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Talking to Parents... Thoughts? Comments?
By PAUL
12/9/2010 2:51:11 PM
Here's the deal. While I take full accountability for my choices and actions, I attribute a great deal of my ability to justify P & M to my father.

At 12 years old I found his magazine tucked away in his dresser drawer, and for several months went back to that drawer when I knew both my parents would be gone for a while. That, I believe, was the first spark of this hellish fire. Later, when I was somewhat involved in P on the internet he found traces of what I had been doing in the history. We were both sitting right there at the same time and there was no denying what was there, but... he said nothing. Not then, not ever. It if was OK for him it couldn't be that bad for me right? Or so I thought at 15.

Anyway, My wife and I now live a long ways from both our families and this Christmas my parents are coming to visit for a few days. Here is what I'm questioning. I want to confront my father... I think... maybe.

I love my dad, he was and is a great father. But, I want to know why he had his magazine. I want to know why he never confronted me. I want to know what my mother did about it. I want... someone I can talk to.

But at the same time... that was a long time ago. I KNOW that my father is not who he used to be. While I have no information about my specific questions, he is a very different person than he was while I was growing up. He has changed a lot, and for the better. Should I just let the past go and work on myself? Should I talk to him about it?

Things like this have never been discussed in my family. Dating, Sex, P, M, are all things I could never imagine talking to my parents about. I believe that is why this secret of mine has remained hidden so long. Everything I was taught says this is something we JUST DON'T TALK ABOUT.

Do I break that rule and talk about it anyway?

Afterthought, they will only be here for 4 days. I know that this will definitely leave a mark on their vacation, but it is the last chance I will get for some time.

Comments:

Write it down    
"I suffered some serious oversights as a child of an alcoholic sexual addict. I never confronted my father because 1) it took years before I realized that how he acted was dangerous and abusive, and 2) he died a young age from the effects of alcoholism. Yet in an effort to become a victor rather than a victim, I wrote everything down, printed it out, and gave the manuscript to an LDS family counselor. I then deleted the file from my computer as a gesture of forgiveness. After this exercise I felt that I could move on. For the first time in 40 years I felt free of shame and anger.
Some things may have to be dealt with on a personal level. What do you expect to gain from confronting your father? He probably was so ashamed of his addiction that he did not talk to you about it, even though he should have. We all make mistakes and some are very serious ones. Maybe you can learn from this and be open to your own children about your weaknesses. You could break the cycle of addiction in your own family."
posted at 15:24:49 on December 9, 2010 by loving wife
DO IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    
"Bro this is the time.
Get the secrets out of that house, there are none in mine, I confronted and told both my parents I was extremely disappointed with many things in my childhood and teens. Feels good to do it but be careful they were probably doing their best they knew how under the circumstances.

THEY NEED TO KNOW HOW THEIR DECISIONS AFFECTED YOU. That is my take on it as applied to my family. It helps too on the road to recovery as you are able to help each other and improve relationships even more than they are now.

Want to write more but busy so DO IT!!!!"
posted at 15:33:31 on December 9, 2010 by ruggaexpat
Loving wife said it perfectly    
"Wow"
posted at 15:35:16 on December 9, 2010 by ruggaexpat
Yes do tell    
"I agree Rugga and Loving Wife .

Addiction hides in darkness and secrets promote addiction.

All of my husband's siblings are addicts of one kind or another. Each does not know about each other, except when wives share. I was the most secret of them all. We all live in different states and rarely see one another, but we are going to share when the timing is right.

In our home (meaning mine and Barm's) I think it is safe to say that there are no secrets. Porn is talked of openly. Sometimes we attend meetings together. My younger sons support their brother by attending meetings sometimes. Oldest helps younger boys when they are having various issues. We do need to be careful, we still have child a bit young, but when she is old enough, we will talk.

It is liberating to be open in our home. No thickness in the air. We suffered together and we are healing together. WE ARE BREAKING A GENERATIONAL CYCLE TOGETHER!!!

Please be gentle and non accusatory. Most parents do not wake up in the morning and say, "hey, how can I destroy my children today". Most of us are lemmings and do what we think is best.

Let us know how it goes.

Best to you,
Angel"
posted at 16:20:02 on December 9, 2010 by Anonymous
I like the comments so far    
"Especially the ones that remind you to be gentle and non accusatory. Your Dad didn't make mistakes with you on purpose, and you will make mistakes with your kids. I don't think it should be your goal to "confront" him, but to sorrow with him about the past, to apologize for your own mistakes, to forgive him for his mistakes, and to look with hope to the future."
posted at 18:50:52 on December 9, 2010 by beclean
Agreed    
"Thanks for all the input. I appreciate your insights and comments. As I have thought about it, I agree with what has been said.

Maybe confront is the wrong word to use. I do not mean to or want to accuse him of anything. As I said, he was and is a great father. I recognize the years of sacrifice that he and my mother have given for me and my siblings. My goal is not to tear him up or blame him for the pain my family now suffers.

What I want to do is clear the air of secrets. I want things to be right between all of us. I want him to know that I love him.

Maybe there are no answers to the questions I wrote above. Maybe that doesn't matter. But I have been feeling lately that this has to be addressed."
posted at 19:51:13 on December 9, 2010 by Paul
Talk    
"It will break the wall of silence bettwen you guys. Perhaps, you will find that your dad and mom have gone trough the same or similar challenges and they may be able to sustein and help you avoid pitfalls. Your dad looks like he has changed a lot, perhaps it is time for him to share with you. Either way you need the support and you will not get it unless you are a open book about the past, the present ... It will also give him a chance to get rid of that burden I'm sure he's been carrying but is too afraid to open up.
crushed"
posted at 21:13:37 on December 9, 2010 by Anonymous
I Agree    
"Talk, but be careful how you go about it. I think it could be very healing for you, and perhaps for your parents as well."
posted at 00:14:28 on December 10, 2010 by dstanley
Prayerfully consider!    
"Secrets are what make families sick. Most families perpetuate the sickness because they will not discuss it.

