Bad Dad

I am a failure as a parent. Actually technically as a loving caring person I got better. but as a blind person who is a parent I’ve failed. Not living openly with my disability created dynamics that made the whole parenting thing impossible. It put pressures on me and my children to the point that none of us knew which end was up and which end was down or sideways.

There are things as a blind parent that you can’t do. You can’t drive the kids to an event. You can’t see their faces or expressions. You can’t help with homework. You can’t get to the game the concert the parent teacher conference. My daughter agonized for years and begged me to help with homework. I couldn’t because I wasn’t living “out” with my disability I couldn’t figure out how to give her attention that showed her I loved her and valued her. To my son I’ve just left a rift and a hole I’m not sure how I will ever bridge it. Not being “out” I passed along how I’ve always felt to my parents, disappointing. My son is not disappointing. I am very proud of both of my children.

Whipping a baby’s bottom is a profoundly difficult activity to ensure that you don’t leave bits behind which will cause problems. There are so many things that you can’t do its actually demoralizing. The absolute terror when you can’t see where your toddler went is indescribable. Getting a child to the doctor to school to their friends. Helping them when they get off of the bus at the wrong place or feel unsafe because some weirdo is lurking by the bus stop.

Mistakenly I’ve told my children over the years I’m a bad Dad and they’d tell me that if I was bad they were bad. As a caring loving person I have really improved with age. As a parent I suck. My kids are not bad, they are good people.

If I had lived “out” with my disability during my children’s formative years things would have been different. Since I was living a lie it made it so hard for my children to know what is real. If I had lived “out” I could have developed systems that would have created contexts that would have allowed me to have a relationship with my children. It would have allowed me to be real. To be believable to have credibility to be Dad. I wouldn’t have been so angry. I wouldn’t have passed on a feeling of being disappointing as I was to my parents. I wouldn’t have….

There are times in life I wish living was like golf. I could take a stroke and call a mulligan. Parenting as a lier as a person hiding who and what they are is one of those things I’d change if I could.

My children I am so sorry.

When I came “out” when I changed I blew everything up that my children ever knew. Everything. Now they have to determine for themselves what is real to them. Its a painful journey I would never have knowingly chosen to set them on. Having no ability to turn back time I hope the love that I was able to give them regardless of the disability and my lying about my disability. Somehow equipped my kids for the path they are currently walking.

My children I am so sorry.

I pray I hope that one day I can share a path with my children. Me being out and who I am and them having figured out what is real and truthful to them. I hope that my new found happiness and contentment doesn’t send a message to my children that I’m happy or content that they are gone. Only that I’m happy because I’m “out” and now know who I am.

My children I am so sorry

I pray every day that one day we can again walk and talk together.

Posted in: Everything Else, Living

About the Author:

Kyle has ocular albinism and has been legally blind since birth. Kyle leads a very active live and is besides his professional career involved in many projects for persons who are different.

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