My entire childhood I was forced into believing whatever it was that my father was teaching that day. He most often taught opposites: whatever I saw, witnessed or felt was not relevant in his lessons.
These rules and his teachings never ended in my relationship with him. When I went back in my 20s to try to discuss the truth and explore options with him, he would have nothing to do with it. Neither would the other members of my family.
Everyone just complied with the instructions he’d given us for life. Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil. The problem with that is that we did see evil, we also heard evil and we spoke evil because we lived in full blown deceit and denial.
Deceit and denial are the backbone of evil.
Why didn’t I realize that he would never change his code of honor? That code had saved him more times that we could count, including covering up a murder. Through that code of secrecy, he never had been held to any kind of accountability.
Why then would a man of his caliber ever change?
His rules had his family intact. Sure, everyone of us showed up hemorrhaging on the inside, but who cared as long as it wasn’t evident to outsiders.
We were a picture perfect family, right? But upon closer inspection, these faces don’t seem to hold a lot of happiness.
Delaware Lane (Mom, me, my brother and two sisters) Circa 1966
What I’ve learned is that I had to change the rules. My father was never going to tell me the truth. He and my mother remained indebted to the past and all the secrets that were buried there.
The only gift they had left to give me was the voice on an accuser. They now accused me of being a liar. They had to.
I no longer fear them. I am free to tell my story.