60 answers

Boyfriend Doesn't Want to Be Called "Daddy"

I have been in a relationship for 9 months now and dearly love this great guy. He is very good with my 5 yo daughter, although his patience is sometimes short. He has 2 children of his own, ages 13 & 15, so he's out of practice with younger ones. The problem is that my daughter has never known her biological father and she thinks that her mommy is going to get married one day and then she'll have a daddy. I have spoken to me boyfriend about this and he does not want her to call him daddy b/c he's not. He says that he did not give her life & therefore, cannot be her father. I tried to explain that he would be the only father figure she would ever know and that all she cares about is that she has a daddy, blood or not. She is too young to know what biological means. He thinks that she will feel lied to when she's older. She knows he's not her "real daddy", she thinks that one comes with being married. I need some advise on how I'm handling this. Is it wrong to want her to call a step-father her daddy. Is it too much to ask of another man to take on that role. Any feedback would be welcome.
Just to clarify, she does not call him daddy now & I would not expect that until after we were married and living as a family.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

New developments: Thank you to all for your words of advise and encouragement. As it turns out, it wasnn't about being called "Daddy". Although he does feel that way. It was the fact that I have been involved in interacial relationships. My daughter is biracial and because of his bigotry, I know that he would never have accepted her as his own. He was having too much of an issue with me having "been with" any African-America man. It really does hurt because he should have let his feelings be known before I fell in love and then I could have ended the relationship. Now my daughter wants to know where Mr. ? has been and I want to cry every time I think that it's because I did not know he was a racist. I know I sound emotional, I have never been rejected because of that and I can't believe there weren't signs that I missed along the way. Lesson learned. I hope the next time I write in it will be for better things. Thanks again.

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Put it to him that he will be just like the parents that can't have children and have to adopt. He will still be her father whether he helped create her or not. A Daddy isn't one who just gives life, but one who loves with their whole heart and gives of themselves to a child who needs love and comfort of a father. That is what he will be. As she grows up the truth does not have to be kept from her, just wait until she is old enough to understand. She will always remember when he came into her life. Being as young as 5 doesn't mean she will lose her memory of the time he came into her life. The important thing is that he is now there, he loves her and is willing to give of himself to her. She will be so happy and love him unconditionally. Tell him that.

Good luck.


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If you do get married, maybe you could include her in the ceremony as if he were marrying her too almost. You could tell her he is her adopted Daddy. Maybe then he would feel more comfortable with the Daddy name. You could also have her call hhim Daddy John (or whatever his name is)

I know this is short and sweet, but I had a friend that had bumper sticker that she kept pinned on the visor of her car and it read: Anyone can be a father, but it takes someones special to be a daddy" Her children had a stepfather.


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Have you talked about marriage and is it in the future?? if yes then, I personally think that as long as she knows he is not her biological father and as she gets older and understands more you explain the situation to her that she should call him Daddy if that is what she wants and he is okay with it. If he is totally against it you may be fighting a losing battle and you may want to reconsider if he is the guy for you and yor daughter. Try to make him comfortable with it by explaining to him that she wants to call him Daddy because he has been that special man for both her and you and that he had fullfilled that roll in her life. Also let him know that she will always know where she came from, and that he will never be her father, but her Daddy.....there is a big difference.

My husband calls his step-father Dad. He knows he is not his real father and he is in contact with his biological father, but his step-father was the man he grew up with who was his Dad and that is who gets that title and all the love and relationship that goes with it.

NO!! I don't think you are asking for to much!

I hope all works out for you and your family.

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It is absolutely not too much to ask. I am getting married tomorrow and my fiance will be adopting my son who is 6. My son has never known his father and is very excited about getting a daddy. He is also very aware of the situation and refuses to call my fiance daddy until tomorrow. It is really kind of cute. I just think that maybe you should really sit down and talk about it to see if the problem is deeper than what he is saying out loud. I can't imagine anyone who loves you enough to marry you not wanting to give your little girl a whole family.

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It is sad that he can not step out of himself to do that. I know there are a lot of people who call their step dad, dad or daddy because they have been good to them or that is the only father they have known. I know the men, even some may not be perfect and far from it, has taken this as a great compliment and a great responsibility. They've administered the spankings and the love.

I know that you may love him dearly, but this is something that you have to look within yourself to ask, "Is this enough for us?" You have been with this child longer than you have been with this man. Kids need and yearn for stability. Is that something that he is not willing to provide, even after you are married? I also know some men who marry the mom, not the child. I hope your daughter will never have to feel that way.

