Having given my mother several “second chances” over the years, I felt the need to call my father and extend to him the same courtesy. Today I called him, and told him that I remembered many birthdays when he’d called me and said “Oh, by the way, your mom wishes you a happy birthday, too.” Not to mention several times he’d attempted to relay written messages from my mother, as he did on the day after Christmas last year.
So, this afternoon, I called him. I prefaced my entire conversation with the admission that since I gave mom several chances to change, I felt that I owed him at least one. Then I asked him if he remembered how many times I’d asked him to stop playing relay for her. He said he couldn’t remember me ever making that request – until I reminded him of all the birthday messages he’d relayed that I specifically asked to never hear again. Then I reminded him of all the times he’d gotten written messages from her and tried to relay them to me – including my most recent birthday when he showed up at my house and surprised me with the card I did not want. I told him that while I was sorry that things went the way they did, it was pure self-preservation that caused me to reject his visit on Dec. 26th.
Then I said that, if he could agree to NEVER attempt to relay another message from her, I’m willing to give him the second chance that I gave her. I didn’t want to be disconnected from him, but he had to agree to my simple limit on what we talk about. No more messages from mom. EVER.
He said he didn’t think it would be a problem, in a tone that sounded like he’d already talked to her and told her that he wouldn”t be able to help any more. So, I confirmed that, on that condition, we’re still good, and I’ll continue taking his calls and visits.
I really hope this works.