Well guys I am back. I am sure you have missed me. Fear not I have some excellent new ideas percolating for my next few blogs and have begun writing a couple already including this one. As it was Father’s Day last Sunday, I felt it was only right to pen a new piece about the old man. Now he doesn’t know I am doing this, so I imagine he has got this far and started to panic but fear not Simon, it’s all good.

Our relationships with our parents shape us in lots of different ways. Some people can be exactly like their parents, for good and bad reasons. Others can be polar opposites which again can be positive and negative. I know many people as I am sure you do too that are like this. I am aware that not everyone grows up knowing their parents which can be for a number of different factors. Our adult lives are formed based on experiences we have with older people that are around us as we grow up. I have had a good relationship with both my parents for the majority of my life and the only down moments have more than likely come from something I have done rather than them. Well apart from their divorce but hey ho can’t all be my fault right?

My parents separated when I was eight and I recall this being a very traumatic experience for me and of course the whole of our family. Looking back over these memories, to which I have been doing over the last few months in therapy sessions I hadn’t appreciated the effect it had on me. I am sure it would have been a tougher struggle for my older brothers who would probably recall a time when they saw my parents in a happy marriage. I can’t honestly say I have any memory of this. The relationship I had with my mum and dad moving forward from the divorce generally was pretty good. Yes, there were some bad times in my adolescent years when things were rough but on the whole, I think my parents handled their divorce’s impact on us quite well. Maybe my brothers would say something different I don’t know? Although there were some bad times I saw as much of my dad (as I lived with mum) as I wanted to. There was never any custody battles or issues in that sense that I was aware of which meant I still maintained a good relationship with both of them through frequently seeing them both.  

I have always found my dad to be supportive as a father. Although he may not articulate that in ways, he and I would sometimes like I always feel like he has my back and has done from day one. Over the last ten months I feel our relationship has got stronger and we can be far more honest about things we would not have been prior to me feeling mentally ill last year. I have mentioned in a previous blog that he calls me everyday without fail to check in on me to make sure I am ok and not feeling down or depressed. Since stopping drinking, things have definitely got better, and he can see that in me. So, I hope that some of the weight he’s likely been carrying around with him about me in his head has been lifted a little. I certainly don’t want to make him worried about me, but I know that is in him and he cares about us all very much. On the night of feeling fully suicidal my dad was the first person I reluctantly spoke to. I don’t know why that was. I said at the time and have done since that I thought he would understand and comprehend how I was feeling. Although I do believe that to be the case, I could have just as easily spoken to my brother, mum, girlfriend, or a close friend. Something made me take his call and not others. To clarify, I don’t want that to sound like I didn’t care about the people trying to reach me that night. Evidently, I was not thinking with any clarity.

When I have done something stupid whilst intoxicated, it has usually been my dad (not in all cases) I have turned to for help. I can remember one stupid night where I had been walking home and banged on a window, yes that again. Learn from your mistakes Nick come on. The window had broken, and I had cut myself again. Although this wasn’t as bad as the time my fist went through the window it was still a cut, I shouldn’t have managed to get. I have never hurt anyone (to my knowledge) whilst drunk, but I have sustained many an injury and embarrassed myself countless times. I called my dad the next morning explaining what I had done and although he was angry with me and rightly so he still sorted the aftermath of my mistake by finding out who’s window I had broken and getting it repaired whilst I sloped off back to university. At this moment in time, I was still reeling from ‘Teenage Dream’ heartbreak, but I can’t attribute this action to that. I was being a twat, no excuses. Maybe my dad recognised what I was going through, and I knew that subconsciously and that is why I turned to him for help. By the way, if you don’t get the teenage dream reference then you need to go back to that blog. If you haven’t read it yet, all I can say is where have you been??

I share a lot of commonalities with my dad. We both love sport. Anything really, we have watched them all over the years, but the main ones are cricket and football. Our political outlooks are very similar and our general takes on life are very alike. Not that stops us from arguing about them all the time. He also has a very good taste in music, old and modern. I know dad has had his battles with hard times over the years and at times has felt very low. I hope he hasn’t felt the way I did last year because if he has, he hasn’t shared this with anyone, and I hate to think of him feeling that way alone. He seems very content with life at the moment spending his time operating a very busy bar at the cricket club we are members of as well as spending time with his family. I can see how happy and proud of his grandchildren he is and how he loves being with them as much as possible. I do feel I can be a lot more open and honest with him about how I am feeling about everything in my life and not just certain things. Our relationship has advanced and for that I am very pleased.

I usually finish with a conclusion befitting of the piece I have just written but I will simply just say dad, I love you and thank you for everything you do and have done for me.

Thanks for reading.

Nick Denton