Post # 1
I’m currently 7 weeks pregnant and while I know it is early despite having seen a healthy heartbeat to tell the world about it, I can’t shake the nervousness I feel about telling my father. My parents were married for close to 30 years and a few years ago my dad picked up and left our entire family, moved to another state and got remarried. When he left, I guess because of the way he was behaving and leaving, I somehow knew we would become estranged and I even told him “You’re going to move away and I’m never going to see you again.” Of course he said it wouldn’t be that way, but since he left 3 years ago I’ve received 2 phone calls, one of which was to tell me he was getting married, and a handful of text messages. He also was really bad at hiding the fact that he was communicating constantly with a family friend before he left, and of course as it turns out that’s who he married and claimed the whole time not to have a relationship with until he told me he was marrying her. Anyway, now that I’m pregnant it is going to be hard for me to communicate with him about it. I know I can’t hide from him that he’s going to be a grandfather, but I’m terrified it will bring him out of the woodwork and that he may actually come here to see the baby once born.
So I guess my question is this – for those of you who had to tell people like this, how in the world did you do it and how did it turn out? Seeing him again would be incredibly difficult, especially because he clearly decided to stop being a father to me when he left since he put in no real effort to mend things with me or my sister.
Post # 3
@bloodgo1: I’m sorry bee, this is an unfortuante situation since the wounds are still very new and open to you.
If you don’t want to see him, you can let him know the news. But also let him know how you feel about the family abandonment, and that you would prefer him not making a surprise visit home to see his grandchild, but should wait until you tell him you are ready to have a relationship again.
I think it would just make you feel more spiteful if he did come and visit. I think this needs to be on your terms. And you shouldn’t be afraid to tell him your hurt, especially after his actions. The truth is, if you want your dad back in your life, your chlld will still have a chance to know him. But a newborn wouldn’t remember either way.
Post # 4
I have an estranged relationship with my mother, I just called her and told her. I’m more worried about when my baby comes, because I don’t want her to have any expectations. My Aunt is who raised me and will be grandma.
Post # 5
I don’t see why you have to tell him. My dad isn’t in my life anymore due to choices he’s made, and I didn’t tell him. He’s not I her life, he’s not her grandfather IMO.
Post # 6
Hey im not pregnant but in the ttc process. My father and I haven’t spoken in approx 13 years and when I do have children I will not be telling him although we do have mutual aquitances. The reason I wont tell him is because I would never give him the opportunity to leave my child the way he left me. I understand yr situation is slightly different but I think you have to ask yrself can u have a positive relationship with him if so then build from there. I know my father would be a fantastic grandfather for about 2 months then get bored leave for a while then come back etc etc each time just looking something. I just would not allow that tyle of relationship around me my husband or my child.
Post # 7
I agree with the two posters above. My father isn’t part of my life and I didn’t tell him I was married. I’m certainly not telling him I’m pregnant. Its been over 3 years since we spoke and since he’s made no effort to be part of my life, I’m not giving him the opportunity to be part of my child’s life. I want people who are going to be actively present in my child’s life, not to be present only when it’s convenient for them.
Post # 8
- Wedding: November 2011 - Florida Aquarium
I ended up sending my mother our pregnancy announcement card at 20 weeks ( others got it earlier) at the request of my brother. He was going to see her and knew his kids would bring up aunt Stephanie’s baby, so he wanted her to know before then.
I haven’t spoken to my mother in years. She wasn’t at my wedding and won’t be in my daughter’s life.
She recently sent me a one line email that wished me a happy birth. That’s all the communication there’s been. I may send her our holiday/birth announcement card.
Post # 9
@bloodgo1: ugh such a tough situation to be in & I totally sympathize with you. My dad left 16 years ago, the summber before I started junior high. I went and lived with him my freshman year of high school but ultimately moved back in with my mom after my dads new wife said he had to choose between her & I, he choose her and sent me home. Fast forward years later to my early 20’s, I would do just about anything to win my dads approval, gave him money for bills, paid his cell phone bill, gave him my old car, etc (all while being a full time college student & living on my own). He’s an emotional black hole. Once I cut off the money he didn’t talk to me for almost a year because I was “heartless” and just a person who “pretends to care.” After DH & I got engaged I started having random conversations with my dad but ultimately told him my oldest brother would be walking giving me away at my wedding. This set us back, again as his feeling were hurt blah blah blah… Just this summer we got in a tiff about him not being invited to spend the day with me and my mom’s family (his EX B&SIL’s)… and he was such a jerk about it. It really made me sit back and reanalyze our relationship. My dad is a victim of life, its not his fault that his 2 marriages have failed, that he didn’t get that promotion at work, that he doesn’t have a higher education, etc. He’s constantly looking for ways to “get rich quick” on the internet but won’t work a second job to make ends meet. It blows my mind! When I found out I was pregnant & had NO desire to tell him about the baby. He did come visit this summer (we all went to my nieces soccer game) when I was about 12 weeks pregnant & I didn’t tell him about the baby. My older sister who is currently the closest to my dad (talks to him a couple of times a month) was so annoyed that I wouldn’t tell him about the baby. Ultimately my dad emailed my sister and asked her if I was pregnant. She said he should talk to me about it. (Never got a phone call). When we found out what we were having at our anatomy scan I shot him an email that said, “I know you already know I’m pregnant, it’s a girl, we are really excited and are expecting her to arrive this spring.” – He wrote back congrats & asked my due date. I never replied. He still hasn’t called me. I’ve all but blocked him on facebook, (he can see very limited things on my wall but can not comment on pictures or anything). I do not plan on telling him when the baby is born & since he can’t see anything on facebook we should be okay. I’m sure my sister will eventually tell him when she arrives but I will not allow him to visit me in the hospital or see us shortly after she’s born. My niece who is 5 has met him maybe a handful of times & when you say “say hi to your grandpa” she says “that’s not my grandpa, thats my mommys daddy.” – My dad only lives 2 hours away, his lack of presence in our adult lives is his fault. (We never go through the town he lives in w/out trying to at least meet him for a meal, but he’ll come to our town to golf with friends for the weekend and not tell us.)
