My "Step" Son's Bio Mom is a Dead Beat

Amanda - posted on 07/25/2016 ( 15 moms have responded )

18

0

4

When I first met my husband, he had a son that was about 18 months old. The little boys mother dropped him off with my husband when he was only 5 months old and never looked back. She moved out of state and never called to check on him... never gave my husband any type of child support..never wanted to see him at all. just completely walked out of the boys life and disappeared into thin air. I had always thought it was a weird situation, and even though I wasn't a mother (yet) myself I could never understand how a mother could turn her back on her child like that.

I have mothered the boy since he was about 2. He is now 6. Our family is great... my husband and I have a great marriage, we have two other children as well. I treat him as if he were my own.. I love him as if he were my own. He has always called me mommy and has a great, happy life. He loves me more than the world...so the problem is really with explaining things to him as he grows older.

He is very aware that I am not his biological mother. He obviously knows that I did not come into the picture until he was about 2 years old, and naturally he has had questions about who this other mother was that is now not in the picture. We have been completely honest with him from the beginning..that is something we have always agreed upon. We never wanted to pretend I was his "real" mother. When he was about 4 years old and I was pregnant with my little girl, he had a lot of questions about his own birth. So, my husband sat him down and told him that there was a different lady that was pregnant with him and carried him in her tummy. She decided when he was a baby that she couldn't take care of him, and made the decision that he would have a happier life if she wasn't in it. We have never told him anything NEGATIVE about her. Just the truth... she walked away. And we don't know why.

Recently, he has begun to ask more and more questions. He has even become a little bit angry about it. Although we have NEVER said this to him, he has said things like "That other mommy did not WANT me. That is rude, right? I bet her life sucks because I'm not in it." It literally breaks my heart every time he says this... because we have truly never said anything negative or that she didn't "Want" him. I guess that's just how he sees it though. She had him..and shes not in his life..so she must have not wanted him. I always just tell him "I don't know why she chose not to be a part of your life buddy, but I can tell you that you are the BEST part about my life, and I love you and am so proud that you are my son." I always try to move the conversation AWAY from her...and basically reassure him that I'm his mom, hes loved, etc.

Recently, though.. hes been asking more specific questions. Where does she live? Does she have a family? I'm not sure what information I should divulge to him at this age. I do not want to keep anything from him, but at the same time I don't want to hurt him or talk about things that don't really need to be said.Here is the information that I have about his mother... When her and my husband dated, she had 3 children. The first two were from a previous marriage and the third was a different father that was not in that childs life. Everything was completely normal when they were dating..she had all 3 of her children, had her own place, had a job...seemed like a very normal/nice woman. While they were dating, her two children from her previous marriage were SUPPOSEDLY molested by their father. We have no way of knowing if this is true or not...this is just something she had told my husband. He said that she became very clingy, very crazy, and he ultimately decided to break things off with her. About 4 months after they broke up is when she came to him and said she was pregnant. When the baby was born and my husband got the DNA test that it was his son...he immediately stepped up, started paying child support, etc. After 5 months she dropped him off and never came back ....she never even called or gave him any type of reason. My husband also learned at that time that she no longer had the two children from the previous marriage either. Whats confusing is that those children live with their father, the very person she told my husband had molested them, and she does not visit them. That makes absolutely no sense as to how a child molester could get his kids and she would have zero rights to them. As it stands now, she has not seen those children in 6 years. We don't know if it's by choice that she does not see them or what the real issue is. She kept her third child,and got married just shortly after she gave up my son. The man she married ended up adopting that child and just shortly after she left him for a different man. That child is now living with his adopted father. This child is only 7 years old. So she has 4 children total and lives with 0 of them, and only is actually active in ONE of their lives.Just a few months ago my husband decided to go after her for child support. She was upset that she would have to pay...and said "Well if im going to have to pay for him, then I should be able to see him." My husband never denied her any type of rights to see him, even though he really didn't want her resurfacing back into his life at 6 years old. He told her she could fly to see him, and eventually after trust was built and if he WANTED to, we'd let him fly out to see her. She mulled over it for a few weeks and then decided again that she did not want to be in his life. She said the logistics of it just didnt make sense since she was out of state. She really did not care about seeing her son at all. Then she tried to get us to settle out of court about the child support payments. She offered to give us $400 a month and said that was the absolute MOST she could pay. We soon learned that she actually made quite a large salary and the payments she is now paying us is DOUBLE that amount. I wanted answers for my son, so I actually had a conversation with her about WHY she left him, and WHY she did not see her other two children. She said that the hospital lost the rape kit for her daughters case, and the court was hard on her because her mother had some prior offenses. It still didnt make any sense to me why she doesnt see those kids at all...so I feel like she is being dishonest about something. She said that she didn't feel like she could mentally be there for my son at that time because she was going through the process of losing her other children and their case of them being molested. I'm really weary of anything she says though. I find it odd that her other kid is living with his adopted father now as well. I think she is pretty worthless and just doesn't want to be a mother or deal with children. Its just kind of crazy that she would not have ANY four of her children living with her.


