My father did me wrong. Now he’s sorry!

Dear Gwendolyn:

All during my growing years, my father was mean to me. My mother went back to the north to work while I remained behind with my father. Now that I am an adult, I often wonder why I was put through such child abuse ordeals. When I was about 12 a neighbor reported the abuse to child protective services. I was taken from him and placed into foster care.


Gwendolyn, all he had to do was go to parenting classes to get me back. For whatever reason he did not attend those classes. Therefore, I remained in the foster care system until last year. I am 18 and attending college. I stay on campus and my life is now good. I don’t care to mend the feelings between my dad and myself.


My mother died three years ago and he was abusive to her as well. He was not physically or sexually abusive to me, but it was abuse all the same. I had to cook, clean the house, and do the laundry. I know those are considered chores, but his verbal language was never anything kind or nice.

I have a good boyfriend and when we were talking about our childhood, he seems to have experienced the same, if not worse. He says after his grandmother died, his uncle put him out of the house to please his new bride who was nothing but a tramp. He says he was homeless. He has a good job and his uncle is trying to come into his life as if nothing happened. Why do people mistreat you and later want forgiveness?—Ruthie

Dear Ruthie:

You can forgive them but don’t forget it. Let me tell you this. I want you to continue your education and go as far with your career as possible. I don’t know you, but I am so proud of you. Many girls (and boys) who go through a bad childhood often go down the wrong road of life—alcohol, drugs and prostitution. It will be difficult to do, but look back as little and look forward more. As a child, someone else directs your life, but as an adult, you are in the driver’s seat. Don’t worry about your horrible past. God will send good people into your life and they will become your family.

(See or write to her at: P.O. Box 10066, Raleigh, N.C. 27605-0066. To receive a reply send a self-addressed stamped envelope.)

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