My Dad Cheated and Abandoned Us

By Pamela, age 26, South Africa
Sweet Designs Featured Writer

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My dad cheated on my mom and abandoned my whole family to his lover and her child. He sewed us, stole our money from the bank, and said nasty wrong things about my mom, like: "she never cooks, cleans... " And in just one day I found all of this out!

Now, every thought of a man creeps me out, even my brother! I so don't want to be a lesbian, but the thought of a boy who can do this to me makes me hate boys, and puts ideas in my mind! HELP ME PLZ, since everyone's been a coward to answer - not a single advice column has written back!

There is a bigger meaner picture with my "dad", but it's odd. Now that I think of it, every time we've hung out he's been lying to me and contacting his lover, whom he has nothing in common with. (She is actually a 35 year old, and my "dad" is 46 years old and divorced with a child!)

So, now that I spend time with people, it's like ... are you really here?!?! And I really need help. Is it normal to start feeling a little bit like a lesbian when you reeaalllyyyy don't wanna be one?

Oughhh! I guess I'm just waiting for the idiotic "dad" to say he's sorry, but he barely even understands our pain! He doesn't care about us but he acts as if he does! When did he become such a good liar? When he did his lover?! Everything I do I keep on imagining her with him! Plzz help me before anything else happens!

Amit, 13

Hi Amit,

Thanks for sharing what you're going through. Your pain really comes through to me, and I just want to say that I'm very sorry for what you're going through. But you aren't alone, and I'm here to help.

Your dad leaving your family for another woman has hurt you deeply, and this is completely understandable. You have always loved him and looked to him to be the anchor of your family, and now he isn't there for you. This brings up feelings of abandonment, hurt, and anger. He has also been lying to you so you feel that you cannot trust him to be honest with you.

Your resentment to men in general, this is also completely understandable in terms of the situation. Women often find it difficult to trust in new relationships because of what one man did to them in the past. If they were cheated on, sometimes they see all men as cheaters and their experiences with one person shapes how they feel about the whole male population. You say you really don't feel that you're a lesbian, but that you just feel like you don't trust men. Therefore, I don't think that you're a lesbian; I think it's just that, as you say, you can't stand the thought of dating a guy and having him do what your dad did, as well as being reminded of your dad by any guy you see. Even though all guys remind you of your dad at the moment, not all guys will do what he did and hurt you. In fact, there are so many great guys out there and this experience will show you what type of guy you want based on how you want to be treated.

My advice is to speak to someone such as your school or community counsellor. You need to deal with the feelings you have about your dad. I think that you should hold off on dating anyone until you feel better and more yourself. I want you to know that as someone older who has had similar hurts and disappointments as you, it does get better. You can't control what your dad does; you can only control how you react to it. I know that it really hurts feeling like he doesn't even care that he's caused you so much pain. Perhaps it would help to talk to your dad. You won't be able to change his decisions, but you will feel better telling him how you feel. If you do talk to him, don't blame or accuse him as this will cause an argument; just tell him how his behaviour and choices have hurt you. I know right now it feels as though what your dad has done determines how you feel about yourself and about family and life. Well, I'm here to tell you that you are the creator of your life and you have the right to choose how you want to feel. You are stronger than you think you are and you will get through this. Just focus on the good in your life and the positives because sometimes we can't control the negatives; we just have to learn and grow from them.

I wish you all the best.

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February & March Magazine Issues

March 15, 2012

The February and March issues of Sweet Designs Magazine are now online, featuring a combined 53 new articles and features!!

- Cover: Stephanie Lynn reflects on 5 years
- Cover: India (of Darn-licious knitwear)
- Life in the dumps (moving in with my bf)
- The difference between men and women
- Angels among us (parts 1 and 2)
- Arts graduates & the dark night of the soul
- Triple threat (how I survived my teen yrs)
- Dating isn't easy (my true story)
- How to turn not-so-great gifts ... (fashion)
- Ten reasons to love being single
- Taking the big leap (college)
- Valentine's Day (not what you'd expect!)
- The last of the cold (hopefully) (fashion)
- A month full of love
- Ten tips for successful airline travel
- Reasons I love writing for SDM
- Who needs love?
- They're not all the same
- The life I'm glad I don't have (fiction)
- Professional dress/ finding Fendi (fashion)
- An airport anniversary: a true story
- Inappropriate Facebook photos
- The perks of a big city (college)
- A night(mare) to forget (part 2)
- The Anita Blake series (book review)
- Saving June by Hannah Harrington (book)
- Under the Mesquite by GG McCall (book)
- The Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (book)
- If I Stay by Gayle Foreman (book review)
- My sweetheart (original poetry)
- Isn't it funny (original poetry)
- The stranger (original poetry)
- A winter wonderland (original poetry)
- One night valentine
- The thick envelopes (college acceptance)
- Southern love
- Healthy hair and vitamins
- It's a date (dating idea alternatives)
- The 30 hour famine
- School's out forever!
- Marching right back into spring? (fashion)
- Dear John
- When TV shows depict your life
- 3 Fun ways to rock spring's hottest trends
- Neglected teeth
- Starting something new
- Guy movies
- To hesitate or dive in?
- Deadly, by Julie Chibbaro (book review)
- Beastly, by Alex Flinn (book review)
- I don't care (poetry)
- Together, alone (poetry)

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