Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on adoption.
Son not biogicaly mine when to tell him(41 Posts)
Iv raised my son since he was born however he's not mine biologically, his Biological dad has never wanted anything to do with him, I have always wanted to tell him but get different advice on when o should tell him I'm not biologically his dad so could do with some advice on when I should tell him
he should have been told as soon as he could comprehend as a normal matter of fact thing. How old is he? this is like a adoption (did you adopt him?). The child needs to know the truth of his birth. I am adopted and never remember a time when I didn't know what that meant.
immediatly, from birth onwards, whenever the conversation arises, in a tone that makes it clear it is no big deal. He should not remember ever being told, he should just have always known, and not care. There is no "different advice" on this issue, there is only acceptable way.
That's what some of what iv been told is, what worries me is we have another kid who is mine (his little brother brother) and I don't want him ever thinking he was treated different. I originally said we tell him from the start but my other half said its best to wait
but my other half said its best to wait nonsense. it is never best to wait.
it was all new to me she had some family members whose situation was similar so I took her word for it but now I'm questioning it, I would be interested to hear from someone who has had this experience and find out what they would of rather happened
Suggest popping over to the adoption board for advice (or asking MNHQ to move this thread to there).
Current advice is to tell children from the outset, to avoid any "big reveal" when they are older, with the inevitable shockwaves that can cause. But there are some older adopters and adopted people on the board too, who can share their experience of the "don't tell if you don't need to" approach
I will do thank you, I'm new on this only made the user to ask for advice on this
I would be interested to hear from someone who has had this experience and find out what they would of rather happened
I have had this experience. I am adopted. I always knew. I would not have been happy for a big announcement to have been made at some point. I would be even less happy to think that multiple relatives knew something fundamental about my life that I didn't.
go over to the adoption boards. Maybe get a session or two of counselling so you can frame this conversation properly and then tell your son.
Do you need to adopt him? Do you have any legal responsibilities to him that you need to firm up?
I've had this experience.
My dad died when I was a baby.
My 'dad' (stepdad) brought me up since I was 2.
It was never a big issue because my mum and new dad always told me that I had another dad but he wasnt there but I had a dad who loved me very much.
It depends on how old your son is now. It was never ever a problem for me because my parents were open about it and they always encouraged discussion about my biological dad.
No got nothing to do with legal responsibility it's more to do with when is the best time for him to find out so he takes it the best
OP - if you click to "report" your thread, you can ask MNHQ to move it for you that way (might take them a little while to get to it, but they are normally happy to oblige these sorts of requests)
He's nearly 3, I would say I would tell him straight away the problem is his biological dad not only doesn't want nothing to do with him he said he should have been aborted (after he was already born) I just don't want him to find out this stuff and struggle through his youth thinking he wasn't wanted I'd rather he not like me when he's older and have a good childhood than find out what's happened
People may disagree with this and I'm only going off what worked in my circumstance, and its probably because my dad died and was a good man so there ws nothing negative to protect me from but what my mum and (s)sdad would do is:
we could casually flick through photos and when one came up of my biological dad they'd say 'thats your other dad. he cant be here with you even though he wish he could, but you have mummy and daddy here and we love you very much'
we would visit his family and they would tell me that 'this is your other daddies family, this is your grandma. he cant be here but grandma loves you and is here for you.'
just simple things like that
They would tell me stories every now and again about him, but it was all very casual none of it was a big deal and because of that I grew up with just knowing that I had another dad, but I had my (s)dad and he loved me and he was my dad now.
I just wanted to say that you're doing such a good thing. I have so so so much respect for men like my dad who brought me up and treated me like his own. It's really good that you asked and want to make this as easy as possible for your son. On behalf of all us kids out there who lost our dads, thankyou
Thanks for the kind words, I'm not the type who would normally ask for help online just this is hard for me to know what to do and thought this was the best place to ask
We had a somewhat similar situation at more or less the same age. We created a life book for her with her life story and pictures, age appropriate. It started something like "Mommy X and Daddy Y had a little girl called Z. Daddy Y lived far away and couldn't see Z. Mommy X fell in love with daddy A and they got married. A is now Z's daddy and loves her very much. They play in the garden, read stories etc. etc. We printed it out, had the pages laminated and put it in a ring binder. She decorated them with stickers.
You can tell him you're not his dad without mentioning all the horrible stuff, because you're right, nobody needs that. My dad tells me often that they only had me because my mum had already had 3 abortions and wasn't allowed another one, and what hurts the most is the fact that he keeps telling me that!
