Profile picture
, 16 tweets, 6 min read Read on Twitter
1. Fathers day is a tricky time for folks like me that didn’t have good relationships w/ their dads. I’m happy so many people love their fathers! Yet I also know how hard it was to sort out my relationship with mine - It’s not something most men, or women, talk about. #fathersday
2. In my late twenties I called my dad out - I told him I never felt important to him and that I wanted to explore why that was. To my surprise he agreed. Which terrified both of us. And we went on a trip to Yellowstone park together.
3. I know many people never get this far - either no one brings up a tough issue, or the other person rejects the very idea of it. But there we were, walking around in beautiful nature, trying to sort out a broken past (and present).
4. There were two major problems. 1) I had harbored a lifetime of anger at him and wanted to understand his choices 2) He really was not prepared for anything like this. He wanted to talk about sports. and go fishing. #goalsmismatchalert
5. It was not a fun trip for either of us, but I got some of what I wanted. I started to realize he was just someone who was not good at relationships. Of any kind really. He didn't "do this" to me. It was just how he was.
6. And that's a discovery adult children need to make. Parents are just people. We don't pick them. Logically, it's obvious they have flaws we don't like. Emotionally, his absence created in me a well-polished standard of fatherhood he of all people could never reach.
7. A year after Yellowstone I'd sorted much out about myself. I knew I'd never get what I needed from him, and that was OK. I had to grow because he was not going to. I also decided to accept talking about sports and fishing. He could be fun to be with at the right place & time.
8. And things were good. Really they were. For a long time. Right up until, at the age of 72, he had an affair and blew up the entire family.

It was a story worthy of a movie. Or a book. I know how to write books, so I wrote one about him while all this was happening.
9. I get asked often why I wrote it. The answer is simple. As messed up as my father's choices were, many people deal with far worse. And have no recourse.

By telling my story I give everyone who has issues with their fathers something to compare and contrast with. It's a tool.
10. The book is called The Ghost of My Father. As that's what he was for me most of my life - someone who wasn't quite here.…
11. You can read the first chapters of the book for free, right here (PDF).
12. Everyone should try writing about their family, even if they don't publish it anywhere. You learn about yourself by even just trying to tell your story.

If you're interested, here's everything I learned about memoir writing, with recommendations:…
13. I'm always fascinated by how people do the emotional math of a) dealing with important relationship issues directly b) the slow long drag of denial and repression.

Choice A is always scary. But I've almost never regretted doing it. Or when someone has done it for me.
14. My father was alive when the book came out. I interviewed him for it (a story captured in the book). But I didn't write it for him - I published it, in part, as a way to incontrovertibly document how I saw myself and these relationships (a nuclear kind of Choice A).
15. And if all this sounds crazy, wild and bizarre to you, and puts your relationship with your Dad or Mom in a favorable context - I'm happy for you! We all need other people's stories to remind us what we need and what we have. /END #ghostmf
16. In honor of #FathersDay weekend - The Ghost of My Father is just $2.99 on #kindle… #family #parents #adultchildren

Read the thread above for why I wrote this book and how it might help you.

Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Scott Berkun
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!