Anyone grew up with no father?

Hey, im not really sure what to do.

Ex was diagnosed with autism plus callous-unemotional traits. Psychs also thought of (added) narcissism or sociopathy, but he didnt want to be further tested or helped. I personally mostly see him as a severely neglected child with reactive attachment disorder (and probably underlying autism) in a grown man’s body.

I went no contact and fought to protect my kid. Judge decided he could have no legal rights or visitation.

Ex was manipulative, secretive and purposefully boundary crossing or covertly sadistic, even to our newborn. He dealt with love, kindness and empathy as if nobody ever showed him these things (which is probably true). There were good moments too, but they were mostly overruled by his extreme survival mechanisms.

Son is 9. Im struggling with what to tell him and how to prepare him in case he wants to ever search for his dad. Son shows little interest now.

Did anyone grow up with either no father or a father like this? What would you recommend?


Be proud that you took your son out of a bad situation. I didn’t see my dad til I was 21, I think 18 is a standard age or highschool that kid seek out lost parents.

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I am proud. I am ashamed i let it come this far, but proud i fought with all i had to protect him as soon as i understood the situation. I almost immediately decided to never let him alone with my son, because this went somewhat wrong right away, and went no contact when he was 8 months.

How was it for you to see your father? Were there things you wish your mum had or hadnt told you?


Um, honestly I wish I had never met him, but I think for many it can be healing and sometimes it can lead to good things eventually. I think even tho it can be bad circumstances it’s good to not crap talk the guy, that way if things get better down the road your son doesn’t have extra anger towards him. I wish you and your son the best.

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My sister got pregnant and had my nephew and never gave any info on his father. It took me and my parents to help her raise him. He is doing very well now around age 25.


I never met my dad. I had 3 stepdads. Tbh most of the family I know is crazy. I don’t mean that as a pejorative against mentally ill people. There are people with symptoms and people who are just not right in far different ways.

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My mother refused to even show me a picture. He abandoned me, but mostly she’s angry he abandoned her. I think she has always hated me because I resemble him (presumably) physically.

I don’t think I get my large build nor half my facial structure from her side.

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Thanks all.

@lofifunk sorry you regret meeting your dad.

I already told my son a little bit about his dad. Mostly positive or neutral stuff. Im not lying, so i refuse to tell him he was an empathic guy. But i told him he loved nature, he was sportive, smart, and that a few of the things son is much better in than i (disciplin, organisational skills) are probably his, etc. I showed a photo and we visited his country for the holidays. I also told him he couldnt care for him though, as an explanation for not seeing him, and that i would tell him more as an adult.

Somehow we got a hold of a picture that was said to be my nephews dad. My mother came across him crying with it in his hands. If this was his father he was African American and it defiantly showed in my nephews complexion and hair.

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my father dies when i was 19 .ever since then i forget about him.i got my mother by my side and thats enough.

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I have a weird father story.

My mom was 24 but slept with a 17 year old. She got pregnant but claimed it was by the guy she liked and had been seeing. So whenever I say my dad, I mean the "accused " one. The real bio dad wasn’t in the picture until I was grown and on my own.

My “dad” was an alcoholic and drug addict. He walked out on us Christmas 1980. I say us, but really my mom had given me over to my great grandparents. So even though dad left, I had my grandfather as a father figure.

It was difficult because being my great grandparents, they had grown up in the 1920s and were stoic. No hugs and no real loving gestures. I still feel weird about physical affection and should hug my kids more.

But my grandfather showed me a lot of stuff. I know he l9ved me like I was his youngest daughter. He let me help him in the garden, with fixing lawnmowers, and I vividly remember sitting to watch him shave.

I wish I’d been a better kid. I did go over and help them out a lot after I settled down. I took over holidays and would bring them to my house to eat.

They always worried about me and I’m glad that roght before they passed aaay I was in a good spot with a home, decent vehicle, and a happy child


@thenicestfreak, im sorry about that. That isnt right. Your dad must have had good sides too and you especially shouldnt get criticised for looking like him.

@dude1, good that the kid is doing well and you all helped her. Good that you found a photo too

@oulabi sorry your dad died, but nice that you have a loving relationship with your mum


@ZombieMombie, that doesnt sound like the best situation, you have been through a lot…I think it is nice that you still talk lovingly about your grandfather and he was a sort of a dad for you. Im happy you were well in their last period.


It’s more something I picked up on. I’ve been good to her my whole life including cooking home made meals for over a year.
She threw that up in my face.
Why she treated me the way she has has no other explanation, rational or other wise.

You seem like a good, respectable mom.

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Im not always the best mum, my son has had to deal with all my ptsd and psychoses and the mess i made. I try my best though.

Hope you can heal from the difficulties with her.


Modesty and honesty is a becoming thing.

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yeah my my mum is did the right call by not telling him now.easier to tell him when his older.hes lucky to have a great and fantastic mother.

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i was very lucky in that I had my great grandfather and then my mom’s dad, my grandfather.

My mom’s dad taught me so much about wild plants. He would take me for long walks in the forest and pastures around their house.

My bio father and the accused guy were trash. I just found out last summer that accused dad died year before last. He was living in a nursing home in Omaha, Nebraska and no one had known where he was. He ran from North Carolina when they instituted a new law where if you got 3 felonies you automatically got life in prison. He had just gotten in trouble for a final felony.

Bio dad is an alcoholic that fathered 13 kids. I’ve only met one. Bio dad wants to know more about me, but he didn’t seem that interested untip my aunt told him I had a novel published. He thinks I have money. Ha! Far from it! Big surprise for him.


godam the alcohol,yeah my father used to drink a lot.

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Wow! I have similarities and dissimilarities.

My mom said my dad probably did the same thing again but that’s just her.

Sounds rough. I had an awesome grandfather too that was something of an electronics whiz/hobbyist craftsman/intellectually gifted.

Unfortunately he may have been one of the few normal people in my family.

I saw grandma browbeat him all the time. Not in a way that I can laugh at. Despite the fact she could barely function her side has called him not good enough. He was on of the kindest and most calm people I’ve met. He worked physical jobs despite being 5’8’’ 155.

I strongly suspect I have half siblings out there but I don’t know how to find them. I don’t know if my father would fear I may be as crazy as my mom but also filled with (possibly justifiable) hatred of him.