One thing that my father often says to me is that I am “just like him”. He will often slip it into emails or phone conversations. We will be talking about my sister being financially irresponsible and he will say something like “you have always saved money…you’re just like me”. I usually just roll my eyes when he says it. I think for him, he knows he has not been the world’s greatest father (huge understatement!) and he likes to think that I inherited some of his better habits and traits. I can acknowledge that some aspects of my personality definitely did come from him- I like to learn how to fix things myself, I am financially conservative, I like to plan ahead and I tend to be obsessive about certain things. In other words, when he says this, I take it with a grain of salt. I understand when he says it that it is coming from a place of pride (and probably redemption) that he instilled some good traits in me.
What I hate, however, is when OTHER people say this to me. My boyfriend has a tendency to start criticism with, “You’re like your father…” or my sister will say,”You sound like dad”. This bothers me because when they are saying it, it is clearly an insult. I don’t want to be like my father. In fact, I can’t really think of many things that would be more offensive than being compared to him because he is widely disliked by mostly everyone who knows him. I don’t know if it bothers me more because it hurts my feelings (it is an easy low blow for them to use against me) or because deep down I know that the comparison is sometimes true.