What to call a step-dad (first post!)

(4 Posts)
FayeCoops Mon 29-Jul-13 14:44:51

Just a bit of background. Me and my dd's dad where together for 2 years a little turbulent. But I found out I was pregnant at the tender age of 19 I cried for like a week because I had no idea what to do (I was on the pill!) but we decided to proceed. He was amazing through my pregnancy and our relationship went from strength to strength.

When I gave birth (20 yo) things went wrong! I had my mother around for the first few weeks (she was visiting form America) and me my partner and baby dd lived with my brother. We didn't pay rent I had maternity pay and my ex also worked so we weren't doing bad money wise however my ex was working 70 hours a week. Me obviously feeling exhausted from dd being a nocturnal baby no help after my mum had gone and just never getting a moment alone started to argue with the ex about him avoiding us. Found he was 'emotionally cheating' at a friends christening and i was totally humiliated so After 3 months i decided that me and the ex where better apart and we where creating a toxic environment for dd. we went on with my ex having contact with dd when ever he had a few hours spare (very rarely wanted to take her for a day let alone a night)

However it went down hill from there won't go into everything as well ill be here forever and I'm already babbling! Between work getting drunk and his new gf he saw our dd a few hours a week (his choice)

When things got to much we decided to live with my parents abroad for 3 months. He skyped rarely, emailed a few times but it was like I was forcing him to have contact!

On returning he decided to be a little more active but by this point my daughter hardly knew him and made it clear she wasn't comfortable with out me after a few attempts of him taking her alone it came down to joint trips to make her okay with him. Well then things turned again I found his days out with dd where joined by his gf who was convicted of Gbh obviously not very happy things quickly turned sour to the point he demanded my dd's pushchair back it was a present off his parents and some of our money too. I sought out police advice and was told he had no right.

However just after coming back from America me and my dp finally started a relationship after knowing each other for 3 years. When he realised how bad things where between me and the ex he invited me and my dd to live with him (happened so soon) however contact from dd's bio stopped over a year and a half ago (again his choice) me and my partner are engaged very happy and have a 4 moth old baby together. But my first dd has always called him by his name until the last few weeks where she has started calling him daddy. (Dp also has an 8yo and 7 yo we have ever weekend) they all get on great and my dp and his family treat my first born like there own it's so heart warming to see.

however I would eventually like my daughter to know who her dad is and hopefully forge a bond. He was more then an arse to me but we where young and well obviously I grew up faster I just don't know what to do with my daughter
do I just allow her to call my dp dad?
How and when do I explain that he's not?

I'm So sorry it's so long! Any help would defiantly be appreciated!!

Thanks

UC Mon 29-Jul-13 15:06:00

Hi Faye,

It sounds as though things are working out for you.

I'm not quite sure how old your first dd is now? 2? 3?

Personally, if it was me, I'd want to know that my daughter was aware that DP wasn't her father. I think even at this young age, I'd be saying that DP isn't Daddy, so that it's something she grows up with, and isn't something she finds out when she's older. That would be a horrible shock.

It's a difficult one as she's so young, she probably won't understand what you're saying. But if you don't say it, one day there will be a nasty shock, and she may feel that you betrayed her trust by not having this "out there".

Hopefully someone with actual experience of this can help you more than me though.

MisForMumNotMaid Mon 29-Jul-13 15:13:24

My DS's were 1 and 3 when their biological dad left. I've remarried and now have a DD.

The boys started calling their step dad daddy very early on but also call their bio daddy 'daddy'. If clarification is needed as to who they're describbing they say 'daddy william' or 'daddy harry' (well their actual dads names). They chose this and they are now 9 and 7 and understand the basics of how babies are made, amoungst much giggling.

Some people I've come across have strong opinion that allowing the resident male to be called dad is denying the bio dad but I can't see that link. Parents do far more damage using the child as a weapon and manipulating them telling bad things about the other parent.

I did discuss with their bio dad that it was something that was happening and we discussed what options there were like using the mouthfull 'step dad'. Daddy for us was/ is the easiest solution.

The important thing is your DC growing up happy and knowing who they are.

SummerHoliDidi Mon 29-Jul-13 15:14:00

Dd1 calls my dp by his first name. She was 6 when we got together, so she completely understood that he isn't her biological father.

My sil lets her dd call her new partner "dad". They are all aware that he is a step-dad rather than a biological dad but it seems to help them bond more as a family.

I think it's fine either way, but do make sure she knows that she has a biological father out there who is someone other than your new partner.

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