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to not have told him he has a child?

(270 Posts)
alreadydonewith2021 Wed 20-Jan-21 15:02:59

Some years ago, I met someone on a night out. There was an instant attraction, he ended up coming back to mine and we spent the night together.

I really liked him and hoped I'd see him again, so gave him my number. I didn't take his number, which as it turned out was unfortunate. I never heard from him again, which was disappointing but not the end of the world, these things happen I told myself. However a few weeks later I found out I was pregnant.

I didn't have internet at home at the time and no one had Facebook etc anyway. I knew the rough area where he lived and possibly the pubs he went into (although the one I met him in wasn't his local, he was only there as a one off, as was I, I lived 30ish miles away).I had no one really to talk to about it or be a sounding board - no family and my then friends were all early 20s like me and pretty useless.

So I got on with things on my own, muddled through and never got in touch mainly because it just seemed impossible. My DC asked about their dad as a young child and I gave some information about what he looked like but they never asked more than that.

The older I get, I can't help regretting it. I know of course that he might not have wanted to know, or been a disruptive presence, but part of me feels sad that my child will never know their father and vice versa. I have several friends who have had babies by donor and at least they can provide their children with basic health information and background on their fathers, I can't even do that.

Realistically it's so long ago now that there's nothing I can do about it I don't think? I've not spoken to my DC about it in years, they don't ask and don't seem to need or want to know. I guess that might change in future though especially once they have their own children.

OP’s posts: |
emilyfrost Wed 20-Jan-21 15:04:39

Yes, YWBVU. You didn’t make the effort to find him and you really should have for your child’s sake.

Glenorma Wed 20-Jan-21 15:05:18

Do you know his full name and remember what he looks like? You could look him up online and your DC could contact him if they want to.

Leeds2 Wed 20-Jan-21 15:05:26

Do you know the man's name? Or any of the friends he was with the evening you met?

DinosaurDiana Wed 20-Jan-21 15:08:07

For me personally I think it’s the right of both the father and child to know, unless that would put someone in a dangerous position.

Indecisive12 Wed 20-Jan-21 15:08:20

How old is your child and have you tried searching for him since you’ve had the internet?

EyeRoll2021 Wed 20-Jan-21 15:08:45

Well, unless you had searched the town on foot you would have been unlikely to find him anyway! I think regret is a bit strong.could you have searched the town? Well yes. Would you have been successful? Unlikely!

If you know his name you could do a search now but I imagine you didn't take his full name ( I never did when I was young!).

Same4Walls Wed 20-Jan-21 15:09:52

How long ago was this if no one had facebook?

I think if you know his name then I'd try and look for him. I'm very surprised your child hasn't asked more questions.

WhatsMissed Wed 20-Jan-21 15:10:11

How would you find him anyway?

Mylittlesandwich Wed 20-Jan-21 15:10:17

I can't imagine you had much of a choice. How would you have found him? I have a friend with a DC who was conceived in similar circumstances and all she knew was his first name. He came back to hers so she didn't know where he lived. Not much you can do.

mindutopia Wed 20-Jan-21 15:10:51

How old is your child now? Would it be something they would want to pursue if you could find out more information about it?

I mean realistically I think you probably did the best you could at the time. You didn't have his address or contact information or mutual friends. You couldn't have just magically tracked him down, and honestly, it may be for the best all things considered. You don't know him and he might not have been a positive influence in your child's life. Or he might have been. But it doesn't sound like you were intentionally obstructive or cruel.

Do you have enough details that a private investigator might be able to track him down? A first name, vague neighbourhood he lived in, where he might have worked at the time. A PI could probably find him if you are willing to go that route. I used a PI to find information about someone's past (unfortunately very upsetting information, in this case), but it was really simple, not that expensive, and hugely satisfying to have the answers I needed. Whether you contact him at that point is another thing, but at least you/your child would have the option.

ittakes2 Wed 20-Jan-21 15:11:35

If I was you I would use a service like ancestory.com to take a salivia sample and link your child to their heritage. They will find some relatives on there - whether they are a close enough link to him is unknown. You might be able to find him that way.
My parents discovered an unknown grandchild via ancestory.com! The mother had told my brother the child was not his but it turns out she is!

