The term “daddy issues” is one you have probably heard a couple of times, as it has been used very loosely – and often wrongly, to describe a lot of people, mostly women who have “weird” relationship habits. But what does it mean to have a father complex? Why and how do people end up with daddy issues? We’ll find out shortly.
What is Father Complex?
Father complex is described in psychology as a group of unintentional associations to a father figure. This means that people with this complex tend to make subconscious or deliberate decisions (often in relationships) that have a connection with their image of a father. This complex affects all genders and can exhibit in different ways. Father complex can also subconsciously affect how people feel or think about fathers, and pseudo father-like authority figures.
Why Do People Have A Father complex?
Father complex usually occurs as a result of a poor or absent relationship with one’s father or father figure. This means either an absence of a father or an abnormal, dysfunctional and toxic, or poor relationship with a present father. Children in this situation tend to grow up without feeling seen, loved, appreciated, understood, supported, and/or safe around their fathers. This can affect how they relate to any male, father or authority figure in their adult years. People who went through childhood without a father in their life may feel the longing for a father while growing up, especially when they see their peers with stable families or having loving relationships with their fathers, and sometimes without knowing, they carry this yearning for a father into adulthood.
How does Father Complex Manifest?
Father complex manifests in different ways for everyone. For instance, people who grow up with addicted or abusive fathers may unconsciously develop an archetype of a father that is abusive or chaotic, even distant and may grow up with resentment or fear of father figures. On the other hand, people who grow up without a father may, in their adult years, seek older romantic partners in an unconscious quest to satisfy their need for a secure, or protective relationship. People who were abandoned by their fathers may go through life feeling like they’re not enough, which may leave them overcompensating trying to “earn” love, or maintaining a guard or protective shield, or being emotionally distant in their adult relationships.
Father complex is much broader and much more influential than most people think. It can have impactful, lifelong, effects on the quality of one’s life and the quality of our relationships, keeping us in patterns of feeling unloved, unwanted, disappointed, rejected and hurt. The best way to heal a father complex after identifying it is to seek the help and guidance from a professional who aid you in doing the real, personal work of re-building your fractured father relationship into a healthy, loving bond. Our last word on this is to assure you that you can heal your father bond without the need for participation or involvement from your actual father – this is a personal healing journey.