Dads have a major role in children’s developmental stages. Having a father figure is a support key for kids to perform in life, reach the academic goals, and have a full life. Unfortunately, not everyone can bear the role of a father. Many kids are left to wonder “why does my dad hate me?”
Paternal love is essential for every stage of a child’s development. When children enter their teenage years, this is the most important point in their lives where they need father figures.
When a dad expresses his love, his child starts developing a unique set of traits. These characteristics can only be imparted if proper care is undertaken on the father’s end.
However, the same holds for the opposite case as well. If your dad fails to bring about feelings of love and care, you will unfortunately lack adequate psychological growth.
If a dad goes as far as plainly hating his children, it will predispose them to a painful life.
An acceptable level of paternal love requires your dad to put in extra efforts to provide as much as he can.
However, you might have observed that there are a growing number of cases where a father lacks emotional responsibility.
This can result in an insensitive and harmful relationship that fails to foster affection, warmth, and intimacy.
In some cases, a father might not even realize that he has started detesting his child. Nevertheless, if you start observing more cautiously, it can be effortlessly evident that such feelings are being nurtured.
4 Major Reasons Why Your Dad Hates You
There are numerous reasons why your dad dislikes you as his son or daughter. The variables that take part to make such an impression can be unimaginable to mention.
For example, the reason why a dad hates his 14-year-old boy may be different from a dad who hates his 29-year-old son.
Ages, maturity levels, educational background, dating life, financial situation, and neighborhood are some valid reasons, to name a few.
The solid and exact answer that you look for when you ask the internet “why does my dad hate me?’ can’t be given as we don’t know the whole picture.
In a systemic approach of family therapy, a therapist may consider the whole ecosystem of where you live, your relationship with people around you, and how you interact with your surroundings.
Before a therapist can help you solve the problem, he or she will dig deeper to find the core problem. This can take more than two sessions of therapy.
One thing you need to understand is when your dad feels hatred towards you, it is likely that the hatred itself is not the real problem. It can be just one of many symptoms that later grows into a big problem.
It’s also worth mentioning that it’s possible that you’re just a black sheep for his emotional crisis and you’re just the only person at whom he can point fingers and express his stress.
Although there are numerous reasons if you lookup for the reason why your dad hates you, the four main reasons are the following:
#1 He Is Disturbed By Your Presence
A father usually has to deal with a lot of things at the same time. This makes it difficult for him to manage his own life.
If your dad finds himself occupied all the time, he might start considering you as a distraction or a source of the disturbance.
Slowly and gradually, this subtle feeling would intensify over time and come to a point where your dad will start getting annoyed whenever you come close to him.
Your dad might have unresolved trauma in his life. If this is the case his abilities to fulfill his responsibilities will be severely limited due to this incapability to perform.
People connect things. If your presence is tied to unpleasant experiences in his life, he may act hostile around you.
#2 He Expects You To Be Flawless
The second major reason is that your dad tends to expect nothing but perfection from your side.
Moreover, that perfection is defined and evaluated by a predetermined set of values.
Your father may have picked up these values and morals long before your birth.
To see you as an ideal offspring, he wants you to follow some set of rules that he defines.
If you do not replicate his choices and attitudes, you will be considered as someone who failed to achieve success.
Your independent actions are usually misinterpreted as defiant or disrespectful. We, as humans, inherently want our personalities to live on even after we have departed this life.
If you are inclined towards opposing standards and principles, you can no longer fulfill this intrinsic desire your dad tries to impose on you.
#3 He Was Handled Similarly
In most cases, if a father did not enjoy the desired levels of love and affection in his childhood, he is more than likely to do the same for his children.
It has been scientifically proved that the parenting style is highly influenced by how a person was treated in his or her childhood.
If your dad experienced strictness and inflexibility during his time growing up with his parents, he will probably be extending a similar behavior and parenting style towards you.
Back in the days when your dad was raised, children could not enjoy increased levels of liberty and independence regarding relationships, schooling, belongings, friends, and much more.
As he spent his childhood and teenage in a relatively restricted environment, he will unconsciously try to replicate this on you.