My girlfriend married into a blended family situation and they went for counseling before they got married to make sure that it would be the best situation for all parties involved. I thought that was the most selfless thing that they could have done, be willing to walk away from each other for the kids. They were also willing to sacrifice to make sure their (the entire family) relationship was strong. I was able to give her some insight on the matter and let her know that she needs to have a special title for them so that they know that they belong to her & her household (stability). If she was uncomfortable with calling them her daughters, she can call them her girls. Not refer to them as "Hi I would like you to meet my husband's daughters..." but as "Hi I would like you to meet my girls (not even stepdaughters"

Maybe you can find a healthy alternative. One thing is for sure, you both need counseling. If it bother's you enough to write in and ask for our advise, it is a problem for you and it must be addressed. To be totally ready to deal with this maturely, you have to ask yourself, "Am I ready to leave, if this does not happen?" If your answer is "no" than I suggest you make an appointment to see a counselor (for yourself) tomorrow because there is something deeper there that you need to explore.

Good Luck and God Bless,

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There are a couple of problems, "red flags", that are here. The first being that he is a little short with your daughter because he is out of practice. I think it is like riding a bike- you may be a little wobbly at first but then it comes back to you. What kind of relationship does he have with his children?

Second: your BF is right- he is not her father. But if the 2 of you get married, he will assume the role of dad/daddy. It is a complete package. He should want to makea difference in her life and give her something she doesnt have. As to being "lied to", I think thats crazy. Though she may not understand completely now, you can tell her that he is her dad and not her father and reinterate that as she gets older. A father is basically a donor. A dad is the man who is there to hold your hand while walking across the road, holding back your hair when you're sick and tucking you in at night. It is more of an honor to be a dad. Sounds like maybe he doesn't want that title. It does take a special man to be a daddy.
Have you discussed marriage as yet? How does he see himself in regards to discipline and every day living with her?
Perhaps they need to spend some time together with out you. You can get a better feel for their feelings and the relationship they will have in the future. If he is against it then he's probably not the one.
Its not wrong to want a man to be called daddy- as long as both are comfortable with it. And its not too much to ask a man to take on that role- if thats what he wants. You need to really look at this relationship and see if he's just not comfortable with the name (then think of an alternative that would make them both happy- pops, duda, dadski), or if he's just not comfortable with her because she's not his, and he's not interested in raising another child (and if thats the case then you need to decide if this relationship is worth it).

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Put it to him that he will be just like the parents that can't have children and have to adopt. He will still be her father whether he helped create her or not. A Daddy isn't one who just gives life, but one who loves with their whole heart and gives of themselves to a child who needs love and comfort of a father. That is what he will be. As she grows up the truth does not have to be kept from her, just wait until she is old enough to understand. She will always remember when he came into her life. Being as young as 5 doesn't mean she will lose her memory of the time he came into her life. The important thing is that he is now there, he loves her and is willing to give of himself to her. She will be so happy and love him unconditionally. Tell him that.

Good luck.


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Sounds like he has no intentions of being committed to her in any way, now or when she is older. He'll be glad when his kids are grown and he no longer as to pay child support. To him she's just the baggage that comes with you and he'll always consider her the third wheel- she'll be a kid on the outside looking in whether he is sharing time with you or sharing time with his kids. He's obviously not interested in being a father again, so don't plan on marrying and having other children with him. My 2 sons were young when we married and they called him dad from the first day. He was the one who came to me and asked to adopt them so they'd be taken care of by social security, etc., if anything every happened to him while they were young. - dump him, there's better out there.

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You need to soul search this relationship. If a boyfriend has issues with your five year old daughter maybe he is not right for you and her. Could he has older children and doesn't want to start over or does he just not want to be involved with your daughter. This is a harsh truth; but if he is going to marry you it should not matter what the daughter calls him especially with her circumstances of not ever having a father. It should be and honor to him for her to want to call him Daddy. Be careful as you pursue this relationship.

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My mother remarried when I was 12 years old. I never called my step-father daddy, but he would have done anything for me and my brother. He wrote a note to my father that he would never try to take his place but would care for us as if we were his own. I still have the note. It meant a great deal to me.

I would definitely have a talk with your boyfriend and see, if you were to get married would he then accept the role. It is so vital that kids have a "father figure" in their lives. Obviously, she is wanting or needing to call someone "Daddy". If he is not willing, then he is probably not the right person. Good luck. I hope everything works out the way you want it to.

A couple of your comments concern me or stick out as big questions. One, his patience is sometimes short! He shouldn't have an issue with patience with a five year old little girl and especially not your baby if he is serious about your relationship! How does he interact with his own children? Two, he doesn't want her to call him daddy because he's not! WHAT IS HE THINKING??? I am a step mom of two boys and I am honored and blessed when they call me mom. I have loved them from day one! Yes, they are a mess and yes we have to deal with the ex however, they are precious children that need love and compassion just as your little girl is wanting from your boyfriend. I certainly wouldn't want her to call him daddy if he was going to lose his patience BUT do you want to wonder when that will be if she would slip up and say "daddy" and he would be mean to her? Life is short and you and your daughter deserves to be happy! Pray hard about this relationship before you make some commitments that may hurt your daughter in the long run.(And then ultimately you)

I can understand how he would be wary of being called Daddy after only nine months of dating; however, if he is going to stick with this "I didn't give her life, so I can't be her dad" after the wedding, then I would recommend rethinking the relationship. This has the potential to break your daughter's heart and ruin her dearest hope.

