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  #1  
November 18th, 2010, 08:29 AM
sugarloafbaby's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I am new to this forum, but I thought I would ask for you advice since you are praying women who put their trust in God. Please bear with me, and I apologize in advance for how long this is!

I have had an estranged relationship with my father for more than 10 years. Both my mother and my grandmother are deeply rooted in bitterness towards him, and I do not blame them. He cheated on my mother mutiple times and left her with 4 young girls to care for, verbally and physically abused her, pretty much stole her identity and incurred many debts, leaving her no choice but to file for bankrupcy immediately after the divorce.

During the divorce, my mother had nowhere to go- he sold the house from under us, emptied his retirement acccount and our college savings accounts and spent it on himself, his business and his girlfriend. He told my mother to go live on the south end of town (a slum), with 4 young girls!!

About 3 years ago, I agreed to let him come to my wedding. I reconnected with him at this point, although I did not know all the details of what he had really done (I found out a lot of the above info AFTERWARDS). My grandmother and my mother were emotional and extremely upset with me. My mom went as far to say I ruined my wedding and she did not smile during the photos and could not be happy for me.

Continuing for about a year and a half after the wedding, DH and I stayed in touch, saw him on holidays and basically let him back into my life. During this time he went through 2 more live-in girlfriends (one of whom he married and then divorced). He also became un-employed as his construction business failed due to the economy. During this time, my youngest sister (who had always maintained a relationship with him), was headed off to college. She did not have the money to go, and he refused to help her in any way financially, claiming he had nothing. He had several assets that he could have easily sold to help her pay for even just a little, but of course he could not part with his precious possessions. I feel like he owed it to her to help her since he had abandoned us when we were younger and basically stole our college money.

He said some very hurtful things over the phone and we argued. Since then I have not spoken to him, and I also discovered some of the above mentioned details about the past from my mother and grandmother who finally started opening up a LITTLE about what really happened. (though they are still rather closed and general on this subject since they claim it is too difficult for them to talk about it). During this time, my daughter was conceived and born - she is currently about 5 months old.

I am friends with him on facebook, but I never comment or speak to him on there. Well, I see what he posts sometimes, and he always mentions to his friends on there how his daughters are "hardened" against him and how he has always been so humble and it breaks his heart to not see us or speak to us.

I realize that my father is not that intellegent of a man, he is not a Christian either. He ways are primarily selfish and he seeks reconciliation from us primarily from these selfish motives. He has always justified his actions and points the blame on someone else, and I actually think he doesn't believe he has done much wrong. It is therefore very hard to discuss things with him since he automatically gets very defensive and nasty. That being said, I believe his desire to reconnect is guiene. I do think he tries to be a good person in general and does not deliberately seek to deceive. This makes it very hard for me since I feel like I should forgive him and reconnect in some way.

My heart has always been torn over this issue, and the biggest aspect is my relationship with my mother and grandma. We are very close and talk almost eveyrday, although I will admit it is sometimes one-sided, expecially with my mom who is very closed. They see reconnection with my father as a sort of Ultimate Betrayal. Their hearts are extremely bitter and my grandma does not hide the fact from me that she wishes he was dead. Both my mom and grandma claim to be Christian women, but it is easy to see that they pick and choose aspects of the faith that suit them. They are Sunday-Christians if you know what I mean. They did not see my initial act of forgiveness towards him as a Christian response, they saw it as betrayal. This hurt me very much, since I love them dearly and they are the most important people in my life. I therefore have avoided contact with my father since then because I am unsure how to handle the situation. But I do not feel at peace with what is going on and I have no idea what I am supposed to do. I feel like I need to reach out again, but I am scared to.

My question is, what would you do? What do you think is the Christian thing to do in this situation? If you have managed to read this far, God bless you and please consider praying for me over this issue. Many hugs and Thanks.
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  #2  
November 18th, 2010, 09:06 AM
Mami's Avatar Christian Parent
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Location: Florida
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Hugs!!! Saying a prayer for you...

Definitely a tough situation to be in. As Christians, we are supposed to forgive each other because that's what Lord commanded us to do.

I can totally see why your mother and grandmother are angry for him but, who are we to judge? We in our nature, try to hold grudges against others but it is truly not in our best interests. We are automatically forgiven for other our sins when we proclaim them to our Lord and that's why God sacrificed his only son for us.

Regardless of what your father did, he is still your father and he deserves your forgiveness. I am praying you mother and grandma can also do the same! I think its selfish for either of them to be mad at you for betraying them. You simply are trying to reconnect with your father and do what you are supposed to do. I see nothing wrong and you should be happy to have reconnected with him regardless of what others think.



"Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you."
Colossians 3:13 NIV

"For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins." Matthew 6:14-16 NIV
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  #3  
November 18th, 2010, 10:40 AM
DawnN's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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There is a wonderful book by RT Kendall entitled "Total Forgiveness". Although I have not gone through what you have, with your dad, I have had my own battles with forgiveness towards my father.

I agree with what Mami said. I know that for your own benefit (even more than your father's) you need to forgive. Forgiveness isn't saying that what a person did was acceptable. It isn't condoning their actions. It isn't even necessary to trust that person...in fact it would be foolish to trust an untrustworthy person. But it is letting go of the bitterness.

(((hugs))) I will be praying that as you forgive your dad, healing will come to your whole family.
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  #4  
November 18th, 2010, 11:37 AM
sugarloafbaby's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Mami, Thank you for the Bible verses, they really help put things into perspective.

DawnN, thanks for the book recommendation - i just reserved it at our library and am looking forward to reading it!
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  #5  
November 18th, 2010, 05:02 PM
Mattiez's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I am sorry you are having to go through all this. It is a touch situation to be in.
I will pray over this and come back with some type of response latter.
Mattiez
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  #6  
November 19th, 2010, 08:37 AM
~InHisHands~'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DawnN View Post
I agree with what Mami said. I know that for your own benefit (even more than your father's) you need to forgive. Forgiveness isn't saying that what a person did was acceptable. It isn't condoning their actions. It isn't even necessary to trust that person...in fact it would be foolish to trust an untrustworthy person. But it is letting go of the bitterness.
I 100% agree with this.

BTW, my father hasn't done nearly what yours has but I have had to forgive my father as well... he thinks you can buy love rather than really being there for his children & of course I grew up very much disliking him. Forgiveness is for you, not him.

& many, many prayers...
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  #7  
November 19th, 2010, 09:37 PM
JessP's Avatar Lovin life and family
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That is tough.
Many prayers that you will be given the answer from the lord to guide you.
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  #8  
January 9th, 2011, 04:22 PM
~InHisHands~'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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How is your relationship with your father??? Has it gotten any bettter???
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