#4 He Considers You A Liability
Being a parent can be exhausting and tiring.
If you come to think of your parents’ lives before you were born, you might realize how much of a responsibility you are for them.
Increased obligations after the birth of a child can frustrate some parents up to a point that they start hating this lifestyle.
It takes away all their freedom and independence.
Having the liberty to do whatever a person wants can be strikingly pleasant and addictive.
However, after your birth, your dad lost his liberty and could not really go for a boy’s night out with his colleagues or to watch a football match with his high-school friends.
This can be infuriating and even if he does not purely admit it. Becoming a parent was the point where this shift took place.
Many people do not consider how a child can be a life-changing experience.
Some couples can bear the new life as parents while other couples would be better without kids.
Whether we like it or not, numerous couples have kids as an effort to keep the relationship intact.
The newborn kids were expected to act as a ‘glue’ in their parents’ relationship. And when the kids fail to keep the relationship alive, the parents tend to put them to blame.
When this goes unnoticed and untreated, parents will disregard their kids and consider them as liabilities.
#5 Mental Issues
Mental issues may also be the reason for physical, mental, and verbal abuse. Your dad may suffer from one of mental illness and he isn’t aware of it.
Several mental problems can affect his behaviors, cloud his judgment, quickly change his moods, and distort his reality.
The typical mental problems that can affect your dad’s behavior can vary from bipolar disorder, depression, schizophrenia, to trauma-related disorders.
Your dad can perceive things differently than normal people and this initiates a set of events where he eventually makes you believe that he hates you.
If you are worried that your dad may suffer from any mental illness, it’s better to consult professionals and seek their help.
Wise people will not blame others.
At the moment, you may think that you’ve done nothing that can trigger your dad to hate you. You’re may also be thinking that you’ve done enough for your father and you don’t deserve to be treated this way.
Well, that may be correct, maybe wrong.
Dealing with other people requires individuals to look at themselves first, and then others. When it comes to disputes between family, you can’t just cut the family ties and go about your day.
To grow as a better individual and perhaps, a parent yourself one day, you need to learn to ponder upon yourself.
Without pointing fingers, you ought to look back and think about what you did in the past and how you interacted with your dad. Do this to the extent that you find the slightest possibility that it was partly your fault.
Once you’ve found out the possible reason why your dad hates you, do not delay to apologize and mend the connection.
It’s not an easy task, I know.
But, knowing that you’re willing to look up for the reasons why your dad has such hatred towards you on the internet, I bet you’re capable of asking first for forgiveness. Even if you’re not at the most fault.
When you already apologized, your part is over. It’s now your dad’s turn to take action. From now on, whatever your dad does, you better do not hold grudges.
Forgiveness will ease your way to do the next steps below on dealing with a hateful dad.
I don’t say that you should forgive everything he does as a mean to let him do whatever he wants.
No, the goal is for you to have a peace of mind.
What Do You Do When Your Dad Hates You?
Even though it may seem like your dad really hates you, mostly this feeling is not as strong as it appears.
Typically, fathers are not as expressive as mothers. This is what makes a lot of children think that their fathers do not love them.
You have to realize that your dad probably has a good reason for objecting to your decisions and choices.
Of course, he might be missing the other half of the picture, but you need to make sure that you are not the one causing any kind of disturbance in this sensitive relationship.
If you believe that your dad hates you, it’s better when you try to understand your father’s concerns and address them as appropriately as you can.
Discuss with your dad and try not to accuse him of everything that went wrong.
If your dad starts hating you, it will not be able for you to solve this problem on your own. In such a situation, my advice is to get your dad’s confidants to chime in.
This will enable you and your dad to solve your differences much more suitably. Trusting a family friend is even better as he/she can easily comprehend and understand the problems you are facing.
Having said that, here are 7 best practices when you have to face a dad who hates you.
#1 It’s Okay To Say ‘No’
It can be heartbreaking when your parents, especially your dad, hate you. For some children, dads are what they have left in this world.
If this is the case with you, you need to learn to say ‘no’.
