A couple of months ago, I was in a really dark place. I had just moved back to Washington, DC with a new job and was visiting a mentor I had promised to catch up with. We started talking about cute things like how my new job was going, if I had found a place to stay yet, etc. I blinked and all of a sudden we were talking about men. As always one to keep it 100, I told him how I really felt about men (black men in particular): how I didn’t trust them, how I was afraid to get married and have kids, how dating just wasn’t in the air right now. He looked at me and said, “There’s a book I want you to read.”
The book was Whatever Happened to Daddy’s Little Girl: The Impact of Fatherlessness on Black Women and it forever changed my life. Growing up without my father’s consistent presence had such a deep and profound effect on my life that, before this book, I was convinced it wasn’t even there. Above all, I learned that growing up without Daddy in my formative years left me feeling like a part of me was missing. I was needy and insecure to say the least. In a chapter entitled, “Home Remedies,” the author Jonetta Rose Barnes gives some great thinking points on how she overcame her fatherlessness, and thus, feeling needy and insecure. But as Barnes says, “each person must craft her own remedy.” The following thinking points were the base and spice to my own home remedy of moving past neediness and insecurity. I hope you find use of them in your own.
1. Change Your Perspective
Being labeled “needy” implies that you’re missing an essential part of yourself to live a worthy life. Well, honey, listen here: you have everything you possibly need to survive and thrive on the inside of you. We act needy because we are searching for something we think we have lost. Even if you grew up without your father for whatever reason like I did, God makes no mistakes. You are not deficient or inadequate in any way because of it.
2. Real Recognizes Real
It’s better to tell the truth to yourself. Don’t be afraid to take a magnifying glass to your spiritual, physical and emotional health and see where you may have unhealthy habits. I felt like no one would love me unless I was the superstar daughter, friend or girlfriend. I did the most for people to love me without realizing I deserved to be loved and respected just because I am alive.
3. Don’t Be Afraid of What You See
It’s hard admitting that you have visible, public issues. But guess what? You’re so not alone. So be easy on yourself – don’t beat yourself up if you find some things you’d hate for other people to see. I encourage you to fight your way through to love and happiness. Don’t run away and hide from your opportunity find healing and wholeness.
I Want to Know…
Did you grow up without your father? (Barnes says fatherlessness can happen through death, divorce or abandonment).
Do you think fatherlessness has contributed to you feeling needy and insecure at times?
How do you think the 3 points above can help you overcome feeling needy and insecure?
Regal Resource: Whatever Happened to Daddy’s Little Girl: The Impact of Fatherlessness on Black Women, Jonetta Rose Barnes.