Please help me! SINGLE MOMS IN RELATIONSHIP AND CARRIER MOMS,

JoyC - posted on 03/30/2012 ( 21 moms have responded )

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Please help me! ... I 've got a 2yr old son that just started goin 2 school.So far he would stay home with me until about 2pm .Then my mother would take over until i went to pick him up ( round 7-8 pm ).I am a professional singer and also a single mom in a six month relationship with a musician which happens to be the first man in my life that my son gets to meet as we all live together now.My son never met his dad and we have no communication with him either, and honestly i dont want my son to ever know him because he was, n still is on heavy drugs, and also going in and out of jail from what i am hearing!Anyway to cut a long story short..Today he asked for the first time " where is daddy "!! WHAT DO I TELL HIM? Me and my bf we are going serious but there's no guaranties in life!... Also another problem is that we ( me and my boyfriend) have to take a job for six months on a cruise ship because things are getting really tough for musicians and singers where am coming from and that is the only way i can provide for a very good and secured income for six months continually! So now that he is asking about his father am also going to be going away (because that is our only choice) Please let me know ! Any kind of opinion will be helpful! I tried ma hardest to put my problem into a few words describing as best as i can my situation!

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Krista - posted on 03/30/2012

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1. If he's only two, you don't need to go into anything elaborate. You can just say that his daddy's not here. And if he asks why, you can say that he's very very sick and had to go away for a long time. Once he's older, you can gradually fill in more blanks.



2. I appreciate that you and your boyfriend are passionate about your work. But...being a musician is rarely a source of stable income. I know many musicians, and virtually all of them have "day jobs". This may be something that you want to consider -- getting a day job, even if it's just part-time so that you can pay your bills and not have to leave your child for months on end, and you can then focus on your music in your spare time. 6 months is a LONG time when you're two. Children change so much during that time. It's up to you, and you have to do what is best for your family, but I just thought it might be something to consider.

Krista - posted on 03/30/2012

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You're not really lying to him. If his father is a drug addict, then he IS very sick and needs to be away. He's only little, so that's really all the detail he needs.



When he's a bit older, you can fill in more blanks, saying that his father is sick because he made some very bad choices, and that it's not good for him to be around. If you're still with your boyfriend, you can say that he's not your son's father, but he would very much like to be just like a daddy to him.



It'll take some time, and some sensitivity, and it also depends on your child and his maturity level. But I would let him ask the questions, answer them briefly and honestly (without being too mature), and then see how he reacts. If he asks more questions, fine. But he might be perfectly content with that amount of information. So you'll want to let him take the lead on this, instead of overwhelming him with too much information that he might not want or understand.

Beth - posted on 04/05/2012

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I don't usually comment but after reading everything that has been posted, just felt like I needed to chime in. As for the daddy question, I agree with what most people on here have said. If he is indeed asking about his biological father, tell him very little detail at this point. I don't know that telling him his daddy is sick is the right answer, even though he obviously is. Little ones want to help people who are sick because in their minds it's like them having a cold or the flu. They just want to make them feel better like you do for your son when he's sick. As far as the cruise goes, I think your son will be fine because you'll be seeing him a couple of days a week and he'll just be spending more time with grandma then he usually does. You're leaving him with family for a short period of time to make life better for all of you. It's not like you're dumping him off with someone he doesn't know and leaving for a solid six months. My ex used to have to take leave for weeks at a time for his job and our kids just knew he was "at work". They didn't feel like they were abandoned. They just knew it was something that happened. You may miss a few things and be surprised how much he grows when you're gone, but he has school now and family around him and that should bring you some comfort. Taking the time now, when he is little, is much better than when he gets into t-ball, scouts or some other activity that you won't be able to make it to. Good luck on the cruise and just know when you get back that you will have a very active 3-year old that will make it all worth it!

