What It’s Like Being A Girl Without A Dad

I don’t have a father. I never have and I never will. It’s just how my life played out.

There was no massive secret that my mom ever tried hiding from me in regards to not having a dad. He didn’t want to be a part of my life and being the person he proved to be, my mom didn’t mind. She always thought it’d be better to raise me alone than include such a negative presence in my life.

When you’re a girl without a dad, it hurts. Not in a conventional way. Not in the way you’d think. I don’t feel an overwhelming sense of loss. It feels more like a gradual rejection.

There are a lot of instances that I can remember wanting a father. The first time I yearned for a dad was in preschool when I would watch my friends run into their fathers’ arms. Their dads would lift them high above their heads and then carry them to the car, while staring at their kids with such love in their eyes. I wanted a daddy to do that for me.

I wanted a father when my friends went to Daddy-Daughter dances. They all got to wear pretty dresses, take professional looking pictures and dance. I wanted a man who loved me enough to take me to the dance and tell me I was his beautiful little girl.

When I was little, I desired a complete family. I always felt like the odd one out.

But I never wanted a father more than when my heart was broken for the first time. When my first love broke my heart, I felt so rejected. It was like all of the work he had done to get me to accept the love of a man was reversed and I had to start from square one.

A father is supposed to be a girl’s first example of men. She will choose her future romantic partners based upon the man that her dad proves to be.

It took me a long time to feel comfortable with men. Unlike the traditional “daddy issues” stereotype, I found myself running away from the male species. Part of me was just uncomfortable with the idea of men while another part of me just didn’t want to get hurt like I had been from my absent father.

When I finally opened myself up to a boy, it was wonderful. When he eventually broke my heart, it was tragic.

When I was feeling hollow and abandoned, I needed a dad. I needed a dad to tell me that I was beautiful. I needed a dad to want to protect me. I needed a dad to provide me with the love and comforting words that I craved.

I wouldn’t undo what has happened to me. My life is wonderful and I am truly a very blessed and fortunate person. But when my heart was so broken, I definitely feel that having a present father would have made the hurt less severe.

Being fatherless shouldn’t define you. You should never let the absence of a positive male role model in your life affect your view of men or your view of the world.

There are men who will not hurt you. There are millions of men who are great, incredible people. But sometimes we don’t end up with those types of men in our lives.

So while it may hurt to be a girl without a father, it doesn’t have to dictate the way you live your life. I am complete with or without a dad in my life.

When you’re a girl without a dad, you don’t make it out of the experience without a scar, but don’t let him ever break you. He’s not worth that. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

featured image – StephaniePetraPhoto

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