As a stepmom who has been "Mommy" from day one, I've learned that love is not an emotion. It is a commitment, and then a choice that you make everyday after that. The warm, fuzzy feelings are byproducts of that commitment and choice. This principle applies to healthy marriage, as well as adoptive (legally official or otherwise) parenting. I hope this turns out well for all of you, A.. God bless.

Don't ask him to do something he's not comfortable with. Maybe he'll want to later, but I don't see anything wrong with your daughter calling him by his first name.

If I had a young child I wouldn't marry anyone that wouldn't let my child call them Dad. I think he should love her just as much as he loves you. I know several step parents who are proud to call their stepchildren there son or daughter without using the step word. I don't think that is fair to your baby. Perhaps her calling him Daddy makes him uncomfortable because he is not as serious about the realtionship as you are. I could be wrong but you have to protect your daughters feelings.

Maybe it is just me, but how does your boyfriend treat your daughter? I have known a lot of men who have stepped in as stepfathers and kids have called them dad and they were honored. Is it really that he thinks she will be confused, or does he just not want the responisibility? Either way, if you get married, he will be responsible. Does he want more children with you? Have you even discussed getting married? I would think long and hard about getting married until I was sure about what his expectations really are. I do have a lot of friends who had step fathers that they loved dearly, but they did not call them dad, they came up with special nicknames for them. Maybe that is a solution for you.

Big red flag for the relationship! If he doesn't wish to be called (which may or may not be a bad thing...his reasoning "sounds" good) and your a/o your daughter insist, it may cause a lot of tension in the marriage.

Have you discussed alternate titles with them? Pops, poppy, something that reflects her attachment and fondness for him, yet doesn't "define" him as her bio. father?

His stance would bug me.The only thing I could tell you to do is keep your eyes open for any other issues before you make a commitment to this man.

This man sounds like he is not attached to your child. You have had the choice of picking him for yourself, did you take into consideration that there was an child involved and that although this man may be right for you , he is not right for her. You are a package deal, or so I assume( you and your baby)? He has been a father and does not want this responsibility again, this does not make him a bad person, but it does call into question if he is the right type of guy to give your child the attendion, love and consideration she deserves. His rejection of her could color her view of her and hurt her now and in the future as far as her self esteem is concerned. Please don't let your attachment to this guy blind you to what your child needs. YOu are anadult and have allof the choices here, your child is just along for the ride with you and your guy. I have seen situations like this before and let me say when the choice is made please do not short change you child and be resentful of her ro thoughtless of her needs. This man, if her trally cared for you, would understand your child and her needs as well. Can you choose what is best for you daughter because she can not speak for herself. May I suggest that if you have a trusted Minister you consult him about this? My thoughts and prayers are with you. I left as a single paretn to 2 children after 17 years of marriage and never regreted the choices made for myself and my children. I saw men who could in no way be considered the type of person needed for my children and so they were ultimately not for me. I did so much at this time of my life that had been on hold during marriage (finsihed education, got godd job and became a grown up). Put your child and her welfare first as she AND you deserve and you will not be sorry.

I just read your response and haven't read the others yet. I think you need to give it time. If he proposes to you then he knows that he will be raising a child. I think he knows more than we all do how much your daughter means to you. However, he has 2 kids and maybe his kids calls someone else dad and that really bothers him.If thats the case give him time.

I really think you might be jumping the gun. Men like marriage to be there idea. I would enjoy this season of your relationship. Remember things change when you get married. Its not bad its just different, so enjoy this phase and if the Lord has put you together then nothing will tear it apart and God has a way of working out the all the details.

Sounds to me that the guy is a tad selfish. He needs to understand that he does become a father figure when he comes into your lives. You have to think, if you have a baby with him how your daughter would feel?.....She would be the only one with out a daddy.

Let your daughter choose. I think your boyfriend should feel honored at the fact that your daughter wants to call him daddy. She must think of him in a good way. What does he prefer hi you! or hi Daddy!. He needs to think about this. Maybe he is not ready to be a Dad again. He would be if you get married. Better figure it out before hand. If he is not going to step up to the plate and be a dad, you need to find someone more mature. It sounds like your boyfriend is much older than you and in a different stage in life. Just some thoughts-oh yeah, rethink the breast implants. Who cares how big your boobs are! and you are now a role model for your daughter to love what god has given you!

It's not clear to me whether you're married to this man or not. It sounds to me like he isn't ready for a big commitment. In that case, I would explain to your daughter that she can call him daddy if you get married. Men adopt children all the time and are referred to as daddy. Get to the root of it and do what's best for your daughter. If you're married or if he plans on staying in a commited relationship with you and yours, then he needs to step up and be her dad (you came as a package deal).

Good luck!!

My mom got married when I was 9. I was given the choice of continuing to call him his given name, Bernie, as I had been all the yrs him & my mom had been dating, or to start calling him dad. I never felt comfortable calling him dad, so I always called him Bernie. My two younger brothers did always call him dad as he was theirs. When speaking about him, I would refer to him as my father, never dad or step-father. My real dad died when I was a baby, so I never knew any other father but Bernie. It is nice to give the child a choice, but it will be fine. Calling him by his given name is quite appropriate, especially if there will be his, hers & ours kids in the relationship.

To start, he says that since he didn't give her life that he can't be her father. That's right, but there is a difference in a father and a dad. I know lots of fathers that don't act like a dad, and lots of dad's that didn't father the children they have but they love them like their own. Don't force the issue. Wait and see how your daughter reacts if you do get married.

Give it time. See were the relationship goes. Don't stress about it now. I bet if things progressed and you ended up married he would love her and welcome being called dad. He might be a little overwhelmed by the talk of marriage and being called dad. Especially if he's been divorced before. Take it slow and let him get to know and love your daughter for the wonderful little girl she is. He will end up loving her as much as you do and being called dad will come with it. I have a 12yr old step-son who I love as if I birthed him my self. It all comes with time.

On some level I understand what he is telling you, but I honestly think he is using it as an excuse. It is a very intimidating thing, but she's plenty old enough to know he's not her real daddy and she will never feel lied to. She's going to remember this. That's just silly. HE is having issues with taking on the father role with another one so young, and as long as he has those issues, I would not consider him ready to be a part of your family. She obviously loves him enough to want him to be her daddy. Have her talk to him about it. Have her ask him if he marries you if that means he will be making her his daughter. If she has never known her biological father, then it sounds to me like it would be a good idea for him to adopt her.

My brother was married a year and a half ago and she had a six year old little girl who hadn't seen her biological father since she was a baby. He adopted her, and included her in the wedding ceremony. After he and his wife did their vows, he and Katryn then had their own set of vows regarding being father and daughter. It was very cute and very sweet.

Honestly, if he is this disturbed by it, the marriage should not be a consideration at this point. And it doesn't have to be. You can give him time, and he can adjust to the fact that if he marries you he will be a daddy again. That should affect his decision.

I wish you all the luck in the world!

Hi A.,
I hope that my response to you doesn't come across as mean....
But your boyfreind is right. Even after you are married, she doesn't have to call him Daddy. I'm a child of many step parents, I never called any one of them Daddy. Though at 5, I knew who the real one was. My children have a step dad, and he also has children. I dont expect them to call me MOM, and my children dont call him DAD.
Yes she's too young to understand Biological and all that, but she'll know in time. Children aren't stupid, they know.
It is what it is...He's NOT her Daddy. But he'll hopefully be the BEST step dad and father figure she has! He doesnt need a label. Just a name.

Not to be ugly but sounds to me like you need to get rid of the man. If he is that set on NOT being her daddy, you don't need him or want him around her anyway. You need someone that is loving and caring and who is proud to be her daddy.
First of all it won't be lying to her. She would know from day one that he is not her real dad and if she asked questions you would answer them to the best of your ability.
Anyone can be a father but it takes a REAL man to be a daddy.
FIND A NEW MAN. I don't like the sound of that one already, sounds like a jerk to me. I have had those jerks... I can spot one from 100 miles away.

Well I have a 4 yo babygirl and my boyfriend and I have been together now for 3.5 years. Just like yours she has never known her biological "donor." We didn't have a discussion she just began calling him daddy. At first he was uncomfortable with it so he had a talk with her and it stop for a little. Then I would say a year later she started again and he's fine with it. Even makes comments to her like "Daddy made a wrong turn" so I know he's comfortable with the idea. Maybe its not the baby you need to talk maybe its the boyfriend. Daddy is not just a word its an action.

There's a couple things that raise red flags for me: one is the lack of patience (we all experience that with kids, but it sounds like it's a concern for you - trust your gut on that). the other is the distancing himself from the parental role. where's the discomfort with being called "daddy" coming from? if he's not ready to step into a parenting role, he may not be ready to be a part of the family. you deserve a full partner and your daughter deserves someone that loves her unconditionally - parents aren't always biological. one more question: does your daughter think of him as a father because he treats her with love, nurturing, and support or is that simply her perception based on ideas of marriage, parenting, etc? hopefully this makes sense. good luck and take care...S.

ps - i just read that you're contemplating your relationship. you're being a great mom.

Any man that doesn't want you daughter to call him daddy, has a problem. She can still call him daddy and still know that he is not her real father. She needs to feel that she is part of a real family. If calling him daddy makes her feel that way, then he should not have a problem with it.
We adopted my grandson, he is now 5, and he called us Me Maw and Papa. But, a year ago he changed it on his own. He started calling us mommy and daddy. I asked him why he changed it, he said b/c I wanted my mom and dad to be called by a different name. ( he wanted to be like all the other kids with families). Kids are smart. She knows your boyfriend is not her real daddy, just as my grandson know that we are not. In fact, he has been introducing us to people and telling them that we adopted him. He knows we are his grandparents, but in his heart we are his parents. That is all that matters to kids. She will be forever grateful that he allowed her to call him daddy.
Oh, and by the way, if he is not ok with it....send him on his way. If he can't accept your daughter calling him daddy, then he is not worth it.

A., I just read where you are contemplating your relationship. I have not read any of the responses yet, but I feel you have made the right decision. It's hard for some men (most men) to take on other kids and, obviously, he is NOT ready for this. You have your sweet little daughter for the REST of your life and even if you never find a man who will accept her "as his own," you have each other. Thank God for that! Best of luck.

That is deffinatly something that you want to consider before you get married to someone. A blended family is just that, blended. When you decide to marry someone that has children you are decideing to become a part of that family.
A Daddy does not have to be someone that gave life to you, it is someone that helps you through life. A male role model that you want to look up to and learn from. Your boyfriend seems to have a certain way of looking at things, if he can try to look at them in a bigger way would help.
It is not too much to ask another man to take on the role of father to the children that will be his step child. They call it step mother, and step father for a reason. It is something that i would want to make sure would be resolved before you married. Just like you said you would be living as a family. If he never got comfortable with her calling him "Daddy", maybe she could call him Daddy with what his name is attached to it, maybe he would be more comfortable with that. If you do get married he is going to be her step DAD.
I hope it all works out well. I am sure with good communication it will.

When I met my DH, my son was 9.. we dated 7 months and got married. He didn't call my DH, DAD until we got married. Keep in mind, that he did see and talk to his Bio-Dad.. it it was an honor for my DS to call my DH "dad"

I wonder why he doesn't want to be called that??? Unless he isn't really considering Marriage at this point... I mean it seems he is pretty adamant about not being referred to or called Daddy. I mean I understand his point of view and I could see if she had a 'daddy' who was involved in her life, but this is NOT the case... She just wants to say she has one... I can't imagine saying as a youngerster.. OH that is just my mom's husband or that is my step dad...

A., in fact when I got "remarried" we moved to DH's hometown and he ran into someone at Home Depot and introduced me... he referred to my DS as his step son... I wasn't happy about it as most anyone who knew him, also knew he didn't have any children at the time.

Best of Luck to you. It is great you found the love of your life.


I didn't see your final response until after my message posted... I have to share now that I dated someone like that before I met my DH.
It hurt as my child like yours is a part of you.. it is a total package and although you may have to 'move on' you will be blessed later because of it!
I have to tell you there are plenty of men out there that haven't been married and have NO children (like my DH) who want a family and have no qualms about being a dad and taking on that role.

A., YOU deserve so much more and so does your DD... don't accept anything less!
"HE" is out there... God is preparing him for his future with you and your wonderful little girl.

If it can happen to me it can happen to anyone!
Keep your chin up... Don't lower your expectations for anyone.

Before you read mine long response, you need to make sure that first the man wants to be apart of your life AND your daughters. If he really truely wants to be there for you both, then he will treat your daughter as if he helped create her himself. You need to be sure that he will have that unconditional love from the jump. If not then do not continue reading this.

I know my situation may be a little different. My now husband entered my son's life when he was 2. Now my son is 6. At first it was awkward because, my son knows his biological father as well as the new man in my life. I never anything or a title on my son. He called my boyfriend at the time Mr... Then as my son grew older he tried the "dad" title a little as well as just first name. Then one day we were watching the movie "Roll Bounce" and someone said "brotherman." At the age of 4, my son said he's my brotherman (refering to my boyfriend). From that point on he called him Brotherman and continues until this day. That was something that my son felt comfortable with and he established the name. My son still refers to my husband as dad, daddy, and Brotherman. He knows that he has two dads. So in short, I suggest that your daughter grow and come with a name instead of having anything forced on her. It may be as original as my son or it may be simple as dad. Hopes this helps!!!!


My response might sound harsh, but before I committed totally to this man , I would think twice about it. Most genuine men would love your child as their own, regardless of whether he was the biological father or not, and would take on the role of being that father unconditionally. I can understand his concern if her biological father was in the picture or you think might someday return to your daughters life, but it didn't sound like that is the case.

When you marry with children you get the whole package and become a family, although his children may not call you Mom either , I am sure you will treat them as your own. The main thing is be a family and love equally and unconditionally.

Best of luck.

I think that if he'd be comfortable with it IF he could feel like he wasn't being put in a position feeling like he's a liar, it could work. ... You guys could decide that "one day" - whether it is a particular age you decide on or whether you play it by ear & do it when you think it feels right - you plan to tell her that she had a father who didn't want to/you didn't want to (?) be her "daddy", but your now boyfriend stepped into the role as you all became a family, it would be good. ... Do you think he'd be willing to think about that? ... Seems like he's all set to play the daddy role, just doesn't want to mislabel himself & mislead your daughter. ... I think you're right, she probably does, at this point, think that if you marry, that will be her daddy. Just let him know that this isn't some deception you're trying to weave; it could be a good thing for all of you.

