Usually, a daughter’s interaction with her father is her first male/female relationship. It’s how she learns to see herself as a young woman; it’s how she determines if she’s accepted, valued, and respected. Whether you have a positive relationship with your father or the two of you are barely on speaking terms, he has the power to ruin your relationships with men. If a woman had an emotionally and physically absent father when she was growing up, she may be more likely to have difficulty making productive and lasting relationships with men as an adult. But even if your father was your biggest champion and showed you his love and nurtured you, he can still ruin your future with men — if you let him.Take the spoiled princess, for example. Her father gave her everything she could possibly desire, and she experienced very little in the way of consequences. As an adult, she’ll look for a man who will treat her the same way her father did — showering her with gifts, taking her on trips, financing shopping sprees — but her adult partner will become more of a sugar daddy than a lover and friend. He’ll willingly play the role, as long as the princess looks good on his arm. When the princess turns into a queen, he’s more likely to spend his money and energy on a younger woman.
A similar phenomenon happens with the daughter who had the “perfect upbringing.” She was raised in a two-parent, middle-class home. Her parents supported her ambitions. She learned how to negotiate fairly and compromise with men because her father listened to her and appreciated her thoughts. However, not every parent raises their children in this ideal situation. As an adult, she’ll have a rather difficult time finding a mate who possesses similar skills in negotiation and compromise. Instead, she may compromise too much in a relationship.
Then there’s the daughter who had little to no interaction with her father. She’ll strive to be accepted by any man because she feels abandoned by her father. As a woman, she may learn to use her sexuality to get attention from men. If those men take advantage of her, she’ll end up feeling unworthy, unloved, and unaccepted for who she really is.
The daughter of divorce or separation who maintain contact with her father doesn’t have it any easier. Her future may be bleak because she’ll think all men leave, return, and leave again. Since her mother was her primary caregiver, she’ll believe it’s up to women do the real work in life. Therefore, she’ll seek out control in her adult relationships with men. Her burden is being the problem solver.
Are you damned if you do and damned if you don’t? Luckily, it doesn’t have to be that way. Just because fathers have the potential to wreak havoc on their daughters’ relationships with men, it doesn’t mean it has to happen. In reality, it’s up to you to take tackle these problems and solve them like a woman.