A Letter to Daddy by Anya Nicole

Dear Daddy,

I decided to write this letter because I’m finally ready to tell you how I feel. Now that I’m married and I have a family of my own, I’m able to verbalize everything that troubled me about the relationship you and I had while I was growing up. I always wanted a close relationship with you like the one Cliff Huxtable had with his children on the Cosby Show. I used to pretend that you were him and imagined what it would feel like to have a father who lived with me. I often felt as though you failed me as a parent. I was the child that was “taken care” of by the system. As long as the check was in the mail, nothing else mattered.

When we did spend time together, you were too busy telling me how much my mother was jealous of me to address my real needs and concerns. I found my solace in the arms of boys hoping and desperately wanting the companionship that I should have been getting from you. I never knew how a man was supposed to treat a woman because you never took the time out to tell or show me. I grew tired of constantly reaching out to you in hopes of developing a father- daughter relationship. I just couldn’t understand why I, as the child, had to call you all the time. I remember calling you on my birthday and you didn’t even remember it was my special day. I cried that day and my mother was the only one there to pick up the pieces. There were so many instances where I felt unloved that I just stop telling you what was going on in my life.

I strived to be the best I could and always sought for your approval. When I graduated from high school and didn’t see your face in the crowd, I was crushed. By the time I graduated from college, I just opted not to invite you; I figured you wouldn’t show anyway.

When you passed away, I was both angry and relieved. Angry because I would never have the relationship I always wanted with you; yet, relieved that this chapter in my life had finally come to a close. I do regret not attending your funeral, but at that time-I wasn’t able to forgive you. After much thought, I now realize that as you were “raising” your children, you were also learning how to be a father. And although you were not perfect you were the best father you knew how to be under the circumstances.

I am proud to share with you that I have a daughter-and she has a father that loves her very much. I can’t describe the feelings I get when I see how they interact with each other. While I know that my time to have a relationship with my father is over-hers is just beginning.

Daddy, thank you for giving me life, fueling my desire to be successful, and making me realize that life isn’t and can’t always so clear cut, like the family on the Cosby show. Thank you for helping me develop my own values about family and teaching me that living life and raising children go hand in hand.

I love you Daddy.

Happy Father’s Day!



Anya Nicole grew up in a drug and crime plagued household and neighborhood in Philadelphia, but she strived to break the mold and became the first person in her family to graduate from college. Anya uses the world around her as a palate to create chilling street stories such as Corporate Corner Boyz (2008) and Judgment Day (2010). Divas, Diamonds & Dollars (June 2010) is Anya’s first project under her publishing house, Black Reign Publications. She also counsels at-risk youths.

© 2010, Shalena D.I.V.A. – Personal Branding| Content Marketing| Product Creation. All rights reserved.


  1. Quiana on June 22, 2010 at 7:46 am

    This was a lot like my own story with my father. I especially like how you revisited all the emotions and wishes that you’ve had about your relationship with your dad, and that you ended it with some feelings of peace and forgiveness. Thanks for sharing your story.

  2. LaShaunda Hoffman on June 22, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    OMG, you hit on the nail:

    I now realize that as you were “raising” your children, you were also learning how to be a father. And although you were not perfect you were the best father you knew how to be under the circumstances.

    You can’t be a daddy if you don’t know how. WOW! That statement will help me in my forgiveness of my own father. Somedays I think I’ve moved on and forgave him and some days the anger is still there.

    I called him on Father’s Day and we had a nice talk. No we’re not very close, but I do believe that he did the best he could do. So maybe one day we will be friends.

    Thanks for writing this. I think all the little girls inside us needed to read this letter.

    Blessings to you

  3. Anya Lindsey on June 24, 2010 at 7:16 am

    Hey Ladies,

    Sorry I’m just commenting. I have been having some technical difficulties with my internet at home. LaShaunda, I have to share with you that I was angry with him up until he past away and even after. I did alot of thinking, praying, and self reflecting. It is hard because I think ALL little girls need thier father. I’m glad that this gave you a new perspective on your relationship with your father and I pray that you continue to heal-It can be a long journey. Thank God that you can actually call him-this letter was all the things I wish I had the courage to say to him. Quiana-I’m glad you also enjoyed the story-Again, I think we all crave a relationship with our father no matter how hurtful he has been in the past.

