Family & Friends

The Many Shades of Fatherly Love
[From Our Archives]

Our writers have experienced many shades of fatherly love—conditional, unconditional, warmly comforting, wintry, authoritarian, nurturing, judgmental. For Father’s Day—this Sunday, June 17—we present these varied memories, which, the authors acknowledge, are tempered by the mature understanding (and sometimes empathy) that their life experience has brought them.

 

WHAT I MISS MOST ON FATHER’S DAY
By Frances Archer | June 18, 2011

We can’t predict what will remind us most of a parent who has died, what one thing will trigger an awareness of his or her absence in our lives. Two years after my father’s death, I still can’t watch a baseball game. READ MORE

 

THE FATHER WHO CAME BACK FROM WWII
By Patricia Yarberry Allen | June 19, 2011

When my father was dying, I never went home. I never said, “Let’s make this better before you go.” Defiance was the gift he had given me and I used it all my life to ward off the pain of the eternal loss of the father I never had. READ MORE

 

LET US NOW PRAISE STEADFAST MEN
By Diane Dettmann | June 17, 2015

During my growing-up years, my dad seldom said he loved me, but I knew he did. Often, after working a long shift at the roundhouse, he’d give me a gentle whisker rub and let me eat the leftover cookies from his lunchbox. My father, Harold Elleson, had all the virtues expected of a husband and father in Minnesota in the 1940s: he was loving, steadfast, dependable, faithful.READ MORE

 

FAMOUS FATHERS IN FICTION
By Margery Stein | June 21, 2015

Through the reach of literature I have come to experience fatherhood in a wide range of periods, genres, and styles. Here, in honor of Father’s Day, is one reader’s unruly list of literary fathers who deserve more than a cursory nod. READ MORE

 

MY FATHER: THE MYTH AND THE MAN OVER TIME
By Lisa Carnochan | June 19, 2011

My father was a scary man. Tall. Handsome. Very good hair. To this day I’m scared of handsome. That awful day he turned and said to me, “Stupid girl! You stupid, stupid girl!” READ MORE

 

FATHERHOOD, TEUTONIC STYLE
By Susanna Gaertner | June 12, 2013

As the only child of such an eminent professor, I have to withstand the impulse to berate myself for being critical of him, because it smacks of selfishness, even ingratitude. But his fathering did not include the empathy that would have made him protect me from my manic-depressive mother. READ MORE

 

REQUIEM FOR AN ORDINARY MAN
By Linda J. Heller | June 17, 2012

For years I felt resentful that my dad seemed to relate better to the little 6-year-old in the tutu than to his grown-up daughter with opinions and dreams he obviously considered ridiculous and out of reach. But given his personal history, I think that I now understand. READ MORE

 

FATHER’S DAY: A LEGACY
By Toni Myers | June 16, 2013

I adored Father, though he was usually gone at work or fighting with Mother when he was home. However gruff he was, I knew he loved me. READ MORE

 

Start the conversation

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.