I don’t think my father cares about me. He’s always in his room and almost never comes out. When he does come out he’s always on his phone and looks angry all the time. I behave really nicely and do good things but he still won’t talk to me. How can I get him to like me more? Do you think I did something wrong to make him not care about me and always be so angry?
Uncared For, 12
Dear Uncared For,
That must make you feel very hurt. You want a relationship with him, and he doesn’t want the same with you.
First of all, it may seem that he’s not interested in you, but he may not know that you want to spend more time with him. Tell him! Once he realizes that, he may change. If he doesn’t realize you want a relationship, he can’t do anything about it.
If he does know, but he still doesn’t spend time with you, realize it’s not your fault. He may have had a very stressful day, and is too upset. It’s not about you, it’s about what happened that day and how he reacts. He shouldn’t be so upset, but you cannot change your dad. He may feel powerless, or angry or insecure because of what happened.
The most important thing to realize is that it’s pointless to try to change your father’s behavior. Only he can do that. Now, I’m sure that’s not what you want to hear, but it’s the truth. My advice to you is to focus on the thing you can change, which is how you’ll react to how he treats you.
Focus on treating your father politely and with respect, no matter what. By showing your father that you respect him, you’ll have done your best to change the situation. And your dad will pay more attention to your considerate behavior.
And always remember: Though you may not be able to change the person, you can always change yourself!