I’ve also organized our treatment of this topic into three parts: your (daughter) emotional need for your father, what you should learn from your father, and what parts of your father’s personality you might identify with.
Just as with a son, a daughter needs to experience the presence and love of a stable father growing up.
The state of ‘absence’ I am talking about includes both physical and emotional unavailability.
This post focuses on what a woman might experience with a father who is unavailable and how it might influence her adult love life.
A daughter’s attachment to her father is complicated by the fact of their opposite sex relationship.
In a healthy father-daughter relationship, a daughter feels nurtured by her father, and acknowledged as on her way to becoming a woman.
The fact is, these ‘childhood/adolescent needs for love do not belong in her adult love relationship. An adult lover cannot give the love a father was supposed to give.
Frustrated love seeks a way to have that person psychologically if not physically.If her mother’s emotional health and maturity are inadequate to the task, chances are unresolved grief and self-blame will negatively influence her.When this happens it is common for a daughter to look to boyfriends, lovers, and eventually husbands to provide the love that has been missing from her father.This need although active is usually buried in unawareness and sex can be bartered for affection and attention from men who are attracted to her.In many instances, these efforts to procure the love that was lost lead instead to disappointment, low self-esteem, and further feelings of loss.Some women possess the personality required to “take care of men” in their love lives.The semi-conscious hope is that she will take care of a lover well enough that he will be able to return the favor at some point later on.She is keeping unavailability alive in one form or another as an emotional tribute to her absent father and his influence on her.Unfortunately this kind of pattern can be passed on from generation to generation affecting many people’s personalities and love lives.Once again, an emotionally mature mother who realizes her daughter’s need for information about men can compensate to a large extent for the father’s absence.The lessons involve, understanding who men are, how they think, what they value, what they respect, and how they commit themselves in love when attracted to a woman.