Rejecting a request or refusing to do something from your dad is not an act of obedience when he is directing you to unethical matters.
Always saying “yes” to every request your dad makes will put you in trouble and further damage yourself.
Even though you love your dad and want to give an impression of a lovely and obedient kid, this is not the correct way to do it.
Learn to say ‘no’ to your dad, especially if you don’t feel comfortable doing his request.
This doesn’t mean that you cannot obey your hateful father. But, there are times and places to fulfill your dad’s requests.
For example, if your dad needs an assistant on fixing the car, doing grocery shopping, or driving to a doctor’s appointment, there is nothing wrong with helping him.
A negatory answer can be your choice in requests that will harm you or your dad if it were to be done. For example, buying liquor while knowing that his behavior is getting worse with alcohol.
You should reject any morally-wrong request that comes from your dad.
#2 Engage Yourself To Things That Matter To You
The world is big and you are in it.
Why don’t you do things that you like and make yourself feel better? There are thousands of things you can do either from home or outside with the community.
Developing a connection with other people can benefit you greatly and see the world from different points of view.
By connecting with people, you will see that there are more than your dad. Many people love you as you are.
Engaging in things that matter to you will improve your self-confidence, boost your productivity, and eventually allow you to have a better life.
I don’t have to tell you how much better you can feel when you focus on the positivity around you.
Yes, your dad hates you for whatever reasons he can come up with. But you are an individual who deserves radiant life.
You can’t achieve this if you surround yourself with questions about why your dad hates you and try to come up with answers. You will miss out on so many good things in your life!
Taking care of yourself and show love to the person in the mirror is the first step to accept yourself and don’t think about those haters.
#3 Your Dad Does Not Define You
He might have raised you. He might have nurtured you up to some point. Even he gave you a roof to sleep in and a full belly to be comfortable.
He has taken so much part in your life that you can’t shake him out of yourself. You start to think that his hatred affects you deeply.
But he is not you.
You are a different person and your dad is an individual that happens to be your biological father.
His attitude and life choice are his own. If he chooses to hate you his offspring, then it’s on him. You don’t have to return the hate.
Or even worse, pass it down to your own children.
Take the liberty to be a father that you do not have. Be a loving father yourself when you grow up and decide to have kids.
Be a better dad to your kids than your dad was to you.
Crave your own mark on those people around you and be the best version of yourself. I know it’s not easy because you’re surrounded by much negativity in the household.
But even the chance is just 1%, I would like you to try and cut whatever transgenerational trauma in your family that caused your dad to hate you.
#4 Accept Him As He Is
Some kids are persistent and that’s a good thing.
If you’re hoping that your dad will change someday, that’s a good hope to have. It keeps you motivated and helps you maintain the small love within the relationship.
But, you need to accept him as he is right now.
Do not accept his potential as he may never get there. He may be a loving and caring dad in the future if you do this and that.
But it may also never happen.
Accepting his potential may not be the best move when dealing with a hateful dad. You never know if he will ever be able to be nicer to you or treat you even worse.
Expecting his potential as a loving father may leave you wounded and disappointed. That’s why it is better to welcome your dad as a person who indeed hates you.
#5 Focus On Yourself
No one wants anybody to hate them. No children want their parents to hate them. For anyone with a healthy mind, receiving hate from important figures in their life is disturbing.
Your dad is one of those figures and the fact that he hates you can activate negative emotions. Later, those emotions will leave you unhappy and depressed.
Before that happens, indulge yourself in things you like. Focus on improving your competence, growing your personality, acquiring a new set of skills, and giving yourself a treat.
It’s a good time to learn that happiness is not defined by whether people like you or not. Especially when you are not on the faulty side.
Busy yourself by doing things you enjoy or surrounding yourself with people you like.
See how your emotions will improve and how you are now able to deal better with negativity that comes from your father.
#6 Speak Positively
When someone throws negative words at you, it’s natural to feel the urge to return the favor by saying worse words (or minimum, equal words) to the original speaker.
However, this is not how you keep the situation calm and under control.
When your dad is expressing his hatred towards you using profanity, do not get triggered. Maintaining your anger and staying calm is the best move you can do.
