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Helping my dad come to terms with my pregnancy(69 Posts)
Yesterday I found out I am 12 weeks pregnant.
It was unplanned, DP and I were were using contraception. I'm 20 and I currently live with my dad, step mum and siblings. DP is a few years older and lives with his family.However DP and I have been together 4 years and recently got engaged.
So I told my dad and step mum today. My step mum was pretty calm about it. But my dad was really angry and upset about it, he kept saying that I had done it on purpose really and I was wreaking my life. I tried to explain to him that it would be ok. DP has a job and has already been saving for his own place. I also work and I will finish university just before the baby is due.
But my dad is really angry and he said some pretty mean things. In the end DP and I left as my dad wasn't calming down and I figured it would be better to give him space.
He has since text me saying he will never forgive me for throwing away my life.
I feel awful that he has reacted like this. To be honest I'm having a hard time getting used to the idea myself.
I'm not sure how to approach my dad now and how to make him see that I can make this work.
Sorry he hasn't been more supportive.
Give him time, and I'm sure once the baby has arrived he will be smitten!
My eldest is your age, I wouldn't be "happy" but I'd like to think I'd put on a convincing supportive act and get "over it" in private. It is hard letting go of the dreams you have for your children - even when you know you have no right to have them in the first place...
One of my siblings announced a teenage pregnancy which went down just as well as yours did.
In hindsight, this was our parents fear, based on the fact they had also had a baby very young and recalled how difficult it was. I mention this as the fear part could be behind your dad's reaction (your age, circs, your partner?) But that said, it's actually got bugger-all to do with him, surely?
(The storm blew over quickly enough though and the subsequent offspring are as adored and loved as any baby is. I hope this happens to you too)
I wasn't expecting him to be really happy about it. I was just hoping he would be less angry than he was.
He did have me and my sister in his twenties but he is always talking about how he and my mum enjoyed being young parents and how great it all was back then.
Not the best reaction but he will come round. A baby doesn't mean 'ruin'. You can do it all, you just might have to swap the order in which you do it.
Sounds like it was a shock for him, maybe when it wears off he will be ok.
Do you have other support from your partner or other family members?
It's just the shock. Having a baby really makes some people, not breaks them and wrecks their lives. I think he is being a bit negative and 20 is hardly 16. Some times things are meant to be. I always remember the story of Maya Angelou the poet. Had a baby very young and her son was it. Her only child. She married twice and could never have another baby. She was eternally grateful for her son and having him when she did because that was her one and only chance to have a baby. You just don't know what life holds. Give him time and space...i bet the baby is adored and loved once s/he is here! Good luck op x
His reaction is borne out of love and worry for you. Having a baby is really tying and majes it harder to do lots of things. Let him digest it and he'll come round.
My eldest is your age.
I wouldn't have reacted like your dad did (I hope)
I would not be happy my 20 year old was having a baby. Still less so if he/she was still living with me and not living as an independent adult.
A baby is always a joy but I am still in the midst of child rearing myself and honestly it is a joy and real hard slog that has required sacrifices I never even imagined. I have 3 lovely children and my life is consumed with getting them to adulthood. Ditto dh's. I suppose if I had one child - the easy youngest one - I might have a different view of child rearing but that isn't how it works. It is the biggest commitment you can make in life. I would be devastated if my 20 year old was taking that responsibility on now rather than a few years down the road.
Like I said, I hope I wouldn't express it like that but your father may be looking at it from this point of view.
I agree with Pallsers and suspect it may take your dad some time to accept that the hopes and dreams he had for your future have turned to ashes.
Few mothers regret having their dc, but many wish they'd waited until they'd married/bought a house/achieved some financial security/seen something of the world before bringing dc into it.
If you continue this pregnancy I hope your dp doesn't turn into a dick as, judging from a number of posts on this board of late, so many seem to do and that he is now saving for "your own place" in which you can both raise a chld.
Text him back "Forgive me? How about I don't ever forgive you for shouting at a pregnant woman. You need to stay away from me until you can behave like a decent human and not an aggressive bully"
I would say though that if you have been with a much older man since you were 16 that red flags are waving.
To him you are still a child / young adult rather than self-sufficient adult.
