An open letter to my father

I’ve never felt more insulted in my life.

To have you discover that I’m using contraception and instead of being impressed that I’m being proactive about it (because wouldn’t you rather have a cautionary daughter than a pregnant one?), you imply that you think I’m whoring myself out a little. That’s really some way to treat your eldest.

Actually, I considered myself pretty conservative. And I still do. No, I wasn’t crying because your talk about people ‘not having self-respect these days’ and ‘giving it away too easily’ made me feel guilty. I was crying because I was ashamed to have you say this as my father. If mum had been around, who knows, maybe she might have supported my decisions and understood why I made them and make them. I don’t regret anything I’ve done and I’ve never done anything I didn’t want to do. I know what self-respect is and I know my limits, but I also know what it’s like to feel so alone and despondent no teenage boys want to get involved with the weird book geek.

You don’t know what it’s like to be an insecure teenage girl who has never had any return the feelings she deserves and needs. On top of that, to be an insecure teenage girl who just lost a mother and was borderline depressed. While everyone was working on their puppy love relationships and comparing boob sizes, I was asking myself why no boy liked me back and wanted to read books with me.

So I did what I did whenever I did it because it gave me temporary relief and a feeling like I could be found attractive by a boy, despite the problems with affection and trust I had developed in my latter adolescence. Sorry to shatter your delusions but not everyone has the opportunity to lose their virginity to the love of their life, or has sex purely out of love, and certainly no-one should be made to feel insulted or judged for wanting to have sex, for whatever their reasons may be. Certainly not your own daughter.

I have never dressed or acted like a slut, ‘given it away easily’ or considered sex as meaningless.

The reason behind people having sex can’t be categorised into polar extremes of ‘love’ or ‘lust’, because it’s so much more complicated than that.

But for whatever reason, you have to remove the ideals of your eldest daughter from your mind, because I think I’ve flouted almost all of them by now, and I think you know I was never going to be a housewife with four kids at 30.

All I know is that I have every right to have every desire I have emotionally and physically, and finally I’m able to accept someone else desiring me and all of this is accumulative life experience, for the both of us.




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