Research indicates there are six types of unhealthy father-daughter relationships. They include:
1. The Lost Father: These are dads who may still live with their daughters but they abandon them emotionally. They basically ignore them, don’t praise their achievements, or comment on their successes and accomplishments. As a consequence, these daughters have low self esteem and lack confidence in their abilities. They feel completely starved of love and look to other guys to give them the attention and affection they crave and need.
2. The Abusive Father: These are dads who communicate the message “my needs are all that matter – and yours don’t count at all.” Their moods and behaviors are unpredictable, unstable and destructive. They are quick to erupt in anger, are emotionally and verbally abusive, and may be physically or sexually abusive, too. Because these dads are dominant and controlling, their daughters grow up with no real identity. They are fearful or having and expressing an opinion, and prefer not to be noticed. They often expect to be misused by others, fear relationships and have low self esteem.
3. The Pampering Father: These dads treat their daughters like little princesses who are pampered and spoiled from the day that they are born. Thus, they grow up with a sense of entitlement and they see themselves as special, and more deserving than others. This can lead to problems in all relationships as they are self absorbed and manipulative.
4. The Toxic Father: These fathers teach their daughters that women are “one down” so she needs his help to make it in life. This makes it hard for the daughter to launch out on her own, and live a successful, independent life.
5. The Ruined Father: These dads are broken men who need the support and constant attention of their daughter to survive. For example, they may be unemployed or have clinical depression – so they lean on their daughter “to try and make it through”. This leads to an inappropriate dependency that prevents the daughter from living her own life. It can lead to bitterness and anger in the end.
6. The Anguished Father: This type of father-daughter relationship is slightly different to the other five types. Here, the daughter reacts to perceived faults, failings or indifference in her father and acts out her anger through rebellious behaviour , anorexia, or lifestyle choices that distress her dad. However, she’s not really free as her choices are reactions and ways of expressing how she feels about her dad.