Father's day for kids without dads is rough.
So are father/daughter dances at school and girl scouts.
So are lots of things.
The interesting part for me is how those feelings don't really go away even when a kid grows up.
I dated someone in high school whose friend asked me one day what I was going to do for my dad for Father's Day (he didn't know my dad had died, much like most of my friends). I said I didn't even know when Father's Day was. He made a bunch of nasty little remarks, many of which are engraved in my brain forever.
This year, my ex asked me if I celebrate Father's Day with my mom, who was both parents to me for nearly my whole life. I remember doing something like a card and making her breakfast when I was young and getting mixed reviews from her. I think most years I call my mom and say thank you but not much more. She never seemed to want that.
I live between the worlds of being a single mom and having a family with two active parents. While I'm no longer with with my kids' dad, he is in the picture regularly. When I'm with my kids and one (or both!) has a full-on, tween, mega-size tantrum, I'm very aware of how alone I am. I think of my mom often during those times. I wasn't an easy kid. It couldn't have been an easy time for her.
So this year for Father's Day, I will celebrate with my mom. Forty-four years of being both a mom and a dad deserves something special.
I'm trying to think of a word for moms who are also in the dad role. MADS doesn't seem to work well. I'm open to suggestions.