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To not tell my ex that he's going to be a dad?

(196 Posts)
BlessedDespair Mon 18-Feb-13 11:59:53

Regular but have name changed

My ex is not the sort you would want to have any involvement with a child. If I let him know that I'm pregnant (to late really for an abortion and who knows if this will be my only chance to have a child or not) he'll want to be involved and will insist we get back together and be a 'proper' family.

He was very controlling while we were together to the point of dictating where I shopped and who I went with as well as who I could and couldn't speak to. I don't want him to have that sort of hold over me again or for him to develop that sort of control over my child.

I'm not putting his name on the birth certificate and if we bump intro each other and he asks I'm planning to tell him that someone else is the father. Since he already thinks I'm a whore who'll spread my legs for anyone (because I worked up the courage to leave him) I'm sure he'll believe he isn't the father.

Thumbwitch Mon 18-Feb-13 12:28:18

I agree that not telling a child about their father is likely to screw them up - a family member by marriage had that happen to her and it really did mess with her life. BUT the OP hasn't said she'll do that - she said she didn't want to tell the Ex about the baby.

She can tell the child about its father, some edited version, as much or as little as she thinks the child can deal with at the time - and has indicated that she would.

So I still say, OP, YANBU - don't tell him. Why inflict that level of abusive control on a baby/child?

sneezingwakesthebaby Mon 18-Feb-13 12:34:40

YANBU. I wouldn't tell him either. Plenty of time to decide what to tell the baby when its older so I wouldn't worry about that for now.

BlessedDespair Mon 18-Feb-13 12:40:30

Can I ask why do you think this may be your only chance to become a mother?

It may well not be but I don't know what the future holds

Deepred Thank you smile

ThisLittleMonster Mon 18-Feb-13 12:41:32

Definately better not to tell him. But I would also seriously limit the number of people who do know who the father is (if indeed you need to tell anyone). You can't afford a chinese whispers situation where he finds out.

Do you have family support nearby? Unless you do, I would seriously consider moving to avoid having to lie.

As for your child, tell them truthful but age appropiate things, so they can't blame you fo withholding information later in life.

Congratulations OP, on the pregnancy and on getting away from this man. All the best x

HappyMummyOfOne Mon 18-Feb-13 12:45:43

Children have rights and I believe they should have the right to see their fathers name on their birth certificate rather than "unknown". They have the right to form a relationship with both parents as recognised by our court system.

Its hard being an adult sometimes but you choose to have a baby by this person and all that brings with it. A court would allow him access as there is no mention of DV in your post. The babies interests should come first.

Wereonourway Mon 18-Feb-13 12:52:32

I wouldn't tell him. I'd tell my child the truth.
I have an absolute twat of an ex who brings absolutely nothing to his child's life but continues to make my life hell on a weekly basis.
I'd move heaven and earth not to have him in our lives.
If I was told my mum had not wanted to involve dad for these reasons if have loved her all the more for being brave enough to leave him and raise me alone.
Maybe not the case for everyone but I know for an absolute certainty that I would not tell him

Rooneyisalwaysmoaning Mon 18-Feb-13 12:53:19

Yanbu. I wish my ex didn't know. Though so far we've been lucky and he has stayed away. I am always afraid of what he might do.

BertieBotts Mon 18-Feb-13 12:54:25

He can't be on the birth certificate anyway unless he comes with her to register the birth which I doubt is going to happen.

HappyMummy the OP did mention DV - DV isn't just beatings. But I suspect you're right and a court would award him access anyway, they usually do in the end.

I strongly think it would be in the child's best interest to be protected from this.

G1nAndT0nic Mon 18-Feb-13 12:55:38

I have a controlling x so although I do understand children will be curious, I still think on balance, NO you are NOT being unreasonable. good luck.

Sugarice Mon 18-Feb-13 12:55:55


By not telling this abusive man about her pregnancy, OP is putting the interests and safety of the baby first, the thought of him having access to her baby may fill OP with horror, she knows him and we don't.

Thumbwitch Mon 18-Feb-13 12:56:49

I agree with BertieBotts. Courts can sometimes be remarkably short-sighted when it comes to the child's actual best interests, as opposed to their "rights to form a relationship" with their fathers, regardless of what kind of person their father is.

Rooneyisalwaysmoaning Mon 18-Feb-13 12:58:03

Oh and I have no problem explaining anything about the father that ds wants to know. I just hope he never has to meet the man.

Nb I didn't know about the huge histpory of abuse/DV/police involvement when we split up - only when I was about 13 weeks pregnant was I told these things.

