I have a teenage (16yo) daughter who I did not have a close relationship with during her childhood (age 5-14) after her mother and I divorced and to be honest, I was a shit of a Dad and Ex husband. This program has helped me process this shame and regret, applogise without expecting love or forgiveness in return, learn and focus on loving my daughter and being the best father I can be moving forward. I cant come to the call this week but would appreciate your coaching on some challenges I am facing with this relationship.
We have come a long way since we re connected when she was 14, its been almost 2 years now of regular contact and developing what is more like a friendship than traditional father/daughter. She doesn’t look to me for fatherly advice or parenting guidance and I know she does not trust me, I have come to terms with the fact that she may never fully trust me. This feels like an unspoken truth between us and I cant help but think if I were to be honest with her about the years I was absent it may help our connection? I dont intend to explain my absence away, I realise there is no excuse for not caring for your child, basically I want to say, I know you dont trust me fully, I know you may never again, I get that and am not trying to win you over or get you to forget all those years I was away. I was a shit Dad, not even a Dad, I did the wrong thing, I was selfish, I picked a new girlfriend over you and that was a terrible thing to do that I regret. Is this too much? Is this conversation to honest? She is a mature 16 year old, It’s nothing we dont already know, I just feel that she wants to hear me actually admit it. Without speaking it I feel like I am pretending things are all Ok, when they are not, I was a shit, I should admit it. Appreciate your perspective on this Laura. Thanks in advance.