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My dd won't call her bio father dad

My dd's father is in the Army. She is 4 years old She was 3 when he left for basic training, before then he had only been in her life 8 months. Since then, he has come back 3 times however only 2 of those times he wanted to see her. He calls maybe once a month to talk to her (if that). Well my fiance' has been in my dd's life since she was 1, they have a very good relationship and she loves him to death, and he loves her too. She started calling my fiance' daddy about a year and a half ago. At first we would correct her, saying " no sweetie that's Jose"" but the more we did it, the more she would call him daddy. I asked her doctor about it and she said to let her call him what she wants, with the inconsisitancy with her dad, it is only natural and after all we were engaged at the time. Well her bio dad just called and she said "my daddy's gonna be home soon" and he said "no I won't be back for another 30 days" and she said "not you, I'm talking about my daddy, he'll be home from work soon". Well he knows she calls him daddy ( I told him about it when it started) but he got so mad a me saying that my fiance' is stealing his relationship with his dd. I told him that 1 my fiance' has been around her longer then him and 2, he chose to go into the military knowing that it would mean he would be around much. I am just glad that she has my fiance' as a constant father figure in her life, am I wrong?

Answer Question

Asked by JLS2388 at 6:38 PM on Jan. 16, 2011 in Parenting Debate

Level 25 (25,280 Credits)
Answers (16)
  • I don't think you're wrong at all! I think it's been very generous of you to try correcting your daughter when she called Jose, "Daddy". She can have TWO fathers!!! When I thought my DD was going to inherit a stepmother, I was THRILLED...the more people to love my kid, the better! Although I definitely would have preferred her to not call her "mommy".....I couldn't blame her if I were away all the time. Unfortunately, for your ex - this is just a consequence of him being away so much. When he's around more, then he won't feel so threatened.... I would reassure bio dad to not feel threatened and remind him constantly that your DD NEEDS both of them in her life. There's more than enough room for all the love!! :)

    Answer by TLALONDE16 at 6:45 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • Well even when he comes back, he will prob only see her one sat a month so I don't see her "father figure" changing even then

    Comment by JLS2388 (original poster) at 6:46 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • I wouldnt necessarily throw it in his face that he went to the military because he is out serving our country. HOWEVER, theres a lot more he CAN do when he is deployed such as SKYPE or sending her letter, etc. she will understand when she is older. My new husband is around the kids more than their dad and they call my husband dad and it irriates their dad, so i can relate. it just goes to show that because of the effort your fiance is making, your child has such a strong connection with him. good luck with it and just keep doing your job as a mom. your dds father will realize later, possibly when its too late, that he couldve and shouldve done more.

    Answer by OurHeartsAwait at 6:46 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • You really cant control what kids call their parents. My older kids didnt call their dad, dad. They called him by his first name or "Father". As they got older they called him more unattractive names lol. The important thing here is as she gets older for you to let her know he is her natural father. That way there isnt any confusion, and so far it seems youre on the right track on that. Never bad mouth him either, or let her hear you bad mouth him. As long as you do that you will come out of this lily white.

    Answer by gemgem at 6:49 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • I deleted my post b/c I misread the ?. Sorry:) I think that as PP said you have done all you can. Let him be the one to mend their relationship. Let him show her that he is her father. Kids are smart and she will soon find out the way it really is. If he gets mad Id just tell him that theres nothing he can do until hes home. Shes only 4 and knows what she knows. And he should take it personal. I would never disuede a person from joining the military but that was his choice. And to be honest that had nothng to do with it. He wasnt there to begin with! Let him make his own decisions and assumptions and know that this is bother him and you more than its effecting dd. Time will tell. Keep up what youre doing and be patient. Best wishes!

    Answer by Steph319 at 6:50 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • bothering* and by that statement I mean in the moment not the long run

    Answer by Steph319 at 6:53 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • It isn't a problem as long as your fiancĂ© is in the picture for the long run. My step daughter lives with her mother, who is constantly bringing new men in the house..she called the last one dad. He is out of the picture now, and her mom is with a new man. I'm not sure if she calls him dad. They have only been together a month. And are engaged. My step daughter calls me momma Katie. I think it bugs her bio mother. You should remind your daughter that her bio father is still her dad. Families are blended now. It's of the norm. I feel the same as the first person to reply. It's just more people to love her.

    Answer by MKSers at 7:01 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • She is so young to understand exactly what she is saying, and her bio dad really should take it personally if he understands that. To a 3-year-old, a Daddy is a person who lives in your house and loves mommy. Its that simple for them. But if you are torn about it, you could have her call him Daddy J, or Daddy Jose. Or maybe just hearing you refer to him like that whenever you talk about him might help her start doing it. But in my humble opinion, I think her calling him Daddy is just fine and like other people have said, it is admirable that she has him to call him that ;)

    Answer by SandyHack at 7:07 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • MKSers, that is terrible that she calls the different boyfriends dad. My fiance' is it in for th long run, we live together and he even had me stop working so that my dd has a stay at home mom. I didn't make that much anyway and he said he would rather work extra so that we know our dd is well taken care of. Even though he is not really her dad, he is a good dad and I can see why my dd wants to call him daddy.

    Comment by JLS2388 (original poster) at 7:10 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

  • I think that your ex needs to just learn to cope with the situation. Your daughter has 2 daddies - as long as she knows that then it should be up to her if she calls them dad or not. She is comfortable with calling your fiance dad, that was her choice so I don't think there is anything wrong with it. Your ex made the decision to be in the military and although he may not have seen this coming, he must realise why it has and he will just unfortunately have to cope with it.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:10 PM on Jan. 16, 2011

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