DADDY CONTRIBUTOR: Anna Scott

Unlike The Unhappy Wife book, Daddy is not written by me. This anthology includes stories written by women, who felt it important to publicly re-tell narratives centered on their relationship with their father. Each woman’s purpose is similar, yet different. Every Friday, I invite you to read about their reason why.

Today, please meet Anna Scott, author of “The Thing About My Father.”

Why were you inspired to contribute to this book? When Kathy invited me to submit an essay about my relationship with my father for consideration in Daddy, I knew this was a unique, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work through the myriad emotions I felt toward him in what I hoped was a healthy, constructive way. One of my greatest concerns while writing this piece was making sure that my intentions for doing so were clean. By that, I mean that I didn’t want to write out of anger or to be vindictive. I wanted to write to share my truth about our relationship, as I saw it, and in the process, try to heal and move on. Writing this was cathartic in the sense that, while I didn’t have any epiphanies or learn anything I didn’t already know deep down, I was able to release the expectations associated with our relationship. Somehow the process of putting pen to paper and being able to look at the relationship objectively, through an author’s eyes, transferred that energy out of me.

What is your father-daughter relationship like now? Nothing has changed on the surface. Our relationship is still superficial, kind of like that between a niece and an uncle she sees a few times a year. What has changed is that this no longer upsets me. Once I accepted that my father doesn’t get it and never will, I stopped taking his behavior personally. This has made a tremendous difference in my sense of self-worth and esteem. Also, I no longer feel an obligation to make effort with him.

If there is one thing you could tell women who struggle with “daddy issues” what would it be? I would tell them that they are worthy, lovable, and significant regardless of whether their father values them or not. I would tell them to be kind, loving, and forgiving to themselves. I would also tell them to be mindful of the men they invite into their lives so that they are not unconsciously trying to work out their “daddy issues” through unhealthy romantic relationships. It is better to be alone than with someone who doesn’t value you.

1521808695783What do you hope your story accomplishes? There are two things I hope to accomplish with my story. The first is that it might encourage women to stop feeling guilty and afraid to speak their truth to and about their fathers. This is tough, I know, because The Bible tells us to honor our father, and so it seems the burden of guilt falls on us, the daughters, no matter how deplorable our fathers might be. Family members may try to make us feel guilty for speaking out, even if they know full well our father has hurt us in some way. Society overall might judge and condemn us. Even so, it is our right to speak our truth, as we see it and feel it. A wise woman once shared something that I still refer to whenever I am questioning my feelings about someone or something: “I know what I know. I see what I see. I feel what I feel.” Don’t let anyone invalidate your feelings in the name of “honoring” your father if said father is an asshole. The second thing I hope to accomplish is that women will realize they should not take their father’s behavior toward them – whether it is rejection, cruelty, abandonment or something else – personally. Again, this is tough, because fathers are supposed to love and protect and adore their daughters, and when they don’t, it hurts. Try not to internalize the pain. It is his ignorance, selfishness, fear, self-loathing, etc. that causes him to behave the way he does. In the end, blowing the opportunity to have an authentic, loving, healthy relationship with his daughter is his responsibility and loss far more than anyone else’s.

What are you working on currently? Currently, I’m working on a historical romance novel set in 1930 Newport, RI. It’s about a young woman trying to hold her family together after her father loses his fortune and his mind in the 1929 stock market crash, who falls in love with the businessman sent to try and purchase their summer cottage for a steal. Recently, I submitted to Harlequin a 75,000-word historical romance. It is the first novel I have ever completed, and I didn’t show it to a soul before submitting it. This was a bucket list goal for me. Three months later, I received a rejection; however, it was accompanied by an extensive constructive critique by the editors that told me what they had enjoyed about it and what they felt needed improvement should I choose to submit again. I was so encouraged by the feedback that I am back to work on this new novel and plan to try again.

Anna Scott believes in the power of writing our stories to facilitate healing and personal growth. She lives in New England with her husband, two children, and the family cat. “The Thing About My Father” is her first published personal essay.

