Not everyone is lucky enough to grow up with married parents, and it’s now more common for individuals to grow up without a father figure in their life. However, there is never a better time than now to make amends and build a relationship, providing the feeling is mutual. If you cannot let go of the past and look towards the future, it will be extremely difficult to reconcile. You both need to make the effort to venture down this long and difficult journey together, but the reward of doing so should overshadow any previous pain you may have encountered. Check out the steps below on how to make amends with your estranged father:
Make indirect contact
It would be recommended to make contact with your father indirectly for your safety and security – either via email, social media or through a friend so that you aren’t giving away your personal details. While your dad may be pleased for you to reconnect, it’s likely that they will have built a new life for themselves and those now in his life may not be happy with the prospect of his attention being diverted to his other child.
Many children of estranged fathers have an unrealistic concept of what their dad may be like – especially if they have fond memories growing up, However, there may be a very real reason why they left in the first place, so always try and maintain a realistic perspective to avoid disappointment. You may be pleasantly surprised by the reality, but ensuring you’re always prepared for worst-case scenarios will keep you grounded.
Keep it short and simple
The first initial meeting with your father should be short and sweet so you can leave easily if you don’t feel comfortable. For example, a morning coffee in a café will be just enough time to get an insight into his feelings towards you. What’s more, a public setting also ensures you’re not putting yourself in any danger. During the meeting, keep your negative thoughts to yourself and don’t speak poorly of anyone. Keeping the meeting upbeat and optimistic will ensure you both connect at the right level.
Buy him a gift
Upon meeting up with your father, either for the first time or as a token that you care, why not buy him a gift? This is one way to show that you’re thinking of him. If you’re unsure what his hobbies or interests are, it would be wise to browse through gifts for dad to give you some inspiration.
Be open to a new relationship
Although your father may have been in your life as a youngster, you’re both likely to have changed dramatically since all those years ago, therefore, you both need to start reconnecting and catching up on all of the missed years. It would be unrealistic that you’ll feel better immediately as some of the long-term emotions you have been forced to deal with unfortunately won’t vanish straight away.