Father’s Day

While thousands if not millions of people are honoring their fathers today, I’d like to take a moment and wish my own father — hereafter known as “Sperm Donor” — a day so vile that he wants to slit his wrists. And I don’t know that I’d be upset if he did impale himself on a sharp object.

Note that I am 29 and have not had children yet. Note that most, if not all, of the men I’ve dated were probably not suitable daddy material. Note that the ones who WERE good daddy material probably didn’t want to reproduce with ME. 🙂 Now that we’re done taking notes, realize that I haven’t brought any kids into this world for the sheer fact that I didn’t feel like being a single parent.

I didn’t meet my father until I turned 18, when we went to Family Court to close our pathetic child support case (thanks for the $40/month for 18 years, you asshole). That embarrassing monetary amount aside, all I wanted was a daddy. And luckily, my grandfather was a wonderful paternal figure for me, and I don’t know what I would have done without him. But without Sperm Donor, I wouldn’t even be here.

Granted, I know S.D. was 18 when I was born (Mom was 16). But he didn’t believe I was his, and after blood tests and whatnot later, he still thought the tests were wrong. So he stayed out of my life and ended up getting married and having another child by the time I was 3 … a girl named Shannon (yes, same name as my darling friend). He had a boy, Ryan, a couple of years after that.

I never met these half-siblings, nor do I want to. They probably don’t even know about me. And if they were reared by this asshole called S.D., then they are probably assholes just like him.

When I met him, he was undergoing a bitter divorce. The kids were with the wife. I had just graduated 13th in my high school class and was going to journalism school on a scholarship, so I thought he would be proud to get to know this *lost* offspring. Oh boy, was I wrong.

We looked so much alike, it was frightening. Motherfucker gave me all the Irish genetics — same huge round eyes, freckles, mouth, etc. My grandmother told a story around that time how much I resembled him as a baby, too — she couldn’t get over his audacity (or density) in denying that I was his. Little did we know that he would deny me again.

I suppose it would be fair to say that S.D. was the first man to break my heart. After court, we made a date to go out to dinner, which we did and it was fantastic. We giggled and talked and — I thought — bonded. I never saw him again, but I called him from the dorms at least twice a month (although it cost me a fucking arm and a leg, as I used a calling card that was outrageously steep). By the next year, when it was time for me to move back into the dorms, I called to ask him if he could help me move my TV and bookcase (as my grandfather was getting frail and couldn’t help me lift stuff anymore). S.D. said yes. Then he called back five minutes later to not only say no, but to say that he’d had nothing to do with me for my first 18 years, so why start now?


The words will never leave my mind.

Another phrase out of his rotten mouth that stabbed my heart occurred on that dinner date we had. He was talking about Shannon and Ryan, and I asked him how many kids he had. He said, “Oh, just two.”


I didn’t count.

And I never would.

It has been my hope of hopes that Shannon and Ryan left him behind, once the divorce was final. I mean, shit, he was renting a crappy apartment and he had lawn furniture in his living room. Sounded like he was a loser (cripes, I’m poor but at least I have nice stuff!) I’m certain that piddly $40 a month couldn’t possibly have bankrupted him!

A few nights ago, I ran searches on the S.D. and the kids. Not a one of them comes up in any of my queries. I know a lot of people lead anonymous lives, but I have to kind of be proud that, when I ego-surf, I see about a good 25 sites that pertain to me (except for the blog). I was quoted in newspaper articles, I wrote magazine articles and press releases, I was in staff listings and on project teams, I donated money, I was a volunteer coordinator, I was on corporate websites, and I left comments and ideas on party-planning sites. I always hoped one of those blood relatives would search for me, because I’m pretty damn easy to find.

So, to Tom Burke of Brentwood, Pittsburgh, Pa., today I wish you a royal FUCK YOU and thank the lord above for my fabulous mom, grandmother and grandfather for raising me in their family. I am certain that I was better off where I was, and I am certain that I am a better person because of it. How I wished for you to love me as your firstborn daughter; now I hope that someday, you will read my name or see it in lights and wish for just one moment that you would have given two shits about me. Because I won’t even be able to give that about you.

Rot in hell, bastard.

But I do wish a Happy Father’s Day to my grandfather and to all the loving and present dads, uncles and granddads out there who took the responsibility and pleasure of being a hero in the eyes of a child. I only hope that when I do finally have children, I will have a man in my life just like the caring souls out there who are being honored by their families today.

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