But you can put it in an age appropriate way - "bio dad wasn't able to look after you, so I look after you instead and I love you". As he grows up you could develop it into "bio dad wasn't ready to have children when your mum got pregnant" etc.
If you are raising him you ARE his dad. But he has a biological father too. His bio dad was not able to raise him because he was not able to put the son's needs above his own.
Our son. was adopted at 3 and his biological parents were not able to put his needs above their own.
Although he knew when he came to us, that he had had another family (actually two because he was fostered) it would be easy for him to forget his past as he has been with us almost two and a half years -almost half his life.
It is important to me he always knows his story, in age appropriate details, no surprises, even the bad stuff.
His life cannot be built on a lie because if so, when it is found out, it could undermine all he has learnt about the world.
Would you like to adopt your son legally? Either way I suggest you talk to your partner. Find some useful info on line about the importance of no secrets and no big reveal. Make sure she knows her ex is no threat to you, just part of your son's make up.
I strongly suggest you get a session of appropriate counselling in how to tell, then tell your boy, with his mum, followed at a suitable time by telling his brother. Even if a baby just make sure it is all normal family life.
A key thing is you chose your son, when you chose his mum, or chose to be his parent when you met his mum and became a family. But you need the right language for this and to keep it simple age appropriate.
I think it would be helpful for your son to see pictures of his bio dad too and for you to ensure there is no animosity/jealousy from you in this. This man is part of your partners past but part of your sons generic make up.
IMHO it is VERY important neither you nor his mum bad mouth his bio dad! Because his bio dad is part of his identity.
It is sad bio dad could not cope but it is reality, and another part of reality is you are dad too, dad who is there, dad who does things for him, even if you are not genetically related to him.
Just as I am not genetically related to my son but I am still mum, my Dh is dad, our birth dd is sister and our son is our son.
Having said all this of course if you split up from his mum, ever, you remain dad, so adopted or not I do hope this is a life time commitment, as all parenting is.
Crazy cat lady tell your dad it hurts you when he says this. it sounds like he is scoring points! If he still does it tell him he is a nob! Sorry but he is eithr insensitive or has an axe to grind. You should not have to listen to that. Xxxx
Op you have time now to put this right because he's only three but if you leave it any longer he's going to feel he was living a lie. It isn't a question of him having a good childhood but then hating you when he's older - it's about being honest with him about circumstances which are fundemental to him as a person which most people in the family will be very aware of. He deserves the truth and if you give it to him from the beginning it won't be a big deal.
And obviously don't tell him his birth father wanted him aborted! That would be cruel.
Crazycat I'm assuming that relationship is difficult in all sorts of ways but, as you know, you don't have to have contact with a person who is cruel and unpleasant to you.
I have worked in Children's Social Care and am also an adopter. Children benefit from being given the basic facts as early as possible. I used to talk to my child when she was little about having 2 mums. When she was about 5 her friend's mum was pregnant, that gave me the opportunity to talk to her in very basic terms about conception and that she grew inside mummy X's tummy not mine.
We have always been really honest with our daughter, age appropriately, about birth parents and us, the parents doing the actual parenting. She knows that her birth parents weren't able to put her needs before their own and that is why we care for her.
Please tell your son as soon as a situation arises where it can be discussed. He will undoubtedly have some sadness and feelings of rejection, that's going to happen whatever age he finds out, but if you don't tell him the truth as soon as possible he will, in the future, wonder what else you and your partner haven't been honest with him about.
By telling him at a young age and letting him know that it's ok to have feelings and confusion about it all, and giving him permission to speak openly about those feelings, you will be helping him enormously to process those feelings.
My child has issues about identity and rejection still but she tells me that the shock of suddenly being told about it later would have been massive and hugely traumatic.
You are his dad because you are doing the 'dadding'.
You could also consider applying for what's known as a step-parent adoption which clarifies things legally and will be hugely important to him later on. However he will still need to be told the truth at some point.
Best of luck with it.
I agree with Nania- at 3 it really isn' too late, but you do need to address this.
Perhaps you could make a kind of life story book. This is what adoptive children have to help with their sense of identity. It doesn't need to be much, but if you have a couple of photos of his birth dad they could be included in an album and mentioned in a low key manner when you talk about other aspects of his past.
This really shouldn't be a big deal- but leave it until he's older or let him find out on his own and it could be.
He should always have known my daughte is 3 and will already be able to tell you she's adopted and why
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.