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Would this ring alarm bells for you?(29 Posts)
I've been seeing a lovely guy for a couple of months, he's kind and caring (and sexy), we get on really well and he makes me laugh a lot. We're from quite different backgrounds though, and he told me something recently that I'm not sure about.
He's got a 14 year old son from a previous relationship, who he fought for sole custody for (and won), as the mum was an alcoholic. He has also told me about his adult daughter, who doesn't speak to him because when he and her mum split up (marriage before above relationship) she took her mum's side. He didn't tell me much more than that about the divorce. However, we were talking last night and he told me the reason they'd split up was because his ex wife had been cheating on him, and his wife had had another child, who BF had brought up, thinking he was his own until the child was 6. Then the long term affair came to light, and the child looked nothing like him, so he did a DNA test and it emerged the child wasn't his. He walked out at that point and has had nothing to do with the child since. Obviously this is part of why the adult daughter no longer speaks to him. He obviously still has very conflicting feelings about it, some 15 years later, and is very sad about it.
I feel very sorry for him, but it's been preying on my mind all day. He walked out on a child who thought he was his dad. It feels really uncomfortable to me.
I don't know what I'm asking really, feel odd about it. He is a caring dad to his 14 year old son and has fought to bring him up, he's not an absentee or uncaring dad to him. It's just, I dunno. I can't reconcile this with the man I know.
In the long run he had no choice. I doubt his ex would have let him keep in contact and maybe he thought going to court would achieve nothing. . I doubt he saw it as taking the easy option if he loved the boy.
I think it would depend on what his feelings are about this and why he did so.
You weren't there, so you can't judge him. It sounds like he's had a lot of heart break and has done more than most dad's we read on threads here. Just enjoy being with him he is being honest with you, you should appreciate this even if it isn't roses tinted glasses your after
The reality is the other child was not biologically his so he had no legal rights. If he won custody of his own son I doubt the mother was the reasonable type with regards to access to the other boy not his
Imagine being with someone bring up a child for 6 years to find out it was all a lie and that child isn't yours? Would you stay playing happy families as I don't think I would
Hang on. Do you mean the adult dd is biologically his, but her younger sibling is not (that's the one he had a DNA test done on?)
And adult dd is upset because your dp walked out on that second child and his wife but also of course his first biological daughter? If so, I can see why she'd be upset - did he make any effort to stay in her life after the revelations? It would seem like the biological dd paid for her mothers' infidelity by losing her father. That doesn't seem fair.
If it's the adult dd who isn't biologically his then it's sad but understandable.
I think it's really hard to imagine what you might do in a situation which is so extreme, which that was, and therefore perhaps difficult to understand his reaction. But he has been honest and open from the sounds of it, and you have seen evidence that he has it in him to be a loving father. I think I would be interested in hearing how he feels about his in his own time, but I don't think it sounds like an alarm bell.
I can understand your discomfort though.
I'm not judging him, just trying to understand. When he was speaking about it he was very factual and pragmatic, just "I'd had my suspicions for a while and he looked nothing like me, so I decided to get a test done to see. It said I wasn't his dad and that was the final straw for me so I left." However, he looked really sad and his eyes were welling up when he said it. I asked if he'd ever tried to get contact and he just said it couldn't have happened, but didn't elaborate further. He saw his daughter, but the ex made it difficult and the daughter got more and more distant. They kept contact until she was 21 (and he paid maintenance) but she was pretty abusive to him (sent him awful texts which he showed me) and so there is no contact at present. He's obviously still hurting about it all, I suppose it was just the fact he upped and left and the child never saw the man he thought was his dad again.
No I don't think it would ring alarm bells for me.
I judge people on who they are today not who they were in the past, we all have a past don't we. Now your Bf is a good dad with full custody of his son
With regards to the child that wasn't his biologically well he had no legal rights and I'm not sure how reasonable an alcoholic mother would be in regards to access. I Imagine it hurt like hell to bring a child up for 6 years and then one day to find out it is all a huge lie and I think walking away from that child is all you could do in that situation as either way it ends in heart ache
Sorry, x posted.
Relationship 1 (marriage) eldest child DD was biologically his (is the spitting image of him). He supported her financially and maintained as much contact as possible, but she now won't have anything to do with him. She is now 26.
Second child (now 19) is not biologically his. He hasn't seen this child since he was 6, but brought him up until then .
Relationship 2 - 14 year old son, who he has sole custody of.
So when your dp left, the non-bio ds was 6, & his bio dd was 13.
At the point of leaving and thereafter, did he try to maintain regular contact & having dd to stay over etc also still be pleasant and welcoming to the ds who turned out nut to be his? Or was he ok with dd but not the ds and dd feels affronted on behalf of her half-brother? What is the dd's actual issue with her dad? Did they get in fine for years after he left and it's only as an adult she has rejected him, or does she feel he rejected her when he left?
People aren't perfect in life. I can see why he couldn't maintain a relationship with his ex-ex do after she had an affair resulting in a child who she passed off as his for years. The deceit is terrible and shocking. However depending on what he did next, his dd is understandably not happy if she felt he walked out and washed his hands emotionally of all of them from that day forward.
The timeline is confusing.
If the 6yr-old that he left is now 19yrs old, how does your DP have a 14yr-old from a second relationship? Was there an overlap, or have I got things mixed up?
Yes his walking away from the boy would make me uneasy. As you say Op the child loved him as his Father.
Though your DP discovered he wasn't his biological child this boy is still the blood sibling of your DP's bio DD. So it does seem cruel that he would maintain contact with one child but not the other when they lived in the same household with their Mum.
The only way it's possible is if like the 14yo only just turned 14, and the 19yo is almost 20?
Then there would be only just 6 years between them, but this suggests he moved on incredibly fast and immediately had another baby with an unsuitable partner.
That's what would worry me
That poor 6 year old, from his perspective his dad left one day and he never saw him again, although dad continued to take his older sister out. His explanation doesn't show empathy for how devastating that must have been for the boy.
I think he acted really, really badly towards the 6 year old. If I found out my child wasn't biologically mine, I wouldn't love them any less. I certainly wouldn't walk out of their life immediately.
Was he listed as the child's father on the birth certificate? If so, he had parental rights, unless a court later revoked them, or he chose to revoke them. He could have fought to continue contact in the child's best interests even if the mum opposed - but there is no evidence that she did oppose it.
If he wanted to sever the relationship with the boy, he could have done so in a kinder manner - a gradual fade. Although I can't see how you could raise a child from zero to six, then voluntarily step out of their life.
I wonder whether he was punishing the child for the sins of it's mother? As in taking out his anger at his ex on her child by ceasing contact? Which is a worrying thing to do.
Sorry, I got the ages wrong. He left 19 years ago and the child is now 25. Have just had another conversation with him about it at his instigation and asked about the crossover, there wasn't one. He didn't meet his son's mother until a couple of years after he got divorced.
He says it's the first time he's talked to anyone about it in years and it's really made him think. He was surprised by my reaction (leaving a 6 year old without warning) and although I don't want to go into further details, he is thinking about trying to build some bridges with his daughter and possibly reach out to the child through her, to apologise and offer to meet up if it's wanted.
So is his adult daughter the half sister of the boy he left? She grew up with the boy as siblings? I'd imagine she is furious with him as she can see the effect his overnight departure had on her brother.
Can he really not see that was a shitty thing to do to the boy?
Can he switch his love off like that?
I'm not sure what to think. I think I would be questioning some of his decisions which do seem poor. I know he has custody of his other child but it all seems to be quite messy and would worry me that he makes rash decisions and then isn't very good at the building bridges part of it, although slightly contradicted by him having custody of his son.
Also 19 years ago was a long time and he sounds regretful.
I suppose it is what he does now that counts but this is very sad it's taken speaking to you to make him see this, and not reflecting on his own decisions prior to this and trying to put things right. Understand the heartache he has been through but both parents seem to have acted in ways that have created total chaos
If his ex made it difficult for him to see his own DD then she probably won't have let him see the DS that won't biologically his.
Think about how he must have felt leaving this child he would have brought up as his own. I bet he was devastated. The only person in the wrong is the mother who allowed your DP to be a father to a child who wasn't his.
So, how old is he now? And how old are you? Are you thinking about having children with him?
I think it's really sad that 6 year old was abandoned. I'm not surprised the sister found it unforgivable. I know he wasn't his but there must have been a strong bond. It must have been very painful for the child. It sounds like the father was very black and white about it all.
This was many years ago and so he may be a different person now. It would ring alarm bells for me. The way he failed to maintain any relationship with the innocent child.
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