Emotionally Unavailable Parents: Know Their Habits, Signs, And Tips To Deal With Them

parents with mental illness

It can be difficult to comprehend why a parent would willingly push their children away. But there are many parents who don’t know they’re emotionally unavailable. They just think they’re normal. In this blog post, we will talk about the signs of emotionally unavailable parents. This way you can find out if your parents are like this.

Who Are Emotionally Unavailable Parents

Emotionally Unavailable Parents signs

As we mentioned, some parents don’t even know they’re emotionally unavailable to their children. People think that is what a parent should be like. But it is not true for some parents. They might love their kids, but they cannot always be there 100% of the time. Unfortunately, this can have a negative effect on your upbringing as well as your relationship with your parents.

Signs Of Emotionally Unavailable Parents

Emotionally Unavailable Parents negatives

There are certain signs you can watch out for to see if your parents are emotionally unavailable. If they exhibit any of the following behaviors, then it is likely that they are not able to be there for you in the way that you need them to be:

  • They’re always busy and never have time for their kids: This is a common sign of an emotionally unavailable parent. A lot of people say they’re busy, but some make the time for their kids while others don’t.
  • They have no problem being away from your family: If your parents like to go on vacation and leave you at home, it might be a sign that they are not available to love you.
  • They’re never really there for you: If your parents don’t listen when you talk to them, then they might not be in a good relationship.
  • They’re always critical of you: Parents who are always critical of their children might be doing it because they’re not emotionally available. Also, they’re looking for a way to connect with their kids, but it’s not the right way to do it.
  • They never show any emotion: If your parents are never emotional around you, then they might be unavailable. This could be because of past traumas that have prevented them from being emotionally available in the present.
  • They’re never emotionally available, even when they are around: This is a sign of an emotionally unavailable parent. If they are at home but they do not help you, this might be because their mind is wandering. Or it might be because something else is more important for them at that moment.
  • They change topics quickly: If your parents tend to skip from one topic to another, it might be because they’re not emotionally available. This makes it difficult for you to have a conversation with them and form a connection.
  • They’re always busy: If your parents are always too busy to spend time with you, this is a sign that they are unavailable.
  • They take things out on you: Parents who take out their stress on their children might be emotionally unavailable.
  • They give their kids the silent treatment a lot: If your parents do not talk to you for days, this is a sign that they’re emotionally unavailable. You might try to talk with them, but it will be difficult because you don’t speak.
  • They always criticize their kids or find something wrong with them: If your parents are always criticizing you, it might be because they are not emotionally available.

If your parents exhibit any of these behaviors, then you should try to build a relationship with someone else who can be there for you. This could be another family member or a friend.

Reasons For Being Emotionally Unavailable Parents

There are many reasons why a parent might be emotionally unavailable. Some of these include:

  • They had a bad experience with their own parents: If the person’s parents were not emotionally available, they might not know how to be there for their own kids.
  • They’re dealing with their own problems: Parents who are going through their own personal problems might not have the emotional energy to be there for their kids.
  • They’re not good at communicating: Some parents might not be emotionally available because they’re not good at communicating. They find it difficult to express their feelings and emotions.
  • They had a traumatic experience: If a parent has gone through a traumatic experience, they might not be emotionally available. This could be because they’re still dealing with the trauma or because they don’t want to remember it.
  • They’re not interested in forming a relationship with their kids: Some parents might not be interested in forming a relationship with their children because they’re really busy. They might see them as an extension of themselves and not someone separate.
  • They’re not good at showing emotions: Some parents might not be emotionally available because they’re not good at showing emotions. They find it difficult to express how they feel and this can make it hard for their kids.

There are many reasons why a parent might be emotionally unavailable, but the important thing is to understand that it’s not your fault. You can’t change your parents, but you can find people who will be there for you.

Regular Habits Of Emotionally Unavailable Parents

  • They don’t put the needs of their children over their own.
  • They are unable to accept responsibility for any mistakes they make. When people make mistakes, they get defensive. They think these small, unintentional mistakes are big deals. The result is that you end up forgetting what it was like before your parents made this mistake, and the only thing you remember is what happened after.
  • They can’t be vulnerable with their children or show any sign of weakness.
  • They don’t know they have a problem, so it’s hard for them to change anything about themselves. Parents often blame their children for any problem in the relationship. They are responsible, not the child.
  • They don’t talk about their feelings or acknowledge your emotions. Parents that are “emotionally unavailable” might say things like, “sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me!” They tell you not to feel sad when you’re hurt, not to feel angry when you’ve been mistreated.
  • They use guilt as a way of controlling their children.
  • Also, they are often emotionally distant and unavailable to their children, making it difficult for the child to develop a close relationship with them.
  • Their parenting style is inconsistent. Sometimes people will be loving and attentive, but other times they can be withdrawn or angry. This makes it hard for kids to figure out what’s going on.