Robin - posted on 03/31/2012

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I am a single mom and became one the day after I told his father who I was engaged to we were going to be parents by his birthday.He left the next morning. We had been living together wedding planned! Not how we planned life but that is what life dealt. I gave up most of my life to raise my son with no regrets. No man ever met my son as being a boyfriend. I felt if it got to the point it was going to be serious and definate then I would add him in. If the relationship broke up I didn't feel it was fair to him to suffer a loss as well. He started asking when are we going to get a dad and what happened to our dad.(about 3-5 yrs old) I didn't lie...I told him our dad was not ready to be a dad or a husband or be part of a family at the time. I told him I know that is silly but some people just can't do it. I promised when we found a dad he would love being with us. He would want to do what we do and love being in OUR family. No matter what weARE a family, we are not broken but a family that can add more to us later. He is 22 now never met his biological dad. I couldn't be more proud of the wonderful young man he has become. I was lucky to have my teaching degree so I had a job but....that did not make it easy!~I always had to budget and stick to it. When we went grocery shopping and he was about 3-4 yrs old I gave him coupons to look for the product in the aisle. We would check to see if it was on sale and we had a coupon we could get it. He thought this was a game...actually it was early reading! It kept him occuppied in the store. I was lucky to have $60 for spending between paychecks of only 2 times a month! Not much money when you are raising a little one.The point is, I know what it is like not having money. Personally I could never leave him for 6 months. He needs one person he can count on as being the constant in his life. Who is that going to be? It is a very hard place to be. And where you are at now it feels like life is soooo long raising your child, how are you going to do it. You will do it and believe me time will go by sooooo fast! Don't miss your child growing up if you don't have to. My son graduates college in May...I can't believe that time is here and we have a new chapter in our lives, but I miss Friday night pizza nights (frozen) and movies or saving up to go to the movie theater during our Christmas break....and we would splurge and buy popcorn! Make those memories! Good luck!

Ioana - posted on 03/31/2012

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Hi Brigitte,

I was wondering if I should react to what you said, given it was not an answer for me but for Joy.

On the other hand you reacted to my story as well by what you said, because I as well am a bit in Joy's situation.

I always appreciate advices like yours, from moms that have been in some similar situations, but I want to state here that I disagree with you and why.

Yes, God gave us these partners for creating our children. AND also God gave me and my child the right to choose for a life without drama and pain. If I have to choose between:

1. a totally dysfunctional father, that would beat the mother and put the life of his child/children in danger, that would use drugs or drink and thus put everyone's lives around him in danger, that would be violent with people he encounters, on any level, that regrets having "not used a condom" and that makes the life of a small child impossible, etc.

or

2. an absent father

.. well, I will always choose the second and always advise the second. I firmly believe in the right of the mother (in this case you, me and Joy or any other mother in this position) to choose for a better life for herself and a chance for a better life for her child. I do not see why I would have to stay in a situation where I may loose my child every day or where I may loose myself every day, just because God put me and a guy together at a certain moment. God gave me also free will. If you chose to stay in a situation that does not sound like is enjoyed by you, it is your choice. I do not know your situation and I am not in the position to give you advice because you did not ask for one, but, without wanting to get into a discussion with you, giving another single mother the advice to stick with a dysfunctional father just because of God is not something I can agree with.

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Kylie - posted on 04/18/2012

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Also I just realized I have made a comment to the wrong person as obviously that's not the question your asking I apologize I've just read yours and another's and I've left my comment that was meant for the woman who wants her kids to call her new boyfriend dad but he don't want them to so that's why I commented only on the wrong 1 but now I've really taken notice of yours I've been in the same boat I told my little one at the time that daddy was sick and he has to stay away from him untill he was better, the older they got the more details they got then when they were teenagers they wanted to see him for themselves and I allowed it for there own curiosity but not long after that they thanked me for keeping them away from him cause they seen why cause like yourself said he was a drug addict etc no

Morals us as parents especially mums protect our kids even if that means from there father no matter what u do Hun is wrong or right cause obviously u love your son and u have his best intentions in heart and the younger he is the harder it is to tell or explain but the older he becomes the easier it is I'd keep it as simple as possible it's hard for u cause we never know what's right or wrong

Kylie - posted on 04/18/2012

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Hun I'm not criticizing it's just I to have been a single mom and now engaged to another man and I see how easy men can come and go and to me to have my children call a man dad is something I would never do as I personally would never set my kids up to be hurt like that cause dad is just not a word to be thrown around it has a meaning of committement forever not just while your with the woman but a committement to the kids for a life time and I'm sorry but not all men can do that and I would never set my kids up for that disappointment it's bad enough for kids to have to deal with break ups let or lone the man his known as "dad" he can't call dad anymore that's just my own personal opinion every has there own hun kids can have many dads but only 1 mum goodluck

JoyC - posted on 04/03/2012

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Dixie: obviously you havent read all i said so i will disregard your comment ... you should read all my posts and the things i ve said.And by the way... am not chosing boyfriend over my child.My boyfriend wouldn't be going on that job unless i was...anyway read my comments before you judge me so you can get the facts straight hon!

