Dear old friend,
I’m writing to you to fill you in on why you won’t be seeing me again. This is a long story but it seems you have forgotten all the details. Alas my mind won’t let me forget them, so let me fill you in.
You stayed with me every day for 3 years then left because you were homesick. I was young, I didn’t understand. However, my mother didn’t have the heart to tell me you’d left me for good so she just told me you were working away. Every day at 5pm for a year I asked when you were coming home, but mum couldn’t bear to tell me you weren’t. A year later I was told I was going to see you, I was so excited. I got to go on a huge boat, well... it was huge to me. The following week when I was brought back my heart broke. I stood screaming at the docks for you to come with me, to stay, but you didn’t have the slightest emotion in your eyes or voice as you said “I’ll see you again next year”.
For the next three years, every June/July the same whirlwind took place. I came and visited on the boat for a week, I broke my heart leaving everyone and you at the docks and emotionless you said goodbye.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the times we spent alone together. Yet the keyword there is alone, one year you told me I was to meet your fiancée. You told me this 10 minutes before we pulled up to the house. Why didn’t you warn me? You knew I was shy, or maybe you didn’t... you never asked my mother how well I was growing up. This new woman.... she made my life a misery when I was over. I used to scream when I was leaving you but now I screamed when I got told I was going to visit.
I told you why I didn’t like her but you refused to listen. That woman told me my psoriasis wasn’t psoriasis at all and it was just dry soap because my mother or I couldn’t wash my hair properly, she told me I sat like a horrible, tramp of a little boy because I didn’t cross my legs in the car. Another thing she told me was that I walked like I was ‘special’ because I looked down when I walked. I soon started to hate her; she made me eat what I didn’t like, break thing and blamed me and she took all your attention away from me. The only times I was free was when I stayed away from that house, when I stayed elsewhere, but you didn’t let me do that often did you?
A few years later you informed me that you were married and there was a new addition on the way. Why wasn’t I invited to the wedding? I always wanted to go to one, you knew I did... or was that another thing you didn’t listen to me saying? The new addition.... I wasn’t allowed to hold her or kiss her until she was 3 because I ‘have Irish germs’. That’s what she told me, I repeated what she said to me to you, but you told me to stop being an attention seeker.
The years passed and you got a divorce and you made sure that the new addition was there everything I was over. Where was my time alone? Where had it gone? I know children require more attention that teenagers but a little wouldn’t have killed you, would it? All you were interested in was my education plan, how I planned to become rich... how I planned to pay you back? You give us £102 a month... that doesn’t cover a tenth of what we need. We needed to buy new clothes because I was still growing, new school uniforms, new school bags and stationary... and yes all that was needed almost every month because I got severely bullied. They ruined everything I had. Yet even when mum explained to you that we needed a bit more money you refused because you apparently had none. No money you said, not a penny... you bought your ex-wife a £10,000 breast enlargement, you spent £500 a month on stuff for the new addition, you bought a new car... but I couldn’t even get a new school bag to hold all my folders. I had a lot of folders you see, I had 6 science ones, I needed them. My education plan was and still is to become a forensic scientist, but I don’t plan to pay you a penny back.
You used to ring me every month, just once, for a quick phone call and that was enough to convince me you cared. They slowly became less existent; it is now 4 phone calls a year if I’m lucky. One for my birthday, one for Christmas and two random education check-ups...never one random to see how I was.
One year when I became suicidal my mother rang you for help. I needed away from my school for a while and she couldn’t help as she worked two jobs to try and keep us afloat. You refused to take me. I have scars all over my arms... I thought you never knew what they were from. When I was talking to mum one day she filled me in. You could have helped. You could have got me away from the bullies even for a week... Hell... that would mean my arms would be a bit less scarred. Yet you refused.
Last year when I was over I said to myself it was to be my last year there, but mum convinced me otherwise. We need the maintenance money... so I went back this year. We had fun, all 3 of us. You used me as a babysitter, but you near had a fit when I pulled you about it and told you it wasn’t on. This backfired though didn’t it? You then started having more dates with this new girl, spending more time alone with the addition... I was left alone in the flat. I would have been better off in Ireland at home being alone.
You didn’t like me driving anywhere alone with the addition any further than the top of the street just in case... but I was allowed to go further, if I was completely alone. Why? Were you afraid that I would crash the car if it was just me and her and hurt her? Or did you simply not care if I crashed when I was alone because it would only be me that would get hurt? On the motorway that time when the ambulance swerved into my lane and cut me off... you were more concerened about the addition... constantly asking was she ok or shaken up. I just was told to expect hazards at all times. That’s it. I stalled trying to move off from the service station because I was shaking and scared to go back on the motorway, but I was told to man up. I refused to drive and asked you to. You seemed disappointed.
At the theme park you made me do things I didn’t like. I was terrified of rides ever since I was a child but you wouldn’t know that would you. You never asked. You never ask.
You text me a few times a month now, but I don’t like that... You aren’t a friend of mine who I don’t like talking to on the phone. Yes I used to run from the house phone because I have telephonobia, not because I didn’t want to talk to you but you didn’t believe me. I can answer my mobile, I’m not afraid of it, so why don’t you ring me?
So thank you for the time spent on the addition while I was over and thank you for insuring me in the car. However, I feel its my time to disappear from your life. I know you only bring me over to keep your parents happy, but papa has dementia now, he’ll forget who I am in no time. Gran is busy looking after him but I’ll still send a card on Christmas. My aunties and cousins are the only ones I feel treat me like family. They’ve promised to come visit me in Ireland. I will hold them to that or I will come over on my own, with my own car without telling anyone and visit them alone.
The addition is young, refrain from mentioning me for a year or two and she will also forget who I am. You treated me like I was invisible, so I will give you your wish and I will become invisible to you.
Thank you for being my father for the first three years of my life and my distant friend after that but this is the end.
I don’t exist......
to you anyway.
With sincere sorrows,