Who Is My Daddy?

I am a Single Mother by Choice (SMC). I have thought about what to tell my child about his father from the time I started planning my pregnancy. Everything I read said that I child may start asking, “What is a Daddy?” or “Where is my Daddy?” around the age of three. I felt¬† semi-prepared for his first question. When Bryan was nursing, I practiced. I talked to him about who his father was and why I decided to have a baby by myself. Sometimes I didn’t like the way it sounded so I reworded it.

During the first year of my baby’s life I continued these monologues abut how everyone has a father but not everyone has a Daddy; some fathers live with their children and some don’t.; it takes a lot of work to be a parent and my son’s father, although he is honest, thoughtful and kind, didn’t want the responsibilities of being a Daddy; that I wanted a baby so much that I decided to have him by myself.¬† I also wrote a journal — letters to my son. In these letters I told him about my feelings, how much I love him, that I am happy with my life, that I have the greatest gift in the world – a beautiful child.

Bryan was just two years old when he asked about daddy. It started one day when he was singing, “Mommy, Daddy, Mommy, Daddy”. I ignored it the first day but he continued it for several days. He looked up at me in the middle of singing it one day and said, “Where’s my Daddy?” I was surprised he put the words together but the answer to his question smoothly flowed from my mouth: “You don’t have a Daddy. Some of your friends have Daddies; Michael has a Daddy, Josh has a Daddy. But some kids don’t have Daddies, like Chloe and Robin.” He seemed to understand. About a week later he said, “Daddy allgone.” I agreed. “Yes, that’s right. We don’t have a daddy that lives with us.” For now he is satisfied with that answer, but I know I’ll have to expand a little each time he asks.

My son is only 2 1/2 and I really don’t know exactly what his next question will be. However, I’m comfortable with my choice, and imagine that my attitude will be passed on to Bryan. I have no regrets, and I know that I am willing and able to help him process his questions.

5 thoughts on “Who Is My Daddy?”

  1. will you tell your baby his Daddy’s name when asked?
    I am in my 30s and am scared to ask my mum for my fathers name. It always caused her distress when I was young.

    1. Most of our members used donor insemination to conceive, so they don’t know the donor’s name. However, if you want to discuss this with your mother, and are worried about how to do that, maybe some counseling would be helpful?

  2. You don’t have to be married to show your child that men are great. Many married women are married to men who are decidedly not great. It would be more difficult to show your daughter that men are great if she were exposed to a toxic father.

  3. I worry about this all the time. I am sad because I know my child will miss out on the benefits of a Daddy like I had. I actually feel in some ways it was selfish of me to have a child without a father. But I know so many kids of divorced families who struggle and my daughter will only know love from one strong parent, and I can only hope that it is enough. I do hope that someday there might be a Daddy in her life, but since I ended up being a SMC, I highly doubt it happening. I also worry that she won’t ever meet a great man, because her mother didn’t. It will be hard to teach her that men are great when I personally don’t have the experience at being married myself.

  4. I told my son gradually about the donor dad who was a special person that helped me have him. I also made up a fairy tale about a Princess who had everything she wanted: a nice castle, a great job, good friends, but still wasn’t happy because a part of her was missing. She wanted a child and found a brave person willing to help her. The Princess was able to have her dream: a child to share her life and love with

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