    Peace and blessings,

    Anya Nicole

  4. Shalena D.I.V.A. on May 6, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    I think my relationship with my father played a role in my relationships. I had to get myself together. It’s so weird though how we learn from our environment and carry those things into our lives, especially when we learn those things at a…n early age when we don’t really have too much to compare it to. I mean, I know my dad wasn’t Cliff Huxtable, but it’s hard to think of things that go on in your house as wrong when you don’t know any better.

    • Aprille on May 6, 2011 at 3:33 pm

      Girl..don’t make me preach!! It had EVERYTHING to do with it! My father was an abuser to my mother and I never wanted to be ‘one of those women”. So I opted for the Independent Woman mantra– not all roses either! WOW, great post!

      • Rochelle on May 6, 2011 at 3:34 pm

        I cant say for sure..my dad died when i was nine*mom remarried my step dad was a wonderful man..loved us and my mom..n steps my natural mother and her husband*he was dog to her and us*im a good woman like my mom*but i keep meetn men like my mothers….sheeeesh

  5. Nicole on May 6, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    My father really was the best father. I mean he showed me what a good provider is suppose to be and the love that he shared with my mom was to me the essence of what black love should be. It was rough at first because he had a few demons to… overcome, but guess what he overcame them. He didn’t throw in the towel and just go to left, he thought his family was important enough to change and he did. I believe he set the bar for my future relationships but I chose to go in the opposite direction. I thank God for him because I remember now what a man is suppose to do. The choices I made were not based on what I was shown by my father but I now realize that’s the gauge by what any future relationship should be measured. I still miss him very much to this moment.

  6. Merrika on May 6, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    I think it depends on that women or girl. Frm personal issues I didnt allow the fact what happended n my childhoold affect me negeatively. when it comes to relationships.I decdied never to allow my kids to feel the way i felt growing up.but… I do agree it is but its up that WOMEN. She cant control what happends in her childhood but she can control how she allows it to effect her grown up.There comes apoint in life where u are the only one to blame for the way you act.But me personally I look to God as my father for advice and comfort. IT depends on that womens heart and mindset.My mind set is im not allowing it to define me or my heart. You can allow things to either build you or take you down..if choosen to allow my childhood to build me

  7. Perry on May 6, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    ladies is it tru dat a relationship wif daddy wil affect urz wif men u engage wif. . .but how so?

    • ShalenaD.I.V.A on May 6, 2011 at 3:44 pm

      @Perry-They say it’s because daddy is the first man we come into contact with and base most of our opinions upon. It could be true or not, but it’s bares taking a closer look.

  8. Pauline on May 6, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    I say yes and no. In my case, I had a close relationship with my father who passed away before I turned 21 years old, and he was a wonderful person that I was truely blessed to have as my father in my life. When this happened I was lost b…ecause I always had him there. So, it came to the point where I was looking for guys to fill the emptiness I felt, and ended having some of the worse relationships ever. I feel that if anyone has the opportunity of having their father close to them, relationships can still be bad, and the values, the high self esteem you once had can get damaged, and hard to get back. I think it all depends on the person and how well they are able to overcome bad situations with parents and later take on working to have a healthy and fruitful relationship with someone or making sure they do not fall into a dangerous or unhealthy relationship.

  9. Liara on May 6, 2011 at 3:37 pm

    I have bad esteem issues and bad relationships in the pass i do feel that some of that had alot to do with my fahter not being in my life like he should have. After my mother pass away two year ago i wanted to have a better relationship wit…h my fahter, but he did reach out like i thought he would. Now he passaway last thursday an i wish he could have reach out more to me. But i will say it has help me realize my weaknesss with men , because i long for the day when god will send the one for me , but he can do that i know i have to start loving me more in order to receive a good man.

