The cultural beliefs and obligations surrounding parenthood are quite dynamic.
A father’s involvement in their child’s behaviors, environment, and social life is a key determinant that can influence short and long-term childhood outcomes.
The origins of responsible paternity can vary based on the state, economics, and social class of families.
The reality, however, is that most people grow up in homes where the father is physically or emotionally absent.
As a result, kids growing up in such dysfunctional setups can develop “daddy issues.”
Without a doubt, children and society as a whole would benefit if fathers are legally, financially, and psychologically invested in their offspring.
However, due to the nature of a father’s temperament, work, or commitments, that is not always the case.
Kids can develop “daddy issues” if the father is emotionally distant or doesn’t provide the love and attention they need.
In other instances, a child can develop “daddy issues” if the father is overindulgent, over-protective, or is a control freak.
This begs the question, can you have “daddy issues” with a good father?
First things first…
What are “Daddy Issues?”
“Daddy issues” is a colloquial term that describes psychological and emotional challenges that children face later in life as a result of past relationships with a father or father figure.
The term does not allude to any clinical or psychiatric diagnosis but is a phrase often disparagingly used to refer to women that struggle with trust issues, self-worthiness, or complex, dysfunctional relationships with men.
“Daddy issues” can manifest itself in different ways, including:
- A strained relationship with your father.
- Feelings of being neglected by your father.
- A lack of a father’s love or attention.
- Experiencing abuse from your father.
Can Someone Develop “Daddy Issues” Even With A GOOD FATHER?
Contrary to popular opinion, one can still develop “daddy issues” or experience a strained father-child relationship even with a father that is generally considered to be good.
The reality is that the nature or quality of the relationship you have with your father will significantly impact your adult life.
As a child, you can either have a close, distant, or no relationship at all with your father, and this can make you develop “daddy issues” later in life.
Any unhealthy parent-child relationship will instill uncertainties and mistrust, and this too can lead to “daddy issues”.
In reality, having a good father-child relationship does not make you immune to developing daddy issues.
Being over-protective or overindulgent in your child’s affairs is generally considered a good fatherly attribute.
However, in the end, the child may feel a sense of suffocation or a lack of independence, which can affect their behavior and emotional well-being.
So yes, someone can still have unresolved psychological or emotional issues even if they have a good relationship with their father.
How Can Responsible Fatherhood Contribute to the Development of Daddy Issues?
Fatherhood plays a vital role in a child’s upbringing.
A responsible father will show love and emotional support, and increase a child’s sense of security, self-worth, and confidence.
Based on our lived realities, one will expect that a dad who is consistently present, is physically and emotionally supportive, and cares about every aspect of a child’s upbringing will ensure a sense of security and, therefore, eliminate “daddy issues.”
That is not always the case, unfortunately.
A growing child will, from time to time, require a sense of autonomy and independence as they get accustomed to gender roles and social responsibilities.
That means that being a good father or developing a good father-child relationship may not be enough to avert daddy issues.
The secret is to strike a balance and understand when to get too involved in your kid’s lives, and when to leave them to their own devices.
How Can Someone Address Daddy Issues Stemming From A Good Father?
Firstly, it can be a challenge to address unresolved issues that stem from a good father.
That is because, unlike irresponsible fathers, your dad was likely present and supportive and, thus, you may struggle to reconcile your emotional issues with your past experiences.
However, you can take the following measures to overcome those issues:
- Acknowledge The Feeling: The first step to resolving any emotional issue that stems from your relationship with your father is to acknowledge those feelings. While exploring these issues, strive to get answers to questions like, “Do I feel a sense of abandonment?” “Was I neglected?” “Or do I feel increasingly disconnected from my father?”
- Identify The Root Cause: Explore the experiences from your formative years that may have shaped your perceptions and beliefs.
- Seek Therapy: The term “daddy issues” has psychological roots, and was first coined from “Father Complex” by Sigmund Freud. Psychologists have explored it over the years and identified therapy as a solution. Your therapist will examine your behavioral patterns, dig into the past experiences that are affecting you presently, suggest coping strategies, and help you heal those unresolved issues or emotional wounds.
“Daddy issues” is a blanket term commonly used to explain emotional challenges that adults face as a result of poor childhood relationships with their fathers.
These can be trust issues, self-esteem problems, or relationship troubles, and are typically linked to physically absent or emotionally distant fathers.
However, it is important to note that everybody’s parent-child relationship is unique and that, even with a good father, you can develop “daddy issues” or relationship upheavals that can have negative manifestations in your adult social life.