I had a similar situation in my relationship. My husband and i have been married almost a year now and actually together for almost 3 years. When we got together i already 2 daughters (they were 9 and 3) at the time and was pregant with my 1st son. Now while i know not everyone looks at this in the same way, my husband adores my children and they do call him daddy and he personally wouldnt have it any other way, but it was not something we forced on them. We let them make the decision what he would be called wether it was "Will" or daddy or whatever the case may be. The girls understand that he is not their biological father and that that "father" is out there somewhere. My 1st son was born just 2 months after we moved in together and he "daddy" are the best of friends and you couldnt pull the 2 of them apart. We since also had another son together and the way he treats the "step" kids from his own son is exactly the same. My husband doesnt feel that we are lying to our 2 yr old because we once he old enough to understand (like the girls) we will explain to him the whole story of "daddy" versus "biological father".
so in answer to your final question, in my opinion,NO it is not too much to ask another man to take on the father figure role, to me it should be an honor (and maybe this is because of my experience), he knew you had a child when you started dating and if your going to date someone with children and relationship prospers then it comes with the territory (so to speak). I hope this insight into my situation helps somewhat. Good Luck!!!

Well that is his choice but he is loosing out on a great thing.I had a son from a previous relationship when I met my ex..he was the only father my son ever knew.Never knew his bio father either and he called him daddy/father/dad is whole life.Explain to your daughter that to call him by his name is okay with you both.Hopefully she wont be to hurt by his rejection and yes..that is what it is..good luck..
S. B

You have only been in this relationship for 9 months. SLOW DOWN!!!

I totally agree with Elaine L. I would be concerned about his lack of patience with your daughter. That could very well be a real indication of how he truly feels. She might be just someone that he has to put up with while he's in a relationship with you. Has he mentioned marriage, or is that something that you have brought up? Have the two of you discussed honestly where you would like for the relationship to go in the future? My brother married a woman with five year old twins. They had a biological father that they didn't see very often, and didn't really have a good relationship with. They began calling my brother Daddy on the wedding day, and he was thrilled. He adopted them at the age of 8. They are now 22, and people that don't know the history would never guess that they aren't his biological children. He loves them in the same way that I love my biological children. I realize that it's hard to be a single Mom, and you may really care about this guy. But if you don't want the same things for your future, you're wasting precious time with someone that's not good for you or your daughter. You have every right to expect that someone that you marry would not only be willing, but want to be a Daddy to your daughter. Your daughter deserves to have a Mother that will make choices that are good for you both. Good luck!


I would not push the issue with your boyfriend. It seams to me he is not ready for the responsibility of being the daddy. He may not be ready for that kind of a commitment. Having your daughter think of him as her daddy is a huge responsibility for him. If in the future you two get married then it's something you can address then but until then I'd think of something else for your daughter to call him. Also since your boyfriend is worried that he isn't her "biological" daddy tell him that makes absolutely no difference. If when you two get married he loves and cherishers her like a father should that is all that matters, blood is not the most important thing. I would however tell her at some point when she is older that he isn't her biological father. But if he is a good father to her it won't matter in the least.

I would accept his wishes and have her call him by his first name. Or you could agree on a special name (?) that she uses just with him, but since you are not married yet, and you've been in a 9 month relationship, it probably is very inappropriate for her to call him "Daddy". I wouldn't feel comfortable with it if I were him. If you two get married someday and he decides to officially adopt her, and wants to be called Daddy, then that would be the right thing to do in my opinion. Good luck!

He's telling you that he's not comfortable with it. Listen to him and quit pushing. You guys have "only" been together for 9mos. He doesn't feel like that is a title that he has earned or derserves and you're only going to aggrivate the situation further by pushing. Let time be on your side and see what it bring.

Your boyfriend should be delighted that she wants to call him Daddy, most men would be. I think it's normal for a 5 yr old to call a father figure in her life Daddy. If the both of you get marry, he will be her Dad anyway. So, I don't see why he has a problem about it, unless he don't see a future with you.

Sometimes men just need you to take things slower. Just because he does not want to be called "daddy" today does not mean that he might not want to be called "daddy" in two or three years or once you are married. I would encourage you to talk to him and figure out if he is rejecting your child or if he just needs you to slow down. I would encourage you to ask him what he wants her to call him and then use that language with your 5 year old. Sometimes as women we read more into things than a man intends us to hear.

Good luck with this situation. It is such a touchy one because men never really get it how much women love their children. Don't hear me wrong. Men love their children, but not in the same way that a momma does. We love our children more than life itself.

It is really normal to want a man in your daughter's life that she can call "daddy" and will be a real father to her. Just slow down and figure out if this man is going to be that kind of man or not. You don't have to make any decisions about this today, tomorrow, or next week. Just give it time and keep talking to him about it.

Try not to let it hurt your feelings that he does not want to let her call him "daddy" yet. When he feels like her daddy he will let her call him "daddy."

Maybe come up with a special name for him. Have him and your daughter come up with it. Or just try to explain to her that he will be the father figure but to just call him "John" like she probably is already.

I agree with the other moms here. My husband was adopted by his step-father when he was 5 and he even he doesn't call him "Dad". I wouldn't push the issue anymore and just leave it alone for a little while. Maybe revisit again down the road when you are married.

You really have to respect the fact that he doesn't want to be called "Daddy" because with that word comes a lot of responsibility. My first husband and I split when my youngest son was 10 mo. old any my oldest was 3. I remarried when they were 3 and 6. However my situation is different their dad is a big part of their life. However I sometimes have this problem with my current husband thinking that since he has been with my boys since they were little he does sometimes need to qualify as the "other" daddy in their lives. Let me tell you I now have a 14 and 11 year old, that is going over like a box of rocks. I to have a step dad, I have not seen or heard from my biological father since I was 13, to my friends my step dad is my daddy, he has done all the things that a "Daddy" does but there is now and will always be that void of not having one. I think that there is a saying that any man can "Father" a child but it takes a special man to be a "Daddy". I am sure if you are planning to marry this man he is very special in your life and your daughter has every right to want a "Daddy" as I am sure all or some of her friends talk about how great their dads are. Every little girl wants to be "Daddy's little princess", but it is really quite frustrating when a man is able to take that away, I am glad that it is not that easy for a woman to let go. I sometimes wonder how men do it. I hope this helps I kinda babbled on as this is a subject that is very close to my heart! God bless

This is a tough one. While I agree with your "position" in the end it has to come down to what your boyfriend feels comfortable with.

Is it possible that your boyfriend is worried about how his older children will feel about your daughter "claiming" their daddy? It could be that they are showing signs of jealousy and he wants to protect them or reassure them in someway. Or I could just be way off base.

My brother walked off and left his ex and their 2 daughters when the girls were very young (nearly 5 and 3 weeks). Luckily my SIL met a wonderful man that stepped in and became the man my brother never was. He isn't the girls "father" but he is their daddy. They are older now (11 & almost 6) and are aware that they have another father but they have never felt lied to or cheated out of anything. All they know is that Jason is and always will be the man that is there for him.

Perhaps your bf will change his mind once the two of you move closer to marriage or maybe the 3 of you could find something different but special for her to call him. Something that will recognize the position he holds in her life but doesn't make him feel uncomfortable.

Hi,A.. Don't force this issue. You may think this will make things right, but they won't. He doesn't want it, and may never, want her to call him daddy. Also, this is still a fairly new relationship. This could really confuse her if ya'll should break up. One word of advice. I would watch how ' impatient ' he is with your child. She is your child, and no one should be allowed to treat her badly, like yelling, spanking, hitting in any way. Men can be found everywhere, but there's only 1 child like yours, and that's her. I would tell him, " We are a package deal. That's how it is. You love us both, or get out of here."

I just read your response to all of your responses. I think you're wise to step back and take some time. What a grown up decision. I know it's hard to grow up and realize there's more than just you to consider, but I hand it to you. You are a strong woman, and mother, to make this decision, for the best of YOUR FAMILY. Take it to God and pray about it. Let Him talk to you. Really listen for what He wants to tell you. God bless you and your family.

Hi A.,
Listen, he has not even committed to you guys(in marriage that is), so it is not even appropriate for your daughter to call him daddy. What if you guys brake up later on, and she will have another daddy leave ?. Of course, little girl wants a daddy, of course, but I would wait to avoid heartbrake. And if he is seriuos, time will come when it would be an honor for him to be your little girl's daddy.

I would be questioning if this is the "one". When I married my husband he loves my kids and said that whatever the kids feel comfortable with is fine with him. I would also question the patience. A father of 2 should be aware of what kids are like. It sounds a little to me that you both are wanting a partner. Please don't make a mistake and have to get divorce. I don't know you and don't know if you are, but truly think about it. Best of luck!

You did not mention where her father is and if he is involved in her life.

I agree with your boyfriend. She should not be calling him daddy unless he adopts her. There are several reasons for this, one is that he is not her daddy. You have been together 9 months, what if, by chance, you break up? She will be devastated and it will really affect her emotionally. Children take everything serioulsy and to heart. They also get hurt very deeply and most of the time they think that whatever goes wrong is their fault. Secondly, you should not pressure him into this either b/c he may get scared away. No man wants to come into a relationship being told he is to play daddy when he is not their daddy. I don't think he is saying he does not want to take care of her when you are married, financially, or otherwise, I think he just does not feel comfortable with a child calling him daddy when he is not her daddy. Give him time as your husband and it will come naturally.

