First off, let me just say, that I did start this…. but the outcome totally surprised me. I’m sorry that it hurts so many people, but I have a right to say what I need to say. I have a right to shout it to the tree tops if I choose, and I do. There is not one person in this world that can stop me. Though, they can try. I’m not the ignorant 30something I used to be. Threats do not mean much to me anymore.
“I’ve always loved Thanksgiving and Christmas. Those were the two major holidays of our childhood lives. There were always aunts, uncles, and grandparents present. It was always at our house. Mom always cooked. There were the Thanksgiving parades, and football. It is what I patterned my adult life on for the holidays. The holidays are all about family. My kids got presents, but what I tried to make important was family.
I have mostly very warm feelings for the holidays as a child. The only dark spot on those memories is remembering when dad would get on a tirade, make a fork or plate being dirty be all my fault. Twice while everyone ate, he yelled at me for my horrible misdeed threw every dish from the cabinets into the sink, and sometimes breaking them, and in front of my mothers family.
In someways, I wish I were not so insightful. I realized yesterday that those scenes were meant for my mother’s family. My mothers brother who dared to speak up for his niece and teach my dad a lesson. At some point there was a bad physical altercation between them over a little girl… me. It taught my grandparents, and my uncle that he could treat that girl anyway he wanted, and they were powerless to do anything about it.
Having realized that yesterday… it kind of makes the holiday feel a little melancholy. So, I am concentrating on today — being there for my kids, and still trying so hard to not repeat the past. Acknowledging that a piece of the puzzle has fallen to. Thanking my uncle for giving me a piece to hang it on. Thankful for a family and dear friends that I have. Thank you!” (Original post, Thanksgiving 2017)
Answer from cousin01: I’m so sad for that little girl. So proud of the woman she became and how she stopped that cycle. (Nov. 23, 2017)
Answer from girlfriend from school years: My dad was a jerk too! We could have gone only two ways…be like them or not. You and I learned a lesson on how not to be. Most people don’t get something from that…merely use it as a crutch. Kudos Peggy! Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas!
Answer from cousin02: Happy Thanksgiving Love to you all.
Answer from step-mother: i completly under stand.he took the joy out of life (I have not corrected the punctuation or spelling, because I wanted it to be true to form. Also note that step mother was being supportive.)
Answer from sister: I for one am Thankful for my father who has been gone for 30 years now. I miss him terribly and wish he were here. Until someone has been thru the military and knows what it may be like for that person…or horible health issues. Nobody is perfect. And most don’t deserve to be blasted on face book where other family members can see. So @ joan rowe….I dont aprreciate you blasting my father on face book….not where I can see it. Unless you would like me to blast the stories about you that I know on face book !!!! Let the man rest in peace!! Happy Thanksgiving Dad ♡♡ (my comment: a hurt little girl comes shining through, while she makes it clear to step mother that the divorce between our parents was all her fault. A reminder here—Dad made choices too. And him being dead does not make him so scared that I will not punch and punch again if it relieves me of my PTSD)
Answer from me last night (11/26/2017): My sister and I have completely different realities when it comes to our parents. We were raised in the same home with completely different styles. Just before my mothers brother died, he told me about how my grandparents and he, and our aunt would sit around the dinner table and talk about how differently we were treated, and how worried they were for me. I asked him why they didn’t say or do something. His answer was that they were all afraid that they would not be allowed to see us girls. My uncle a few weeks later asked if I remembered a fight he and dad had. Apparently they were trying to hurt each other. It was a serious issue. The fight was over something that dad had done to me. That something is probably why I could tell people when I was little that I loved my dad, but did not like him. Something my mother was quite proud of. I’ve heard that story countless times. I asked my uncle what dad did to me. He just looked at me. He looked sad. Over time he reiterated that as far as he and my grandparents were concerned the Rowe’s were uncivilized. I cant hurt them now. They are all dead. My mother’s brother could tell me about his bar brawls, and his ‘fights with the universe’ and how he lost. I heard a lot from him before he passed away. With all the stories full of drunkenness, and violence and a young mans stupidity, he could not tell me what my dad did to me. There had been a conspiracy almost from the day I was born. He could say and do as he pleased, and mom protected him instead of protecting her daughter. The same scene played out again with my daughter because I did not have the conscious memory enough of the past to stop it from happening. This IS MY struggle, and it’s going to ‘leak’ out on occasion because on occasion, I get triggered, and some ‘realization’ hits me like a ton of bricks. I am way, way beyond angry with both of my parents. I’ve studied psychology along with computers in college. I’m no expert, but I have a pretty good clue. The genealogy hobby, and the love of history– is a tool for learning about the people in ones family. I am smart enough to know that none of it was really my parents’ fault. This shit has been going on literally for GENERATIONS. They came from somewhere, and had their own crosses to bear. But, when they knew right from wrong, then I take issue. My guess is that if my 20 something year old uncle knew that my dad did something wrong, that means mom told her parents, and knew dad was wrong. And over the years, they just let the crap pile on. The only thing that dad did different, is that dad apologized to me before he died. Mom just won’t face a daughter who wants answers. I will take this crap to my grave with me. My mother, when she cut off ties with me, wrote a letter and told me that my daughter would “survive” just like she did. She (my daughter) did not need the insurance money that I was suing for (and gave up) — a judge at one time awarded my daughter 1.3 million dollars for what my daughter went through at the hands of my step-father. He and my mother counter sued. I got emotionally exhausted and I dropped the suit. But, I have to tell you–that daughter is 34 years old and she is angry. She is so angry she is literally SICK. Literally dying. She looks at life through shit colored glasses. And it all of this…. is intertwined–history repeating itself. My mother was incapable of being there for me, and she was incapable of being there for my daughter. What my daughter lives through is not being a survivor. Not yet. My daughter is still fighting her demons. And so am I still fighting with mine (I’m 55 years old, and the flashbacks are not gone yet!). Dad did what he did. I have a right to express how it affected me. And ya, he could take the joy out of things. Like the time he ran over a dog to get back at mom…. the stories could go on all day and all night and well into next year. He was very, very capable of taking the joy out of things. But, on the other hand, he was the one who would let us sit on his lap, and put barrettes in his hair. He sang us songs, he danced with us, he tried to show us right from wrong. NO one is completely evil, or wrong. Even Charles Manson had a good thing or two within him (what, I have no idea). I liked my step father so much I named my little boy after him. It’s been going on for generations — and it’s my generation now. I get to have my say, I get to try and stop the cycle of abuse of all sorts. I refuse to be silent.
More from me: (11/26/2017): But she (step mom) said it because she is on my page. That means, I am ok with it. I asked Joan, years and years and years ago why she got involved with our father at the time she(they) did. She gave a completely honest, and pragmatic answer. “If it wasn’t me, it would have been someone else.” And that was the truth, was the truth, was the truth. It took two to dance that little dance, and dad was apparently fully consenting because he is the one that left us. He was and is as guilty as anyone else. In fact, he’s more guilty…. he’s the one that choose to break up the family. Not me, Not you. We will NEVER know what really happened between mom and dad. I over heard dad talk about mom one night. I know of at least one big reason he left her. The truth is, if it wasn’t Joan IT WOULD HAVE BEEN someone else. That is not her fault. I for one, am not going to stay any more angry at my step mother as I am at my own parents… yup, been there done that. Joan is not at fault that Dad left home. Dad left home because he wanted to. Because things between mom and dad were not good for him. And if the truth be told, based on things mom said to me over the years, that if she were not so busy putting on a show for the world about how perfect our little home was–that she’d realized she was probably much happier without him there. That is after she got over the fact that you can love a mean person, and she should have seen that train wreak very EARLY on. And yes, you can say that about me. The difference is that I am authentically me. What you see is what you get. I already know that I did see my train wreak in the making and I relived my mother’s life–and fought it. I am exhausted as she is, I promise!!!
Additional Notes: A childhood such as the one I had often sets a child up to be an adult that is incapable of functioning in their own home, or even in society at a high capacity. Sometimes the emotional fall out is just too great. I do not have to forgive and forget. Neither do my kids, whom I failed over and over again. (11/27/2017)
And the conversation went on into the night– and nothing was resolved. I am not going to shut up under any circumstances. I may, if I can ever get through certain situations without being triggered by flashbacks from the past, I might slow down. I might be more quiet. But, I will not 100% quit until I am dead. Everyone can literally run to their corners. Let me say this really loud, clear and simple: I WILL NOT STOP!
There is freedom of speech in this country, and I am going to take 100% full advantage of it, and I dare anyone to stop me. I do this for the kids who grew up in compete and utter insanity. For the kids who’s father showed them a big bowie knife, told them how much like their mother they were, and how much they deserved to die because of it. There is no belittling, no shaming, no pretenses of “I’d do it this way (*if I were you,* was the clear pretense…”) that will ever shut me down. The grown ups that stood around me as a child created drama that went well into my adulthood. I am fighting to be 100% conscious of all of that, so that I can heal from it. It is my right, it is my mental health. It affects my life to this day, as it affects the way I treat my children. It affects the way I treat my significant other(s). It affects my ability to keep a job, and to keep relationships. It takes an incredibly patient and forgiving person to deal with me and my issues.
If you have a comment that you would like me to see, please email me at pegrowe 62 @ g mail dot com. (with no spaces). Depending on how nice you are… I might or may not answer. Thank you.