the shell of fear you’ve been raised in and reach out. I promise you, I will not force myself into your life. It can go at your pace. You will be in control.

Love,
Dad

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