So with that being said.. how do I keep myself neutral? I obviously don't want to sway my son one way or the other about his real mother. To me and my husband, she doesn't matter at all. We are a family and really dont give a second thought to her at all. But I know that this is a part of my son, its something hes probably not just going to be like "Oh well" about. I want him to know the door is open to talk about it. and he is going to want answers, closure, and to probably know about his background. I can't say "Yes, baby, your birth mom is a piece of crap. End of story"I would love some insight on doing whats best for my son. I guess I'm just confused on what do I say...what do I not say? It's so hard. The situation breaks my heart. I just want to be there for him.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 07/25/2016

13,211

21

2014

SINCE SHE CLOSED THE POST...

i'M EDITING.

this is the same person claiming that "baby momma" would ot stay out of their lives.

So, Ms Botts, which is it? Is she a deadbeat, or is she over involved with your territory???

Pointing out: you see it one way, that she doesn't want to be involved.

He sees it in his own way. You did state that he stated the the "other" mommy did not want him. This indicates that he is more bothered than you realize. Yes, attorneys cost money. Would it be worth the money for him to know that you ARE his mother, not only by virtue of having raised him, but also legally?

Amanda - posted on 07/26/2016

18

0

4

You people are beyond ridiculous. There is no lack of security about my position as his mother. Im his mother, period. He knows that.

Let's pretend I do adopt him, since no one can seem to GET PAST THAT POINT.

HE WILL ALWAYS KNOW HIS BIOLOGICAL MOTHER DIDNT WANT HIM, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER I ADOPT HIM OR GO AND FREAKING HANG THE MOON FOR HIM. ITS STILL THERE!!!! Something you people cannot comprehend. My best friend was a child in this exact situation. Her step dad adopted her. It was great, it meant a lot, but guess what..she still went searching for biological dad. She contacted siblings she didn't get to grow up with. Whether I adopt him or not, THIS IS STILL HIS PAST. I wanted advice on how to help him COPE WITH HIS PAST. Wow.

Thanks for nothing. I will not be returning to this forum. Me adopting him is not the problem...its not even the Issue. Clearly I need to seek professional help, as this website is a bunch of internet trolls with nothing better to do than cause drama instead of actually helping. I posted for advice about another subject as well and got the same treatment. This website is a joke.

Jodi - posted on 07/26/2016

3,529

36

3906

"I think that you are missing the point entirely. "Legally" adopted or not, the fact still remains that I did not give birth to him. The fact still remains there was a woman who should have been his mother, but chose to walk away. The fact still remains that he will have questions, feel emotions, and want answers. This was the whole point of my post."

Actually, I totally get the point of your post. I think you are missing MY point. The point that for this child, there is lack of security around YOUR position as his mother, and that many of his questions may be around his insecurity. You are not his mummy either, as far as he is concerned. If you were to legally adopt him, this may put many of his concerns to rest because you will now be his real mother because that's how adoption works. You THINK you know what his concerns are, but actually, from his perspective, this is a very real possibility. You asked for advice, that is one part of my advice - adopt him legally.

I also know people who were adopted and it truly does make a difference, whether you see it or not. It is natural for them to be curious about their parent, but they are quite accepting of the fact that their biological parents could be parents to them. You'd be surprised what "you chose ME to be YOUR child" means to an adopted kid. At this point, you did not choose him to be YOUR child forever. You are merely a parent because you married dad. If you were to adopt him, it could become a really big deal for him. He might not understand legalities, but this could be a true gift to him from you.

And as I mentioned earlier, do you really think she'll object if it means no child support? It seems you are prepared to take the child support all the way to court, but not prepared to at least TRY this as an option?

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 07/25/2016

13,211

21

2014

If the child's biological mother has fulfilled the definition of abandonment, why does your husband not get her rights entirely rescinded so that you can adopt legally?

No, that won't stop him from having questions, but the other ladies have advised how to handle that, and I agree with them.

Jodi - posted on 07/25/2016

3,529

36

3906

"The way we see it is she doesn't want to be in his life. She's not a threat at all."
The way YOU see it. Not the way the child sees it. I just wanted to add that. I am sure the child sees it very differently no matter how many ways you explain it to him.

This conversation has been closed to further comments

15 Comments

View replies by

Dove - posted on 07/25/2016

11,625

0

1348

And you entirely discounted our points in saying what we've said... He is 6. You have no idea what kind of thoughts and feelings are going through that little head of his... and you have no idea the impact of someone making it official can have on a little child.... I know kids who were w/ their adoptive parent/parents from birth, but not adopted for several years and it DOES make a difference. No, a 6 year old doesn't really grasp the legalities of it, but the whole special process of going in front of a judge and having that judge declare a particular person as THEIR parent. Yeah... it matters.

Amanda - posted on 07/25/2016

18

0

4

I think that you are missing the point entirely. "Legally" adopted or not, the fact still remains that I did not give birth to him. The fact still remains there was a woman who should have been his mother, but chose to walk away. The fact still remains that he will have questions, feel emotions, and want answers. This was the whole point of my post.

