If I’m the AH here, I’ll own it. I’m not sorry, but like it would be good to know because the rest of my family thinks this went too far.
My (24F) mom died when I was 7 from leukemia. I have very few memories of her from before she was sick and I didn’t get to spend a lot of time with her in her last year, but she was an artist and until she couldn’t anymore she would make me little collages when she was in the hospital with drawings and photos and messages for me.
My grandmother put them all in a book for me after she died. I wanted to be like my mom and my counselor thought it would help, so I started a journal where I would do kind of a similar thing and I’ve done at least one page a week all these years ever since my mom died, more when I miss her or have something hard going on
My father remarried when I was 9. My stepmother really leaned hard into the “I’m your mom now” and my father didn’t stop her. It improved when they had my half-brother because she basically forgot about me then. Unfortunately he got cancer when he was 3.
I pretty much ceased to exist for my father. He was either working or gone with my brother and I spent all my teen years mostly at home alone or with my grandparents. The mantra was that my brother needed to be the focus because he might die so I needed to not be selfish since I was healthy.
My grandparents let me know that my brother died a couple of years ago, but respected my desire to remain NC with my father. He recently reached out to them because he wants to see me and talk.
I went through my old journals and made him a PowerPoint with images of the entries where I had talked about being frustrated and feeling abandoned and unwanted, some with literal quotes of things my dad had said to me during arguments. Even the really dark stuff from when I was seriously depressed.
Then I ended it with a photo of one of my mom’s collages where she had written “Remember that your dad and I are always here for you” and I wrote “You failed. Go away.” underneath. I felt like him being able to see it from my literal perspective would communicate why I don’t want him back better than I could.
Evidently it worked, but a little too well because I’ve been bombarded by family telling me that it’s understandable that I don’t want to see him, but what I sent gutted him and he’s completely fallen apart after reading through it and it was unnecessarily cruel.
Info from OP:
The PowerPoint was about making 100% sure that he can never claim that he wasn’t told why I won’t have him in my life anymore. He’s been given a detailed multimedia thesis on the subject to refer to and it was done in a way that required no unwanted contact for me and that he can’t interrupt or redirect or try to overpower. Mission accomplished, and that’s the last contact I will ever have with him.
Here's what people had to say:
NTA, i have a saying 'If the truth about your conduct paints you in a bad light, the problem isn't with the truth. It's with your conduct.' If the truth hurts your dad its his own to deal with and not on you.
NTA he failed. He's gutted because he's had to look at the actual consequences of his actions- the pain he caused his child. Yea that probably sucks, buy maybe he should have been a better dad.
YTA. What do you expect to accomplish? You’re not just unwilling to forgive, you want to punish him. Just let it go.
throwaway_1028585 OP responded:
I hope to accomplish him never trying to make contact with me ever again for any reason. If that’s what comes of this, that’s a full success in my book. I expect the next I hear about him to be his funeral and if his family have any sense they won’t tell me about that either.