Denial. Or claimed ignorance. It's a lesson I've learnt all too often. Usually coming from my end.
Whenever I build up the confidence that I actually might be able to start to put my opinions across in a clean and concise manner without being easily swayed, my father comes across and demolishes it. I swear, he's the only person in the world that can affect what I do so easily. Usually, I don't let the thought of other people disapproving get in the way of my actions. Around my father, I tread every step so carefully.
I'm slowly learning to stand up for myself, but it's been a process a year in the making and I'm not even a quarter of the way there.
An example. Nothing like the magnitude or significance of what happened today, but an example.
I know a damnsite more about legal procedures than my father... though I can't say he's not been involved in a few. Over the past year he's been involved in a court case because he's beaten someone up in a pub after they challenged him to a fight. Drunk, of course.
So recently, he was talking about this, and because he's never been in a court case... yes, more than one... on the right side of the law, he has negative feelings towards the police. Corrupt and unjust, the whole lot of them, in his opinion. Especially the Australian police force. He was talking about the police involved in his court case and calling them a bunch of lowlife bastards who should never have been allowed to join in the first place, among many other names. He then goes off on one of his many spiels about how the police force is corrupt, and how the government doesn't give a shit because they prefer the poor kept uneducated and seeing as the poor have nowhere near decent representation in criminal cases, they end up in jail, where they're unlikely really to be uneducated anyway. One of his many conspiracy theories, though this one may hold more than a grain of truth.
Then I pipe up, feeling pretty confident about what I'm about to say. I ask him where Australia would be, where any free and democratic country would be, without the police force, without some system of enforcing justice on people? I then make the point that we're better off with a police force than without them- some corruption is better than no justice at all. He looks at me like I'm stupid for even suggesting that, crushes my argument within about ten seconds with completely unreasonable, invalid, and in parts untruthful points... none of which I can remember, yet at the time I thought they made complete sense... then completely dismisses my opinion and yells at me for an hour for being a smartmouth.
Thing is about my dad... he tells us to put our opinions across, then when we do, he dismisses them or ignores them. So I've taken to an "I don't know." or a simple shrug of the shoulders approach, which leads him to then talk about the political and social ignorance about teenagers today, and in general just the dumbing down of the population through pop music, sitcoms, and unintelligent movies- all apparently a scheme by the government to keep people uneducated. I nod and look him in the eye, then listen to him talk about women in a demeaning way, telling me that they destroy a mans life and don't ever give anything back, and always take something for nothing. Then he backtracks and tells me, "Oh, Brittany, not all women are like that"- when he's just said the exact opposite-"Maybe you'll find a happy and balanced relationship."
He continues to call my mother a pussy-licking lesbian bitch who destroyed our lives, our being us kids. Especially my sister. He tells me that my sister used to be a happy, exuberant little girl, albeit with downsyndrome, but she progressed well and was friendly. And to be honest, he destroyed her life more. His three hour long, top-of-his-voice rants which caused all three of us kids to shrink into a corner when we were below ten years old destroyed mine and my sisters confidence. If we'd still been living with him, I think there's over a 50% chance I wouldn't exist as a life on Earth.
I've tried to stick up for my mum a few times. Told him she's not destroyed my life, she's not a lesbian, and even if she were, what of it? What's wrong with being attracted to the same gender? But no. My mother has quite obviously destroyed my life and my livelihood, and any non heterosexual relationship is quite obviously wrong and unnatural.
I'm so ridiculously tempted to tell him. Say "Well, who do you think has destroyed my life, at least, more? Who's comforted me as I've tried to get through a three year long battle with depression? Who's the person I trust to tell that I've tried to kill myself four times? Who's the cause of that?"
I hide everything from my dad. In the car on the way home tonight, I realised just how much. He asked me what I was doing tomorrow. I assumed it was because he wanted to see me, and I'm pretty sure I was right. I told him I had a doctors appointment at 1:30. He asked why, and I almost answered him. But I didn't. I realised it wouldn't be a good idea. So I replied "Oh, I'm... (insert an oh shit oh shit oh shit here)... just going in for a checkup.
He nodded from the front seat, and asked if it was just the local one. No, I said, and he said the local one was shit.
I agreed with him, and said we'd transferred our family doctor to Belridge Medical Centre or clinic, because I'd went there before when I (insert another oh shit oh shit oh shit here)... had something go wrong.
That's how much my father doesn't know about me. I got hit by a car a year and two months ago, and if I hadn't been wearing a helmet there's an almost certainty I would have died. (There's a safety lesson thrown in for you, kids.) I went to Belridge Medical Clinic for treatment. I was limping heavily for about three weeks, with bruises all down the left side of my body. My dad didn't notice a thing, and I see him twice a week.
And on that note, I'll leave you to your doings. Thanks for reading. though I doubt it's a good thing that you've read. You're probably bored shitless and you know a lot about my personal life. Yay for being open. Not.