We brought all our children in one by one and discussed our situation with them. It was hard to see the hurt and fear on their face. But their testimonies were strong and they talked of the atonement and what that will mean for their parents. They were all adults. Served missions. Those that are married have done so in the Temple.

Our children have talked to me about how the example we are setting, is and will have a lasting effect on them. They are taking stronger precautions and actions to fortify their homes and marriages.

As hard as this was, I wanted the traditions of the Fathers to stop. I also take the Lord for his word, and the scriptures tell us that the sins of the fathers or mothers will be passed down upon the heads of their posterity for generations. The scriptures also tell us that we can stop that process through complete repentance. It can be reversed and the blessings of righteousness can be multiplied upon. 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7 x 7........

Pray, read the scriptures the Lord will tell you how to handle this.
Hero"
posted at 00:42:38 on December 10, 2010 by Anonymous
I like    
"What loving wife asked. What do you want to get out of it? If you're clear on that the Lord will show you how to go about it.

In fact...that's some good advice for myself come to think. I've been wondering about addressing my father about his homosexuality for years. Maybe I just need to get clear on what I want. For me, the main thing I want him to know is that I love him and that elephant in the room never stoped me and never will."
posted at 01:55:10 on December 10, 2010 by They speak
Whatever you do....    
"I would strongly advise you to pray about what you do. Open your heart to the Lord, tell Him the desires of your heart, express to Him what you would like to have happen. Ask Him if what you are considering is correct and right, He is the only one who can give you the answer for your situation. Whatever you do, I can feel from your post it will be done in a spirit of love and concern. What your parents might not have done for you, you can do differently for your own family. When we know better we do better, right? Best wishes for you as you deal with this situation. All will be well."
posted at 02:07:55 on December 10, 2010 by Anonymous
Speak    
"I heard, and do not ask me where, that homosexuality is a form of sexual addiction. That statement rang true to me. When you have a better understanding of sexual addiction, sexual response conditioning. Homosexuality seems nothing more than a fetish? Something to think about?

HERO"
posted at 03:04:11 on December 10, 2010 by Anonymous
Hero    
"I really appreciate your several most recent comments on this and other posts. I appreciate reading your thoughts, opinions, and experiences. I hope you know that."
posted at 09:41:54 on December 10, 2010 by BeClean
Thanks    
"Beclean. I am all about recovery. I understand not all are in the same place, gender, or desire for recovery. Like the Gospel this recovery process is line upon line.
If I offend a few in my lame attempt to help another. I apologize to those I offend.

Yet I feel the comforting grace of my Redeemer who acknowledges to me by words and actions of others that my efforts are accepted

Thanks. Crushed. I always want you in my corner. Angel your name says it all but you might consider Tiger Angel : ). Barm and. Son your examples say it all as does Rugga.
I believe in recovery, I teach of recovery and I pray for all to receive the blessings of recovery through our Savior Jesus Christ.

HERO"
posted at 16:02:36 on December 10, 2010 by Anonymous
You REALLY sould talk to him.    
"I know this is a little late but you really should talk to your father. I know how much of a blessing it is to have some one like your father to talk to about your problem. I'm only 22 but I found my parents how to have a better s*x video set. It was my first taste of porn at the age of 10. I don't know why my father and mother had them but I can tell you that as I struggled with my addiction over the years my father was the one that held my head above the churning waters until I was willing to let the Lord help me. He's been a God send and I love him for that. Talk to your father, ask him how he's fighting his problems. In the very least you can help each other. Just remember not to blame him for you addiction. I have some one close to me that I'm helping to go through counseling for sex offenders. The first thing they taught him was do not blame some one else for your actions. Like in your case, your father didn't force you to keep going back to that drawer. That was your choice.

So in closing, talk to him. Email or write him if you didn't talk to him over the holidays. It will be one of the best things you could do."
posted at 04:00:53 on January 8, 2011 by Prodigal Son
Did you talk to him?    
"Just wondering if you talked to your parents and how it went if you did."
posted at 06:49:31 on January 10, 2011 by dstanley
Tried, but didn't.    
"I invited my dad to take our dog out for a walk with me. There is a park nearby where we can let him off the leash, I figured it would be a good place for a private talk.

Unfortunately, when I made the invitation, the rest of the family decided it sounded like fun too.... so it didn't happen. I would have tried again, but that was already the day before they left. That is the bad news. The good news is that I have finally opened all of this up to my dear wife.

That is another post..."
posted at 10:02:36 on January 10, 2011 by paul
Let freedom ride my friend    
"You can rejoice in that and be prepared for a tsunami of emotions.

I am here for you bro.

The Lord will heal you and your wife.

Get her on here, She needs a community to share her pain with."
posted at 15:15:04 on January 10, 2011 by ruggaexpat


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"Jesus rejected temptation. When confronted by the great tempter himself, Jesus "[yielded] not to the temptation‚ÄĚ. He countered with scripture. Gospel commandments and standards are our protection also, and like the Savior, we may draw strength from the scriptures to resist temptation."

— D. Todd Christofferson

General Conference October 2006