A Father’s Day Read, From Ina Chadwick

The Good Men Project is “a glimpse of what enlightened masculinity might look like in the 21st century.” It gets 5 million visitors a month. Most of the voices are — naturally — male.

But Westport writer and storyteller Ina Chadwick recently posted a very powerful story. Called “A Father’s Legacy of Power and Powerlessness,” it’s not easy to read — but on this Father’s Day, it’s well worth your time. 

Here are the 1st 2 paragraphs:


When my father drove dead drunk up the Bronx River Parkway with his hat pulled over his eyes, while the passengers trembled with fear that if expressed aloud enraged him even further, my sister and I grasped each other and whimpered. My grandmother sobbed and begged for mercy in Yiddish.

If my mother shouted, “Nat, you’re a drunk,” with whatever slight vision he had left from beneath the brim of his fedora, he threatened to pull the hat over his whole face, and then jerk the wheel just to show my mother he was in charge.


To read the full story, click here.

Ina Chadwick

Ina Chadwick

16 responses to “A Father’s Day Read, From Ina Chadwick

  1. A. David Wunsch

    A good antidote to the sentimental treacle of a Hallmark Holiday.
    Staples 1956

    • Thank you! I wish it were a Hallmark card, but if you think you know of any Hallmark card perfect stories, those are the secrets that never get resolved in a llifetime.

  2. I have a tear for you and your father… This is the first Fathers Day without my dad. There are some losses you just can’t label.

    Betsy Phillips Kahn

    • Yes, Betsy, no matter how flawed people are, if you love them and they were your family, it just remains a wound, but resiliience is triuphant.

  3. Ina, the whole book and nothing but the whole book – so help me, Rozanne.

    • Oh, you devil, Rozanne! Plays and stories and memoirs, but no more books.Wrote alll of these stories in some way and now? I have to collect them. Thank you, my fan club.

  4. powerful stuff ina. x

    • Fortunately for the writer I am, I’ve got a lot more of this “powerful” stuff, which i believe was my writer’s gift. Nothing hum drum in my life. And did you hear the one about my mother’s fourth husband being a croupier in Las Vegas and 30 to her 54, That’s next, but it’s not about this kind of love I felt for my father, and thank you. Thank you!

  5. Ina is a gifted storyteller. This is not a story but the real thing told through the memory and heart of a girl, who carried this heavy weight into adulthood.

    • But we do laugh, Alberta, a lot. The heavy weights get lighter with an ironic and truthful eye. They do not weigh us down. They keep us anchored on the ground if we step back and find the care and the love.

  6. Bonnie Scott Connolly

    She (Ina) shows the resilience of the human spirit that she came out on the other side of such experiences.

  7. Stephanie Bass


  8. Thank you, Stephanie. I value your comment very much.