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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5823
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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How close should a relationship between an adult

This answer was rated:

How close should a
relationship between
an adult daughter(35)and her
father be? When is it
considered to be
"over the top?" Or
just plain needy on
the daughter's part?

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.

Fathers and daughters can have a variety of relationships that range from no contact (usually indicating a conflict of some sort) to very close. If the daughter is needy, that indicates that there is something wrong in the relationship or with the daughter's emotional needs.

A typical close father/daughter relationship can include physical closeness as long as it is not sexual in nature. Talking about everything is fine except sexuality after a certain age. Sexuality should be reserved to growing up discussions and never after this period of time. Sleeping in the same bed is a not appropriate, especially after the child begins to mature, and never without a female family member present, ever.

If the daughter is needy, it depends on what kind of needy type of behavior she is displaying. If she is asking for or pushing for inappropriate contact with her father, this may indicate a history of sexual abuse. If there is no history of abuse, then it is always the parent's responsibility to stop this kind of behavior and help find out what is causing it.

I hope this answered your question. If you want to provide more information, I would be glad to expand on this information. Please let me know if I can help any further.


I haven't heard from you. Do you have more questions or need clarification?


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
How would you handle snide remarks and digs from her when her father is not around?
I am married to him. There is no sexual abuse or behavior...she just has to be in his
presence at all times to the point of following him where ever he goes, dominating all
conversation with him. I can't even have a conversation with my husband when she
is around. I feel like she is trying to engage me in some kind of competition with her.

Is your husband trying to put a stop to her behavior? If not, that is where it needs to start. The daughter feels she has a special relationship with her father and if he is not stopping it, there is not reason for her to believe it is not real. And there is no reason for her to stop doing what she is doing. If your husband allows her to act out like this then it also confirms to her that you are an intruder. Because your husband is not putting your needs first, then he is sending a message to his daughter that she is first and you are not important.

If she makes comments at you, ignore her. You should move away from her as soon as you can. The less contact the better. If she is allowed to come into your home without your permission, put a stop to that right away. Tell your husband that you are changing the locks and getting new keys. He is not to give a key to his daughter. She has no right to be in your home without you being there. Outside the home, avoid her as much as you reasonably can. Do not see her without your husband being there.

If your husband will not deal with his daughter as he should and put limits on her behavior, then the two of you need to seek out counseling to resolve this issue.


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