In January 2015, 21-year-old Richard Johnson at last welcomed his little baby girl, Persephone into the world. But within just a few weeks, joy quickly turned to despair for the new dad. The mother kidnapped their newborn and ran off to California. But soon enough, she changed her mind, and demanded that Richard come and retrieve their daughter, otherwise she would have her put up for adoption. Richard didn’t hesitate and jumped on a plane to bring his daughter home. Following the mother’s unexpected behavior, said to likely be a result of postpartum depression, Richard became their daughter’s sole caretaker. It wasn’t long before the 21-year-old realized just how unprepared he felt for the task. Lonely, depressed and quite frankly terrified, Richard stumbled upon a Facebook group for dads called “Life of Dad.” It turned out that there were numerous other men in similar situations and experiencing the same kind of tough journey Richard was. With courage, Richard seized his role and made several changes to his life which he realized would be required as a new parent. He recently posted his feelings about the Facebook group that helped him so much and the post has since gone viral. When I read his words, I couldn’t help but shed a tear. I knew I had to share his story of courage and love further. Here is his powerful message to the world.
“My name is Richard Johnson, and I’m a single father to a beautiful little girl named Persephone. Her mother left about a month after she was born. We still don’t know exactly why, but we suspect post-partum depression played a part. In the first few weeks of it being just her and me, I stumbled upon your [Facebook] page by accident. I was so nervous and scared about being a father in general, but now I was a single father and had to fulfil two roles. I wasn’t sure I could do it.”
“I had read every “new parent” book I could find and clocked in over 1000 hours in YouTube videos from everything to braiding hair and painting nails to theories on how to deal with common parental issues. I then started to watch your page more closely and saw that there were other fathers out there who were in similar predicaments as me.”
“The [Facebook] page started to turn into a major confidence booster and really helped me through all of this.”
“We’re both very happy now and continue to grow together everyday. She’s now 10 months, and I now get asked by my friends for parenting advice constantly. We’ve come a long way, my daughter and me, and we definitely owe part of that to this page and the people within it. So from both of us, we wanted to thank you.
Persephone & Richard Johnson”
Here is Richard’s original post:
Not only is Richard a fantastic father, I think his moving story really may have inspired other single parents in similar situations. I think he deserves both respect and all the support he can get, because it’s certainly not easy taking care of a child on one’s own. Please like and share this story if you agree Richard is a great dad.
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