Royalbloo Wed 20-Jan-21 15:11:41

If you can find him I think you should

Godimabitch Wed 20-Jan-21 15:14:39

I dont see how you could have done. You'd struggle to find anyone even now if you only know the general area they lived and their first name.

alreadydonewith2021 Wed 20-Jan-21 15:15:20

It was a few years later before I got home internet (this happened a long time ago, back in the days when not everyone even had a mobile ) and that was still before Facebook etc. I think I looked on Friends Reunited which was the big site back then but I wasn't sure which school he attended (there were 2 possibles) and couldn't find it. I can't remember his surname now, and I don't know I was even entirely sure of it back then.

I didn't know his friends, I wasn't from the area. If I had tried at the time I would basically have been driving round the streets/ going into pubs looking for him. I didn't have a car then either which would have made it even harder. It just all seemed overwhelming at the time so I got on with things on my own.

OP’s posts: |
JemimaTiggywinkle Wed 20-Jan-21 15:18:43

How old is your DC? I’m assuming teenager or adult if they were conceived before you had the internet at home.
I think unless they express a desire to find their father, I would leave it alone.

alreadydonewith2021 Wed 20-Jan-21 15:19:11

It's 20 years ago now - since my DC turned 18 I've been thinking about it more.

I know the area where he lived, what he did for a living, the sport he played at the weekend, and some relatively unusual tattoos he had. Beyond that not much. I'm not sure that's enough for an investigator to go on after so long.

Maybe the DNA search thingy is the best solution now?

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Same4Walls Wed 20-Jan-21 15:20:35

It was a few years later before I got home internet (this happened a long time ago, back in the days when not everyone even had a mobile ) and that was still before Facebook etc.

This leads me to believe the child in wuest3is actually an older teen otmr even young adult. I would tell them as much as you know and leave the ball in their court as to whether they want to try and find him.

Same4Walls Wed 20-Jan-21 15:22:28

Arrrgh excuse the millions of typos.

StarfishExpress Wed 20-Jan-21 15:22:48

I bet you could find him with a hefty dose of intense Facebook detective skills. I don't think you should feel badly that you didn't find him by scouring pubs in the early 2000s though. He didn't call you, and of course would have known that it was possible (however remote) that he fathered a child.

Could you hire a Private Investigator or is that something they only do on TV?

Edgeoftheledge Wed 20-Jan-21 15:23:39

Of course you should try and find him. Should be a lot easier now. He has a right to know as does your child.

justanotherneighinparadise Wed 20-Jan-21 15:27:02

Could you ask your child if he’d like to know? He could do a DNA ancestry test and possibly link to relatives immediately.

Indecisive12 Wed 20-Jan-21 15:31:52

Given your child age I think you just need to leave it up to them. Ask your child if they want the details and tell them you will help them if they wish to find him.

Glenorma Wed 20-Jan-21 15:33:55

That’s quite a bit for an investigator to go on. In fact you could even try posting on local Facebook pages to see if anyone knows him. If your child was small I might caution against it because you’d be bringing a stranger into your child’s life and you don’t even know if he’s a good guy. But as your DC is grown up it’s not an issue. I do think it has to be your DC’s decision now though, not yours. They might not even want to find their dad.

BarefootInTheMoonlitSnow Wed 20-Jan-21 15:35:29

I agree trying to find a bit more about him if you can, it will be hard to experience whenever you have conversations with your kids but a bit worse to not have done as much as you can along the way (even if that way is long and done at your pace)

One problem I’ll flag, for you and others, is that unless you are phone/face with the person you cannot know if your initial message was a) wrong address, b) badly received c) put them in shock mode, so its bloody hard to know what’s appropriate in terns of following up that initial reach out.

And raising a child alone, particularly the immediate bit, doesn’t lend itself to adding another difficult thing about the joint creation of the child, alone, so I completely the normal decision to kick it into the long grass and spread out the hunt for someone who may or may not be actually evading being found.

Find out what you can OP, about him (contact details most reliable method to be opened by himself)

The take some time to think over your hopes/fears, perhaps with a counsellor, perhaps alone, then with a counsellor so you have more time to fully explore how you feel.

He could contact you out of the blue/they could start asking tomorrow, or not for years, starting to prepare how you will feel/cope is the only sensible thing to do for you right now (& how that fits in with normal lp life)

Best of luck, never a good age/time when there’s separation and general life events intervening so best advice: prepare yourself as best you can.

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