Understanding The Effects of Growing Up Without A Father

importance of a father

Welcome to yet one of my more inspired posts. Today the subject at hand is the effects of growing up without a father.  Whilst a lot of the primary effects should be fairly obvious the plan is to dig deeper into the secondary and tertiary effects, the ones that are not obvious.

I want to split up the conversation into two sections going forward

  1. Effects on boys
  2. Effects on girls

Whilst these are all complicated and interconnected topics it pays off to also respect the differences between them. If you still believe boys and girls are the same you are about 6 months of posts behind the eight ball here.


Effects on Boys Growing Up without a Father.

In most cases the scenario I am contemplating here is children growing up with an absent father. It may be directly removed from their lives through restraining orders or indirectly by threats shame and indoctrination but the effects to the children are still just as bad and they often don’t get to know the truth anyway.

boy grow without fatherFirstly it is common that boys are taught that they come from a defective father (as a way of explaining the situation and transferring blame) and once they put two and two together they make the connection that some of the badness must rub off onto them and make them the same.

There is also this narrative that constantly gets driven into boys that women can do anything and men are not needed.

My son came home from school in grade 2 telling me that he learned at school today that women can have babies without men.

The only result that can come from such wide scale shaming of boys is low self-esteem, low value, and low self-worth; whatever terminology you want to use.

There are also longer term effects. Boys who grow up in single family are put (too early) into protector roles for their mothers and if they are any good at it quickly learn that all women need the protection and will happily validate his existence in exchange for his service to them.

It is very common and it is very destructive. This is just one of the mixed message sent towards boys:  in its extreme it would be women are all powerful and don’t need men but your very existence is to serve us and we insist you do.

It’s no wonder that they grow up confused.

What’s happens to these boys when they do grow up can go either of two ways. The spectrum of possible outcomes exists within the two extremes below:

  1. He will idolize women as effigy’s of their mother who need protection (inadvertently using this trope to seek their own validation) [aka white knights]
  2. Ignore the need for a woman’s validation, treat her as an equal and let her protect herself. This usually leads to a case where relationships are viewed on a risk vs reward basis. Most of these men will go ghost to varying degrees. [aka MGTOW]

It should be pretty obvious to you by now which way most benefits the women of these situations. I have never heard of a women treating any man with respect for his opinions on gender equality.

It kind of like example number 1 above is the gynocentric extreme whilst example 2 above is the androcentric extreme.

There is a definite bias toward gynocentric in all western societies. It hasn’t always been like that, a thousand years ago women were still idolized but not on the basis of a false ideaology based on political power.

The men who chose path 1 above will be referred to below as white knights (because they decide to ride around saving women from themselves for a living).


Effects to Girls Growing Up without a Father

Girls will be placed in the same situation of thinking that they have come from defective stock hence must be somewhere defective themselves but they get given a lifeline through the storyline that women don’t need men.

girl sad without fatherProbably the biggest problem for girls (and this is also relevant to boys) that grow up without a father is that they never learn the fact that men are different to women, think differently, act differently, emotionally different, are biologically different, are motivated differently, have different needs and will not respond well to being treated the same as a woman.

If you disagree with the statement above that is because you are one of the abovementioned victims of the cover up.

These effects may begin during the school years but university culture will amplify the effect. Such a big gap in the fundamental knowledge about human nature will not bode well when to the time for a relationship.

Relationships can compound the problem and grow the gap especially if the barriers are up, communication is one way and self-importance (from the woman) is inflated by the male’s idolization of her.

Again a spectrum of outcomes could result. The extremes which bind the spectrum will be explained below (trigger warning):

  1. The more attractive young women will seek out the white knights and alpha males and jump from one man to the next as often as required to gather the most amount of emotional and material wealth (aka gym thots)
  2. The unattractive young women will band together and feel rejected from society and relationships seeking ways to ruin the fun for everyone else and bring everyone down to their level (aka social justice warriors, radical feminists)
  3. The intellectually successful young women embrace all the scholarships and grants thrown at them and throw themselves into work life putting all the relationship sagas to the side (until later).




If nothing else I just hope that this post has opened up your mind a little bit to the possibility that childhood experiences can shape your adulthood and negatively affect your ability to grow up as a whole person.

family fragilityFor some reason human nature is one dominated by suffering and experiences having negative affects rather than positive ones!

Have you ever met someone completely different to you, someone who’s life experiences all seem to become positive expressions of themselves. I have, it is a very foreign world, trying to relate with someone who sees the whole world with rose colored glasses on.  If you know someone like this spend as much time as you can with them, their enthusiasm is infectious and will rub off on you.

I haven’t made obvious the underlying moral of this entire post yet. Children inadvertently make adaptions to their psyche as a coping mechanism when trauma, pain or suffering is evident.

Example 1:  A girl grows up with a single mother who is under-responsible and submissive.  As an adaptation (or compensation over time) the girl develops the dominant side of the personality to provide the required direction.  This adaptation over many years becomes engrained in her and will become a personality trait.

This trait will carry on into adulthood and dominate her choose for a husband, she will most likely (unconsciously) seek a husband with submissive personality traits to compliment her dominant ones. Of course this all goes on subconsciously and whilst the complimentary personality traits may seem perfect on face value the underlying mechanisms are destructive to both people’s sense of independence and self-worth.

Example 2: A boy grows up with a passive aggressive mother and an emotionally unavailable father (very traditional setup). One of the results of his parent’s short-comings will inevitably be poor communication skills. Following on from that the adaption he will develop to compensate could be something along the lines of rebellion against the traditions closely followed by a drive to be heard and a drive to be self-sufficient (protecting himself from the same manipulation happening to him).

Whilst these traits were beneficial to survive throughout childhood and adolescence if not understood and respected they can cause a multi-generational loop (repeat of the disaster). If he doesn’t understand his personality trait adaptions, ignores them and finds a partner who compliments them history is repeated.  He comes a carbon copy of his father and she becomes a carbon copy of his mother.  How often do you hear that story playing out?

Please leave a comment below, suggest a topic or share your thought. I will leave you with some music to reflect on.

2 Replies to “Understanding The Effects of Growing Up Without A Father”

  1. Hey Remy:

    This post is a look at a very different world view than mine. I am so sad for you.

    I grew up with way too many parents. I had a mom, a dad, a step-mom, a step-dad, a grandpa (my mutual-admiration society buddy) and my grandma (my push-me, pull-you partner).

    They were all in my life in varying degrees. Every one had a very different way of walking and a different idea of how I was supposed to act. Talk about confusing!

    My major adaptation was a severe reaction towards anybody’s ideas/definitions of me (if they were bent on pushing them on me), a tendency to pay attention and listen to everybody’s opinion, and a decided preference towards thinking my own thoughts and defining my own self.

    As a kid, I always thought it was so unfair that I had six parents (plus a lot of opinionated relatives). How come I didn’t get just the regular one or two? THAT would have been a heck of a lot less confusing, I say.

    1. thanks for sharing netty,

      I have never heard anyone else tell me of a similar set up except for the shared family communities from the Torres Strait Islands.  They have had hundreds of years to work it out though.  Each child pretty much has an entire community of parent, sometime even to the point where they don’t really know where their biological links are.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *