A single mom having trouble with the father of my baby

Amanda - posted on 03/29/2016 ( 6 moms have responded )

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I had just broken up with my boyfriend a week before I found out I was pregnant with my first child. It was my first relationship, he was controlling and manipulative, and I was utterly unhappy. Now that I'm pregnant, he and his family want to be involved in my life. I didn't want to wait to tell him because I figured he had a right to know as soon as it was confirmed by the doctor, but now he's giving me problems. He's going back to his clingy ways by trying to message me constantly and hoping to get back together with me. He's promising all of his friends and family that they can babysit our child, but I don't know any of these people. I told him I wasn't comfortable with the idea, and he's saying it's cruel and unfair, and that I'm being ridiculous. I don't trust him because he drinks alcohol and does drugs on a daily basis, which he said he would go to therapy for to clean up. He's also willing to go to therapy for his psychological issues. He's verbally abusive and he is showing early signs of becoming physically abusive. Example being, he would grab my arm and squeeze it, but not leave marks. One time he joked that if I ever cheated on him, he'd kill me (bad joke, but it was one of his manipulative tests), and he choked me, for a good 15 seconds. He claims it was a joke despite my struggling and crying. He's too unstable, and I don't think 9 months of therapy is going to be enough time to change him. I've asked him not to talk to me, and only I would reach out to him when I had news about the baby, which he is not respecting and is bothering me regardless. He wants to be involved and go to my doctors appointments.

I appreciate that he wants to be involved, but I don't trust him. Every time I speak to him, it stresses me out. My mother miscarried a lot, and I worry that it runs in the family, so I'm trying to avoid stress like the plague. I only broke up with him a week ago, found out I was pregnant a few days ago, and I'm young. I had plans of going back to school, and I wanted to accomplish so much before any of this happened. I've explained this to him, but he won't have it. He tried to guilt trip and told me I'm stressing HIM out, and told me how bad of a time he's having (40$ parking ticket and his boss was being mean to him).

My question is, how do I handle him? I don't want my baby to grow up without a father, but I don't trust him. I don't know how involved I should allow him to be (going to my ultrasounds and such), but I'm also worried that he would take the baby without my consent one day and never come back, and that scares me. What should I do?

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Dove - posted on 03/29/2016

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Document all interactions w/ him. If he so much as lays a single hand on you in an aggressive manner (as you've mentioned happening)... call the police and file a report. If you have proof of the drug usage... document it. Strongly consider seeking counseling w/ someone willing to testify in court (if your lawyer thinks it would help... the counseling will be beneficial regardless).

He currently has NO rights to accompany you to doctor's appointments or have any involvement in your life whatsoever, but as soon as the baby is born... he has rights to access, so you are going to want to get a lawyer and file for custody, visitation, and child support as soon after birth as humanly possible... perhaps your lawyer can even file the papers while you are still in the hospital.

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Redsheart7 - posted on 03/31/2016

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Amanda- First, congratulations on the new life you are carrying! I am sure this time is difficult as you navigate planning for the future of your LO; dealing with pregnancy hormones and seeking wisdom about how to handle your dealings with your ex-boyfriend / father of your LO. Trust is critical to ensure the possibility of a good relationship. It is good that he is willing to seek counseling - have you considered going together? Perhaps if you did that you could see his progress. Would you consider reconciliation if he successfully completed a program?? I hope that you have family and friends that support you during this time; if not, do you have a church home or contacts that can help you? I am praying for you, Amanda.
Redsheart_7

Raye - posted on 03/30/2016

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Before the baby is born, explain to him that your romantic relationship is OVER. Keep him updated on the progress of the pregnancy, but ignore all his other bullshit.

Once the baby is born, having court orders in place to assure legal custody and provide visitation terms for the father is the best legal recourse you can have. It takes the emotions out of it and doesn't allow one parent to manipulate the other by using the child.

you can still have a great future for yourself. it will be work, but you can do anything you put your mind to.

Jodi - posted on 03/30/2016

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"He's promising all of his friends and family that they can babysit our child, but I don't know any of these people."

That won't be up to you. Unless you have evidence that they are a danger to the child, the father can choose to have his family babysit his child on his time. It doesn't matter whether you know them or not. Perhaps now is a good time to get to know them.

" I don't trust him because he drinks alcohol and does drugs on a daily basis, which he said he would go to therapy for to clean up."

Gather evidence of this. Without evidence, there is little you can do, but if you document everything, you may be able to push for supervised visitation.

"He's verbally abusive and he is showing early signs of becoming physically abusive. Example being, he would grab my arm and squeeze it, but not leave marks."

This is all abuse against you, not the child. It doesn't count when it comes to him having rights over the child.

"I've asked him not to talk to me, and only I would reach out to him when I had news about the baby, which he is not respecting and is bothering me regardless."

So file a restraint from harassment or restraining order against him to restrict his contact with you to ONLY being about the baby.

"I appreciate that he wants to be involved, but I don't trust him."

That is why, when the baby is born, you should file for custody and visitation orders, so that he can be involved. You can potentially push for supervised visitation so he is still in the child's life but doesn't need to be in yours.

"I'm also worried that he would take the baby without my consent one day and never come back, and that scares me."

And you are right to be concerned about that - this is why custody and visitation orders are so important. Talk to a lawyer about it so you can start negotiating it now.

Jacklyn - posted on 03/29/2016

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Hi! You know in reading this, it reminded me a lot of what I went through about two years ago when I was pregnant. I also had broken up with my ex-bf when I realized I was pregnant. Although he was not physically abusing me or on drugs, he is a complete narcisist and psychopath. He emotionally abused me, took advantage, and put me down the point that I thought I was crazy and sought counseling thinking I was the things he said I was. Anyways, long story short I made the mistake of giving him a chance to let him be in our lives and be a family only for him to cheat on top of everything else. He didnt make the effort to be in our sons life and often refused to help. At first, he also said he wanted to help and be here and that he loved our son, but my advice is pay close attentions to their actions.

Regardless of your relationship with him, a god father will put his child first, will work to provide for your child, and make the time. Also, if they are mentally unstable, then they need to get the help. It is not your job to help him and make anything easy for him,. Your priority is your child, the well-being of your child, and your own well-being. I know this is hard, but you know him better than the rest of us. Good intentions is great, but focus on what is actually done on his end. Think about this, do you want your child to learn to hurt people, to be selfish, and to learn how to manipulate, or do you want to give them a fair chance.

Look, you cant keep the child from him, but you control the majority of the child's rearing. File for child support to get their money, and then to the best you can, work with sharing the child, but at the end of the day, if they are not good for your child, then dont try to make him care either. Right now, he may show caring and involvement, but wait till the baby gets here. Belive, most single moms here will tell you that having the baby only made it more clear that the father was not a good person and could not be counted on. Being a parent is a lot of work and responsibility and my sons father was too selfish to make the time for his son and to care for him. His needs came first. He puts his new gf first and pays to take her out but refuses to buy diapers.

So keep in mind too, things will definitely once that baby us born, and you will change for sure. What you may find yourself tolerating now, you will not be able to once that baby wakes you up every other hour crying and your bf tells you off also.... you need a partner, not another person to be looking after or stressing you out. I gave my baby daddy a chance knowing he didnt earn it, and I regret it to the day. But now that I sent him to hell, I am not stressed, I get child support, and the judge put him in his place in terms of responsibility. He still doesnt see our son, but at least its legally recognized and I dont have to worry about my son learning from his fathers bad traits.

Ultimately you know what is best for you and your child, and I cannot emphasize more, you and that child some first!

Oh and another thing, I work full time, go to grad school part time, and live on my own with my son without any support from others except occasionally my family and friends. So you can definitely get through school and raising a child alone. It will not be easy, hell no sometimes you will want to quit, but you will look at your baby and know that its worth it and that you are teaching your child values and priceless experiences to learn responsiblity, determination, perseverance, strength, and more.

MaryAnn - posted on 03/29/2016

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First things first... You CAN accomplish school (and whatever else) as a single parent. Its not easy, but it can be done.
Second- these are your appointments, and you can allow or bar anyone you would like from attending. But once the baby is born, only a judge can decide how involved he is in that baby's life.
If this man is abusive, I urge you to talk to the police about the violence and harassment. Counsellors, doctors, anyone who will listen.

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