A portion of the book’s proceeds will be contributed to an organization important to Scott, Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. The Foundation’s mission is to “provide optimal care and services to individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease and related illnesses and to their families and caregivers.”

The eBook version of Daddy is available for pre-order now!

Paperback is available for order here.

 

24 thoughts on “DADDY CONTRIBUTOR: Anna Scott

  1. Never met my father, I watch and cherish my daughter’s relationship with my husband. I wish and wondered about my daddy for so long. I never considered fathers present but distant simultaneously.
    I know both situations are crushing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting Liz! Yes, for sure this group is oftentimes a bit overlooked. It’s like either your dad is in your life, or he isn’t. But there’s this whole subgroup of women who knew him, but (as Anna so aptly described), he was just an a-hole who wasn’t present.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “In the end, blowing the opportunity to have an authentic, loving, healthy relationship with his daughter is his responsibility and loss far more than anyone else’s.”
    Anna knows what she’s talking about.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “It is his ignorance, selfishness, fear, self-loathing, etc. that causes him to behave the way he does.” – so true. I hope these stories could reach a lot of men. Too often I see men who believe that raising a child is mostly women’s job and that girls don’t need their fathers as much as boys do, and in the end men distance themselves from a family. These stories yet again show that parent-child relationship, no matter the gender, is of primary importance.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Daddy is a book I plan to get very soon. When I think about my father. He loves me. I know he does in his own way. He’s just not affectionate, he doesn’t communicate, and I only hear “I’m proud of you” when I do the things that he wants me to do. Growing up I was just so misunderstood that it’s ridiculous! And now it’s frustrating that when I look at my ex, I see so much of my father.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. “The second thing I hope to accomplish is that women will realize they should not take their father’s behavior toward them – whether it is rejection, cruelty, abandonment or something else – personally…”
    ~ I share this view. Our fathers, and our mothers, bring their own emotional baggage to their relationship with their children. We have to assume that they’re doing the best they can within their limitations. As parents, we, too, will face similar challenges.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I love everything about hearing this story and the others. Daddy is HUGE! It’s allowing us to come to grips with a lot of issues and release them.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. “Don’t let anyone invalidate your feelings in the name of ‘honoring’ your father if said father is an asshole.” — This, all day.

    I would take it one step further and say, don’t “honor” your father if he’s an asshole. We don’t have to pretend something is good when it’s not.

    I am enjoying these spotlights. What a great way to garner interest in your book.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Absolutely Akilah! Someone recently brought it to my attention that many times Christians are caught up in the “honor thy father and mother” part of the bible, ignoring the remainder of the scripture, which also heeds parents not to provoke their children in anger…

      I’m glad you like them!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. ” Don’t let anyone invalidate your feelings in the name of “honoring” your father if said father is an asshole…” – More power girl!!!!!!!!!!! I think it’s bad enough having a father who was not a father in the acceptable sense of what one ought to be. The situation is then further compounded when those who know how badly your father behaved, seek to dilute this by making you feel guilty about your feelings about him. A huge part of the healing process is ‘honouring’ your own feelings and not the perpetrator’s. Struggling with honouring both sets of feelings at the same time is a lose-lose situation.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. This part is what burned me up for so long Marie, so I understand exactly what you’re saying. For the longest, family would say stuff like, “well he’s still your father,” and I never had any idea what that meant. I implied it to mean I’m supposed to put up with crap, no matter what. So, yes. I agree. Honoring one’s own feelings is a major part of the healing process.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Sounds like a great book. Loved this:I would tell them that they are worthy, lovable, and significant regardless of whether their father values them or not.-Yes and the part about not choosing a man who doesn’t love us as we deserve to be loved. I tried but ended up marrying a man with addictions just like my dad. Ugh. Thankfully I divorced him and got it right the second time. Live and learn.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks E! Yes, these two things are hardest to grasp while you’re going through the situation. What’s worse, I think, is that you sometimes don’t realize you’re even going through it. Many times we don’t grow up understanding the true significance of our father’s in our lives, so then we ultimately end up choosing someone just like him :-/ So glad you were brave enough to begin again ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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