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  • Writer's pictureErika Sardinha

The Love and Relationships Guide for Daddyless Daughters

Would you believe me if I told you I am a double daddyless daughter?

I know this sounds crazy, but it is the truth. I had two father figures in my life: one was physically present but emotionally absent and abusive, and the other, my biological father, was physically absent and unable to provide emotional support. So yeah, I am twice a daddyless daughter, and that has affected me in so many ways that I don’t even know where to begin.

Growing up with a father figure who is not actually there for you is a painful experience. And I wish more people would talk about how not having a relationship with certain people is a form of relationship, especially when it comes to deep bonds like family.

We may not even admit it or be estranged from them, but they are still there, hovering.

Because of the experience with both my absent fathers, during most of my life, I felt worthless, unlovable, and absolutely sure that everyone would eventually abandon me. Inevitably, I took all these feelings and limiting beliefs into my quest to find love. And that led me to date men who were emotionally or physically unavailable and made me feel... Can you guess? You got it right: Worthless and unlovable.

Here are a few examples of what I used to believe about myself and relationships:

  • Nobody loves me.

  • Guys only want me for sex.

  • Nobody will want to have a serious relationship with me.

  • I am so ugly! Who would want to date me?

  • They always end up leaving...

It took me ages to put two and two together, but eventually, I realized I was recreating relationships based on the interactions with my father figures and repeating very unhealthy patterns over and over again because of what my fathers, unwillingly or not, taught me. But you know what? I got out of the loop, and now I am here to share the exact process that helped me find and maintain a long-term, happy, healthy relationship. And the best part: I feel safe and worthy, and there is no fear of abandonment lingering.

I broke the process down into 5 steps to make it easier for you to apply.

  1. First, you want to explore and understand the beliefs you inherited from the relationship (or lack thereof) with your father figure. This part of the process is pretty simple: sit down, take a deep breath, ask yourself what you learned from your father, and let the thoughts flow. Ideally, write them down in a journal.

  2. Decide what you want to believe now about love and relationships. Considering all the beliefs you assimilated, are there any beliefs you want to maintain? What new beliefs do you want to focus on from now on?

  3. Identify all the actions/behaviors that don’t support the new beliefs. Yes, I said all actions. I see you, and I lovingly tell you: This is no time to hide; it is time to screen the behaviors that stem from your old beliefs and start adjusting. It's okay to do this bit by bit, of course, but if you feel super inspired by this post, by all means, go for it!

  4. Start taking the steps to act differently. You know what they say: if you want different results, you have got to be willing to make different choices. Really, that's how it works. From now on, your actions must support your new beliefs. Start acting like you are worthy and lovable, and see your love life change!

  5. Get grounded and get support: Since you are trying to change old programming that has been a part of you for decades, be prepared to find some (if not a LOT) of resistance. Journaling and meditation are probably practices you already explored, so I would advise you to use these practices intentionally as a tool to navigate this process. Additionally, you can always get support. I mean, what we're talking about here is some deep work, so it's only beneficial that you get some help with that.

As a survivors coach, and a daddyless daughter myself, I would love to support you in finding and nurturing a healthy relationship. If you'd like that, please reach out to me at

Remember: Being a daddyless daughter has affected the way you view and experience relationships, and that is perfectly normal. The good thing is that you can always change things around, and start taking action today. By following the process I personally used, you will be 5 steps away from having a healthy relationship, not only with your current or future partner but with yourself. I wish you the best of luck with that!

One last reminder: You are worthy because you were born worthy, so you're worthy of a healthy, loving relationship too.

Love and light,


Did you like this post? Then you're gonna love this one: 5 Fundamental Rules on How to Love when you didn't have the best examples growing up.


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