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  • Writer's pictureCaitlin Lewis

What it's like growing up without a dad.

So my background story is super complicated. It gets even more complicated when you add the fact that I don't have a dad. So my mom accidentally got pregnant with me when she was 25. She didn't want kids but you know how that goes. When she found out she was pregnant with me she was 5 months along. Too late for other options. She contacted the man who was my biological dad to inform him that she was pregnant with me.

His reaction wasn't great as he was already in a relationship and was not going to choose my mom and me over that. I was born shortly after and so the story goes he came to the hospital, kiss my forehead, apologized to my grandparents, and left. I never met him after that. My mom kept him a big secret for as long as I can remember. I don't know if it was because she was embarrassed or processive but I never even heard his real name until I was 15.

When I was 4 my mom met a man that was great. They married shortly after and he filled in for a short while as a dad. I loved him and really thought he was my dad. He even adopted me. Until I was 8. At this time my mom and him were having major issues. One night I went to sleep and woke up and he left. He moved to New Mexico with his new girlfriend. I was destroyed, not once by twice now I was left by my dad. I saw him two more times before I was 18. It was never the same I was so hurt. My mom spiraled quickly after that, going through the divorce was hard for her and me. She began drinking and bar hopping. I am sure she was lost but it was a very hard time for me.

When I was 10 she met a new guy at a bar. We had a camp on a lake, we would go there on the weekends and she would go to the local bar to drink. I came with her and had to learn how to survive on my own. So I began to play pool. I liked it and realized that people would put money on the table for the next game. So I found a way to rig the table so the pool balls would just keep dropping out and I pocketed the money. Till one day a guy came in from snowmobiling and after a few games saw my scheme. He was impressed and called me a little hustler. At that time my mom walked over and began to talk to him. They fell in love and are still together to this day. The thing is he was married at the time when he met my mom. He had 2 kids and my life was torn and flipped upside down.

He moved my mom into the house with him, his wife, and kids. Yes, altogether. It was horrible. I felt bad for the wife and kids. Like who am I to be there? Shortly after it was me and his daughter left. We lived together until we left that house. I don't think either one of us ever looked back. She never bonded with my mom and I never bonded with her dad. Our goal for the whole 8 years was to survive and get out. That's exactly what we did.

Now, some people think I should have major daddy issues. I don't. The only time I feel like I missed out is seeing other daughters with their fathers and having a great bond. But I had an incredible grandfather and uncle that stepped in for me and that was perfect. Since then 23 & me and have come out. I have a ton of people ask why I don't just do that to find my real dad. Because he isn't my real dad. I am happy in my life and have no desire to open pandora's box. Sure I missed out on having a dad but now I get to see my kids have a great dad and that makes life pretty amazing!

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