Father's are flawed, all of them, so is everyone else. I spent years in counseling talking about my enmeshed twisted relationship with my mother. Then my counselor pointed out that my Father let it happen. When I complained to my Father about my mother's behavior he would blow it off with, "That is just the way your mother is, you have to love her." He failed me. I've read enough abuse accounts that this is a mild failure, but it is me and my life. I worked this past year on accepting this is who he is. He showed me the consequence of living a life with an eye singled to peace at all cost. I know from his example that it costs everything, your integrity, your compassion, your thoughts of everything accept appeasing the tyrant that is belittling, manipulating, and controlling you. Did he teach me anything good? Yes, he did. Part of acceptance is separating out what was a bad influence on me and what I can freely integrate into my life. This year I called and wished my Father a happy Father's day. He chatted about my sister barely listening to me. Its ok. I feel no more ache of loss. This is just the way he is. I don't have to love him or hate him or anything. I am working at accepting what he is capable of giving.
This post is not an invitation to list every fault of every father. I know some committed crimes that should have been punished by imprisonment. I know that some people need to go no contact for the health and well being of themselves. I feel deeply that loss, for it is a loss of "what should have been."