People say that all your interpersonal issues can be traced back to your parents, stemming from some root cause, which implanted a fear of a certain something or another. I didn’t realize then, but after nine consistent years of always dating someone, I realized that I was always substituting someone for the father I don’t have.
Well, yes, compared to many who don’t have a presence at all, my father is still an active participant in my household. Both having very strong attitudes and big bad tempers, we almost always butted heads, usually ending with him loudly screaming and cursing, until my ears and eyes and throat closed up.
At a young age, I knew I was a victim of verbal abuse.
As I grow older, I know I am a product of one too, with an explosive temper that many do not expect from a tiny Asian girl. As a child of a minority household, I also knew that the idea of verbal abuse did not exist in traditional mindsets.
Therefore, I held onto my angst and anger and lack of a wholesome male figure in my life. And, for many years, tried to replace that with many boyfriends.
After some amazing and some broken relationships, I now realize how scared I was to be all by myself.
I was always seeking a male representation of stability and strength, who could tell me they loved me and mean it eternally. However, love works in mysterious ways, and, most of all, it will stop working if you don’t love yourself first. I was always seeking someone to love me and someone I could love, without the screaming and shouting and anger that I was taught came with it.
Now, I realize I cannot love anyone but myself at the moment. In a desperate attempt to run away from the verbal abuse I experienced in a familial relationship, I carried that with me into every relationship thereafter. In essence, I became the ugliest bits of my father, while seeking different versions of him everywhere.
Today, I still struggle to stand firm in my desire to be alone. It is easy to replace and to coddle the idea of having someone be exactly what you want them to be. But people, feelings, and love always transform into their true forms at the end of the day- and hopefully, I’ll be there with a full heart for myself.