Ignore this- you know it already. I need to tell a story I’ve already told before. I just can’t get my mind off this.
My uncle committed suicide by police. I was there hours later, standing next to the spot where he died. I remember finding his blood on the grass. I noticed all the circular burn marks in the grass, where officers’ patrol cars had sat idling for hours. Even then, his wife refused to tell me what was really going on. She explained in detail how he had died. How he said he wanted to die and she called the police to Baker Act him (Baker Act is a suicide hold). The police arrived and he apparently set his secret plan in motion. He barricaded himself in his bedroom, ran out of the back door (located in the bedroom), and circled around to the front door of his house. He carried a handgun with no magazine in it. He ran up behind the line of officers, who were still entering through the front door. They noticed him and he raised the gun and pointed it at the officers. They fired. Of course, it wasn’t until afterward that they realized his handgun wasn’t loaded. Suicide by police = quick and highly effective.
It wasn’t until a few years ago that I found out why my uncle committed suicide. I don’t think that many people knew- I know of two. But those people- my cousin and my aunt (my uncle’s wife) refused over and over again to tell me. My cousin let out the most information, saying that my Uncle Gary had always accused someone of something and no one had ever believed him. Well, with my past, my mind immediately went to sexual abuse and I thought maybe my dad or someone else in the family. (I had always wondered if someone ever did anything to my dad- I mean, where did he learn this from?) Anyway, maybe two years ago, I was back in my hometown visiting. I was with my cousin and had already decided in my head that I was going to extract this information from her before I returned home. We had already gotten into some deep conversations- her husband (one of my most favorite family members) had been murdered. He was a government agent and she thought he’d been murdered by his own people. (Btw, if this blog suddenly disappears, there ya go.) So we’d broached heavy topics and I brought up my uncle. Again, she refused to tell me what he’d been so depressed about his entire life. I knew he hated me…he hated everyone. But I never knew why. I remember being so confused at his funeral as his co-workers stood up and relayed stories about how sweet, kind, generous, and funny he was. I thought these people are at the wrong funeral!! Who are they talking about? I never knew my uncle to be sweet or generous or funny. Ever. I was shocked as person after person went up to the front and said all these things about him. They were describing a side of him I never knew existed. And I remember thinking again… why did he hate his family so much? But he loved these people? I was so confused and unsettled. So years later, I’m sitting in my cousin’s kitchen. It’s nearly 2am. I told her I wouldn’t leave until she spilled it. So she finally did.
She told me how my uncle had accused his older brother (my dad) of sexually abusing/ molesting him. No one had ever believed my uncle. I’m assuming he must have despised my father. It was no wonder he hated me too then…I was my father’s child. He was probably disgusted with all of us. And…now that I know how my grandma helped cover up my abuse…I’m assuming she did the same with my uncle. No wonder he was such as ass to her too. He had told her and she had acted like she didn’t believe him. She just kept it all covered up. Is that a mother’s loyalty? I don’t think that’s right, no matter how you look at it.
Tears stream down my face right now as I know I would have been the only person to believe him. I wish I had known. I wish he had told me, instead of just hating me from afar. I wonder if he had shared and I believed, would that have comforted him at all? Would that have made a difference or prevented his death? Would he have been more disturbed to discover that my dad had abused another?
So that’s where I find myself stuck. I very slowly came to the realization that my dad was a sexual predator, a child molester, a
Until I found out about my uncle, I never thought of my dad that way. I’d honestly thought he was a good person, as everyone had repeatedly told me, who made a mistake once with his daughter. It took a while to hit me…there was more than one victim. I wasn’t the only one. That makes him all those bad things. Maybe I should have thought of him that way before, but I just didn’t. I think it’s easier to forgive your father. You want a dad so badly, you wouldn’t want to push him away by being unforgiving.