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How to Deal With a Selfish Father: 5 Helpful Tips

Dealing with selfish people is always tricky and exhausting.

It’s even more complicated when it’s someone close to you, especially if it’s a parent, in this case, a father.

A father is expected to be a reliable support in your life, not a selfish person.

Why is your father selfish? Because he is not parent material, he is narcissistic, egotistical, and overly controlling.

angry son and father

All of this can be extremely painful for you.

Maybe it even left some consequences on you because you grew up in such an environment, and perhaps you still live in it.

The consequences are probably poor self-confidence, insecurities, and self-blame.

Let’s see what the characteristics of a selfish father are, but also offer some solutions on how to deal with him.

4 Obvious Signs of a Selfish Father

Selfish people care only about what they want without any thought for the needs or wishes of other people. 

In what way is your father’s selfishness manifested? 

Here are 5 clear signs that your father is selfish:

1. Your Father is Narcissistic

Many people think that selfishness and narcissism are the same but they are not.

Narcissism is selfishness on steroids.

We can’t imagine how hard it is if your parent is a narcissist.

Narcissists like consistently having everything around them and always being the center of attention.

They have a superior value complex and think they are better than others.

Parenting requires the exact opposite behavior.

Parents are expected to balance their wishes and needs with the child’s needs, especially when they are young.

You have a feeling that your father never did that.

This kind of person doesn’t want being a father to ruin his life.

He always wanted everything to revolve around him, his work, and his career.

You probably had to move a lot when you were little because of his job.

2. Your Father is Immature

Selfish father

Not everyone is ready for the role of father.

Some may be unprepared but adapt, while for others, it becomes a problem.

Maybe your father was a carefree, party-outgoing guy who suddenly had a child who depended on him.

From guy to father was a massive transition to your dad.

If you have early childhood memories of your father not being around because he had to go to the pub or the games, it is clear that you are dealing with an immature father.

Your father may not even like being a dad because he thinks it’s too demanding.

And now that you’re grown up, you need the advice and support of a stable father figure, and that’s not your father.

Can an immature father adequately prepare a child for life?

He may still have continued to be the manchild he was for his whole life.

Maybe this kind of immature father made you feel embarrassed.

Such an immature father probably asks you for money on loan and never pays you back. 

He’s too lazy to work anyway.

3. Your Father is Over-controlling

Anyone who has dealt with over-controlling parents knows how troublesome that is.

This excessive control starts in childhood.

We can single out fear and perfectionism as the main reasons parents control their children too much in childhood.

It is logical for parents to fear for their children, but if the fear is excessive, it can lead to extreme control.

Such parents will keep their child under a glass bell and will not allow the child to live his own life.

If your father was like that, you probably didn’t go out much as a teenager.

Such a father can be why you don’t drive a car now. 

You have a license, but you don’t drive because your father kept nagging you when you started driving and made you afraid of traffic.

As for perfectionism, you know those parents who want their children to be the best at everything.

In this way, they fulfill some of the wishes they may not have achieved.

Such parents start early to burden their children with responsibilities.

If your parents are such perfectionists, you probably spent your childhood taking language lessons, learning to play the piano, and being a member of all the sports clubs.

A perfectionist father can create a rivalry between siblings by comparing them.

So that if you have a broken relationship with your brother or sister today, that can be one of the causes.

But now you are grown up, and your father still wants to control your life.

He probably doesn’t like your fiancee or rolls his eyes when you mention your career choice.

You feel your father doesn’t want you to be independent because he can no longer control you.

4. Your Father is Too Traditional

son and father conversation

This is not necessarily a bad thing.

We have nothing against traditional education, but it can lead to misunderstandings.

A father who is too traditional with a strict upbringing thinks he is doing good for the child, but he can also be selfish in that role.

Such a father sees himself as a provider, a strong figure who does not deal with emotions.

For emotions with children, there is a mother.

The traditional father is convinced that what he thinks is right and knows what is good for you, but he only hurts you emotionally by behaving in such a way.

Was your father always too serious, angry, and negative?

We think it’s selfish not to share emotions with your children, and you probably agree.

How to Deal With a Selfish Toxic Father? 5 Tips

You probably concluded a long time ago that your relationship with your father is toxic because of his selfishness.

It’s time to do something about it because you feel it’s holding you back for too long.

Here’s what you should do:

1. Reevaluate Your Situation

How damaged is your relationship with your father?

It may seem that there is no going back and that his selfishness has completely destroyed your relationship, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

It may still be possible to fix your relationship.

You don’t want to wonder if you did everything possible to repair your relationship when your father is no longer around.

2. Recognize Generational Differences 

Generation wars have always existed between children and parents.

You probably already hear your father say the famous “Back in my days.”

So don’t be surprised if your father doesn’t understand that you want to live a nomadic freelance life and travel the world.

You are not burdened with material things. Instead, you want to gather experiences in life.

Your father may not understand it initially, but he mustn’t restrain you in your decisions.

3. Set Healthy Boundaries

Healthy boundaries are necessary with everyone, even with one’s own father.

If he tries to control you, manipulate you, and guilt trip you, you must have a defense mechanism.

That mechanism is boundaries.

For example, if your father has comments about your fiancee, it’s up to you to make it clear to him that you end the conversation immediately.

Or if he makes you uncomfortable in any way, don’t feel bad about leaving the room.

4. Don’t Let His Criticisms Affect You

Sad woman sitting on sofa at home deep in thoughts

This is extremely difficult because the father is the one who should love and support us, although sometimes this is not the case.

You are a person for yourself, and you walk your own path in life, don’t let your father stop you.

Develop yourself and your personality.

Invest in yourself, your education, mental and physical health, and similar.

A man who is mentally strong and happy with his life cannot be swayed by the comments of others, even if his father is on the other side.

5. Distance Yourself From Your Father

This is the most difficult, but sometimes it is, unfortunately, necessary.

If your father is so selfish and toxic that he seriously interferes in your life, you may feel great relief when you distance yourself from him.

Now we come to a problem.

You might have done it a long time ago, but you don’t have the possibility to do so.

You still live under your father’s roof and depend on him financially.

As much as you hate them, finances are the road to independence, so you have to start earning your money.

That way, you will be able to fight for your independence and not have to put up with a selfish father anymore.

It may sound scary, but leaving home and moving to another city are significant life changes.

But these are all steps you must take so that the next day you will be grateful to yourself for doing so today.

To Conclude

“Good parenting gives headaches, but bad parenting gives heartbreaks”

Shiv Kera

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