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Whatever was on my father’s mind was rarely a secret. Unless it was a secret, of course. Both my parents were masters at keeping secrets. Common everyday concerns, like how they felt about me, for instance, was worthy of a trip along with them to their graves. Oh, they tried to come up with plausible feelings, but I don’t think they knew how they felt about much.

Their feelings popped out unexpectedly at times.

They didn’t fight. At least not in front of the kids. Oh, they did bickering pretty well, and complaining, and Dad was especially good at deriding, degrading and humiliating. But I was shocked to learn, that during my childhood, Dad would get so mad he threw plates at the wall. That’s what Mom said, and I believed her because it definitely sounded like Dad. But I never saw anything like that. That was a secret.

It was no secret that was how it was supposed to be. You are supposed to never share your feelings, if you even know what they are.

That’s what I learned at home.