My name is Frank

Meet Frank. He wrote the following introduction recently on the AVfM forum and it needs repeating. I have no idea who Frank is and after reading his words I asked, and received, his permission to post it here. I have changed absolutely no words. His writing comes from his heart with no attention to presentation or process.

Whoever you are Frank, thank you. Please come forward and tell us who you are. This piece will then be at home right next to your name where it deserves to be. Dr. F

Hello, My name is Frank

I’m sure you may have noticed that already. I consider myself more fortunate than most of the folk here. I can’t tell you a blue to red story. As far as I can tell I’ve always been red. That is unless my blue to red moment happened in early childhood. Or perhaps it was my teenage years, around the time my father died.

The story I can tell, is the story of Frank. Most would find it boring, or average, or even just normal. Not to say that normal is a bad thing. Normal is what we are. Like it or not, you are normal, so am I.

Most of my childhood memories take place at my grandmother’s house. It seems I either spent a lot of time there, or that those were my only memorable memories. My earliest though, is of my father. I was about six. At the time my father worked as a laborer at the local Nickelsaver, a classified ad in newspaper form. He loaded ridiculously heavy paper rolls into printing machines when he wasn’t maintaining and running them.

I went to visit him at work once. I remember feeling welcome with the office staff, all women. But my father, obvious even to me, was not. I don’t think they liked the sweaty working type stinking up their air conditioned office. It was the first time I had seen the difference between men and women in the workplace. These days I’m one of those men dealing with the same type of office folk. It makes more sense to me now.

When I was around ten my parents divorced. Well, my mother divorced. My father didn’t, till his dying breath he still loved my mother. I don’t doubt that he loved his children more, but he didn’t know what to do about it. He spent every moment he could with us. He taught me everything I know whether it be about life, love, hard work or simply perseverance. Without him, I simply would not be the man I am today.

I can’t tell you what my mother did for a living when I was just a lad. Truthfully it doesn’t matter to me. But I can tell you how she treated my father. Like a burden. What confused me as a child is how he always seemed to be a chore for her when he was the only one I ever saw doing something. I watched for years as a child, never understanding but always witnessing, as my father suffered at the hands of the woman he loved. My father always told me, if there was one thing that would make his life worthwhile, it would be if his children ended up better off than him.

I am better off than him.

He died of cancer at age 39. I was 15. I later found out he was not in fact my father.

I often wonder what makes a man love? I don’t think the question can be answered. What makes a man suffer so well for a child that is not his? Another unanswerable question. These thoughts only make me miss him more.

As a child I learned that there is no payoff from women. I didn’t have the specifics, or the wealth of knowledge contained in sites like AVFM. But it was obvious to me that marriage was a bad idea. So were children. It saddens me that I will never have children. They would not be mine to raise anyhow. It would not be up to me to make sure they ended up better off than me. And I trust no one to do it for me.

A few years ago I stumbled on AVFM, I don’t remember how. And the more I read, the more what I already knew became clearer. What I already knew now had words, reasons, articulated notions that made perfect sense. It was like coming home. How I missed the home I never knew I had. I fuckin’ love you guys. Now I know Why I never married, why I wanted children but knew I would never have them. I know why I don’t trust women, why I stay clear of casual hook-ups yet stay at arms length in relationships as well. What you gave me was clarity, and I cannot thank you enough for that.

Like I said before, I consider myself more fortunate that most the folks here.

My name is Frank. I’m a thirty year old single white working class male with no children. I think it’s unfortunate that the only thing in that statement that will ever change is the age.

Stay strong and fight on. You guys and gals are true heroes, or at the very least what heroes should be.

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