Former NFL Player Aveion Cason Faces the Son He Left Behind

mother and sonIt had been almost 10 years since Aveion Jr. had seen his father. He was about four years old when his father, Aveion Cason Sr., a former NFL running back, left. Now 13 years old, he was able to face his father and utter the words no parent would want to hear, “I think I was a mistake.

Iyanla Vanzant, an inspirational speaker that frequently appears on The Oprah Winfrey Show, is placing an increasingly common family situation in the spotlight: too many children are growing up without father figures.

All boys need to know what it feels like to have a man—a father—love them.

Iyanla knows from personal experience the effects of epidemic. She shared her own experience, saying, “When my young son's teacher asked to see me, I reacted defensively. I was a 17-year-old girl thinking: ‘What had he done this time? What am I going to do with that boy?’ The conversation was a rude awakening. ‘Your son pulls his pants down when he uses the bathroom,’ the teacher told me. ‘He doesn't know how to use a urinal.’ I turned my face to hide the tears of embarrassment. In that moment, as I explained our situation, the realization hit me like a ton of bricks: I am the mother of a fatherless son.”

Aveion Cason Sr. was also a fatherless child. And after many years in the NFL, playing for teams like the Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions, facing his son on “Oprah’s Lifeclass” with Iyanla Vanzant was probably more difficult than anything he’d experienced before.

Aveion Sr. said, “I grew up without a father. I feel resentment with my father coming up because he’s never been around, and when I talk to my son, I feel like he feels the same way.”

And his son does feel the same way. Aveion Jr. quietly told viewers, “I think I was a mistake … It felt horrible that you left me. It made me feel like I was a mistake … Like I wasn’t supposed to be here.”

My heart breaks for this little man, who missed out on opportunities and experiences that only fathers can provide their children as they grow. The interview ended with Aveion Jr. telling his dad, “You don’t get to leave me again.”

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Iyanla says, “The mother of a fatherless son must keep the door open. The father of a son must learn how to, and be willing to, walk through the open door to his son's heart and life. All boys need to know what it feels like to have a man—a father—love them.”

Are you the mother of a fatherless son? If so, how do you handle the challenges of raising your son alone?

What do you think?

Former NFL Player Aveion Cason Faces the Son He Left Behind

Kimberly Shannon is a wife, a mother, an editor, a writer ... She is always working to find the perfect balance¹! After Kimberly received her bachelor’s degree in Journalism, she worked on two master’s degree programs (Creative Writing, and Marriage and Family Therapy). At various times in her life she has signed up to study Naturopathy, only to back out at the last minute, and humored the idea of returning full-time to the world of dance. Kimberly has also started 10 different children ... More

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1 comment

  1. heelsandsass says:

    I don’t see how someone who knew the personal feelings of a father leaving them behind can do the exact same thing to their son. It hurts my heart to know a child can say they feel as if they were a mistake. I hope he does everything in his power to right all the wrongs that young man feels and have some sort of a bond.

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