What Are ‘Daddy Issues’ And How Do You Get Over Them?

From Britney Spears to Demi Lovato, daddy issues were always at the heart of most pop songs in the early 2000s. It makes sense, too, because most of us have unresolved issues with our parents in one way or another. Daddy issues are generally the result of an absent or unhealthy father figure in one’s childhood, which results in certain sexual choices in the child when they grow up. For many, the inconstant source of affection in those early years means that validation as an adult can only come through an equally unhealthy partner. Here’s how to try to get over your daddy issues and start having better relationships.

Find a new father figure.

Start at the source of your daddy issues. Go all the way back in time and identify who or what you were looking for in a father figure, and why the person who left you disappointed you. Maybe it just wasn’t destiny at the time, but everyone deserves another go at family. Look around you at other relatives or friends that support you in a healthy, sustainable way. This will help you model a new form of attachment style that isn’t as co-dependent.

Reassess how you view men even platonically.

Lots of people are blindsided by their Daddy issues because they ignore how men treat them in friendships. What are your expectations with a male friendship? Is platonic affection enough for you, or are you always looking for ways that they can grow into your life more? Do you feel differently about your female friends versus your male friends? Reflect on those questions and consider all the ways that you might be internalizing daddy issues.

What do you want from a relationship?

Ask yourself the hard questions. Do you want affection and someone to agree with you? Do you value comfort and stability below charm and spontaneity? What does this conflation of ‘love’ with ‘inconstant’ mean in the big picture? Does it mean that you are willing to accept a shallow relationship because it’s all you’ve experienced before, and therefore it’s all you think you deserve?

Experiment.

Try going on a date with a woman, if you’re so inclined. Or, get a dating app and track how you interact with men. Are you flirting off the bat, or trying to get to know them? Are you keeping your distance, or investing too much of yourself too early? How does that affect the power dynamics, and are you attracted to the idea of a ‘master’? Big questions, and while you think about them, go on a practice date, stay sober, and keep track of how you behave.

Ask a friend for advice.

The same goes for family members. Everyone has an insight either into similar experiences or into the missing father himself. Either way, it might take him off his pedestal and make you less desirous of the idea of a strong man in your life. Listen to them, it’ll make you feel less alone. They might even have been through daddy issues too.

See a therapist.

I know ‘therapist’ sounds like a big, dramatic word, but it really isn’t. I am of the opinion that everyone should be seeing a professional in their life so that they can come to terms with this thing we call life. Just because you think you haven’t had a big obvious trauma, it doesn’t mean that you don’t need therapy. We all dismiss our own experiences for other people, but it’s time to claim our own feelings.

What are your expectations?

Do you think relationships without romance or intensity are worthwhile? Do ‘good guys’ bore you? What do you seek in a partner, and how can you unpack those traits into healthier alternatives? Do you want to feel protected by a strong, physical man? Or, is it really that you just want to feel safe and stable?

Look for other ways to find validation.

No single relationship should be the sole source of validation or happiness in another person. That’s too much pressure, and it’s also pretty much doomed to fail. Find casual friends, reconnect with your aunt down the road, and find a new TV show. Spread yourself over lots of important relationships, not just one.

Relearn that you are complete even if you’re single.

No one should consider themselves to be empty or incomplete without their significant other. We’re all interesting, smart, and funny without another person to define ourselves by. Remember that, and you will rely less on their validation. You can retain your independence.

Either way, the first step is to acknowledge that you have Daddy issues and to see where they have influenced your habits. Take it slow and be kind to yourself, and always reach out if you need support, there’s nothing to be embarrassed about. 

The best dating/relationships advice on the web – sponsored. If you’re reading this, check out Relationship Hero a site where highly trained relationship coaches get you, get your situation, and help you accomplish what you want. They help you through complicated and difficult love situations like deciphering mixed signals, getting over a breakup, or anything else you’re worried about. You can immediately connect with an awesome coach via text or over the phone in minutes. Just click here

The best dating/relationships advice on the web – sponsored. If you’re reading this, check out Relationship Hero a site where highly trained relationship coaches get you, get your situation, and help you accomplish what you want. They help you through complicated and difficult love situations like deciphering mixed signals, getting over a breakup, or anything else you’re worried about. You immediately connect with an awesome coach via text or over the phone in minutes. Just click here



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