Relationship Advice Tips from Dr. Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.

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photograph copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.

Have you hoped and waited for some sign that your loved one will someday love you the way you want?

Have you put your life on hold waiting for that day, while ‘knowing’ that it’s never going to come?

Hope is a very powerful motivator and can sustain you through the worst and most grueling of times. But what happens when that hope fades and you are left with the reality that your wish to be accepted and loved for who you are is unlikely to be realized?

Is it worth hoping and waiting for love to come in a particular way from a particular person?

You can be angry at all the time you wasted investing in a hope and dream that is now defunct. It won’t change the past but may adversely affect how you approach the present and future.

You can pretend you never had the wish or disown it by making it stupid and childish. Denying your true feelings enables future disappointments to open the wound and sting you again.

Or you can acknowledge the loss and grieve while giving yourself a more realistic hope that has a good chance of becoming a reality.

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photograph copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.

Francesca’s unfulfilled wish to be loved and wanted by her dad made her stressed and insecure

All Francesca had ever wanted in life was to be loved by her father for who she was, his first born daughter. But what she got was attention for her excellent school grades, her hard work and taking on the deep religious faith that was central to his life.

Francesca wanted her father to tell her that she was the sunshine in his life, the fresh air in his lungs and the joy in his blood. She wanted to be loved for her laugh, her curiosity and her loyalty. But the most attention she ever got was for going to church and studying the bible. She hoped her silent suffering would soften her father’s heart and bring her his treasured love and affection. But she stayed lonely and silent in her suffering.

As a young adult Francesca broke away from the church in a last ditch attempt to find out if her father would love her despite her disavowal of the faith. He didn’t, causing her bitter disappointment and heartbreak.  Francesca hoped that her father would miss her when she left home and declare his love for her but she received only reprimands and disappointment that she had left the church.

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photograph copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.

Francesca puts her hope of being loved in a shrine and puts her life on hold

Years went by as Francesca eked out a living staying in touch with her father to keep the hope alive that one day he would show his love for her as his daughter irrespective of their different beliefs or ways of life. Francesca put her life on hold. She didn’t marry nor have kids. She had to keep herself for her father and that meant not having any conflicting attachments. She didn’t go to college and fulfill her potential to become a musician and painter. She lived in the most basic of ways, not caring about her apartment or appearance. After all, what was that worth without the unconditional love of her father?

Francesca finds genuine love within another family and realizes the folly of her hope

Loneliness and despair propelled Francesca towards  being loved by a friend and her family. The taste of pure love  was hard to swallow at first, but as she got accustomed to it Francesca began to notice the contrast between the kind of love her father offered and the more nurturing care that her friend’s family provided. The difference was so stark that Francesca felt her substitute family were more like parents than her own.

After a particularly hurtful exchange between them Francesca told her father how she hated the church coming between them and how much she wanted to be loved for being his daughter. She expressed her anger and bitter disappointment at the phony way she was loved. There was little response and certainly no unconditional love.

After that momentous event, Francesca began to grieve her loss.

She grieved the loss of the love of her father

She grieved the loss of hope that he would ever love her the way she wanted,

And she grieved the loss of time she had wasted putting her life on hold.

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 photograph copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.

Grieving a loss of a particular hope makes room for the hope to materialize in other ways

Grieving made room for Francesca to speak up about what she wanted and how she would like her relationships to be. She took charge of her life and set out her expectations so that there was a mutual understanding of how her new relationships would work. Francesca stopped waiting for her hopes to be magically fulfilled and is now actively engaged in making them a reality for herself. She is going to college, dating and experimenting in a new more equal relationship with her father. She also has a guitar and is writing songs about her experience as she learns to play it.


Copyright, Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.

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How to repair family relationships that get broken with repeated hurts


Disclaimer: this article is for informational and educative purposes only. Dr. Raymond is not responsible for any reactions you may have when reading the content or using the suggestions therein. Interacting with this material does not constitute a therapeutic relationship with Dr. Jeanette Raymond, Ph.D.