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Should I tell my daughter now or wait until she gets older that my husband isnt her biological father?

As soon as I told my daughter's biological father that I was pregnant he dumped me. When I was around 5 months along in my pregnancy, I met my husband. He has been there from day 1 of her life. Her biological father never wanted anything to do with her so we decided not to file for child support. Instead, when my daughter was about 3 years old my husband accepted paternity (knowing she isnt his) and signed her birth certificate. He has and always will be Daddy.. BUT.. I live in a very small town and there are alot of people who know the truth. My daughter will be ten years old next month. I am afraid if I wait much longer she will find out from someone else, but some of my friends say she is still too young to tell. I know some will say I should have told her from the beginning, but I was afraid it would be even more confusing. Any advice would be appreciated. Please.. no mean comments.

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Asked by Anonymous at 9:59 PM on May. 18, 2009 in General Parenting

Answers (11)
  • As difficult as it will be, you might want to go ahead and tell her. As thoughtless as most people can be, it's only a matter of time before some well-meaning idiot tells her. It's better that she hear it from Mommy and Daddy. Just sit down and explain to her that her biological father wasn't a very nice man, and how lucky she is to have a Daddy who loved her enough to call her his own. Talk it over with your husband first, and make sure he agrees, because you both need to be there for that particular talk. You might even want to involve grandparents in the discussion, to make sure she knows that the rejection was your ex's fault, not hers. Yes, she's going to be hurt and confused, but being surrounded by her family will help lessen the blow.

    Answer by 3_is_enough at 10:06 PM on May. 18, 2009

  • By the way, I hope everything goes well. I understand how you feel, because one day I'm going to have to tell my children that "Pappy" isn't their real grandfather. My real father left my mother when I was less than a year old, and I didn't meet him until I was almost eighteen. Besides that, my half-brother (who is younger than my oldest daughter, only two), will have to be told one day that Sissy doesn't have the same Daddy as he does. It's going to be difficult, but it's something that an increasing number of families have to deal with.

    Again, I wish you the best of luck. Your husband if obviously a good man, but I'm sure you don't need me to tell you that. Blessed Be.

    Answer by 3_is_enough at 10:12 PM on May. 18, 2009

  • I have had to deal with this same situation. I have two daughters, both of which my husband has adopted. The older girl is old enough to remember life before Daddy came........but the youngest knows nothing but us together. She was just a baby when he came into our lives.
    I told my daughter that there are all kinds of families........and the bond for them is love. We are foster parents, and adoptive parents as well......
    So I explained that it takes a man and a woman to make a baby......and the woman has the egg, the man has the sperm. Sometimes these people become the mommy and daddy, sometimes not. So, my son has a mommy, a daddy, an egg lady and a sperm guy. :)
    My daughter has a mommy , a daddy and a sperm guy. I tried to make it clear that there is no such thing as "real" parents.........because that implies there must be "fake" ones.
    I am the mom. My husband is the dad. And we love her.

    Answer by Foster_Mom at 10:16 PM on May. 18, 2009

  • I have a friend who explained to her DD at the age of 8 that she was adopted, and that her aunt is her bio mom, but that her mommy will always be her mommy. She also explained that she has 2 sisters that she calls her cousins. I don't think that 10 is to young to explain the situation. Just choose your words carefully so that she doesn't think that she was rejected by her bio father, but that the relationship didn't work out and that her "Daddy" loves her SO much.

    Answer by coala at 10:36 PM on May. 18, 2009

  • I would say go ahead and tell her now. When I was in middle school one of my teachers who had known my mom since she was a kid let it slip that my mom was adopted, I had no idea (she did just didnt tell us). I know this isnt really the same but I still felt like it was something I should have been told sooner. You dont want her finding out from somone else.

    Answer by Chandra034 at 10:38 PM on May. 18, 2009

  • I have this EXACT same problem with my oldest. My DH is not her biological dad, but he has been there since i was about 6 months pregnant with her! She is only 6, and IMO still too young to really "get it". But at 10 I would think she's old enough to understand.

    Answer by rosesNclovers at 1:43 AM on May. 19, 2009

  • Speaking from experience you should tell her now instead of someone else. I found out my Dad wasnt my dad when I was 16 I went to get my birth certificate to get my liscense and I found 2 with different dads i was hurt upset and felt lied to. I thougth there was something wrong with my that my dad didnt want me. Which wasnt true we are close now but I was very hurt. I also had to go thru this with my son his biological sperm donor cuz that is all he did I tried to explain to him about his daddy but he didnt want to hear it I did have him in counseling and was told to not push it that he wasnt ready to hear it but he knew the door was open if he wanted to talk to me about it.It is difficult but when you tell her make sure she knows it had nothing to do with her that he wasnt ready to be a dad yet.

    Answer by unicorn54166 at 2:08 AM on May. 19, 2009

  • I would tell her now. Like the first poster said...there are people out there who like to speak before they think and it will be much more confusing and hurtful if she has to hear this news from someone else. Just tell her that you and another man made her. He was her Daddy but he wasn't very nice so he went away and she got a new Daddy that loves her very very much. It's going to be hard for her to understand and she might even get upset, but it is all a completely normal reaction for a child and just let her know that she did nothing wrong and that she has a family that loves her very much.

    Answer by Ash9724 at 2:35 AM on May. 19, 2009

  • I didn't find out until I was 13 years old and I hated my mother for a long time. I think she is a little young at this point to understand, but try to explain it. We were in a small town and all my parents friends and family knew that I didn't know and kept their mouths shut.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:37 AM on May. 19, 2009

  • do not wait any longer to tell her; she should have known from day one that her daddy wanted to be her daddy and another man helped mommy have her.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:52 AM on May. 19, 2009

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