This is in part due to him not wanting to cut the apron strings but also (I have assumed here) the fact you are still dependent on him as you live at home and are at uni.
I think you need to make a clear plan of what you're next steps are, baby's aren't cheap. Yes there's free cycle, gum tree etc but with a home to now set up and bills to pay you and your boyfriend are going to see a sharp rise in outgoings
I'd be tempted to text him back and say you aren't looking for his forgiveness, just his love and support and you are happy to talk when he wants to give you a call.
From your dad's perspective, it may be that he's shocked / worried for a number of reasons. If he thinks you're wrecking your life, why is that? Does he have concerns about your partner, about your financial position, your capacity to work and make a career, for example?
Does he not want you 'tied down' and what are his grounds for thinking like that?
And from his own perspective does he perhaps see this as you bringing a baby into his household which he and his wife will end up being at least partly responsible for, at a time when they maybe had some plans of their own?
If you live at home with your dad then to some extent you are still dependent on him. Maybe he's feeling the pressure. His reaction does seem to suggest a lot of stress and pressure coming to the surface.
What plans do you and your DP have to be independent of your parents? Explaining that might help calm things down.
You can research all your options for help, e.g check out your uni course for bursaries for parents.
Will you get maternity pay from your work? I think 20 is perfectly fine to have a baby, only issue really is living home, but you have plenty of time to plan your move before baby is born.
You said your partner is even older so I'm guessing around 23 and working.
Hope your dad comes round and apologises.
Sorry OP. I was 20 when I had DS and my Dad was upset about it too. He hasn't really come round even 8 years later and it's still upsetting. We don't have a great relationship anyway, but I think it hasn't helped. DS doesn't really get to see him as a grandfather at all.
You just have to keep going, perhaps one day he'll say he's proud of how you handled it.
Honestly, now I'm a parent myself, I'm quite amazed that a parent would act that way. I can understand being shocked and upset and perhaps disappointed, but to communicate that does what exactly? It's still your (adult!) child's choice whether to go ahead with the pregnancy. Making them feel shitty about it doesn't make it go away. It's not the supportive thing to do.
My Dad wasn't happy about my pregnancy and I was twice your age. My stepmother calmed him down eventually. He adores DS but still worries about me and doesn't make an effort with DP.
You could try telling hin you know it will be hard, but you hope you can count on his support and love, and that whatever your differences of opinion, you hope he'll be a great grandparent. Try to keep cslm and try not to let it overshadow your pregnancy.
Is your mum around? What does she think? What about your friends? It's not about listening to other people's opinions all the time, but sometimes others will spot things you don't. It's worth knowing who you can rely on.
I'm shocked that anyone would act that way to be honest. I understand that having a baby at 20 isn't ideal for most people but to talk to your child like that really shocks me.
I was 22 when I had my DS and although my parents weren't thrilled at first they were nothing but supportive of my decision.
I think it's important that you think carefully about your plans though. Are you planning on staying living with your dad when the baby is born? How supportive is your DP?
I was 30 and unmarried and terrified to tell my dad. He didnt utter a word to me from the minute I told him til the day she was born. On the day she was born he of course was totally in love. I think dads get upset because a baby is irrefutable proof that their daughter,their little girl has had sex and that's hard for most dads to stomach, however they wrap it up.
as others have already said, he will come round when your baby is here
When i told my dad I was pregnant with ds he put the phone down on me. When he next saw me he chucked a leaflet at me saying "you should have read this" . It was leaflet about contraception
I was 40 and married!!
Roll on 7 months and as soon as he saw him he melted and would have chucked himself under a bus to save him
My DD is nearly 19 - if she announces in a years time that she is pregnant I will be shocked and disappointed.
But.... I would not show it to her.
I would like to think I can remain calm and talk with her through all her options and then support her with any decision.
My niece got pregnant very young and my DSis was not impressed.
But her little boy is gorgeous and my DSis absolutely loves being a nan now.
Your dad will come round in time.
Just don't bring it up until he's ready to talk about it, sensibly!
You're in a long term relationship, both wirk, your partner is going to buy a place, and you'll have a degree. Maybe it's not prefect timing, but you're not 15, and its not a bad situation either. I hope he comes round soon.
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