Good luck with your situation!
Post # 10
I am not in contact with my father at all. If I were to have a kid, I doubt I would even let him know. His loss!
Post # 11
- Wedding: April 2012 - Chateau Briand
First, I want to say i’m sorry you are in this situation. It’s the last thing you want to worry about at this happy time and I can understand your frustration/worry about the situation.
DH and his father have a very strained relationship; they only see each other once every few years. He told him we were pregnant and even though his father was invited to our co-ed baby shower and he rsvp-ed he was coming, he didn’t show up and offered no explanation. DH still plans on telling him when the baby arrives but he will just send a text and leave it at that.
Post # 12
@bloodgo1: Oh gosh, I feel for you. This is so hard. After having no contact with my mother I recently ended it and things are not good. Really not good. I’m in a similar position to you where I just don’t know how I’m going to tell her, or when. I sent her an email asking her if she’d like to get together over Christmas and she said she wouldn’t… it’s just so hard… Hopefully you’ll find a way that feels right to you to tell your Dad x x
Post # 13
I feel for you. I am 20weeks pregnant and havnt really spoken to my dad in over 8months. Since our wedding, where he decided to get drunk and attack one of our friends and then trying to drive my lilttle sisters home drunk, then when I stepped in to try and stop him he punched me, almost knocking me to the ground. Hehasnt probaly apoligiesed and he dosnt seem to care about my husband or me anymore. He still talks to my five brothers and sisters but dosnt bother with us, they allgo out for dinner but we are never invited and he seems to be happy with that. I would be willing to try and rebuild our relationship but since he dosnt want to, i cant force him. I told him i was pregnant when i saw him one day, he didnt seem to care. I dont think i will let him know once our baby is here, im sure my sister will tell him. he is the father and he shouldbe the one making the effort. I will not subject my baby to the constant rejection ivehad to go through
Post # 14
I’m torn on this – both parents of the child have a right to know the child exists (so in the situation of an estranged couple where the mother is pregnant, I think the father has a right to know), but I think the status of grandparent involved in a grandchild’s life is more of an earned position. At some point, yes, I think it would be good to let your dad know you are pregnant or had a child, because I don’t know that he has been overtly abusive or shown any signs that he would harm your child in any way, but as for having a ROLE in your child’s life? Not sure he owns that right or that you have to give it to him. Honestly, though, I wouldn’t make a big thing of it when you do tell him, and definitely wouldn’t be telling him until you are further along in pregnancy. If he shows a ton of interest in getting back involved in your life, and you don’t want that, simply tell him, and be firm.
My mom and I don’t really get along, but as my dad died a few years ago and she is alone, my sisters and I do make a point to make sure we are in touch from time to time (and definitely on holidays). When we get pregnant, I can’t imagine telling my mom early – the last thing I would want is her knowing we are pregnant and then having something go wrong and having to tell her that. But I will allow her a limited role in my children’s life, unless she ever abuses that.
Post # 15
I have been estranged from my mother for close to 10 years, although a few of my siblings still speak to her. I didn’t tell her. I am sure 1 or 2 of my siblings told her and thats fine, but I saw no need to reach out to her. She is not a grandmother in my opinion.
There is no right or wrong to this. You have to do what is best for YOU. Take some more time to think about it and come to terms. Think about what you would say IF he says he wants to come visit. You don’t have to tell him, if he finds out through the grapevine, ok.
Post # 16
As others have stated, you have to decide what’s best for you. I haven’t talked to my own father in years and have no plans to tell him about the baby. I didn’t tell him about my wedding either and DH has never met him. My relationship with my father has never good though. I tried to keep in touch with him after him and my mom split up 12 years ago but whenever I spoke with him he would say the most hurtful things to me. I’d cry for days afterwards and actually got super depressed over it. I don’t want to allow that kind of negativity around my baby.