What happens when the rose-colored glasses break

Emotional Neglect At Its Worst

April 30, 2021. Tori was over after taking Madeline driving. Garrett, Tori, and I were on the back patio talking. For whatever reason, the conversation turned political. Garrett is borderline conservative extremist to the point where he won't even associate with someone he views a liberal and often has rude things to say about their character based on their political opinions (or his assumptions of their opinions). Tori is (was) liberal leaning but usually very careful to avoid discussing politics – especially with her dad.

At some point in the conversation, Garrett decided to start talking trash about the BLM movement and voicing his opinions on social media telling people what to believe. He brought up crime and incarceration statistics, arguing that black people are more likely to commit violent crimes. Tori argued that white men are more likely to commit sexual crimes (and get away with them) and that she often felt safer with black men than white men. Garrett responded with an underhanded, rude comment clearly meant to get under her skin. I wish I could remember what it was. Possibly something about white men being wrongfully accused – he often uses the Judge Kavanagh debacle to argue this point whenever the topic comes up. Tori got very quiet, clearly upset, and quickly came up with an excuse to leave.

Not long later I received a text from her apologizing for getting “angry” (she was nowhere near angry). She told me something had happened to her – twice, both by white men, and that the first time it was a black man who walked her to class so she would feel safe at school again. She also said the first time her dad didn't believe her because she didn't want to report it.

Let me break that down for you:

His daughter was assaulted.
By a white “man.”
She tried to tell him.
Flat out dismissed her.
It happened more than once.

If there is ONE PERSON in the entire world a girl should feel the safest with, the once person she should be able to count on to protect her – it should be her dad. Hands down, without question, a daughter should ALWAYS feel that she can count on her dad to be there for her. To believe her. To protect her.

But not this dad.
This dad refused to believe her.
This dad downplayed what happened to her and treated her as though she made it up.
And then he completely forgot about it.

I believe her.

Tori doesn't know this, but he also did the same to me. Ignored me every single time I tried to open up to him about things that have happened to me in the past. Or he changed the subject. Or he argued. Brought up that Judge Kavanagh thing. Every. Single. Time.

After Tori's death he flat out accused me of lying about my past experiences. Out of the blue, for no reason at all – other than to hurt me. (Why would anyone make something like that up? With absolutely no motive.)

Tori also didn't know that her dad would one day become a member of that club. It's no surprise, knowing how flippant he is about the subject and how good he is at dismissing and justifying his behaviors.