narcissistic fathers

Growing up, was your father really charismatic? Was he the life of the party? Did people think he was really cool or great or handsome? Did he think he was all of those things?


If you said yes to any of those questions, you may have been raised by a narcissistic father. I have talked about the topic of having a narcissistic mother in a previous video, but many wrote in asking about fathers, so in this week’s Real Love Revolution video, I will cover:

  • Behaviors of a narcissistic father
  • Difference between selfish and narcissistic
  • The impact narcissism in fathers has on daughters
  • How you can heal from having a narcissistic father
  • How to NOT date a version of your father



Understanding the behaviors of narcissistic fathers is important to determine if you had one. Some behaviors include being self-centered, vain, and having an inflated sense of self-importance. He also uses people to achieve his own ends, which is something you most likely witnessed. He expected everyone to cater to him. He was the life of the party – everyone wants to be around this type of narcissist, and he loved to be in the spotlight. Very tender about criticism and would either cut people off if they criticized him or he would try to hurt them back. If he got angry, his rage was very scary. Another quality is an inability to be sympathetic to you as his daughter. He was more concerned with how other people felt about him than how his own children felt about him.

In some ways, as the daughter of a narcissistic dad, your value depended on what you could provide for him to brag about to his friends. You were something to prop up his ego and make him feel better about himself. There’s no way you could really get what you wanted from him (like love and a healthy amount of attention and adoration.)

Narcissism is a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration and a lack of empathy. This begins in early adulthood. If we’re getting clear about the difference between a selfish father and a narcissistic father, a narcissistic father does not have the ability to empathize with his child, and he really believes the rules don’t apply to him. It can be really depressing to be raised this way. It does impact your dating life and who you attract. Once you’re not living at home anymore, you end up internalizing his criticism and directing that negativity to yourself. You can develop a deep rooted fear of being left in a romantic relationship because down deep somewhere in this narcissistic relationship, you’ve internalized that you don’t really deserve love, affection, loyalty, etc.

So, let’s move on to healing. Once you become an adult, you might want to consider getting into therapy as it is the fastest way to your healing. Coming to terms with what you experienced as a child is crucial to moving on. Journaling is another way to fully understand not only how your father hurt you in the past, but how his narcissism is affecting your life today. If your dating life has been hell, you need to ask yourself these three questions to understand where you might be having a transference: Who does this person remind me of? Where have I felt like this before? And why is this behavioral dynamic familiar to me?When you answer those questions, you’ll be able to see that you are being drawn to narcissistic men because they remind you of your father. In your unconscious mind, that may equate to them being partner material. Consciously changing that association is what creates space to have a different experience. For the full list of tips, click the button below to download the Checklist: 5 Essential Dating Tips for Daughters of Narcissistic Fathers now.

Know that you have permission to cut off anyone in your life who is too toxic. If you have a parent who is abusive or a narcissistic father who is using you for his narcissistic supply, your job is to protect you.

Drop me a comment here on the blog and let me know what resonated with you after watching the video above.

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Thanks for watching, reading, and sharing!
And as always, take care of YOU.

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  1. I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels an empty void inside of my heart even when I’m next to my father…I thought I was the only one who felt mistreated and unheard most of the time…The self hate, the constant feeling of not being pretty enough, good enough, worthy enough…I hope I’ll have the strength to not give to him the thing that he wants from me…I need to protect myself.

    1. You are not alone. I see you Esther, and you matter. I am witnessing you with compassion and holding space for your healing. Thank you for being here.

  2. I always had a somewhat close relationship with my father until I was in my 20s. I met my husband at the age of 22 and that is when my relationship with my dad went downhill. He acted very jealous and tried to control my every move, every decision and who I was dating. He was rude and disrespectful, and sometimes cold to my husband. My husband and I dated for 6 years and then we got engaged. We are now married for 2 years and my father will not accept our marriage. He tries to control every decision my husband and I make even to what kind of house and where we purchased our house. He is currently not speaking to us. I am in therapy trying to work through the damage that my father has caused during the last 10 years and to heal the hurt.

    1. I am so sorry to hear about your painful situation, Michelle. I am happy to hear you are in therapy. I believe that once you get married your spouse needs to become your FIRST family and your family of origin must come second so your marriage can thrive. Your father is obviously having issues with you growing up but the truth is that him being in your life is a privilege NOT a given. I say limit contact (when he decides to start talking to you again) with the clear message that if he cannot accept and respect your husband AND your choices the contact will remain limited and then stick to it, mama!!

  3. Wow u really helped me to figure out why I always end up in relationships with narcissists.
    I have dated 4 narcissists up to now and currently I’m struggling with the last one.
    Thank u for making awareness.
    Now I vaguely understand what it is like to have a healthy relationship.
    I’m 31 years and hope i ‘ll be able to overcome all my worries.
    Thank u so much for all ur valuable videos.
    God bless u.

  4. Torri Cole, I can’t thank you enough for posting this video and blog.
    I’ve gone to years and years with counseling, but still feel like I grief the fact I’ll never have a “father” in my life.
    I just have one question, how do I break up with him? I’m so scared of the regret I may feel, but all he ever does is cause distress in my life, and I don’t want that for my future children.

    Thank you so much

    1. Jade,
      Since I don’t know your situation -it is hard for me to weigh in. If in your heart you know he is not right for you then slowly but surely make a plan to end the relationship. You can do it. Part of our healing journey is to re-parent ourselves with love and kindness and it sounds like you are doing a great job. Sending you strength and courage to choose you (and your future babies 😉

  5. Wow! This video hit home with me. I emailed it to a couple of family members. How synchronistic was it that the sirens came (@18:00) just when you were saying to basically, save yourself and get out??? “Your job is to protect you.” Timing couldn’t have been better for the sirens and for my family members’ situation. Thank you so much!

    1. Cindy Lou 😉
      You are so welcome! I am glad the video and content resonated with you and am sending you strength for your healing journey. I’m so glad you are here with me. xo

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