He is NOT your father

A friend of mine wrote a letter to her younger self. It was touching. As I read I thought to myself, "wow, i learned those lessons too". In fact a couple of times I said "I need to re-learn those lessons". At the end of the letter she goes on to talk about one day being married. She reminds herself "he is not your father and deserves all of your trust". WHAT!?! Excuse me? That was beyond profound to me.  After weeks of searching for a few answers, there is was and it spoke ever so clearly to me. I am literally in tears.
I have heard of those who conveniently use their parental issues to ascribe how they approach their intimate relationships.  " My dad was this way. My mom used to do this and that's why I am the way I am". The skeptic in me would think, "yeah right". I never thought how influential our parents, their habits and flaws are when it comes to dating. but this morning, those words jumped off the screen into my chest and grabbed just a piece of my heart and tugged on it for a bit. It's still tugging.
So you mean to tell me that what I have witnessed my father do (good or bad) can affect the way I select a man? Change the way I look at men? Influence the way I speak and act towards men? You have go to be kidding me!

Berkeley, California, psychotherapist Elayne Savage says familiarity is a big reason people may choose someone that resemble Mom or Dad as a partner."When you grow up familiar with a certain type of person, you're attracted to that same type of person because it feels comfortable, whether you like it or not," says Savage, author of "Breathing Room: Creating Space to Be a Couple." "That's what people mean when they meet a potential partner and say, 'It 'feels like I've known him my whole life. Evidence has also suggested that a parent's physical or intellectual traits may have some influence. I am baffled!

A while ago I wrote a blog "Previous Cats" and now that entire blog applies to parents too. "We owe it to our new partner (and ourselves) not to take out every infraction on them because of what someone else has done to you in the past."  This also means even if daddy was a cheater we can't automatically assume that our beau, husband, boo, boyfriend or whatever he is, is or will be a cheater. Just because mom (not my momma) was a hoe does not mean she is a hoe.

So those are the most drastic things but this actually needs to be applied in the small areas as well because those small things can turn into HUGE ones as times progress. Yes, if you have issues trusting your parent you will more than likely have an issue trusting your mate. Sucks I know but it's true.  If you have a hard time respecting your mother for whatever reason you might have issues respecting women in general.

Our parents are who we use as models, present or absent. They are the first we see, encounter and see in action. Although we look to them to set the standards if they are affecting your relationships in a negative way, drop that standard.
What I am learning is it takes a bold person to realize 1. they have totally misplaced anger,hurt and pain because of parental familiarity and 2. they are wrong for doing so.I have come to that place and I have become extremely determined to be different. What I am not saying: I will ignore red flags. What I am saying: I will NOT attribute my parents' behavior to the person I am dating. I will not look at him as the same person. He is NOT my father.