My baby's father has left me while pregnant. Any advice?

(42 Posts)
LittleBeth53 Thu 13-May-10 14:32:12

Hello everybody. Where to start?!

Well, I'm 24 years old & 5 months pregnant with my 1st baby. The father left me when I was 12 weeks pregnant. We were crazy about each other & totally committed, that is, until the day we shut ourselves in the bathroom together & watched that little stick come up positive. He instantly changed, right from the minute that the second 'yep, you're pregnant' line showed up on the home test. He sat in stone silence for 20 minutes, then walked out of my house & I haven't seen him since.

He wouldn't/won't return my calls, he removed me from his email contact list, removed me from his facebook, he won't see me or talk to me & left 'the break up' box of my stuff in my porch one day when I was out. He didn't even bother voicing the words out loud that he was leaving me, he just disappeared. He couldn't even reply to me when I left a message pleading with him to just let me know if there was a medical history in his family that my midwife needed to know. He sent me one single text message almost instructing me to "get rid" & when I sent one back saying that wasn't an option for me, he replied telling me not to contact him until the baby's born & even then he want's a DNA test. Even though we were in love, committed & the word "cheat" doesn't even enter my vocabulary, he just had to insult me that much further by insinuating that our child might not be his. It's like the love of my life so far, the only man who I've ever wanted with so much passion, the only one who's ever made my heart skip & my brain go mushy, literally turned into a unrecognisable, hateful monster overnight.

So now I haven't seen or spoken to him in nearly 3 months. He thinks our baby is an "it," he doesn't know we're having a little boy. He hasn't heard his heart or seen his tiny body on a scan monitor like I have. He doesn't know that the unfairness & depression of it all put me in hospital a month ago with stress induced high blood pressure. I was diagnosed with Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy which translated, roughly means, broken heart syndrome. My baby was in distress because I was, his heart was struggling & irregular, it was like because my heart was breaking, his was too. The father doesn't know that he did that to us. But I've just finished a month of bed rest at my parents place, a nice comfortable, stress free environment so I'm doing much better. My baby is now as healthy as can be at least. Thank god.

But I'm just scared silly now of what being a single mum will mean. I was legally advised to write to his parents, what with them being the paternal grandparents & offer an olive branch. I had to do this because I knew that he hadn't breathed a word of my pregnancy. I did this as I've only met them a dozen or so times & I didn't want to be slapped with a court ordered visitation request under the Grandparents Rights Act by almost strangers, I was advised that writing would give us the oppurtunity to become more aquainted & I'd feel more comfortable leaving my baby with them should they ever apply for visitation. They never wrote back.

I've been advised to get in touch with the CSA & get "what I deserve" but now I'm thinking, is it worth it? Even though I loved this man not too long ago & I'm still trying to box axay my old feelings for him, I don't want him anywhere near my son. This man who never wanted him will hurt him, not physically, but emotionally. He won't love him like I do & he won't keep him safe no matter what. He wouldn't risk everything for him like I would & he'd take him to people I barely know who might not feed him the way I like, or bathe him properly or dress him warmly enough or who might leave him crying for ages before picking him up. I'm literally scared witless of handing my baby over for the weekend or whatever to these people. It's got to the point where I'm thinking that if it's going to give him a right, I don't want to claim child support off him. I'd rather sell everything I have to pay for my son rather than subject him to a dead beat dad who doesn't love him.

So now my mind races every single day. There's a million other things to consider about being a single mum such as the financial strain, worrying that a man will never want me again now that I'm going to be part of a package deal & worrying over whether it will affect my sons state of mind not having a dad around. And I wish I could say my friends have been brilliantly supportive but they haven't. Someone once told me that most friends are fairweather & I've recently begun to understand the meaning in that. My friends like being around me when I'm bubbly, happy & the life & soul, but when something real is happening with me, like now, I go weeks without hearing from them. Even my so called best friend of 15 years. So it'd be nice to maybe get some nice words or advice through. Is anybody going or has been through a similar situation? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Even if I don't get replies or posts to this thread, it's been nice to vent because like I said, listening ears have been a bit thin on the ground recently!

Have a lovely day everybody, thank you for reading. B. xx

FabIsGoingToGetFit Thu 13-May-10 14:36:17

I really think you will be okay.

You need to accept this person is not who you thought he was.

Was the baby planned?

Keep a record of everything you do for your baby to give him a dad in his life and just try and get on with your pregnancy.

Expect nothing from the father but be prepared for him to try and pick up where he left off once the baby is born. Make sure it is on your terms.

LittleBeth53 Thu 13-May-10 14:48:45

It was an unplanned pregnancy so to some extent I can understand a certain amount of hesitation, fear or resentment or whatever. But I didn't do this alone.

