Choosing to forgive is a noble (albeit difficult) path, and it’s exactly the one Lily Collins is choosing to take. The 27-year-old actress is opening up about her turbulent relationship with her father, famed singer-songwriter Phil Collins, in a beautiful and moving letter of forgiveness from her new book of personal essays, Unfiltered: No Shame, No Regrets, Just Me.
“I’ve realized that many of my deepest insecurities stem from these issues with my dad,” she writes in the memoir. “It’s taken me over a decade to resolve some of them (others I’m still resolving) and to finally build up the courage to speak my mind to him.”
The Rule Don’t Apply actress and her father’s rocky relationship began around the time he and her mother divorced when she was just 5 years old, after which he moved from England to Switzerland. After moving to Los Angeles with her mother, Lily and her father’s relationship became all the more strained due to his absence and growing dependence on alcohol.
“Because my dad was often gone, I never wanted to do anything that would make him stay away even longer. I became extra careful about what I said and how I said it, afraid he’d think I was angry or didn’t love him. And the truth is, I was angry. I missed him and wanted him there.”
And while she elaborates upon her painful truth in a touching and vulnerable manner, Lily certainly isn’t backing down or withholding anything.
“We all make choices and, although I don’t excuse some of yours, at the end of the day we can’t rewrite the past. I’m learning how to accept your actions and vocalize how they made me feel…I now understand that my frustrations surrounding our communication are not about changing you, but accepting you as you are.”
In addressing her own issues and insecurities, Lily ultimately lays the foundation of forgiveness for her dad. She writes that she hopes this painful issue for herself and her father might help other girls heal their relationships with their fathers as well. And in closing, Lily invites her dad to get to know the amazing woman she is today as they begin to heal themselves. She’s optimistic, forgiving, and filled with ~so~ much love.
“There’s still so much time to move forward. And I want to. I’m inviting you to join me. I’ll always be your little girl.”