7 Random Father Figures And What They Taught Us

With Father’s Day coming up, we’ve been thinking about father figures. We learned a lot from our biological dads (both good and bad), but there were also other fatherly influences in our lives who provided us with guidance, advice, and helped us understand what it means to be a dad. After the jump, check out the men who have shaped our lives (from brothers to therapists to a certain “Star Trek” captain), and please tell us a bit about your own father figures in the comment section!

“I had an amazing writing teacher in college who helped me send out my first freelance pitches and taught me a lot about how to deal with rejection and have confidence in my own talents.” — Winona

“I went into the office of my first therapist at age 23 and cried. He gave me a series of cassette tapes on existential philosophy and told me to get a day planner. From there, he took me on pro-bono (I had no money) and helped me get into grad school.” — Ami

My ex-fiance’s dad was the antithesis of my dad in so many ways — conservative, preppy, business-minded, etc. — but as a member of their family for nearly five years, I learned so much from him and got a lot of support. Sometimes I wish I could still call him up for advice on my 401K.” — Amelia

“I’ve had a couple boyfriends/guys I’ve dated who’ve taken on a father figure role. A few of the dudes that I’ve gotten involved with have taken on a more paternal role in my life than a straight up romantic one in the sense that they’ve given me advice and guidance and made me feel protected and cared for. I know that sounds creepy to some people. But it really isn’t because I actually have a great, even enviable relationship with my own dad. I don’t have any  “daddy issues” that I am trying to fill. In fact, I think the reason I might seek out men with a paternal streak is because on some lizard-brain level, I want to feel cared for the same way I feel with my actual dad.” — Jessica

“Since I watched ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ every single day as I was growing up (usually with my dad), Jean-Luc Picard kind of became my second dad. I always admired his courage, calmness, and ability to lead and wield his power without degrading people.” — Winona [Amelia seconds that!]

“In recent years, my brother. He knows more about money than anyone else in my family, so I can ask him financial questions.” — Ami

My college journalism instructor, who I still keep in touch with, basically was the reason I got into journalism and was a real mentor and father figure in the sense that he had many of the qualities my dad had, without all the shitty ones.” — Amelia

Alright readers, now it’s your turn! Who has been a father figure in your life? What did they teach you?