"I need to know your parent’s zodiac sign, so I know how deep your childhood trauma goes"

From the time you’re born, you’re brainwashed by your parents to either be the ultimate version of them or sabotaged, so you never rise above them. Some parents have the tools and support system to raise you with love and understanding, but the majority are learning on the job and end up scaring you in ways that they’ll never know.

Depression, anxiety, fear, heartbreak, low self-esteem—no, I’m not talking about a Summer Walker album; I’m talking about humanity. Everyone is trying to figure out life, struggling to adult, and stumbling into mistake after mistake. Introduce a baby to this equation. Now you have a person who doesn’t know what the FUCK they’re doing responsible for a new life. Your parents weren't perfect when they had you, they aren't perfect now, they were just like everyone else, flawed people trying to figure out life while battling their own demons.

How they raised you didn't stick to a blueprint, they just went with the flow, and in the end it was an experiment that either worked or failed. You're either better for them or currently trying to heal from what they did to you, allowed others to do to you, and everything in-between. Today is going to be a hard read because I'm about to trigger a lot of you all who don't want to address the biggest problem that's keeping you from manifesting a better life-- child hood trauma.

My child isn’t on drugs and has this kind of job” is how parents judge success. In reality, you’re riddled with mental health issues and barely holding it together because you were raised by people who thought putting food in your mouth and a roof over your head was more important than emotional support.

Your mother didn’t want you to repeat her mistakes, so she was strict, verbally abusive, and overstepped boundaries because she didn’t trust you to not fuck up your life. The irony is that she can’t communicate “I’m trying to protect you” in a way where you two can have deeper conversations that create trust and understanding.

All this type of mother can do is yell and stay on the defensive because her own parents never taught her how to express her feelings in a non-confrontational way. Poor communication is inherited, not learned! You hide things, repress emotions, and are forced to navigate life without a solid support system because failing on your own is better than talking to a parent who will judge you and make you feel stupid for making even the smallest mistake.

I’ve met so many women who tell me, “I talk to my Mom every day, she’s my best friend… but I can’t tell her anything about my personal life because I know how she is...” how are you supposed to adult when you were raised by a person who judges you one day, supports you the next day, then gets back on her bullshit by the end of the week? Your mom is the best... but also kinda fucked up in the head. Think about how that kind of backwards parenting reverberates. You grow into the same kind of bipolar woman even when you swore not to be like her. You attract female friends or boyfriends who are hot and cold but you don't check them or walk away because you're used to people who love you being sometimey and cunty towards you. That's not healthy or sustainable.

The biggest damage I’ve seen in the thousands of emails women have sent me are Daddy Issues. I have so many receipts that show how fathers or lack of fathers really mindfuck a person in terms of creating healthy attachment bonds. “I grew up in a fucked up family and I’m fine,” are you? Let’s add up your relationships and see if you’re nailing it or just blind to the truth that your life would be much better if you had real support, love, and understanding. Yes, people can overcome hardship and trauma but the point is you shouldn’t have to in the first place.

Think about the lasting effects of toxic parenting. The closest person to you is also the villain in your story.

-How could you develop into a confident adult when the person that raised you constantly threw your past mistakes in your face to prove how dumb or incapable you were of living without their help?

-How could you gain common sense and healthy instincts when you’ve been second-guessed from the time you first started to walk?

-Is it a surprise that you’re horrible at communicating when you lived with a person who expected you to blindly follow commands and saw expressing your feelings as “talking back”?

Your parents may have been superheroes when you were a kid, but as you get older, you realize that they were messy as fuck. You need a license to drive a car, but any idiot with potent sperm or healthy eggs can literally bring a child into this world. Of course, the results are going to be disastrous more times than not.

No, G.L., my parents were great… but,” says the woman who is about to tell me all the ways her “great” mother or father secretly fucked their head up. It’s not always about the father who left or the mean mother; it can be the overbearing grandmother, the family member who sexually assaulted someone, and all kinds of family secrets you had to sit on as you pretended everything was alright. Over the years, these secrets and lies, and shameful events snowball. Next thing you know, you’re trying to date, and triggers are coming out because you never dealt with this hidden trauma. Maybe you have a child, and you realize you’re doing things that your mother did, and although you recognize it, you don’t even know how to stop the cycle. That’s how brainwashing works! You’ve been conditioned to mirror the same people that hurt you.

