What to do about the father --COURT UPDATE #90 - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 131 Old 05-06-2009, 10:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I hope it is ok to post this here, because the other thread got removed, but I was really appreciating the advice I was receiving.

my basic situation is that I got into an intense, fast moving relationship with a guy i met here in TX. He is not at all AP and we did not mesh over my parenting choices, especially breadstfeeding. He nad my ds do not get along that well. My ds cries if he tried to take him, and he tends to be forceful in trying to get ds to like him and come to him.

We spent nights together and he interfered with me breastfeeding ds. basically he doesn't seem to respect my relationship with ds. Then I found out i was pregnant. I had intended to keep it a secret, but he found out.

i am no longer with him, but he is expecting me to stay here and let him live with me and so forth so that he has access to the new baby. I would sort of love to just get rid of him, but I realize that it may not be my place to do that. OTOH he has a rough past....he has been to prison, has done drugs, etc. he is very "hood" and that is not the type of environment I want for my dc. That was why I got ou of there.

He will be so upset if I leave. I will not be able to totally cut him out of my life because I am needing public assistance and they require me to name a father. I am still legally married to ds1's father (who was abusive) and if I don't provide a name they will automatically assume he is the father and bill him for child support. I don't want to tip my hand and let him know I am prenant before the divorce. I am happy with the custody arrangment as it stands and don't want to jeopardize that.

if yu follow all this, thank you! My close friends in georgia are asking me to come live there, rent free for a time. They want me away from the baby's father because they see nothing but trouble. I would like to get away from him too. Bt he is begging for a chance to prove himself. He has not actually DONE anything really wrong....he was just a really really bad pick for ME.

Also if anyone has advice on applying for assistance in this situation, I would appreciate it. I have no idea how this is going to work out.

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#2 of 131 Old 05-06-2009, 11:04 PM
 
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I'm really sorry things have been so hard for you. I'm a little confused though. It seems you had posted about how great he was with your son and how well they got along. I'm not saying this to call you out I just want to point out that you are in far to vulnerable a state to be dating. You moved in and were having unprotected sex with someone you just met putting yourself and your ds at considerable risk. You need to stop letting people pull you back and forth and work on standing on your own two feet. Can you get into another shelter and get fastracked into housing? You will need to get assistance and find work but I would really try to do all of this on your own. I think you need to see the evidence that you can do it. I hope you can also get some therapy for yourself so you can work on getting stronger and not letting these people into your life and sphere of influence. As far as including him I doubt you have a lot of choice. I wouldn't necessarily stay in that town but you will need to name him and he will have rights if he chooses to pursue them. You can hope that he will fade away but only time will tell. I think you need to keep your walls up for a while and be very careful about the influences you let in until you are able to make better judgements. You can do it. I did it on my own with two kids and so can you. Just please please be with yourself and your children for a while.
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#3 of 131 Old 05-06-2009, 11:07 PM
 
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I would go to Georgia and think things over- if he's already interfered as much as he did with your current child, he might be even worse with his- you need to have a firm plan on how to deal with this. Be with people who support and know you, and go from there. I am so sorry you are in this situation.
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#4 of 131 Old 05-06-2009, 11:13 PM
 
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Go and just break off contact with him. I read the other thread, as well as this one, and he just sounds like trouble, indeed. Once the baby is born, and you have to name the father, you can choose to name him or perhaps say it was a one night stand and you don't know the father...can you do that, and not have them go after your soon-to-be-ex? If you name him, then he might or might not pursue visitation, especially if you are out of state. It might well be more hassle than he is willing to follow through with, for a 3 week affair.
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#5 of 131 Old 05-06-2009, 11:16 PM
 
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You were having extra-marital unprotected sex with some strange guy with a shady past while breastfeeding? Do you know what kind of danger you have put your nursing child in? Have you been tested for stds?

If you are still legally married I think that the automatic legal assumption is that your husband is the father of any children born into that marriage.

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#6 of 131 Old 05-06-2009, 11:30 PM
 
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You were having extra-marital unprotected sex with some strange guy with a shady past while breastfeeding? Do you know what kind of danger you have put your nursing child in? Have you been tested for stds?

If you are still legally married I think that the automatic legal assumption is that your husband is the father of any children born into that marriage.
My gawd! This didn't even occur to me in all the drama of the situation. The father of this baby has spent time in prison and has been a drug user. Op, you need to get checked out ASAP! Your nursing baby is at risk here!
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#7 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 10:45 AM
 
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I believe that when a person is in prison they are tested for STDs and just because he was in prison and was a drug user does not mean he has an STD. Not 100% sure though. I think you need to go to Georgia as soon as you can. If not leave there then leave him if it isn't a positive relationship for you and your family.
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#8 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 01:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by waiting2bemommy View Post

if yu follow all this, thank you! My close friends in georgia are asking me to come live there, rent free for a time. They want me away from the baby's father because they see nothing but trouble. I would like to get away from him too. Bt he is begging for a chance to prove himself. He has not actually DONE anything really wrong....he was just a really really bad pick for ME.
I disagree, he showed bad tendencies with your other son and has a really bad history. Run now to GA if your husband will let you go with your ds and get away from this guy now. If he cares then he will pursue visitation and make child support payments and if its out of sight out of mind its better for you. Trust me from the experience with which I speak, bad dad is worse than no dad.
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#9 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 01:35 PM
 
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I can only imagine how difficult this situation must be for you.