I just want to keep him away. I'll be fine if I can manage that! Lol! I know full well he'll try & enforce "his rights" when my son is born & I want things to be on my terms but I'm well aware that as his dad, he's going to have a certain amount of rights that a judge could (and probably will) grant him. So my mind is rocked everyday thinking of every intricate detail, I've kept the couple of messages he sent as proof that he doesn't want the baby & I've kept a record of every time I've tried to contact him & every failure to reply in the desperate hope that this will be defense enough in a court to keep him away or at least eliminate his chance of overnight stays & grant supervised visits ONLY with myself as the supervisor. I know it seems extreme but I can handle him being a complete vile piece of trash to me over my baby's existence, but my child won't. Children are bright. They know when someone isn't interested in them.

Thank you for the reply.

FabIsGoingToGetFit Thu 13-May-10 14:51:07

If he didn't use contraception then it should have been a shock to him.

OhBuggerandArse Thu 13-May-10 14:55:07

Don't name him on the birth certificate.

It won't mean that you can't allow access and support if he is prepared to work with you in a way that you can handle, but it will give you some degree of protection against any difficulties that you feel he may be likely to cause.

LittleBeth53 Thu 13-May-10 15:03:04

I wouldn't be able to anyway. I can't see him willingly accompanying me to the registry office & because we weren't married at the time of conception, he'd have to be there for me to put his name on it. I guess at first I was unhappy with having a blank space where the fathers name should be. As though it has certain connotations, like I have something to hide or I don't know who his dad is. But your right, it'll probably be totally worth it.

StealthPolarBear Thu 13-May-10 15:07:11

you sound like you're going to be a fantastic mum
OTOH he might come round when the child is born and be prepared to lay his life on the line for him, so your worries about him not loving your child enough might be unfounded. You never know.
Are you planning to breastfeed?

LittleBeth53 Thu 13-May-10 15:20:34

Absolutely! So that's one thing he won't be able to do!

FabIsGoingToGetFit Thu 13-May-10 17:44:08

Shouldn't have been a shock is what I meant to say.

i find it extremely unedifying at this not putting the father's name on the birth certificate so they can't claim rights to their own child. What about the child's rights to see their father's name on their birth certificate?

Tanga Thu 13-May-10 18:33:42

It goes without saying that he has behaved like a total arse, but just to be clear - he has no rights, but the child will. And those rights are about having a relationship with his or her father and paternal family. As you say, you won't be able to put his name down on the birth certificate unless he has a radical change of heart once the baby is born, but this makes very little difference. If he wishes to get his name added he can. If he applies to court to get PR then you would have to have a spectacularly good reason for him not to get it.

Your child also has the right to financial support from his/her father, and this is one of the few enforcible rights and TBH it is your child's money, not yours, so I think you should claim it. Finances and contact are two entirely separate issues.

Finally, although the strength of your feeling is completely understandable, do you really mean that if he realises what an idiot he has been, and wants to have a relationship with the child when it is born, that you would deny the child that opportunity because of what he has done to you?

From the things you have said - and I know you don't want to hear this - no court will deny him contact if he decides to apply for it.

I think you should put it all out of your mind and focus on staying healthy and enjoying your pregnancy. Things have a way of working out.

PipinJo Thu 13-May-10 19:31:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PipinJo Thu 13-May-10 19:36:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PipinJo Thu 13-May-10 19:47:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Hodie Thu 13-May-10 20:09:43

LittleBeth53, my dear, I am in the same boat too.

I am more than happy for the cockroach to have his name on our child's birth certificate, when it pops out. Mind you, I am doing this for the child's sake, not his.

Look after yourself. Mothering is not easy, but I am sure you will do a sterling job.

As for the father, well, let him get on with it. Your little one will be the judge of him.

Lasvegas Fri 14-May-10 13:32:01

Littlebeth similar story here. Married for 7 yrs & planned pregnancy then a couple of days after birth he left. Not seen him since. People say how did you manage, but I had never known any different so just got on with it, including returning to career when DD was 7 months old. I married again when DD was 2 ys DH does very little and from what I understand from other mums most men do very little in terms of childcare. So really on a practical front I have seen no difference in co-parenting and sole parenting. Good luck to you both.

MollieO Fri 14-May-10 13:44:24

I had the same and I can honestly say you will find a way of coping however hard it may seem at the moment.

The only time my ex saw his son was when he visited him in hospital when he was ten days old following us registering his birth together. Ds was born 7 weeks early and very poorly.

Ex was a bit flaky during (unplanned) pregnancy but always said he would 'do the right thing'. I foolishly interpreted that as having an interest in ds's life. He doesn't other than paying £50 per month direct debit and hiding his income from the CSA.

Ds is nearly 6 now and accepts that he is different from all his friends (I don't know any other single parents). It has been hard and there are still times when I struggle to cope but at least I know that everything ds has become is completely down to me and he is an adorable little boy (others say that too!).

