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To bad mouth DD's biological father to her...

(147 Posts)
DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 19:42:24

DD's biological father left us (returned to his home country) when she was 6 months old after being a complete cunt for 2 months. I spent the whole of my pregnancy alone as he went back to his country to try and earn some money when I was 2 month pregnant - and came back at 9 months with no money having spent it all. I was very young and have since learnt my lesson. he on the other hand didn't contact us for a year after leaving then went to prison for drug smuggling for 3 years. Once he was out he went on to have a child with another woman who he also left. He has had NO contact with DD despite me emailing him.

My DH wants to adopt DD (we have 2 more Ds's) but DD's biological father said no.... This was over a year ago and he STILL has made no attemot to contact her or me despite me encouraging it.

She has started asking hy he has never wanted to know her and I am getting sick of lying for him "oh he is too far away" and "he wasn;t ready to be a Dad" etc... please help!!!!!

belledechocchipcookie Sat 02-Jul-11 19:46:18

It's not bad mouthing him if you tell her the truth.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sat 02-Jul-11 19:48:26

Don't, please. All you will do is impress upon your daughter that she shares some of his hated characteristics at a later date, even though you wouldn't mean to do that.

Keep your opinions about him to yourself. The 'he wasn't ready to be a dad' might unfuriate you but there's no reason why your daughter needs to know the whole history. He might want to see her later on, he might not, but he's her father irrespective of whomever else might take on the role.

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 19:51:31

Arggh is make me so angry that he has done NOTHING for her and my DH has been her daddy since she was 18 months old and does EVERTHING for her while this arsehole swans about, grrrr!!!!!

I don't mean 'bad mouth' as in call him a fucking useless c*nt by the way.

shakey1500 Sat 02-Jul-11 19:52:31

How old is your dd out of interest? But yes, YABU. She will form her own opinions as the years go on. She must be free to make up her own mind. If he's as unreasonable as you say you won;t have to wait long.

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 19:54:17

She's 6. I have never said anything bad about him but I do find it very difficult when she gets upset asking why he has never wanted to speak to her.

EssentialFattyAcid Sat 02-Jul-11 19:55:04

Its very unfair to your child to bad mouth her biological father. You should speak about him with respect if you have respect for your child imo.

bubblesincoffee Sat 02-Jul-11 19:56:17

You can tell her a cushioned version of the truth in a child appropriate way without slagging him off. You can't be that mean about him, because she may well feel like half of her is him iyswim, so just stay away from your opinions on him and emphasise how much her other Dad chose her and loves her.

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 19:56:49

shakey1500 - Can I just ask, for who's benefit would thi sbe if she is going to see what he is like in the long run anyway? Do you mean it will benefit me in the fact she will se I have let her make up her own mind or it will benefit her?

shakey1500 Sat 02-Jul-11 19:57:25

I know it's hard. My dh was forever making excuses for his ex to my stepdaughter. It was hard for me also to keep schtum. She's an adult now though and is finding out for herself. Believe me there's no mileage in it except venting YOUR anger which you can do away from your daughters ears. Like on here ;)

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 19:58:55

bubblesincoffee - absolutely, I do do this but I also worry she will idolise him if she doesn't know the truth at some point in her life,

Pagwatch Sat 02-Jul-11 20:00:26

You can walk between those two extremes of telling her nothing and telling her everything. You can do that by telling her the truth without guessing why.
So you can say " the truth is he doesn't seem to want to see you. You are gorgeous, loving, kind sweet but he doesn't come and see you. I don't know why but that is how it is. It's awful but it is how it is.

As soon as you add "because...." then a) you are guessing and b) you are editorialising. Tell her what you know to be a fact and sympathize with her but don't make excuses and don't add what you think. Just tell her it's shit but that is how it is -she deserves much better.

If you give her "he lives too far away" excuses she will guess badly and blame herself

shakey1500 Sat 02-Jul-11 20:00:36

There is no "benefit" as such. Just that she doesn't need to hear your anger towards him even though it is valid. She's still young and unable to understand quite why you are angry. Far better for you to be as neutral as is humanly possible.

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 20:04:35

Pagwatch - I don't really want to bring him not wanting to see her into it, I was thinking more along the lines of he's just a silly man who can be very selfish rather than "he doesn't want to see you"

Oh it's so difficult!

DogsBestFriend Sat 02-Jul-11 20:10:05

"Its very unfair to your child to bad mouth her biological father. You should speak about him with respect if you have respect for your child imo."

What a load of bollocks! (iMho grin ).

You don't need to have respect for any one person in order to respect another. IMHO it's far, far more disrespectful to lie to a person, particularly your own child. What's so unfair about telling the truth? Is it more unfair to refuse to lie than it is to give a child false hope or, just as likely, end up being blamed for the ex's behaviour towards his child when it's not your damn fault?

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 20:14:38

I feel she deserves to know the truth, with me pointing out how "silly" he is so that she doesn't wonder whether it is somehow her fault. What i don't want to happen is for me to be 'neutral' and for her to find out the hard way and then somehow blame herself or be angry that I didn't tell her in the first place

bubblesincoffee Sat 02-Jul-11 20:19:40

Maybe she will idolise him if she doesn't know everything, but surely you would prefer her to have that for her childhood than for her to have the heartbreak of the truth?

Pagwatch Sat 02-Jul-11 20:21:42

I know what you mean darlingduck.

I understand why you want to avoid " he doesn't want to see you" but I am not sure that " he is a silly man " is kinder in the long term.

I haven't had this with a dad - so I can't totally empathise.
But I have had to explain for nine years why grandparents don't visit to children between the ages of 10 to just born through to 18 and 10.

I have said " I don't know why they don't come. I have told them they can. I am sure they love you in their way. And you are wonderful and everything I could wish for as a son/daughter. But they won't come. I don't know why. Maybe one day they will tell us. But for now we just have to accept that and you need to remember that it is nothing to do with you because they don't know you"

DogsBestFriend Sat 02-Jul-11 20:22:33

bubbles, the truth will out anyway and it won't wait until the OPs DD is an adult before realisation dawns. I preferred my DC to know from the start and not have that shock some years down the line when they were older DC/going into their teens etc.

And I admit too that I was fucked if I was going to be blamed for the violence and neglect carried out by my own daughters' father. Some of us just ain't that saintly!

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 20:32:13

It's a hard one, I just want to understand the reasons behind the arguments on both sides so I can make a more informed decision, although I do realise it's not an easy situation and there is no 'ideal' solution

Pagwatch Sat 02-Jul-11 20:36:03

I guess my view (quite possibly wrongly) is that when they are not told the truth children have an astonishing capacity to blame themselves.
My primary motivation was to make sure that they understood that this would have happened to any child in their situation -that they were not abandoned/rejected because of some perceived failing.

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 20:42:36

I sometimes feel like emailing him to tell him how she is upset and been asking about him and demand he writes an meail to her explaining in his own words why he has been so crap.

TheSecondComing Sat 02-Jul-11 20:45:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

shakey1500 Sat 02-Jul-11 20:48:43

He obviously has no interest whatsoever sad
What reason did he give (if any) for refusing to consent to the adoption?
No harm at all imo in emailling him telling him how upset dd is etc.
Thinking on, maybe it wouldn't be unreasonable to give her a version of the truth as a pp said. As in "I really don't know why, if I did I would tell you etc etc" followed by tons of reassurance that it's nothing that she has done.
I really feel for you and the situation.

DarlingDuck Sat 02-Jul-11 20:48:54

TheSecondComing - I don't think anyone is trying to 'rewrite history' here

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