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Daddy Issues

Our need to know why becomes the trap that enslaves us.

Our daddy issues are manifestations of our father’s problems. As children we too often think that we are to blame. For me, I just always wanted to know why? Why wasn’t I good enough for him to stay? Did he not love me enough? Was I not worth it to him? I was, but as a teenager without much wisdom it did not seem like it. My dad loved me. I was plenty good enough. My dad’s issues were simply, then and now, all his. In a world of divorce, single parenting, and confused children all too often the kids take up those issues as they try to pick up the pieces from their broken homes. Our need to know why becomes the trap that enslaves us.

Daddy Issues

Daddy issues can come from divorce, death, adoption, addiction among other things. It leaves a hole inside the kids it affects. The children face low self-esteem and self-worth. They may seek to fill the hole within them with anything that gives them attention or approval. The real problem is that while the adults try to pick up the pieces from their mistakes who helps the children. Who steps in and helps the kids pick up the pieces to their shattered existence. Melissa Johnson, of My Truth Starts Here, writes on this in her blog post Father of Mine. Many are lucky and have father figures step in. Many are not. The important thing is that we stop neglecting the ones left in the wake. If the kids are not our focus then we see those daddy issues become real monster issues for those children as they become adults.

My hero was gone and it was never the same.

My parents divorced when I was in the 8th grade. My father soon moved to another state. My hero was gone and it was never the same. I quickly become the pseudo husband and father figure in my home. Much of my early years seem to slip away with the added responsibility I felt. I did not really see it at the time, but I had father figures step in to my life. My grandfathers taught me most of what I came to know as a man. They were an invaluable asset to my growth at the time. My youth soccer coach also played a huge role in my young life. Jim Ainsworth left with me many lessons I still draw from today. Out of sheer generosity he took the time to show he cared. I remember long talks about life and the greatness he saw in me. Talks that I will never forget. I am grateful to have had those father figures in my life. However, I did not recognize their importance at the time because of the desire to have my own father with me like I had always envisioned he would be. Life changed and I did not change with it. Because my focus was on rewriting my past I could not begin to write my future.

Father Figure

My daddy issues became mere shadows in the light of my heavenly Father.

I grew into a young adult, got married, and began having kids of my own. I had no clue that not dealing with the divorce of my parents had left such a hole in me. My daddy issue would again rear its ugly head. My need to know why, stuffed inside my soul with layers of resentment, took its toll. I seemed fine and successful on the outside but it was eating away at the very depths of my being. It led my own role as a father to have waves of greatness mixed with those of disaster. I could not shake that empty feeling. I could never put a finger on what it was that was missing. My daddy issue had become my own. An addiction to alcohol was my remedy. It distracted me from the pain of searching for something I could not find or explain. And that led me to God. My Father who never fails me and was always there. My daddy issues became mere shadows in the light of my heavenly Father.

Letting go of our past

The only why I needed to know was my own.

I was able to overcome my issues from my early years in a rather unorthodox fashion. Then again, I have always done things out of the ordinary. I learned in recovery that my self worth was tied only to me. The only why I needed to know was my own. Holding on to past pain and resentment did not hurt anyone but me. I had to let dead things go to live. If not I would be forever distracted from my true purpose. Focused in on what others did or did not do instead of what I was to do, today. It became part of my spiritual awakening.

God has since guided, protected, and provided for me all I ever needed. In cultivating my relationship with God I see my purpose, my worth, and the way to be a true father. I do not regret what I did not have from my earthly dad. I do not focus on the failures, and there are many, as a dad myself. I look to them as reminders and lessons on how I can be a better father today. I still feel the sadness from the past at times but it is a natural feeling. It is not a feeling derived from guilt, shame, or resentment. So here is my question for you!

Will you let the desire to rewrite your past, completely destroy your ability to write your future?

6 Comments

  1. I have daddy issues. My wife reminds me of them all the time. My issue is trying to pleas him or make him proud. Lately I’ve realized it stems from me having to fight so hard for his attention in childhood. He was a good dad. Just not around very much and he held us to really high standards. Was a really high achieving man himself. Kip I love the new name!

    • You got me started on brainstorming a new name for how things have evolved. There is a mess to my story but it was not necessary to post. I am still learning to let go of my resentments because they keep me from moving forward completely to what I am purposed for. I try and use what I am learning to be a better Dad. I really enjoy your pieces on parenting and your kids. It gives me renewed hope.

  2. LaJean Roper LaJean Roper

    Kip, I am so proud of you. I pray these valuable issues you are speaking of will help others. You have come a long way. Love you man.
    LaJean

    • Thank you Lajean. I just move forward, as I stand on faith on Gods purpose for me, and He teaches me what to say. I know it will reach whomever it is suppose to as well as helps my grow also. Still like playing the part of Sam from our Pnuematikos days.

  3. Great post, Kip. Lots of us fathers have issues like this, I think. My dad was not emotionally present, and often he worked shift work, so I didn’t see him a lot. He was also depressed at times, so it was hard to access him. I too was lucky to have a father figure or two around at times to help me, but like you, I did a lot of my own fathering, and that hurt me. I became my own judge, jury and executioner and didn’t learn self-compassion. That still haunts me today. I still am that way, and my self-esteem suffers. I try to lean on God and remember that He forgives me and loves me no matter what.

    Thanks for this.
    Paul

    • Love the comment. I think for people like you and I it is something we have to always be aware of. It left a scar on our hearts. To overcome it I believe we just have to have the right eyes to see it with. I look at it best I can the way God would. It becomes then something that makes me better and striving to be the father I was created to be. Appreciate the kind words and you taking the time to read it.

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