Should add that I also haven't had a relationship since ds was born. Not really sure why that is other than probably lack of time and available babysitters smile.

poshsinglemum Sat 15-May-10 21:45:53

This happened to me and I was gutted at first. But now I am over him and I have the best dd ever. I love being a single mum. As for him- he is gutted that he's missed out on dds first years as he buggered off abroad and his passport has apparently expired. I don't care either way. He has his just deserts.
Any dad who can't support his child is totally messed up in the head. Best you found this now rather than a few years doen the line. Your son won't remember any nasty braek up and you will find a decent man instead. He's the looser- not you. All the best.

poshsinglemum Sat 15-May-10 21:48:10

As with regards to money - you can claim benefits until you are ready to work again. I wanted to enjoy my first year with dd and now I work part time and make jewellery. Think about all the skills that you have. Mabe you could work from home? Also- buy second hand baby stuff. They grow out of it so fast that it is often great quality. Check out the NCT website and find out when the Nct sales are on.

mumtotwoboys Sun 16-May-10 10:03:51

What heart breaking story.

At least you stuck to your guns about what you wanted and didn't abort just for him.

I think you're strong enough to do this x

Scorps Sun 16-May-10 12:23:15

My H left me at 37 weeks pg with our fourth baby, kist before Xmas last year. You can do it - yes it's hard sometimes and getting through some days with the weight of a broken heart is horrid, but gradually it gets better.

Don't worry about men - I honestly don't think having dc bothers new potentials - I have interest and I have 4! It will take alot to trust someone again though, and I'm not ready.

You can do it.

You sound so brave and strong I became pregnant at 18 and we both, after intially being happy sort of freaked. I was persuaded to have an abortion and he left the next day anyway. We did eventually get back together and get married and are now expecting DS3 but it's there like a dark cloud every second of every day. It's a shock, but the majority of men and women have children in their life, it doesn't warrant this sort of behaviour. Keep the door open for your childs sake - I say this begrudgingly but he could turn out to be a great dad in the end. I wouldn't put his name on the birth certificate if I am honest, I'd be too scared it would turn nasty and into a custody battle but I don't know where this leaves you with regards to CSA. You should be very proud, you sound lovely

LittleBeth53 Mon 17-May-10 08:45:15

Thank you everybody for the lovely messages.

All I have to go off is the behaviour the father is displaying now. I can't predict that he won't love my child but what I know right now is that he doesn't want our baby. He blames me for getting pregnant & he actually hates me for not having an abortion. He thinks I chose the baby over him. I did, but he doesn't understand & can't forgive me for it. I also know because he's said he'll do this, is he'll try to "enforce" his rights upon the baby being proven as his, purely to be a bastard.

So all I can do *for now* is carry on as though he's never going to be in the picture. I'll offer the chance for him to register the birth with me, lest I be seen in a court as "not doing my bit," but when he refuses to come with me to the registry office (because he will) then right in the middle of his case, he can call the leg factory & see if they have anything for him to stand on. I bet they'll be sold out!! grin

Hopefully the fact that I've attempted to make so many tries at civilised contact & I've been ignored each & every time, the fact that I have proof of him saying he doesn't want our baby & I should "get rid" & the fact that he won't come with me to register the birth, will be enough for him to have to make his financial responsibilities without neccesary access.

Although I'm already betting every penny I have that he'll hide his income from the CSA, like so many arsehole, dead beat dads do. He'll do that because he resents me. He won't see it for what it is - money for his son, not me. So our son could have food, clothes, toys & nappies. He'll withhold these things from his baby to get at me.

I'm better off without.

webwahm Thu 27-May-10 15:15:12

Just wanted to add my 2p here - I was in the same situation and devastated. But, 2 years down the line I can honestly say it worked out for the best in terms of him not being around to screw up even more - although it kills me to know DD3 has 'no dad' and will be asking hard questions.

I kept all texts, emails etc. so that when DD3 is old and strong enough she can see for herself if she wants to. I think this is far better than what we had in the 'old days'...one parent's word against another as to what really happened. That said, I don't know if I really want her reading the cr@p he wrote :-(

You will have all the good times, he just ran away and will miss out - he is the one with the conscience to live with not you.

How are things now?

RockinSockBunnies Thu 27-May-10 15:23:08

I was in a very similar situation. DD's father made it adamantly clear he wanted nothing to do with me or the baby when I found out I was pregnant at 18. He's never met DD, has never paid a penny towards her and is generally a fairly worthless human being. I also wrote to his parents, offering them the opportunity to meet and develop a relationship with their granddaughter; they never replied to the letter.

DD is now nine, I've met a lovely DP and we're moving in together this summer. DD asks about her father from time to time but knows the basics - her father is an idiot and losing out by not knowing his daughter.

You'll be fine as a single mother, I promise. It can be lonely, but the overwhelming joy and love a child brings outweighs any of the difficulties.

ElizabethWakefield Thu 27-May-10 15:32:57

I just wanted to add to this from the other side. From your baby's point of view if you like.

My father left my mum when she was 21 and pregnant (this was in the 70s when being single and pregnant at 21 was a bit if a bigger deal than it is now) From that day neither him nor his family wanted anything to do with me (my mum contacted them when I was born, sent pics etc, but everything was returned.

I can honestly say I never felt I missed out by not having a dad around, so please don't feel that it will mess your little boy up. I was brought up by a strong, loving parent, who I know always did her best for me, and now looking back from an adults point of view I can see how hard it must have been.

Honestly, everything will work out smile

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