So i spoke to a stranger about my blog and they thought they had very much to say then just yesterday they sent me this very insightful email regarding their experince with having an ATM father. They asked to remain anonymous so go ahead enjoy the read with trying figure out lol..
I was reading the latest contribution to the blog about ATM fathers and it made me realize that the definition of an ATM father is wide and the circumstances that lead to one being an ATM father vary.
I have a different kind of ATM father one who has always been present in my life, one whom I’ve known from birth up to this point. Family politics or legal constraints did not interfere with the “relationship” between me and him. He had access to see me at any point and I could call him at any time. He made sure that I obtained the best education and that all my needs were catered for, flip!, I was the kid that was envied during xmas time because my dad would show up with a plastic full of xmas clothes: nike, levi’s, etc and of course a huge ass box of fireworks and if you grew up ekasi you would know ukuthi that was a big deal because not many fathers did that for their offspring.
My dad did all of that but he forgot to do one important thing which was to make himself emotionally available to me. I am about to hit a quarter of a century and reflecting back I do not remember a single day where my dad took the time to sit down and have a:“How are doing” conversation with me just to find out what is happening in my life. Guy never took the time to show up at any of the school fun days, prize giving ceremonies, parents meetings. He did not even have the time to teach me how to drive and give me the “Use a condom” lecture.
To me the was a definition of a father was the guy I needed to contact whenever I needed something AKA My living, walking and talking ATM. This was life to me.
It was when I started working when I first realized that me and him had a non-existing relationship because the one thing that kept the “bond” between me and him no longer existed. I was at a stage in my life where I was my own person; I did not need any financial support which meant his main role in my life had been diminished he had been relegated to the mvela league. So where did that leave him then? Where did that leave me?
Signs of tension started to show between me and him because I had picked up the: “ I do not give a sh*t about your opinion because I don’t need you” attitude and he felt helpless because he could not comprehend what was going on because to him he has always been a great father he did what most men failed to do for their kids. To keep it short let’s just say things turned out ugly as a lot of necessary things were said with the only problem being the manner in which they were said.
Yes he screwed up a bit, but yet again I cannot blame him. He grew up being taught by society that a father should only protect and provide for his family, all the other emotional “sissy” stuff was the mothers job. He however forgot that times had changed and we were living in an environment where fathers played a more prominent role in their children’s life than before.
I am sharing this with you guys with no intention of bashing my dad, he may not be perfect but he is still my dad and I will always regard him highly in my life. I will forever be grateful to him because the little that I did learn from him contributed in making me the person I am today. After all, most of the great South African soccer players started off kuMvela and they made their way up in the ranks and became the greatest.
Have your say and commentabout this. Maybe your experince is very similar to this one.