Dixie - posted on 04/02/2012

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As far as leaving your son for 6 months. I am sure you will miss your boyfriend, but think how much your son will miss you. Nothing short of death could make me leave my child for 6 days......, 6 months, NEVER!!!!! Get a day job, and wish your boyfriend Good Luck. Now if you think more of your boyfriend than your son......sorry for you.

JoyC - posted on 04/01/2012

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To Kylie: None of us suggested that ma son should call my boyfriend as his dad and i wouldn't be so irresponsible as to do that to my son for the same exact reasons as you have mentioned above! The only thing that Ioana said is observe my son and try to understand what exactly he is referring to us "dad" when he asked me where his dad is.Which is something i did not think previously and i think she is right! I have to find out what it is that he thinks dad is or who he thinks dad is so i can cope with the situation better, because he might have even meant MY own father which he hears me call dad and maybe that's what he meant when he asked "where is dad".Or maybe its someone else! And to Ioana : i have not felt critisized nor judge by any of the girls here :) so don't worry...We are here to exchange opinions and hear and learn things and get advises :)

Thanks again to all you girls

xxx

Ioana - posted on 04/01/2012

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Hi Joy,

Thank you for explaining:-) I understand it now. Not knowing about your background I thought you were somewhere in the "western" world, where the contact between the children and grandparents is mostly not very strong, if present.. It is different if your child is with grandma so often. I wish you good luck with your future plans!

Also I wanted to add that I did not "judge" you at all (if I gave that impression please excuse me!). We all do what we can do in that moment. With a singing talent maybe you could consider giving an online singing course or something like that. Once again, if you want to know more please ask me, and I will send you a private message.

Good luck and have a great cruise!

Kylie - posted on 04/01/2012

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I won't advise as I think u have great advise from everyone else the only reason why I'm commenting is I'm against kids calling men who are not there fathers and who have been around for little time dad I'm not expressing judgement on people who make that choice but what if it don't work out and let me tell u hunny most men once they break up with u have not much interest with the kids that aren't there's once it's all over so why set your kid up for that rejection, because addy is not just a word that gets thrown around, it has huge mean that this man is going to to father your child no matter what and at least if the knows this difference from day 1 that will a little less disappointment for them and then what if u start a new relationship as u know nothing's ever guaranteed in life are you going to have the child call the next guy dad to after a couple of years?? Please think about that it's not fair for kids

JoyC - posted on 03/31/2012

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Thank you all guys for you responses! I only disagree with Brigitte! I am really sorry to say this but a bad parent like my baby's father if was let into our lives would be the worse thing i could 've done! Not for me! I don't care about my feelings cause i do not have any feelings about the guy! I have nor good nor bad feelings concerning him! I want him completely out our lives, and he has been since i was only 4 months pregnant,because of his drug addiction! I gave him the chance to go to rehab if he wanted so that maybe he could 've had a chance to see his son in the future but he didn't.He threw me out of the car when i was still pregnant while the car was on motion after he beat me up continually banging ma head on the steering wheel because i tried to prevent him from getting his fix! Is that really a man that anyone should be around ??? HELL NO! Then after i broke up with him i found out more about this man...He had 74 convictions which he hadn't gone to court for!! I found out he did 2yrs in jail before met and many more! He had to go robbing just about anything to get his fix! Even today as we speak i know he is in jail and i know he is doing drugs in there as well! WE do not need drama in our lives!!

Besides that , I 've decided that if he asks again i will tell him the truth like you guys said and keep it simple and maybe Ioanna is right , maybe he is not even asking about his biological father! So i'll pay attention to him as she suggested!

