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Daddy Issues: The Signs, Symptoms, And How To Deal With Them

Daddy Issues: The Signs, Symptoms, And How To Deal With Them

What do you think of when you think about “daddy issues”? Most people think of strippers and sex workers. They think that daddy issues are something that only women on poles have.

But that’s not true, and daddy issues are much more common than people want to admit. In fact, you might have them, and they might be ruining your relationships.

What Are Daddy Issues?

A black woman with a broken heart

Most people use “daddy issues” to describe a very sexual woman, like a stripper, or a prostitute, or the neighbor who brings home a new guy every night. But it’s really more complicated than that.

Not everyone who enjoys sex has daddy issues, and not everyone with daddy issues enjoys sex. Let’s get scientific for a moment.

Psychologist Carl Jung called daddy issues the Electra Complex. A woman with the Electra Complex constantly seeks attention from men, positive or negative, in order to compensate for her father’s absence from her life.

According to Jung, women who grew up with fathers who were physically or emotionally absent try to fill the role by getting male attention any way that they can.

So how do you know if you have daddy issues?

You Need Constant Reassurance That You’re Loved

Needing constant reassurance is a sign of daddy issues

Just because you grew up with your father in the house doesn’t mean he was truly present. He could have walked around without ever expressing affection for you or interest in your life.

As a result, you might be so insecure that you constantly need your partner to reassure you that yes, you are loved.

If you feel yourself becoming insecure, nervous or angry unless your boyfriend proves that he loves you – frequently – then this might be you.

You Jump From Relationship To Relationship

A black woman in a relationship with a black man

Some people assume that a girl with daddy issues will want constant sex with a ton of different men, but that’s not true. Like some women, you might latch onto one long-term serious relationship after another, seeking stability.

You’re terrified of being alone. The men you date don’t even have to be good men – in fact, some of them might be distant or abusive, like a bad father – but all that matters is that you never have to learn how to love yourself.

There’s always a man to do that for you.

You’re Sexually Aggressive

Signs you have daddy issues

Sex is power. If your father left you and you didn’t have any control over his relationship (or lack thereof) with you, then you might overcompensate by using sex to gain control over other men.

A woman who plays into men’s desires finds herself coveted and showered with attention, if only for one night. Sadly, you might be attracting jerks who are just using you for sex, and if you begin to associate sex with self-worth and control, you’ll get trapped in a cycle.

You Only Date Older Men

Only dating older men is a sign of daddy issues

Who better to be the father you never had than a man your father’s age? Older men can give you the attention and affection you’ve always craved. They can treat you like both a child and a lover, taking care of you but also desiring you.

Unfortunately, just because a man is older doesn’t mean he’s more mature, and you might be drawn to an older man who is just like your father – in a bad way.

You’re Clingy and Jealous

A distrusting woman

If your father left you, emotionally or physically, then you might be paranoid that any man can leave you. Technically, that’s true. But all men aren’t like your father, and decent men won’t just disappear from your life like he did.

Nevertheless, your experiences make you hold on tightly to whomever you’re dating – too tightly. You check your boyfriend’s text messages. You prohibit him from seeing any female friends. When he wants to hang out with the guys, you get anxious, certain that he’s out cheating on you.

Ironically, smothering of him might drive him away, which will only make you more paranoid that the next man will leave as well.

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12 Comments

    1. Do some Yoga, Pilate and Meditation and you can restore the positive vibes in your body and heal yourself from Daddy issues.

  1. I am guilty. Currently seeing an older man and cheating on my kind boyfriend. How can I overcome this? Please help.

  2. Most of this applies to me. I’ve learned about being attracted to the emotionally unavailable man and the narcissist who feeds off the narcissistic supply. Healing is a constant and long process. Focusing on self around these types can be construed as selfish which leads to guilt and shame as you work to empower yourself. Good luck sisters.

  3. This is exactly me. I grew up with my dad but he was so distant. He never hugged me or told me he loved me. I found comfort in dating older men who made me feel safe and loved.

  4. I’m a growing woman in this area. I’ve been growing in Hod and that’s how I realized my “daddy issues”. I blamed it on past relationships, because my father is a good man in general. I don’t think he realized that his third daughter was not getting the same attention, especially with the birth of his well coveted son 15 months later. That doesn’t mention the anticipation and excitement that started as soon as my dad heard about the sex of his baby. Nevertheless the more I’ve grown to see my faults and broken habits, I’ve been able to build my self esteem. I began to recognize my worth and what I actually brought to the table. So that means what are the things that make me happy without the approval of others, including men. Once I was blessed to be solid in that, I understood more about what kind of man I needed, and it isn’t a father figure. To keep it short I needed a man who could deal with who I was, as I grew and grow more into the woman I want to be. I’m not there yet, but with God and time I will get there. The more you find yourself and what makes you happy outside of another person, the closer you will get. At least that’s what has worked for me.

  5. I grew up without my dad’s love. I jump from one relationship to the other. Seek affection everywhere. I really need help.

  6. I am just now finding out I have daddy issues. My partner pointed them out to me as we had just finished a heated and probably one of the most intense arguments we had ever had. We have been together for five years and it would devastate me if it failed on account of me. He’s the father of my two year old and I definitely want to work on myself and make changes in positive way. But I’m not going to lie, looking at myself in the mirror pointing my flaws out are scary.

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