G1nAndT0nic Mon 18-Feb-13 12:58:39

Yes, in agreement with writing it down.

When your child grows up you will probably need to defend your decision. So write it all down while it's fresh in your head. Your memories, the situations where he has been unreasonable, verbally abusive, excessively controlling. Also detail the dialogue in your own head wrt the decision. Keep the diary and then one day you'll be able to give it to your child.

Your child will blame you because you are the closest one. But that's the hit you're going ot have to take if you know that it's still the lesser of two 'evils'. I knwo my children will blame me for being stressed, anxious, unable to unwind etc... he has given me so much stress over the years.

Branleuse Mon 18-Feb-13 13:00:14


Goldmandra Mon 18-Feb-13 13:00:58

You alone know your history with this guy and you are best placed to judge the impact that involvement with him will have on your baby.

Not knowing his or her father will have a negative impact on this child but so would being subject to controlling and abusive behaviour.

You need to decide which is likely to be the lesser of the two evils.

Nobody else can tell you what to do because none of us have seen this guy's behaviour.

Follow your instincts and know that whatever decision you make it will be with your child's best interests in mind.

As you've left an abusive relationship, i can understand why you'd not want him to know - I agree withthe posters who've pointed out that not wanting him to know will mean more than not telling him - you need to make sure that he's not able to hear it from anyone else too.

I do think your child has the right to have the option to know their dad when they're older though. I've never met my biological father, but (I think) I can if i want to as my mum has given me enough info to look him up if I want - I think that's very important. I probably never will, but I can. No-one's made that choice for me.

LittleMonster has it in terms of how you deal with the info with your dc - be truthful and age-appropriate, Dc doesn't need to hear everything right off the bat and they may well be much older before they have any interest at all. (I 'knew' since I was about 4, but only ever asked for any info when I was about 13/14) Good luck smile

Schooldidi Mon 18-Feb-13 13:03:09

I wouldn't tell him either.

I did it all by myself (with family support, I hope you've got some good support too) with dd1, even though I did tell her father.

Dd1 has never met her biological father and has told me she's not interested because he wasn't interested in her.

Your child will be fine with you, they don't need to know more than you are willing to tell them about their father. If you have had an abusive relationship then it is far better for a child fro you to say 'I chose not to let your father be involved with you because I was scared he would hurt you like he hurt me' than it is for the child to have contact where they are scared or hurt.

Follyfoot Mon 18-Feb-13 13:03:35

The birth certificate wouldnt say 'unknown' father though would it?

As others have said, I think the two issues are separate ie whether the OP tells him and what she tells the child. Agree that he shouldnt be told, it sounds like it would cause all sorts of awful problems for you and your child. But I think your child deserves to be told the truth about who his/her father is.

BertieBotts Mon 18-Feb-13 13:06:47

I don't know what it says, but you're not legally allowed to name a father unless you're married to him or he accompanies you to register the birth.

AngelWreakinHavoc Mon 18-Feb-13 13:08:47

YAB Completely U.

A child has a right to know who their father isas does a father have a right to know they have a child.

I can not belive so many posters are saying otherwise. Mumsnet really astounds me sometimes!

rodandtheemu Mon 18-Feb-13 13:13:30

YANBU - venus for me hit the nail on the head on her first post.

Also well done for feeling strong enough to not go down the you 'cant see your child, but i still want financial support ' route.

Good luck!

Thumbwitch Mon 18-Feb-13 13:14:12

So you'd rather pitchfork a child into a situation where their mother was in an abusive relationship with an utter control freak, who is likely to visit the same sort of shitty controlling behaviour onto the child as well, than allow the child to be brought up in a free and happy manner, would you Angel?

I can not believe anyone would put the "rights" of the father over the welfare of the child, although I know it happens entirely too often for many children's comfort.

Shoesme Mon 18-Feb-13 13:14:39

I believe he does have the right to know he has a child. Was this planned or was the pregnancy a result of failed protection?

Sugarice Mon 18-Feb-13 13:16:01

Angel her ex is a control freak and has displayed threatening behaviour and you think OP is being unreasonable in trying to keep herself and the baby safe?

That is astounding.

Squitten Mon 18-Feb-13 13:16:15

Nobody has the "right" to a child - they are not an item to be owned. This man has already shown himself, according to the OP, to be an abuser and not a nice person at all. I wouldn't tell him about the baby.

The child, however, does have a right to know who their father is. That means that when the questions start to be asked and the child is of an age to understand it all, they should be told about why their father is not around and supported in looking for him if they wish.

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