Do you struggle with behaviours that you can’t change, and can’t understand where they come from? Or perhaps you still harbour guilt and shame, or blame yourself for not having a father in your life?
“More than half of kids in the western world will grow up experiencing being fatherless at some point in their life,” says Jack Thurston, founder of The Father Code, who, being fatherless himself growing up, now helps others experiencing the effects of being fatherless.
Jack’s father was a special forces soldier deployed overseas, and when his parents divorced acrimoniously when he was two years old, Jack had no say about whether he could know his dad. He couldn’t.
As a consequence, Jack didn’t know his father and his extended family never even spoke of him. Jack finally tracked down his father when Jack was in his late 20s, but even then, his dad did not want to know him.
A Fatherless Story
Jack’s story is at the extreme end of the fatherless scale, but the fatherless generation also includes those who have had a dad around in body, but who was not there emotionally and intentionally for the child on a regular basis. These kids are fatherless too.
To listen to part 1 of Jack’s story and his solutions to overcoming the impacts of fatherlessness, listen to Real Talk 4 Real Men podcast episode number 7:
Part two, which is podcast episode number 8, is available here:
Jack pains to point out that being fatherless is not a guarantee of failure in life. Jack is himself a successful business executive with a well-functioning family, but the statistics related to fatherlessness are stinging and startling.
These statistics though, are the “tip of the iceberg” says Jack. We might not be one of these statistics, but those who have experienced being fatherless at some significant point in our lives may live in a state of quiet desperation. Jack notes:
“Being fatherless isn’t necessarily something that is front of your mind, but it is like a river — an undercurrent that is always there in our daily lives.”
Jack points out that fathers leaving to take on jobs, or to go to war is not something that is new in this generation, but in past generations, there were other men around — extended families and communities — that could take up the slack and provide for each other. They were communities that were rich with relationships. That is increasingly not there today.
Jack unpacks this issue in a two-part podcast series.
Two-Part Podcast Series
In part one of the two-part podcast series, Jack highlights some keys to understanding fatherlessness in our lives. You will learn:
- Jack’s very emotional story of fatherlessness
- The origins of The Father Code
- How being fatherless impacts our sense of identity
- The hidden parts of our lives that being fatherless disrupts without us even realising it.
In part two, Jack highlights:
- How being fatherless impacts our brain’s limbic system and function
- How being fatherless can be like a great-looking tree that is not able to withstand the strong winds of life
- How to help your partner if she has suffered from having an absent father
- The A.C.E framework for recovery
- and when you should get professional help for fatherless-related issues.
- Also in part two, Jack points us to where you can find quality help.
Both part one and two are also available from our podcast page:
This is Jack’s story, but what is yours? We’d love to hear it. Leave a comment and let us know how fatherlessness has impacted you and what you have got out of these episodes.