I Want(ed) a Full Family

This could potentially be one of the most heartfelt, and emotional pieces I’ve written in a long time, I’ve started writing this piece before, but always stop halfway or just delete it all together, but on the 30th November 2017, I cried my eyes out on the underground at Oxford Circus station. This year I have been sharing a lot of my personal stories in articles and captions that I believe can help people. I get personal because I believe my stories are relatable to others, they are real life that people can read and really understand. So, this post is called… I want(ed) a full family.

If you know me, you know I only touch base about my father, I came to terms with our relationship and how we are too each other. My father has 3 other children. So, I have other step siblings, of which I only found out about 10–11 years ago. (in my teenage years) When I found out I immediately attempted to contact them, and try forge a relationship, and to find out if it was true. I did speak with one of them, when they told our father I made contact, he got angry at them, and told them to cut contact, and since then we never spoke, but from THAT moment my relationship with my father began to deteriorate, I am not bashing my father at all, he paid for my university tuition, which I will always be grateful, he would come visit, and always try and provide financial support when he could.

One moment in my life that I didn’t think affected me at all, was when his father (my grandfather died) and I found the programme, and under where it showed the names of his Grandkids, my name was not there, he didn’t count me as one of his children, or maybe he forgot to put my name there. Who knows, but without any information or explanation I assumed the latter — He didn’t count me as one of his children.

Later in my life, I found my step siblings on Instagram, I followed and began liking pictures in hope to forge some form of relationship, I would like pictures, comment but never get any reply, I didn’t think this affected me at all, but I didn’t know the damage it was doing inside me, was I not counted as his family, was I the black sheep, all my other siblings are doctors, lawyers etc, and going to the best schools, and had the support of our father, which surpassed money, he was their for them, physically they all lived together. I only saw him when he came to visit. (Funny enough this never mattered to me, when I didn’t know he had other kids, I just assumed he lived a very busy, due to the nature of his work). It all began to click when I found out about his other kids and wife. I would go on Instagram and see my siblings with him at parties, having fun, on holidays etc, and used to ask myself, why didn’t I get any of that? Why was he ashamed of me? All these things really led to me to question a lot of things in my life, why was my mother still so nice to him, when he didn’t even want to acknowledge me as his child publicly? Was I doing something wrong? Should I be a lawyer, or something academic for him to accept me fully? All these thoughts slowly chipped away at my self-esteem, made me question my life choices.

These thoughts would amplify whenever I would go on my social media and see them having fun, or just together as a family. I know this could be corny, but sometimes that kind of love is all that a young man may need. I tried to reach out to one of my siblings last year and to no avail, but this day, I told myself, I want to try and create a relationship just so I could feel a little closer, I sent the riskiest private message, and the reply was not what I wanted, so I very hesitantly unfollowed, which for some reason was very hard, it’s like I wanted to see what my other siblings were doing with him. I never asked the questions I should have asked my father when I had the chance, because I was afraid of the answers, but this new reply from my step sibling, had me sitting at Oxford Circus crying my eyes out, because I wanted to be accepted by them as one of them. But after the crying had done (I still feel sad obviously) I was able to close a chapter now, the chapter of thinking and wanting to be part of them.

I think the message I want to put across is blood does not make you family, and you should appreciate the people around you, who want to be in your life, and show you love, I have unconditional love for my Mother, who has more or less sacrificed her life for me and little brother to have the opportunity to make something of ourselves, a opportunity she never had, and I still look at myself and think, would things have been different if I conformed to the person my father wanted me to be? Would I have made him proud, would he have ever liked/wanted me to know or speak to my step siblings? These thoughts had me feeling inadequate, as a person, as a son. Only recently I have started coming to terms that, I choose to go down this path, and now more then ever appreciate those around me that do love me, my reach out for external love from step siblings I had never met was not a good decision, but a decision I had to make. I looked for father figures, in the mentors that spent time with me, and were cool with me and supported me with my endeavours. But they could never be the father I wanted.

To anyone who has felt this way towards a parent, I’m not saying just cut off the ties, please do try and reconcile if you can, but if you cannot always remember;

· Parents, siblings or not, there are (is) someone (people) who love you for you.

· You don’t need both or (a) parent to be a whole person

· Never apologise for who you are!

· Understand pain does not last forever, you may feel it, but once you realise it’s your choice to hold on to it, then you can start moving past it.

Writing this was one of the hardest things I’ve written ever, and even now still contemplating if it was the right thing to do and share with the world. But Thankfully to God I have people who listen and read what I write and every article I’ve written has resonated, touched and helped someone who reads it.

I have left out a lot of details for security and general privacy, but the I hope you get the jist of the piece, and anyone who is in or has been in my shoes (not in exactly the same way) that this helps you.

I need to send love to my family tree — my little sister Alex Ampofo, one of the most kind hearted people on earth, my little brother Haych Sane, he looks to me like a little brother, My best friend Farzana who has my whole life :), my little big brother Chevy, who is another son to my mum, my brothers Robert and Cartell, who I know I will know till my deathbed! My new little sister, Luna :) I have appointed myself her Guardian, my amazing cousins — Cecil, Jason and Eugene, we grew up in Ghana together, and recently witnessed Cecil get married, which was beautiful. . And everyone that I speak with in depth, I am grateful for all of you in my life.

And a special thanks to Lionheart who inspired me to write this, I went to his show not to long ago, and he said something transparency that stuff with me. Thank you Lion.

Be grateful for the people in your life, through fights, ups and downs, if they have proven they are there for you no matter what, that’s all that matters end of the day. Keep those ties, and stop searching for external love, when its around you at times.