Don't You Love Your Daddy?: The shocking true story of a by Sally East with Toni Maguire

By Sally East with Toni Maguire

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Additional resources for Don't You Love Your Daddy?: The shocking true story of a mother's neglect and a father's betrayal

Sample text

You’re a beautiful little girl,’ she told me on her good days, but by the time I started school I had ceased to believe her. I can only imagine how my mother felt when the midwife placed me in her arms for the first time – after all, that is her memory, not mine, one that she polished with love, for that is what mothers do, before sharing it with me. ‘I loved you the moment I saw you,’ she told me. ’ Well, maybe I was to her, but each time she tried to reassure me I thought about my eczema. It covered my arms, crept up my neck and speckled my chest, and I thought of how I must have looked, with my baby face scrunched up and my skin marred by those angry red spots.

When tears spilled over and ran down my cheeks, they were wiped tenderly away. ‘Whatever’s wrong, Sally? You’re getting as bad as your mother. ’ and, of course, I did – then. A kiss would be pressed to my cheek, a sweet popped into my mouth and he was back to being the father I loved. As I grew a little older, my father began to exercise more and more control over me. In front of my grandparents and my mother, he would sit me on his knee, his hand stroking my legs. ‘She’s a daddy’s girl, all right.

Even at four I felt uneasy when I saw the look of impatient pity and something bordering on contempt that crossed the shopkeepers’ faces as she filled her bags and placed them at the bottom of the pram. Once we arrived home, my mother gave Billy a bottle, then poured orange juice for me, and gulped down glass after glass of the golden liquid that came out of the brown bottles she had bought. By the time my brother came back from school her speech was slurred. He gave her a look of reproach and disappointment, then took his school books out of his satchel, spread them on the end of the table and started to do his homework.

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