Friendsgiving has become almost as big as Thanksgiving because a generation of damaged adults no longer wants to sit and eat turkey with a table full of people that ruined them. PTSD is running rampant because it’s hard to ask for help when you don’t think there’s a problem or have been told you’re just being dramatic. You can rack up a therapy bill trying to release all the trauma that you pretend doesn’t exist. Or you can keep repressing those emotions and watch as your adult relationships suffer because you’re carrying baggage that a man’s love can’t fix. My solution is to confront your trauma in a way that frees you from the cycle. Today I’m going to break down 5 Steps to reverse the damage.

Step 1: The Daddy Problem

When you’re reading Men Don’t Love Women Like You again notice how I frame the relationship with your parents and position it as something you must overcome before you begin dating on a deep level. Whether you’re a man or woman, the relationship with “Dad” sets a crucial foundation. For males, their father is who they mimic, the blueprint on how to be a man. For women, their father is the first male they’ll fall in love with, the prototype in terms of affection and attention. With my own 4-year-old daughter, it warms my heart every time she randomly cuddles up next to me and tells me she loves me, and it’s not by happenstance that she does this; it’s because, from the day that my wife gave birth, I’ve verbalized and shown her that I love her. However, there are homes where the “L” word is rarely said or where the father isn’t around. Let’s run through a few examples of negative fatherly archetypes.

The Absentee Father: Some dads aren’t around at all due to death, prison, relocating, or because the mother chose not to have contact with him after you were born. The cliché saying goes, “you can’t miss someone you never knew,” but that’s bullshit. What happens with an absentee father is that your mind creates theories about who he was and then projects a fantasy “what if” world where you imagine what life would have been like with your real dad around. These fantasy thoughts are overwhelmingly positive when you’re a child. You can imagine that your father was some great guy who did all of these amazing things, and life would be so much better if he were around. When your mother pisses you off, you go to your room and lose yourself in the idea that your dad would see things your way and be a better parent than the mother that keeps getting on your nerves or punishing you for stupid things.

The problem with never knowing your father is that the fictitious stories you create around him become big shoes to fill. As you grow older and begin to interact with men, you expect them to match the image of the man you created, be this superman who can finally fill that void. You don’t know what love from a man looks like, so you look to books, TV, or stories from friends. I’ve noticed that women who say things like, “Men are supposed to do this and do that,” in terms of high treatment aren’t the ones who were raised with their dad or even stepdad. They base what a man is supposed to be off of secondhand ideology.

These ladies tend to be addicted to YouTube advice and relationship books because they’re trying to over-stand what makes a man tick and what to look for. But when they go out and actually date, they’re awkward and confused. They’re trying to find the dad they never knew in these men who can smell their desperation, who prey on their ignorance and sell them that fantasy. In the end, the chase for dad gets you played more times than not.

The Distant Father: Many of you know your father, you can probably call him right now if you wanted, but you weren’t raised by him. Distant fathers are those men who were around for a little while when you were young then moved on from your mother. They could also be the fathers who never wanted your mother but tried to be in your life as much as they could. To have a father who existed but wasn’t a real force in your life causes the most amount of damage in terms of the cases I’ve seen.

The problem with the distant father is that it’s his choice not to see you. How does it feel to know you weren’t actually wanted or to see him treat his new family or child better? He could have gotten more visitation when you were a kid or taken you more places as a kid.

Your dad could even rebuild that relationship right now. Your father did the bare minimum because you weren’t that high of a priority to him. As a result, his absence made you feel as if you weren’t good enough. Your mind whispers: He didn’t want you. If he did, he would see you more… He regrets having a baby with your mother… Maybe if you were born a boy, he would have treated you differently… all kinds of thoughts will swirl in your head until those thoughts become facts. Of course, when you see your dad, you don’t talk about the past or how he hurt you. You’re happy, and you enjoy that little time you do get to spend with him. It’s as if all is forgiven when “Daddy” comes around. But it’s not; you still feel hurt and rejected.

As an adult, your distant father manifests in the form of how forgiving you are when it comes to men. You want male love, you’ve craved it your entire life, and the moment a man comes in and gives you what your father didn’t want to give—unconditional love and affection, you fall hard. Your vetting isn’t that strong because you’re so consumed with getting boys to love you and accept you that you forget that it’s a two-way street where they need to earn their way into your heart. Those same men you fall hard for disappoint you or ghost you in the end, and that same feeling of “I’m not good enough for men, just like I wasn’t good enough for my father” hijacks your mind. In order to fix this trauma you need to

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