Now on the matter of me leaving for six months..this is how the backround is! Since even before my son was born we were all staying in the same house with my parents until last Christmas, when we slowly started moving in with ma boyfriends cause i didn't want this to be a sudden change for him.My son goes to school in the morning and then every afternoon straight after school he goes to my moms house which is 2 minutes away from where we live! Then if i am not working at nights he comes home with us.That is about 4 nights a week.The time spend with him after school is divided between my mother and I.This is very ordinary for Greek families especially Cypriots.Our mothers help us tremendously with our babies no matter what age they are even to extremes.As i said i won't be gone for six months without seeing him but i also understand and know it is going to be very hard for him but it's the best we can do under the circumstances!I need a job that is gonna allow me to pay bills and save money both for my son and me as well! I do not know anything else besides singing and i've tried several other things but they always failed.With ma singing jobs I ve managed to save up 14.000 euros under my sons name the past 2 yrs that will be provided for his education after he is 18.Now this job is giving me 2.000 euros a month and even when i come back i will be claiming unemployment which will be more than 1.000 for me as a single mom plus i will also be working at nights as well ( here in Cyprus nobody pays singers social security ) so i ll be earning a great deal when i come back too.Singing to me is not a hobby and i know its hard cause of the income and everything but that is what i am.A professional singer.I understand that our children don't care about that and that we need to be there for our children but its very important to me to know that i've done the best with the skills that i was blessed with to provide a better tomorrow for my family! It might sound like am not a great mom but i am only doing this because my son is really comfortable with his grandparents and the help i have been getting from them is very big and am very grateful!And because i get the chance to see him atleast twice a week.This is the best i can do for my son right now...And although it hurts me and makes me feel guilty for having to take this job...it's a sacrifice i have to make for him to have more when growing up.

I have bigger and better plans for the future as both me and my boyfriend discussed about our future and he wants us to be a family and we both have property that we can invest in and for that to be accomplished we need a lot of money.Surely you can't blame a parent for wanting and planing for a better tomorrow?And am sure that everybody knows that to have that you need to make sacrifices some small some big.

Am really thankful i found this page and being able to discuss things with other moms.And it doesnt matter if i agree with you guyz or not because every opinion counts to me.Am sorry for making this so long...but i wanted the chance to explain things better.I ll be waiting to hear back from you :)

Heather Michelle - posted on 03/31/2012

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Keep it simple, but be honest. No need to give the child more information than he can process. A straightforward answer will help him understand that you feel he deserves the answers he seeks.

[deleted account]

As a mother who has had to deal with parent alienation (and still is) for the last 5 years...with my daughter's father and live-in girlfriend talking badly about me to my daughter, and whom continue to judge me for a long ago past when I went to a treatment center for an addiction/mental health issue, here's my humble suggestion: Tell your son the TRUTH, as best as he is able to comprehend at this point (age). Children are extremely intelligent with exceptional memories. If we tell them made-up stories, half-truths and/or (worst of all) lies about their other parent, it will come back to haunt us, and be especially damaging to them...in many unforeseeable and tragic ways. I would also suggest gradually (as well as cautiously, of course) allowing the relationship between your son and his father to BE...in whatever ways you can. Severing the God-given ties of love with his other parent is wrong!...unless you have honestly assessed the whole situation and you cannot find at least one possibility for maintaining contact. The reasons for helping them stay connected should be self-explanatory if you are a truly understanding and loving parent. Please give this your clearest thought, apart from any personal feelings you may have about his father, and you will have done the right thing by your son. My love goes out to you, to your son and to his father. Brigitte

Ioana - posted on 03/31/2012

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Hi Joy,

I am also a single mom and my son is now almost 3. Until a few month ago we were living across from his father who was becoming more and more violent. He broke up with me when I was 7 month pregnant and living so close to him was not at all easy. I am super glad I left. All this time I was a single mom plus problems from the dad.

I am saying all this to give you an idea about my background although it is not really comparable with yours. My son saw his father regularly for the first two years of his life and at one point I thought necessary to let his father "babysit" for 2 times a week. He was at that point only psychically and emotionally violent to me - not to our son - and I was just plain stupid to think that his father's confusion and fury would not have any effect on my son.

My point is that my son knew his father as his "papa". As I closely observed my son at age 2 I would want to tell you that I doubt that your son referred to his biological father when he asked about "daddy". If I was you I would observe your son, maybe he referred to your boyfriend with that question. What references does he have in regards to daddy?

