Daddy Issues

To say that someone has ‘daddy issues’
is a somewhat rude and humiliating way of alluding to a very understandable longing:
for a father who is strong and wise, who is judicious, kind, perhaps at points tough,
but always fair – and ultimately, always on our side. It would be so understandable
if we were to feel we wanted someone like this in our lives, especially at moments of
confusion and chaos. The longing for a strong father has been a recurring theme in history.
Most religions have conceived of their central divinities as male parents. In ancient Greece,
Zeus was described as the ‘father of men and Gods’; in Christianity, God was the
heavenly father; in Germanic mythology, Odin was the Allfather, the father of all other
gods. The longing has been no less present in secular culture. In the US, the individuals
who led the war of independence and drew up the constitution came to be known as the Founding
Fathers; Garibaldi, the dignified and authoritative man who fought for the unification of Italy
in the 19th century, earned himself the title of the ‘father of the fatherland’. In
early childhood, we are all immensely weak and in need of protection. We can’t understand
the world, we are so fragile, we could be killed by a moderately sized dog; so much
feels mysterious and outside of our control. A hunger for a ‘daddy’ is – in the circumstances
– wholly natural. A grown man inevitably and rightly seems immensely impressive to
a small child. They appear to know everything: the capital of New Zealand, how to drive a
car, how to say a few words in a foreign language, how to peel an avocado. They go to bed mysteriously
late. They’re up before you. In the swimming pool, you can put your arms around their neck
and rest on their back; they once kicked a football so high, you nearly couldn’t see
it; they take you on their shoulders and help you touch the ceiling. It’s beyond astonishing
– when one is four.. The paradox of daddy issues is that those who have them are – almost
always – people who didn’t have very good fathers when they were small. Perhaps one’s
father was strong but ultimately cruel, bullying or disinterested. Perhaps he was more interested
in another sibling or in his work. Perhaps he wasn’t around much, left the house after
a divorce or died young. The adult longing for a father is not the result of having had
a good father in childhood: it’s a consequence of abandonment. The longing can incline to
us some tricky patterns of behaviour. However mature and sceptical we may be in most areas,
in relation to the idea of male protection, we remain a little like the young child we
once were and haven’t been allowed to mature away from. We secretly yearn for a man to
step in and fulfill an unquenched fantasy role. They’ll take charge; they’ll make
the big decisions, they’ll be tough and certain and make our problems go away. They’ll
make sure the money side of things is sorted, they’ll get angry and aggressive with anyone
who hurts us; they will be proud of us and love us as we are. We’ll be looking out
for daddies in friendships, at work and, not least, in politics. The danger is that these
‘daddies’ may in the end hugely damage our trust, for it isn’t in anyone’s power
to assuage the sort of longings we bring to bear on them. They may know very well what
we want, and naively or cynically promise to provide it for us, but gradually – too
late – we stand to realise that they had a thousand flaws, as we all do. We may realise
that they are bullying rather than noble; that our enemies haven’t gone away; that
they couldn’t help us; that there isn’t in fact enough money in the world to do what
they promised; and that – in fact – they didn’t really love us at all. The fantasy
‘Daddy’ figure of adulthood isn’t in fact a good father for one big reason: truly
good humans know they aren’t that powerful and are happy to admit to the fact cleanly
and honestly, just as soon as we are ready to take the news, which is normally when we
are around twelve years old and conscious of new powers and capacities. A good father
doesn’t – beyond that age – pretend to be all powerful, they confess they can’t
solve all our problems and can’t magically save us from a myriad of dangers, no matter
how much they wish they could. The good daddy disappoints us just as soon as we are strong
enough to bear reality. Out of love they deflate the idea that there could ever be a perfect,
ideal daddy. They try as best they can to help us grow up. If we encounter someone who
has daddy issues, the temptation is to get frustrated, tell them to mature, mock them
and – in particular – poke fun at the particular daddy figure they might have identified.
This isn’t either a very wise or ultimately a very kind strategy. It simply tends to entrench
their devotion – because, whenever we are attacked, we of course feel ever more intensely
than ever the need for the protection of an idealised father. What we really need to help
us out of our daddy issues is something more like the actions of a genuinely good father:
someone who truly acknowledges our suffering and our fears, who deeply wants what is best
for us and isn’t reluctant to say so; but who, at the same time – out of love – wants
to help us come to terms with a messy and essentially disappointing world; a man who
– out of love – will encourage us to be independent and, specifically, not to fantasise
that anyone, however outwardly imposing, can ever do the impossible. Good daddies allow
us to bear the truth that there are, in the end, no ‘daddies’. . We love bringing you these films. If you want to help us to keep bring you thoughtful content please consider supporting us by visiting our shop at the link on your screen now.

Maurice Vega

100 Responses

  1. This is something in almost all MEN and WOMEN go though in LIFE ,those whom EXPERIENCED it know and UNDERSTAND ,some even they EXPERIENCE so I'll take YEARS to UNDERSTAND it .Being a FATHER or a MOTHER ENTAILS a COMPLETELY TOTAL DIFFERENT OUTLOOK towards LIFE . Thanks which been a SINGULAR EXSITANCE is no MORE ,there is RESPONIBLTY and COMMITMENT to a NEW LIFE in this WORLD if the FAMILY is there it's BOTH ,but if JUST a SINGLE PARENTS the CHANGE is GOING to and HAVE too COME .So MANY think it's FUN and GAMES it's not and never will be . The NEW LIFE not only is going GIVE COMMITMENT it's also GOING to ENTAIL SCARFING by both . I TALK to a lot PEOPLE everyday , with some the FIRST think OUT of there MOUTHES is my CHILD or GRANDCHILD and LIEING like HELL to PEOPLE who know they are LIES . There are OTHERS around YOU with the DUTIES and RESPONIBLIES which COME with are RESL and MET .With s lot there is HELP from the EXTENDED FAMILY because it's a EXTENSION of them as WELL . The MANY thing though is many TALK about there CHILD being SHORT CHANGED in LIFE and the WORLD ,they should ALWAYS REMEMBER no one on this can SHORT CHANGED YOIR CHILD in this WORLD but YOU ,HOS GAVE YOU that CHILD YOU are RESPONSIBLE for in LIFE no one else.

  2. I've seen many mothers who take this role of the protector or the idol. The idea of a necessary male figure to fulfill these roles seems based on traditional romanticism. A brother, a sister, a parent, a friend… All these could play this role.

  3. "…in the end there are no daddies.." really!??!!!!?…Well, that will never be on my end… God is my Ultimate Father! My Ultimate Big Daddy!

  4. I think 0:57 is wrong. AFAIK Allfather was sacrificed to make the universe out of his limbs, but Odin is just the highest of the "gods" that came to populate the universe thus created. I am 95% sure allfather is not the same as Odin. Would even bet on it.

  5. i think your videos (as in school of life’s) are patronizing and disrespectful, that they don’t honor people and their struggles as legitimate but instead as petty life long forms of ignorance. It upsets me to see the way information is displayed. the facts said are not inaccurate in the slightest, but the way it’s presented feels manipulative and patronizing. maybe it’s just my reaction, who knows.

  6. I doubt i ever had a caring father. But because of everything we had to go through because of him, i grew more stronger and i am soo much more empathic than he ever was. Lack of fatherly love gave me the strength of a man and ability to do everything by my own expecting no help.

  7. I always consider myself blessed to have had a strong, fair father.
    Even when he died in front of me, as a child, his example was the biggest and best in my life to date.
    The world dearly needs good fathers

  8. I never had a good childhood and I had to learn everything by myself (life lessons, wisdom). I thought before I was doing great till I realized I had this fantasy of the world or my parents being perfect or at least caring for me, but life can't always be perfect that's why in the end, I've accepted everything I've been through but it also made me soft and weak. Still, there's a good side of it. I value everything that lives and I am unique in my own way because of my experiences.

  9. Daddy issues doesn’t always mean your father was a terrible one growing up. My dad spent so much time working, he was never there for even the simplistic moments like to pick me up from school, or play with me outside, or help me with homework, teach me how to ride a bike or swim. It breaks my heart because I don’t want to blame him trying to keep our family from being homeless on my emotionally neglected child/teenage years. Maybe that’s why I always get so excited when my boyfriend picks me up to take me to simple places like running an errand, or pays extra attention to me and takes me to eat. Especially whenever he holds me, even the slightest touch of affection satisfies me. I think it’s because growing up I never got it from my dad and I can’t blame him for his bad parenting cause my grandpa was an alcoholic and he didn’t set a very good example.
    Now my life is completely terrible because I am emotionally exhausted and can’t keep healthy relationships with ANYONE, including my family. I feel like im completely misunderstood. And now my dad isn’t proud of me because he found out I smoke weed. If anyone is still reading sorry I had to vent..

  10. Thank you Alain, such a wonderful and helpful film. This has helped me realise why it might be beneficial for me to look for a strong, protective, kindly 'father figure' within myself, or art, or books, or some other than in romantic partners, as I normally do (which never works!) I sometimes stand and stare in disbelief when I see fathers playing happily with their youngsters in parks or on the beach. I honestly thought they were Hollywood actors at first! My own father came within a hare's breath of stabbing me in my forehead once, within other fun events. It was one of the few times he ever noticed my existence in our family home; the rest of the time I was a ghost, or he was. Hence attracting the most emotionally unavailable men possible! But Dad was in so much pain and mental anguish; I am learning to forgive him and move on. Any tips for how to develop a healthy sense of a father figure in one's life / mind would be gratefully received. Thanks : )

  11. My dad don't know how to be a dad, I am not angry with him, he is like that cause is father was like that too, and probably I will do their same mistakes

  12. Omg this is actually so true. My father wasn’t around much when I was younger and he made me keep secrets of him bringing women over while he was married to my mother but when I got older I broke down and told my mom. I just got into my first serious relationship with my boyfriend and I notice myself being more submissive and I guess “little” as some may call it and him as more dominant. I sometimes wonder if my dad was normal that I wouldn’t be like that in my relationship.

  13. I hate my dad. He always made cheap ass excuses, and threatened to divorce my mom for over a decade. He always made promises you knew he wouldn’t keep. He instigated a lot, especially with me- making me the horrible stupid bitch of a daughter that he always said I was. Now he’s gone, and I feel no remorse for his sudden departure.

  14. The problem is the one hypergamous female and the many different fathers (i.e. step-dads as well as biological).

  15. My father was a total narcissist. He was cruel, judgmental, and absent emotionally. He was emotionally, physically and sexually abusive. The scars he inflicted are permanent. I try to get over it, but it is a constant struggle and I make little progress. My father is dead so I can't confront him, not that that would work, but perhaps it would make me feel better.

  16. Never felt the need to be with farther or getting to know him and wanted anything from him. I did not grow up with him. I always felt alright without him.

  17. My father treats me like crap. He doesn’t acknowledge me or talk to me. When he talks it’s to put me down and degrade me. His loss! His choice .

  18. I have daddy issues, no wonder I’ve been longing for a man to take charge and be aggressive with me. Thank you school of life. 🥵🥵

  19. 1:29 lol x] i can't.. "a hunger for a daddy is only natural" lol… what about sugar daddies? is that natural too x]

  20. I am ina lesbian relationship, amd sometimes I wish to be hugged and loved by a man. My father died when I was 14, and I still feel deeply sad sometimes, not knowing why. I am 28 years old, and I probably have Daddy issues.

  21. Sure it sucks to have a dad that’s an asshole, but how do you think I feel. I had a great father and he died. It’s worse once you have something good and it’s just taken away from you.


  23. My father has hardly ever been around. There was always something of a higher priority for him to do, work, hobbies, working on his car, going out to a bar or a game of tennis, literally anything. During his vacation he'd take his motorbike and go away for days to weeks on end. When he was at home, he'd sit in front of his computer or lock himself in his bedroom. Any interaction we had was him getting angry, beating me and leaving me alone to cry. Occasionally he'd come back and tell me to shut up or hell give me a real reason to cry. He'd destroy my belongings in a fit of rage, throw things at me, yell and insult me. Other times he'd laugh at everything I said or belittle me, my feelings and my thoughts. I don't feel safe around this man. I feel like he can snap any second and lash it out on me. My mother wasn't a big help either. She'd stand by him. She never tried to stop him from beating me, only sometimes she'd mutter "that's enough". Yeah, like that was gonna stop him. My father was both the physical and emotional abuse, he was neglect and a scare tactic. My mother would start an argument and blame me for it. If she started a fire, I was to blame for it. Nothing I ever did was good enough for them. My feelings were always inferior and insignificant because they were inconvenient. I'm just learning how to be a person and how to see myself as one. This is so strange to have my opinions and thoughts being considered by others. It feels like a privilege I haven't earned.

  24. My real question is why no-one talks about men’s daddy issues? Whenever one hears someone has daddy issues, it’s automatically inferred that someone is talking about a girl.

  25. I had a dad until I was 5 and he died from a drug overdose but when I think back on it, I don’t think he ever really acted like a father to a young child, thata probably why I was never really that upset when he died because I never viewed him as most do to there fathers at a young age, so I didn’t see it as my dad dying, just someone I stayed with and hung around sometimes.

  26. Shaming single-mother/parent household men has become a mainstream trend these days. Instead of compassion for a life with less support, you get called weak. It’s great.

  27. I honestly don’t really care about my dad and haven’t since I was 12, I only feel bad sometimes when I notice how set back I was with less financial support to get my life started. Having to struggle just to get things that fell into the laps of everyone else my age, and still not getting them.

  28. I bet my dad hates me.
    He kinda abused me and my siblings when we were little. He still does, but now it isn't physical anymore.

  29. it's really hard to accept this, but i do have daddy issues, i wanted a father so badly when i was young and all my life really; and now that i'm fully grown it still represents a huge empty space that i don't think i can ever get to fill….it hurts remembering all those times when kids back in school seemed very happy and protected by their parents…whilst i felt abandoned and without a loving dad to rely on. I started to build a wall around me, that served as an impenetrable fortress (substitute for human protection) that has become nearly indestructible, making me an introvert and sad person…i'm writing this in the hopes to tell you that if you're reading this and have children, please be a loving parent, be there, spent time with them, DO NOT walk away…because abandonment leaves scars and trauma and makes unhappy/bitter people. <3

  30. Neither of my parents spent much time with me. The only times they did was to punish to beat me or drag me along to use me for something like getting past buying beanie baby customer limits.

  31. 2:50 – 3:55 , I subconsciously have done this most of my life. I wanted to have a father figure that would help edify me, be proud of the progress I made in life, and generally provide a father-son experience I never had. A man provides structure to his children.. I tried my best to replicate this by joining leadership programs and reading personal development books. Through time I've met some elder men in passing who dropped jewels that really helped forward my progress in life, and there were others that I got burned by due to trusting or exalting them so highly. The older you get the more clear your responsibility to give yourself the things you yearn from other people becomes.. because such people may or may not make an appearance in your life, and even if they do it might not be at a reliable rate. Doing this won't fill the void, but you will be much better off.

  32. Oh dear. This video took such a weird turn right at the beginning. Typical contemporary Western philosophy BS they feed people at the universities these days so they can recite it perfectly… Why do you presume religions "chose" the father figure as their central deities, how cute of you to think you have solved the mystery of archetypal figures occurring in religions. The fact that no human could ever live up to the father archetype(or any other for that matter) you use to crate tongue in cheek "no daddy" nonsense to push your boring agenda that gains traction among contemporary intellectual fops.
    Also, your reading of Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard and Dostoevsky is appalling.

  33. Well now I'm realizing that I have daddy issues, covered them up with my boyfriend for 3 years and suddenly he got tired of me and abandoned me, hummmm that must be the reason I can't get over him after 4 years

  34. And this is hell I come to be married six times this is all very true very sad but in time you work through things but that feeling of the emptiness never goes away

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