    • ShalenaD.I.V.A on May 6, 2011 at 3:50 pm

      @Liara—I’m sorry to hear of your father’s passing. We need each other more than we’ll ever know. And yes, loving yourself the way God sees and loves you is the best thing to do. If you haven’t already, download the first chapter of my ebook for free at http://www.shalenadiva.com/archives/2435 You’ll see yourself in a new light. Be blessed!

  10. Greathookup on May 6, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    No disrespect to anyone. This is no more than my two cents, nothing more. But piety is a principle in both religious and tribal culture. And the descent of piety has become a primary reason why our culture is rapidly declining. I dont t…hink we should encourage the minimizing of either parent, regardless of their role in your evolution, because the fact remains that your parents 2/3 of the exclusive reason you even exist. God being the third. We need to appreciate that, appreciate our existence, and make the best with what we have moving forward, not clinging to the past. Several people has differences with their parents. But most of us on this thread are adults now that would not be here if not for both of them. What ever diminishes our parents equally taints our own existence, and personally, Im glad your here to read this. So lets start with us and start making a positive difference and do what we can to reinstate piety. Respect for the parents is necessary to fully appreciate the greatness in you.

    • ShalenaD.I.V.A on May 6, 2011 at 3:56 pm

      @Greathookup—No one is minimizing the importance of either parent. We are trying to put things into perspective. If you think that your past has no bearing on who you are today, then I question that. You may have to go back in order to und…erstand the present. No one on here disrespected their father at all. And most have said that they had to learn from their mistakes to be better adults and make better decisions in relationships. You have to work through issues honestly so you can be the best adult and role model for your kids to set great examples. That is all I think we were saying.

  11. Laticia on May 6, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    thats not always true, its depend on that person & ur personality on how the relationship w/others will work out. and i know this topic, 1st hand.

  12. Victor on May 6, 2011 at 3:38 pm


  13. Christina on May 6, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    Naturally all children want a relationship with their father’s..but I truly believe each experience is different….I’ve seen women use that as crutch to be in cycles of negative relationships…I’ve also seen women take the void of the abs…ence of a father and have a healthy lasting relationship……It all depends on the person….From my experience waiting on God and his timing is the number 1 factor for any relationship…God will send us what we need..male and female…Alot of mistakes come when the focus is solely on what we want…..And sometimes those choices are stemed from self esteem issues….

    • ShalenaD.I.V.A on May 6, 2011 at 3:59 pm

      ‎@Christina–You’re right. It depends on the individual. Some will say yes and others will say no.

  14. Layfifi on May 6, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    Sorry to say my relationship with my father played a very little role in my self esteeem and relationships.

  15. Wilnet on May 6, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    yes,it is w/ me

  16. Girlfriends on May 6, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    I enjoyed reading your post (why didn’t you guys repost this for Father’s day this year?) Anyway. Wow, I thought as I read your letter that you were talking about me! The feelings and the unforgettable incidents were just remarkably similar…. I know I’m not the only one to have had a poor father/daughter relationship, but you hit the nail on the head when you described how it felt, how (he) could leave a broken hearted child, crushed and devastated in his insensitive wake, leaving mom to pick up the pieces. right there, is where you got me, I didn’t think anybody knew my story but me…but you did. Thank you for your honesty and courage to write this. It could be the healing balm someone may need. I enjoyed this.

    • ShalenaD.I.V.A on May 6, 2011 at 3:57 pm

      @Girlfriends– I’m glad you enjoyed this article. My friend, Anya, was totally honest and I believe that is what made the piece so touching. We did these letters last year. I’m thinking of doing it again this year. I’ll try to get some mot…her’s day articles in there, too. It’s nice to get various perspectives. I’m glad you felt as though this article gave voice to your experience. That is the beauty of when we share open and honestly. People get the help they need. You can always write a piece for this year if you like.

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