Further, if he indeed asked about where or who is his real father, I totally agree with the other mothers that very wisely advised you to say that his daddy is sick, and keep it simple. That is also what I will say when my son will ask about his father. 9 month ago we run away and we live on a secret address. The strange thing is that my son asks about other old neighbors but never ever ever asked about his "papa" (at least not until now). He sees other families where there are papas and he has a loving male in his life in the person of my best friend (who is also his best friend now) but he never said "where is my papa?".

So good luck and please observe your son closely. Once again, I am not so sure your son WAS asking about his real father. Maybe he will not ask again.



Also, good luck with your cruise. 6 month will be a long time for your son indeed. It is possible that when you will come back he will have intense "being left " feelings.. I am so sorry to tell you this, actually, but your first concern right now should be in my opinion not with his question, but with the fact that you will be so much away from him for such a long time. Psychologically (for him) you will leave him, as he will not be able to understand all our logical thinking.. (as in: mommy comes back in two days and mommy must earn money ).. He is immensely attached to you. I suppose you cannot cancel your cruise and I do not want to scare you, but for a child this age there is no "time" as we know it. It will be an eternity every day you are not with him. Eventually he will get re-attached, to your mother (how nice of her to do this for you) but when you are back he will most probably have some issues with and of attachment in regards to you. You will have to re-attach him to you and it could take.. well.. years.. Once again, I do not want to scare you, maybe you will not see very much difference but each child works this out in his own way and some give warning signs only later (which signs are interpreted as bad behavior and such)... I've read a lot of psychology books related to this subject because I was such a child: my parents sent me to my grandparents in another town (also because they had things to work out) and came to see me once a week or so. They did not know better but I do so now so I thought to give you a fair warning.. I hope it works out for you and your son..

I also know how difficult (financially) life as an artist is, as I am an artist myself.. maybe in the future you could consider doing something else to earn money (like an internet business?) than cruises.. if you would like more info please tell me..

much love to you and your son and I hope your BF is good to you guys.

Joann - posted on 03/31/2012

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When my daughter asked, I simply told her that she does not have one. At that age that is all they need to know. When she became older, 6-7, she asked why she did not have a dad like everyone else... I told her that when we find the best dad in the world, he would belong to her. I got married to a wonderful man when she was nine and he not only adopted her but gave her two sisters and a brother. It has been 13 years now and we have been blessed with another brother for her. She is graduating college this year and has known the truth about HIM as we call him for about 6 years. The man who has raised her and given her his name is her true father.

JoyC - posted on 03/30/2012

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Krista and Rachel, Thank you so much guys!..You have been extremely helpful and you've made my panic and fear go away!Thank you both, i really appreciate ! :)

Rachel - posted on 03/30/2012

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I have been through this my son does not know his biological father and probably never will. his father wanted me to have an abortion and i refused so i left and havent seen him since. when my son started to ask even though i was with someone i told him he just wasnt ready to have a baby. the younger he is the less detail you need to go into. my son is now 5 and i have been dating the same guy for over 3 years and have a 2 year old daughter with him. this is the guy that my son and daughter call daddy but my son knows that he isnt his dad and it doesnt matter to him that is still his daddy. just take it one day at a time and try to make the most stable environment for your son.

JoyC - posted on 03/30/2012

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Thank you so much for replying, i really appreciate it ! I know what you are saying is so very true and i should have taken some kind of action prior to this but i didn't because so far for the past 14-15 yrs i ve been doing it i never encountered such an economical crisis as this...and also the only reason i took this cruise job ( sorry for not clearing that up earlier but i was trying to put everything in as less details as possible but also stating the true facts!)... is because its giving me the chance to see my son twice or three times a week from mornin till afternoon....so i wont be completely gone.In ma head though that's how it feels and am feeling even worse because he started asking about his father now... and i' ll be goin on that cruise ship in about 2 months!You are right though about what u said and i agree thats y am gonna make whatever it takes so that when we come back we wont have to leave again like that!

About the other thing u said... isn't it a bad thing if i lie to him? and also...isn't that gonna confuse him more when we living togather with my boyfriend??

Thank you so very much again for taking the time to help me out!! You don't imagine what it means to me!

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