Tips To Deal With Emotionally Unavailable Parents

Emotionally Unavailable Parents tips

Here are some tips to deal with emotionally unavailable parents:

  • Don’t wait for them to make the first move: You might feel like it’s your fault that they’re not around. But, this is not true! Don’t try to win their love because you’ll never be able to do so. Instead, find people who will be there for you. They might be your friends or family members.
  • Let them know that their behavior is affecting you: If you’re upset about the way they treat you, let them know. It will be hard to change how they do things. But you need to explain why this is a problem and what effect it has on others around them.
  • Accept that they might not be able to change: It’s important for you to accept the fact that your parents are not always available to help you. This is something they cannot change. Reality can affect you. But you need to accept it so that you can move on and find some people who will support you.
  • Talk to someone about your situation: If you’re feeling really down because of how your parents are, talk to someone about it. This could be a friend, family member, or therapist. They can help you understand why this is happening and what you can do to make things better.

It’s hard when your parents don’t give you attention. But it is better to accept their reality and try not to worry about it. With the help of others, you’ll be able to get through this difficult time in your life.

Negative Impact On Children

Emotionally Unavailable Parents tips

There are many negative impacts of emotionally unavailable parents. Some of these include:

  • You might think that your parent’s behavior is your fault: You might feel like you’re the cause for why they don’t pay attention to you. This can make it difficult for you because, in truth, there isn’t anything wrong with you! They need to be able to understand that they’re the problem.
  • You might feel insecure: When your parents don’t pay attention to you, it can make you feel very sad and upset. You might not be happy. Also, you might think that there’s something wrong with you, but it isn’t true. It makes you feel bad. This can cause insecurity in yourself.
  • You might feel like you don’t belong: If your parents are not around, it can make you feel worried about who is there for you. Sometimes people feel like nobody cares about them. People might also think that if something happened to them, no one would care. This can cause a lot of stress and worry in yourself which could lead to other problems.
  • You might feel like you can’t do anything right: When your parents are not happy, it can make you think that there is something wrong with you. This is because they don’t give any feedback or support to you. You need to understand that this isn’t true! You’re a good person and they’re just not able to see it.
  • You might compare yourself to other children: When you notice that your parents are always around for their kids, but not for you, this can make you worry and upset about the way things stand in front of others. Also, you might think that there’s something wrong with yourself and start comparing yourself to other people who have more support.
  • You might begin to feel angry: When your parents are not around, it can make you very upset and angry with them. It is normal to be upset. But it is important not to be too hard on yourself or others. You can move forward if you work hard and try your best! You don’t want this anger to stay with you for a long time.

It is important to understand the impacts of emotionally unavailable parents so you can get help. This will make you feel better. If you feel like talking to someone, please don’t hesitate to reach out. You are not alone in this. There are people who care about you and want to see you succeed!

Therapy Options For Emotionally Unavailable Parents

therapy options

If you are the child of an emotionally unavailable parent, there are a few therapy options that might be available to you:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: This type of therapy focuses on how your thoughts and beliefs contribute to your emotional state. You will learn how to change these thoughts in order to feel better.
  • Family Systems Therapy: In this type of therapy, the therapist will look at how your family functions as a whole. They will try to identify any problems that might be causing difficulties for you.
  • Psychodynamic Therapy: This type of therapy focuses on your past and how it is impacting your present-day life. You will explore why you might be attracting emotionally unavailable parents into your life.
  • Group Therapy: This type of therapy is for people who want to meet and talk about their issues with others. You might be able to get helpful advice from them that you can’t find anywhere else!

Helping Emotionally Unavailable Parents

Therapy To Treat Anxious Preoccupied Attachment

If you have a parent who is emotionally unavailable, there are some things that you can do to help them.

  • Talk to them about how you’re feeling: This is the first step in helping them become more available to you. Let them know how their behavior is making you feel and why it’s important for them to change.
  • Be there for them: If your parent is going through a tough time, be there for them. This doesn’t mean that you have to agree with everything they do, but it does mean that you should show them some support.
  • Make sure they know you’re available: Let your parents know that you are always available to talk or spend time with them. This will make them feel better and more connected to you.
  • Join a support group: There are many different types of support groups available for people who have emotionally unavailable parents. This is a great way for them to connect with others who are going through the same thing.
  • Talk to a friend: If your parent is not willing to get help, talk to a friend about what you’re going through. They can be a great support system for you and might have some helpful advice.
  • Get professional help: If you’ve tried talking to your parent and it’s not working, consider seeing a therapist or psychologist. They can help you work through your feelings with guidance from an expert!
  • Emotionally unavailable parents might make life difficult for their children, but it doesn’t have to be this way forever. You deserve love and happiness in your life, and with some effort, you can get it!


If you are a parent who does not have time for other people or who is not happy, it’s your fault. You need to take responsibility and change the way you think about yourself. It is important to ask for help. You can’t do this alone. But you need to ask for help from someone who knows how to help people with emotional unavailability. They can guide you in making changes. It may seem like a lot of work right now but when you see the positive effect on your child, it will be worth it!

For more information, please contact MantraCare. Parenting is a challenging yet rewarding experience that is crucial for the development and well-being of a child. If you have any queries regarding Online Parenting Counseling experienced therapists at MantraCare can help: Book a trial therapy session

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