As I stated before, his mother has zero visitation rights granted by the court. She lives halfway across the country, and has not seen the child since he was 5 months old, when she dumped him off. Even after paying child support, she still has said "No thanks." to visiting him...and has now pawned her 4th child off on another man and is currently living with a new boyfriend. So no... she is not a threat. Period. My son does not see it any other way. He is 6 years old. He doesnt know anything about child support, court, or legal adoption. He knows I'm his mom...and that's it. He is in no way worried about her coming into his life...or threatening his security. If anything, he is very CURIOUS about her...and WANTS to know about her. He wants to know WHY she didn't want him. He knows his place 100% within our family. There has been zero talk about him seeing her or anything of the sort...so in regards to adoption its a mute point.

I don't object to legally adopting him. His mother would have to relinquish her rights and I dont know that she even wants to do that. I doubt she would. We'd have to get a lawyer...it would probably get nasty, and its not free.

Dove - posted on 07/25/2016

11,625

0

1348

Excellent point Jodi. A legal adoption and going in front of a judge and having her officially declared HIS mom... could very well stop most of the insecurity and questions. Granted, I'm sure he'll still have some wondering about bio mom, but his position in his family would likely be more securing to him.

Jodi - posted on 07/25/2016

3,529

36

3906

So why wouldn't you actually both go the steps so you COULD legally adopt him? Having you legally adopt him would help take the threat out of his life too....for him. None of this should be about the child support - I was just saying that because THAT is a way she might be happy for you to adopt the child. Can you see how a legal adoption could make a difference for HIM? Men sign off their rights and have their step fathers adopt them legally all the time too. Why do you object to adopting him? I don't understand that. This is about him not about you taking the high horse and thinking she "can't just go around having children and dumping them off when you feel like it with no consequences." It's not your job to hold her accountable. I am sure there will be consequences in the long term and life itself will end up holding her accountable.

Amanda - posted on 07/25/2016

18

0

4

`The way we see it is she doesn't want to be in his life. She's not a threat at all.. we offered her to be able to see him. We want him to know when hes older that we never kept her away from him, and we always did the right thing. My husband DID get her visitation rights taken away at the child support court hearing just in case she demands something in the future. We want it to be on our terms, since she is a stranger to him. To be honest I think she needs to pay child support. You can't just go around having children and dumping them off when you feel like it with no consequences. Men have nothing to do with their children and pay child support all the time. With me becoming a stay at home mom with my new daughter, the money each month actually helps us significantly.

Amanda - posted on 07/25/2016

18

0

4

To me, he is my adoptive son. I did not see it as "false information." Being adopted in my definition is a person who adopts a child of other parents as his or her own child, which is what I've done. I am his guardian, and I have nurtured and raised him as my own. So to me...hes adopted. No, hes not "legally" adopted...so I get how that could be confusing...but I thought it was pretty clear if you read my entire post you can understand the situation.

You said it was misleading...In hopes not to mislead anyone else I chose to open a different thread with different wording since I could not find a way to edit the post title..

I realize we are doing everything we can do at this point... I Just dont know what words I can choose in the future with his questions. And when do I tell him about his 3 other siblings? What if he wants to know more about them? Wants to meet them? Its just confusing. Perhaps someone in the same situation who has been through this can give some insight, or we may need to meet with a family counselor. I just don't want him to be scarred from any of this.

Jodi - posted on 07/25/2016

3,529

36

3906

Just out of interest....has dad ever tried to get mum to sign away her rights? Then she wouldn't have to pay child support, there wouldn't be the threat of her coming into his life at a moment's notice and you could legally adopt him? Just a thought.

With regard to his questions, you can simply just let him know that sometimes, people aren't ready to be a parent, and that's what happened to his mother. Sometimes in life, it is also daddies that aren't ready. That doesn't mean they don't want or love their baby, because it isn't about the baby, it's about the person who had the baby just not being ready because it is SUCH a big responsibility it can be really scary sometimes. Try to keep reassuring him it isn't about him. Because he is 50% her DNA, he doesn't need to hear the bad stuff, he needs to be reassured that mum isn't a bad person, she just has a lot of things going on that made it really hard for her to be able to be the best mummy for him.

Dove - posted on 07/25/2016

11,625

0

1348

I pointed it out simply because it was false information... but I had to read every word of the entire post to clarify that it was false information.... not a big deal. Kind of weird to get advice on a post and then lock the post w/out a word... but whatever.

You seem awfully defensive over good advice. Everything you've been doing is already everything you CAN do... w/ the exception of seeking some family counseling.

Amanda - posted on 07/25/2016

18

0

4

Then why did you feel the need to comment on it?

Why does he need to direct his questions to his father? I'm his parent as well and can answer just as well as he can. I really don't agree with the "have his father" do everything mindset. This is MY son as well, regardless of DNA or not.

Dove - posted on 07/25/2016

11,625

0

1348

You didn't need to lock the other post just to make a whole different one... the advice is the same.

Have him direct his questions to his father. Keep reassuring him w/out degrading her.... and have his father seek counseling for him if he's still having a hard time.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms