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The Father-Wound: A Book. A Journey.

Updated: Jul 3, 2022

Every boy, in his journey to become a man, takes an arrow in the center of his heart, in the place of his strength. Because the wound is rarely discussed and even more rarely healed, every man carries a wound. And the wound is nearly always given by his father.

— John Eldredge, 'Wild at Heart'

This writing is a product of more than a decade-long journey through the depths of the inner world of men — initially, only my own inner world, but later, of other men as well. Having had the honour to spend years travelling alongside men on their inner journey of finding freedom and wholeness, I have observed that there is one thing that a man’s whole inner world, his personality, and even his physicality, is tremendously influenced and shaped, for good and for ill. That thing is a man’s relationship with his father, or the lack thereof. You do not need to take my word for it; but if you are willing to embark on an inner journey with the intent to reclaim something inside you which you have lost, or gain something which you have never had (like confidence, for example, or creativity, or the courage to be yourself and freely speak your mind in your relationships with others), you will inevitably come face-to-face with this phenomenon many today call ‘the father-wound’.

This e-book is meant to get you started on this journey. It is by no means 'complete', or 'final'; it is but the beginning of that which you must explore and come face-to-face with, if you want to become a whole man, a free man, a strong man...

I advise you to not take this journey alone. You need at least one other man with you. If you do not have a mentor, a friend, who is at least aware of the grave reality of the father-wound, seek out a men's group (locally or virtually), mentorship or counselling from men who have been on this journey themselves, and have emerged as teachers and leaders, strong enough and wise enough to be at least one step ahead of you in it.

If you are alone, do not despair. You might find that you really are not alone. You might find that, as the ancient saying goes, once the student is ready, the teacher will indeed appear.

I hope that this book gets you started on your journey through the deep, dark waters of the father-wound and those darkened, lost parts of your inner self which you are yet to reclaim.

If you are struggling, and are feeling that there is no hope for you for deep, lasting inner change, let me encourage you: you can be the man you want to be. But it will not be easy. You will have to be willing to be challenged, and you will have to be willing to be stretched, in a way that would hurt you. Pain is the only way to lasting transformation. The willingness to ‘die’ to what and who we currently are, know and believe, is the only way to the ‘resurrection’ and the renewed life that we are seeking. There is no resurrection without death; there is no growth without pain. And if there is one thing that causes pain to men in virtually every area of their lives – from relationships and sex to work and money to calling and purpose – is the father-wound. Yet, if there is one thing that men are doing everything in their power to avoid facing, this is the father-wound. But it is namely that – the gradual, painful, character-building process of uncovering, facing, and dealing with the effects of that wound, which would set us free to become men who we have not even dared to dream we could be. But, let me say it again, it is not supposed to be easy. That’s precisely the point. I myself remember with painful clarity, sitting with the four other men of the first men’s group I was a part of, and hearing them openly and unashamedly discuss details of their journey with the father-wound…and it horrified me. I did not want to be there. I did not feel that I belonged there. You see, I felt that those men did not have fathers who were even remotely as good, upright, reliable, and sacrificial as my father was. In fact, I felt quite indignant that they were somehow assuming that I too, had some kind of a ‘wound’ from my father. I remember trying to express that to them, clumsily, in broken English, while feeling totally ‘missed’ and not really seen for what and who I was. But what I also remember is that the facilitator of that group – a wonderful, wise man called Nigel Mohammed, my friendship with whom began then and continues to grow stronger to this day – leaned over and said to me: ‘Sooner or later you will have to face your wounds, George. There is no other way.’ I don’t remember much else from that night besides the fact that I was overcome by utter loneliness and the awareness of some hidden sense of grief that was inching closer and closer to the surface…something in me was reacting to the words of Nigel and all those other men; something was being spoken to and called upon. Something was being called to life and expression, and I realised that I had been running away from it; I also realised that, if I really wanted to be free from all that was holding me back internally, I was running out of options… I soon realised that the only real option I was left with, , was to leap into the unknown, armed only with my trust in those men, and a tiny grain faith in some mysterious God who I sincerely hoped knew what he was doing... More than a decade later, I am overwhelmed with gratitude and indeed, relief, for the wonderful (though often terrifying) journey that has been unfolding before me and shows no signs of slowing down… It works. But you don’t need to take my word for it. You need to take a leap of faith yourself. I will see you on the other side.

G. K. Stoimenov


'The Father-Wound: Discovering, Addressing, and Overcoming the Hidden Phenomenon that Shapes Every Man's Life' is available for pre-order on Amazon. If you have already bought it and found it useful, please remember to write a review — it would be a tremendous help in making it 'stand out' on the website, so that it would be easier for others to find it and benefit from it.


BONUS MATERIAL: 'The Father-Wound' with George Stoimenov an interview by John Fontaine on his platform, Maximus Heart


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