A very long time ago when I was 18, I was living in Mammoth Lakes in California. The reason I was there was to escape an abusive situation (mentally and physically) by my stepmother. When I tried to explain to people about her, I referred to her as the Wicked Witch of the West, a character in one of my favorite movies, the Wizard of Oz. This character description is perfect for my stepmother.
The Wicked Witch of the West is the major antagonist in the story.
When I was living in Mammoth Lakes, my stepmother decided to write me the following letter about a month after I turned 18. I have scanned it in its entirety. Before you read it, I’d like to say that EVERYTHING she accuses me of is a lie. The truth is that she stole most of the money I made working at the factory my father ran, the summer before I left home. Also, she and my father sold my car and kept the money. This letter proves that you can choose your family… unfortunately my father picked the wrong woman. Especially when that person is just 7 years older than me.
One of Carolyn’s wishes came true. I have not seen her since I was 17 and not long after this letter, my father told me that I can never have contact with him ever again. This included phone calls, greeting cards for birthdays, and more. The last time I spoke with my father (around 15 years ago), he dialed me by mistake, so that call didn’t last long. I’ve never met one of my half-sisters, and the other I have only seen once since then.
Neither of my half-sisters will be my friend on Facebook, because of my stepmother. She has spent her entire life, since I was 17, telling my two half-sisters what a terrible person I am. So I don’t think I will ever see them again. This really saddens me because I was the “live-in babysitter” for my sister Amy. To this day, I really miss being part of her life.
What also saddens me that my kids never had two grandfathers, only one. I’m especially sensitive to this since ALL of my grandparents died before I was born.
After reading this letter, many decades later, I wondered to myself if my accomplishments piss Carolyn off? I hope they do!
- I did graduate from High School.
- I did join the US Navy and when I left I was a Petty Officer Second Class.
- When I was 18, I was the head manager at a restaurant & profit sharing.
- I’m an award-winning photographer.
- I’m an award-winning software engineer and a patented inventor!
- I taught at a University for 18 years.
- I travel the world helping others by teaching software engineers.
- I’ve written more books than I can remember now, and am still writing!
- And much more.
I don’t know if it was that letter or the abuse from her or her constantly telling me I would never amount to anything; I was very driven when I was young to succeed in work and life. Later, when I was married, my drive was to be a better dad, husband, and provider.
Carolyn also left me with two chronic physical aliments that have left with permanent chronic pain that I will have for the rest of my life. If anything, SHE owes me hundreds of thousands of dollars for medical bills and pain an suffering.
In the end, Carolyn McCarter (Owens) and her emotional issues have ruined many lives. Mine, my brother, her kids, my kids, and even our neighbors in Flagstaff, Arizona where at least one of them had to move across town to get away from her. I’m not letting my father off the hook since he enabled her to carry out her “KGB” style of psychological warfare against his two sons. She won the war.
All the protests about the police and Black Lives Matter in the United States in 2020 has reminded me of a story that happened over 20 years ago where I was called a racist. I’d like to share that story now.
Way back when my son Paul was in 3rd or 4th grade, I was at home and he and his friend ran into our home and told me that a man was chasing them. They told me that there was a man in a car that was trying to get them to stop and talk to him. I can’t remember if that man was yelling or not, but Paul did exactly what I taught him. He ran away and came home!
I asked Paul what happened, and he told me that he and his friend called a black girl, from his class, the “N” word (sorry, I don’t want to use the actual word) when they were walking home. I guess she went home and told her father. Her father, who was a police officer, decided to get in his personal car, wearing street clothes, to track Paul and his friend down. I still have no idea why he decided to do that or what his end goal with that was. Since Paul ran away from him, he decided to go tell his school.
Then I got a call from the school that we had to go in for a meeting about it and this is where the story goes in a bad direction. Paul, his mother, and I arrived at the meeting early. When the girl’s parents come into the room, the first thing out of their mouth was that I and Pauls mother was a racist and we taught Paul the “N” word and to be racist. I got very upset because I could not believe someone was calling me a racist.
When I was a small child, I grew up on the east coast of America. I have always felt that that area is a lot more racist then where I live now. My relatives and even my parents might have taught me about racism, but I don’t know now that I am older. I do remember, when my family moved to Flagstaff, Arizona I felt that people there were less racist, so I worked hard when I was in the 5th grade to change. Even though there was a lot of racism going on when I served in the US Navy, from all sides, I have worked hard ever since I have lived in California to be less racist. Let’s face it, everyone is a racist, one way or the other. It’s what you do with what you were taught is the most important part.
Currently, I feel I have done a decent job on changing how I think about other races to the point now that I don’t see color, I try to see the person. I think my very first girlfriend in 7th grade was half black and Mexican. Most of my dates or girlfriends since I have been divorced were with non-white women. Even both of my kids’ partners are of color and all three of my grandkids are of color! At work, I am the only white person in my team, and they have even made me an honorary Pilipino!
So, when this girl’s parent called me a racist, it upset me. I did push back on the girl’s parents and the vice-principal and told them that Paul’s mother and I never use racist words at home. Heck, we didn’t even curse around the kids. We wanted them to learn not to use any of those words.
I told everyone in the room that Paul learned those words from other kids at his school. Also, the reason Paul even said the “N” word was that the black kids in the school use that word all the time. He was simply copying them. His mother and I didn’t even know he even knew that word, otherwise, we would have had a talk with him, which we did after this event happened. After all this, Paul still received an in-school suspension. I thought this was an overreaction, just to make the other parents happy.
In the end, I was upset we were called racists when the parents didn’t even know us! That is like me calling them a criminal just because they are black! So, I know first hand how people just jump to conclusions without knowing the facts. My wish, that I don’t see happening right now, is that everyone would do the same thing. There are always two sides to every story. I believe that if both sides tried to understand where the other side is coming from, there might be better outcomes. When one side just starts yelling, the other side either shuts down or put up walls to defend themselves; as I did in this situation.