She is 5 yrs old which is now old enough to learn a little bit about her real daddy. Not deep details of course but you can tell her that when two people are in love, they make a baby but that does not always mean that they stay together forever. Sometimes they fall out of love. Sometimes mommies find another person to love and that other person can sometimes become your 'family' but that does not make them your daddy. You will always only have one daddy. This does not mean that ??? does not love you, it just means that he did not create you with mommy. He has his own children and they have their own mommy. You wouldn't want his kids to call me mommy would you? I am your mommy and he is their daddy. When we get married, he will be your family too and he will do everything that daddies do, but he is not your daddy....???? is. It is not fair to her to think one thing and then years later find out another. You can give her bits and pieces of info as she gets older but she does need to know the truth, little by little as she is age appropriate.

Later, if you get married and he decides he wants to adopt her, you sit her down together and tell her that you are all now a family and that ???? has asked if he can adopt you. This will make him just like a daddy and he will be here for you and for mommy forever.

You must be very careful with a child's feelings and emotions. Although it will make you happy to have a daddy for her, you have to think of her. You take care of her as if you were single b/c technically, you still are. Don't get her so close to someone until you are married.

If he has a "short patience", you might need to work on that before you marry him. That is not a good trait to have, especially around a child. Take care of her, keep her in as little of conflict, emotion, etc as you can. Everything a child encounters when they are young is forming their personality later. It is amazing to watch and see what affects them and how. Keep happiness in her upbringing, patience is huge in raising a child. Teach her patience.

Good luck, let us know how it goes.....

My "Daddy" came into my life when I was 2 years old and he has been in my life ever since. I don't know my biological father and it has never been a problem. He fathered 2 more children after me and now has 3 daughters. Your boyfriend's problem with being called daddy by your child might be because of his other children. If that is the case, then that needs to be discussed. The one really big issue for all to remember is there is always plenty of love to go around. The capacity for humans to love is unlimited. So he wouldn't love his biological children and less for loving, and adding, another one. Hope this helps.

Is this guy interested in anything more than what he has with you now? Would he ever commit to more? Since his children are older, is he one of those people who are "done" being a parent? Some do not want anymore children after having children in the teen years or older. I would want to know the answers to these questions, because if you want a permanent relationship, no doubt you want it with someone who you could trust to treat your child well and someone who is interseted in being "daddy" to this virtually fatherless child. It takes a special kind of guy to raise a child who is not his biological child so you will need to know if he is that kind of guy. It would be very heartbreaking to be in a permanent relationship with someone who would cast your child aside because she is not his biological child. Although you have been in this relationship less than a year, a man should not be involved in the first place if this is not the type of relationship he wants to pursue permanently. I hope you are able to investigate this matter further and get the answers you need to make a good decision.

I know this is short and sweet, but I had a friend that had bumper sticker that she kept pinned on the visor of her car and it read: Anyone can be a father, but it takes someones special to be a daddy" Her children had a stepfather.


You say that you would not expect to call her Daddy until after you are married, but why expect your daughter to do anything. If she calls him by his first name know, then that is what is normal and natural to her. Have you thought that she may be uncomfortable calling dad? My mother married my stepfather when I was six years old and shortly after she tried to get my older sister and I to call him Dad, but we had called him by his first name for the last two years so this change in name was not natural for us. We call our stepmom "Mom" but that is what I was taught since I was not quite two years old. Just because isn't called Dad doesn't mean he won't be an excellent father.

It was a blessing in disguise that you learned of this now vs after you married this man.

The right man is out there for you and your daughter certainly deserves a man who would be proud to be her "daddy". The color of one's skin has absolutely no baring on how much love one deserves and needs. As heartbreaking as it is to end a relationship, be thankful that the truth came out.

I am glad to see that you are re-evaluating this relationship. My biological father was a loser - as a father anyway. Luckily my Mom met a wonderful man when I was three and he is my Daddy and my children's grandpa. He is the most wonderful Dad I could have ever been blessed with. I wish this for your daughter. Be patient and the right one will come along. Your child is yours forever - a man is a lot more easy to replace. Good luck.

If you do get married, maybe you could include her in the ceremony as if he were marrying her too almost. You could tell her he is her adopted Daddy. Maybe then he would feel more comfortable with the Daddy name. You could also have her call hhim Daddy John (or whatever his name is)

WTF really who gets involved with a mother and has issues with the race of the child. I have lost several friends by CHOICE as they are the same way and my grandbaby is black. I would not change her for anything..I can tell you that leaving is the right thing and if he tried to crawl back and say he made a mistake you still would be nuts to take him back as this is the way he is...toss that fish back out there and find a good one...Your clild and you deserve better...I am really angry right now and would like to kick him in the well you know for being like this...Your family deserves better and you will fid better one day until then have fun and enjoy your child..

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