You are here:

Counseling/Hurting relationship

Advertisement


Question
Hi, Laura
I've been struggling with some issues from my childhood and it's beginning to affect my relationship with my fiance. My father is a drug addict and was rarely around while I was growing up. I very desperately craved his attention and did not receive it. Sometimes I expect that my fiance will make up for all of the attention and love I didn't get from my dad, but when that doesn't happen It really hurts me and I feel like I'm being rejected twice. How do I get past the emotional damage from my dad? How do I make my needs known to my fiance in a healthy manner so that our relationship won't suffer because of my issues?

Answer
Hello Rachel,

This is a self-esteem issue. It's normal for us to get our sense of self-worth from our parents. Then we grow into a place where we get it from ourselves. When the parent/child bond is not there (as in cases with drug abuse, often), that can sometimes not happen.

Unfortunately, there isn't a set of skills or behaviors that will automatically do that for you. It's a process that happens when you are competent, go for your goals, and give yourself recognition for what you've done and who you are. So my advice is to study mindfulness (so that you can see things as they are and negate negative self-talk) and go for your goals. Push yourself outside your limits. Don't make this about your partner. If you are trying to make him fulfill your needs, you will always be half empty. You already have all that you need. You just need to know that inside.

Best of luck,

Laura Giles

Counseling

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Laura Giles, MSW

Expertise

I can answer questions about sexual assault, sex offending, domestic violence, substance abuse, acudetox, hypnosis, biofeedback, neurofeedback, ADHD, relationship issues, and run of the mill mental health questions.

Experience

Extensive inpatient, outpatient and criminal justice experience.

Education/Credentials
BS counseling, MSW social work

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.