Do not cut your dad in the middle of his hateful speech and don’t let him get under your skin.
Once he’s done, quickly change the direction of that conversation into positive matters such as your accomplishment today, the good weather outside, the dog that happily runs into a puddly, or the food that you’re bringing for him.
When having a conversation with a dad who hates you, it will end up much better if you take the wheel and steer the conversation.
Pick a positive topic and starts from there. Do not take part in his words when he says he hates you.
When he starts acting uncontrollably, it’s time for you to leave the room and let him cool down.
#7 Forgive, But Never Forget
Some wise people may say “forgive and forget”. However, my approach to such troublesome parents is ”forgive, but never forget”
It’s your choice whether you forgive your dad and say it out to him or just do it inside yourself. The important thing is you must forgive. Even though he doesn’t return the favor.
Forgiving your dad who hates you will enable yourself to go further without being chained. To forgive and move on are preferable for you to have a better and happy life with your dad less involved in it.
Do not forget what he’s done to you as this can be a valuable lesson on ‘how to NOT be a father’.
Your painful experience can keep you on a straight path in terms that you remember what and how your father was.
This can further save you down the road in the future. Once you have your own family, you can identify the behavior when your dad starts showing symptoms of other hateful episodes.
Is It Normal To Dislike Your Dad?
Parents-child relationships can be tough at times. For you to dislike your dad is not common, but it is not abnormal.
At some point, people do understand why you hate your dad when you’ve been living in circumstances where your rights as a child is not fulfilled by your parents.
Abandonment, abusive upbringing, or forced way of living can be one of the valid reasons why you dislike your dad. Is that normal? In such circumstances, your feeling is completely justified.
Feeling disconnected from your father, being hurt by your dad either physically, mentally, or verbally, getting not enough love and affection from your dad can significantly impact you as a child.
Knowing that your dad hates you and you return the favor by disliking him may seem fair. But that doesn’t always have to be the way you choose. You should not carry around the hatred you feel towards your dad all your life.
For one, holding hatred can negatively impact your mental health and disrupt your day to day performance.
If you believe you carry the weight of hatred towards someone, it is better to seek therapeutic interventions.
How Do You Deal With a Toxic Dad?
Wanting to avoid any negative environment is humane. To be fair, avoiding any awkward moments is normal, especially when you know that your dad will be more incredibly toxic at any family gathering.
One important thing to remember when dealing with such a toxic dad who hates you is to stop pleasing him and start making your own choices and decisions.
Be careful with what you share with your dad since he may use it as a means to hurt you. Accept your dad as he is and don’t try to change him. You may waste your entire life dedicating to change your dad and it’s going nowhere.
Anytime when your dad starts giving signs of toxic behavior or statement, exit the room immediately. That’s the reason why it is important to have an escape strategy from difficult situations when your dad is a toxic individual.
Avoid reasoning with your dad as this will escalate the already worse situation. Do not expect your dad to understand your point of view. This can exhaust you and make you even sadder and stressed.
Dealing with toxic dad requires strategies and mindfulness. Ask help from your support system when things get worse and make sure that you take care of yourself well.
Final Thoughts: You Are Enough
If you feel like your dad is not considerate enough to tune in to your emotional needs, you need to do something about this -but if only you want to alleviate the problem.
It is important to keep this in mind that if your father starts hating you, it will not be possible for you to transform his feelings overnight. Both you and your dad will have to put in sincere and truthful efforts to get things back on track.
Dealing with a dad who hates you is stressful and it can take a toll on your emotional health. This can also weaken your physical function and put you in a worse health situation.
It is important to take care of yourself and not lost in your effort to fix the relationship. You are enough and you don’t need to bear the responsibility to earn your dad’s love. If he wants to hate, it is his right.
Your happiness is not tied to whether or not your dad loves you. At the end of the day, you cannot please everybody and still have a sane mind.
Important is that you keep going like a good person and be responsible for yourself. Get enough rest and sleep, start exercising, and connect with positive people.
Get support, have fun, and give yourself more of what you need.