I do think the best thing to do is to go with your friends in Georgia and to start over. You are so lucky to have friends willing to take you in and give you the support you need... USE it!

I'm sure you didn't intend to get in this situation, but your current boyfriend does not seem like the kind of father you would want for your child.. especially since he already disagrees with your parenting style. Maybe some time away will let you clear your head and you'll be able to talk to him about parenting your new baby. I am not saying to cut him out - just to give yourself time to think about it with the support of your friends.

I am not sure why you would need to put down a father in order to get assistance. I didn't because there is no father on DS' birth certificate. But if you are still married, then your husband will automatically be considered the father. I am not sure how to get around this one. Other mamas might know more about this.

Above all - take care of yourself and your 'lil ones! Best of luck.
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#10 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 02:37 PM
 
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Isn't it that they only come after the baby's father if you're on cash assistance? I get food stamps and medical for my kids, and their dad isn't responsible to them for anything. Is the measly amount of money you get on TANF worth it? I would get out of state if possible before going to DHS for anything. I think it will make it more difficult for them to contact him, though it probably won't stop them.

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#11 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 02:55 PM
 
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There are three different questions here:

1. Whether DSHS will require you to tell them the name of the father of your currently-unborn child (who apparently is your recent boyfriend rather than your husband), if you apply for benefits. (And a related question: whether DSHS will then contact boyfriend.)

2. Whether your hospital/state will require you to name the father of your currently-unborn child on the child's birth certificate. (And a related question: whether your husband will be assumed to be the father of this new child, if you don't name your boyfriend as the father.)

3. Whether you need to inform your recent boyfriend of your/your child's whereabouts if you leave Houston for Georgia (or anywhere else), so that he can pursue visitation and partial custody of his child (and perhaps child support from you - say if you do become employed and he stays unemployed, and custody is shared) if he wants.

I don't know the answers to #1 and #2, but just wanted to make sure we're all on the same page that those two answers are irrelevant to #3 (whose answer, of course, is YES). Ethically and legally, your recent boyfriend has rights to his child, and you need to keep him informed of your whereabouts if you move so he can pursue those rights if he wishes.

The only thing you owe to others is to behave with integrity.
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#12 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 03:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't know the answers to #1 and #2, but just wanted to make sure we're all on the same page that those two answers are irrelevant to #3 (whose answer, of course, is YES). Ethically and legally, your recent boyfriend has rights to his child, and you need to keep him informed of your whereabouts if you move so he can pursue those rights if he wishes.
Does it not matter whether he is a good parent? Wou;dn't it just be avoiding more trouuble in the long run to cut him out now? Just musing.....


I ahev already created enough trouble here....wouldn't be inviting trouble to keep him up to date on where I am, my phone number etc? Last night he became extremely irate because he heard that I had let a male friend of mine do my hair for me. He inerpreted that to mean I was cheating. I didn't even know we were still TOGETHER....I thought this was just a co parenting situation. He got furious with me called me names told me "f- you" and hung up on me. Am i really obligated to live with that for the next 20 years just because of his supposed rights?

what is best for the child? That is the issue. i don't frankly give a d*** anymmore about him OR me. I just want to do what is in the baby's best interests (and my older ds) and i'm not yet convinced that involving him is the answer.

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#13 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 05:11 PM
 
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I don't think it's right for you to keep your new child from knowing who his father is or to keep the father from knowing at least where his child is.

I don't mean to sound harsh, but this is what happens when you have a kid with someone. You're stuck with them. That's why you have to be careful when you pick (and have sex with) a partner.
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#14 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 05:23 PM
 
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Seasons did a great job separating the issues.

Let me seperate a little more - going to Georgia does not in any way constitute a decision either way for issue #3. You can go to Georgia and think things over and still make decisions about the father's involvement. Personally, that's what I'd plan to do next.

Also, another thought: I wouldn't go to Georgia just to test the guy, but I do wonder how he'll react. Going might tell you something about him, which can aid in your decision-making. Personally, I believe he has a right to be involved, regardless of your personal feelings about him, but I also agree that in some cases he can lose that right. If he acts too crazy about this and leads you to fear for your/your children's safety, I would certainly make different plans.

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#15 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 07:18 PM
 
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going to Georgia does not in any way constitute a decision either way for issue #3. You can go to Georgia and think things over and still make decisions about the father's involvement.


Exactly. waiting2bemommy, you are in the lucky position (compared to some others in this forum) of being able to move around as you please, because there is no parenting agreement telling you NOT to move away from the other parent. So feel free to leave your boyfriend.

BUT - at least once your child together is born - you must tell your boyfriend where you and your child are.

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Does it not matter whether he is a good parent?

Nope. (Besides, the child isn't born yet - you don't know whether he'll be a good dad to his child.)

Wou;dn't it just be avoiding more trouuble in the long run to cut him out now?

Maybe, but it doesn't matter. You cannot.

wouldn't be inviting trouble to keep him up to date on where I am, my phone number etc?

Maybe, but it doesn't matter. You must.

He got furious with me called me names told me "f- you" and hung up on me. Am i really obligated to live with that for the next 20 years just because of his supposed rights?

Yes, you are really obligated to let him have co-custody of your child together, unless and until a court says otherwise. Whether you choose to listen to him call you names is your choice.

what is best for the child? That is the issue.

Not really. The courts in EVERY state have declared that both parents have a right to be a parent to their child, unless and until a parent is proven - by a court, not the other parent - to be unfit.

i don't frankly give a d*** anymmore about him OR me.

But because your previously having had sex with him created a child, you do have to care about him vis a vis your child.

I just want to do what is in the baby's best interests (and my older ds) and i'm not yet convinced that involving him is the answer.

Whether you exclude your boyfriend in your older ds's life is entirely your choice, but whether to exclude your boyfriend from his own child's life is NOT your choice at all. He has that RIGHT unless and until a court says otherwise.

The only thing you owe to others is to behave with integrity.
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#16 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 08:25 PM
 
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Exactly. waiting2bemommy, you are in the lucky position (compared to some others in this forum) of being able to move around as you please, because there is no parenting agreement telling you NOT to move away from the other parent. So feel free to leave your boyfriend.
No but I believe this poster has a parenting agreement with her husband, father of her toddler.

My strong suggestions:

1) Get tested for STDs. You had unprotected sex with someone that you know absolutely nothing about. You could have anything! Get tested.

2.) Resolve your legal issues with your husband. You won't be able to be any kind of parent to either child if you are in jail for contempt.
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#17 of 131 Old 05-07-2009, 11:50 PM
 
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I am not sure why you would need to put down a father in order to get assistance. I didn't because there is no father on DS' birth certificate. But if you are still married, then your husband will automatically be considered the father. I am not sure how to get around this one. Other mamas might know more about this.

Above all - take care of yourself and your 'lil ones! Best of luck.
When you get assistance, if you know who the father is they want to go after child support first.

My concern would be that since he already knows you're pregnant, if you lie and say he isn't the father, or you don't know who the father is, if he pushes the issue you may be putting yourself at risk for welfare fraud charges if you are getting that kind of assistance.

However, if you move now, and he's bluffing about pursuing his rights, he might not bother to pursue visitation once you're in another state. But once you have that child in the same state he's in, you put yourself at risk for the court not allowing the custodial parent to move away without the non custodial parent's permission in some states, and you sure don't want to risk that. Check out the laws in both states now.

ETA-oops, forgot about your other child's dad. You might not be able to just up and move anyway.

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#18 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 12:47 AM
 
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on a single parent's board it should be obvious that most of us are guilty of making a poor choice of coparents.
Please be careful not to generalize about single parents - we are a very diverse group of people. For instance, MY husband (bio-father of my child, although never my co-parent) left ME (for a new wife). I didn't do anything wrong by not psychically predicting his leaving. No guilt or poor choices here!

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I believe this poster has a parenting agreement with her husband, father of her toddler.
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You might not be able to just up and move anyway.
Good point. waiting2bemommy, is the visitation agreement/parenting plan you have with your husband temporary, or final? Does it say whether you are allowed to leave the state where he is (not sure if that's Texas - I assume it is)?

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#19 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 12:56 AM
 
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well i know in texas that you cant get a divorce while youre pregnant, even if you were already seperated, you cannot name someone other that your husband on the birth certificate, although you can leave it blank and give baby your maiden name. i dont know how it is in other states though

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#20 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 01:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My husband is in Pennsylvania. He does not know I'm pregnant. I plan on getting a divorce asap, and not mentioning that I'm pregnant. This early on, it's entirely conceivable that I wouldn't even know. i have full legal and physiacl custody from a court order from an earlier separation (we were back and forth with each other for a while). He does not know I am in Texas. He will not know that I am in GA. He does not call me. As it stand right now, I just changed my number, so he wouldn't be able to call me if he wanted to. he has my mother's home number, and if he wanted to contact me he could call her and ask for my number. He has not made any effort since I left him to get involved in ds's life. I don't forsee that changing until ds is much much older and less "work" to have for visitation. If he contacts me, I'll deal with it, but he has never actually pursued his visitation rights, so I don't worry about it.

The baby's father does not have my new number. I have his friend's phone number so i can contact him when i'm ready. He does not have a phone. he is on parole so he cannot leave the state for any length of time. He also expects me to go to VA, not GA, so he would be looking for me in the wrong place anyway. i suspect that if he doesn't hear from me i the next few months he will end up going to costa rica (a violation of his parole, which means he would have to stay there until his parole is up, 4 years.) This is something he had been talking about doing before we found out about the pregnancy.

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#21 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 01:57 AM
 
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well i know in texas that you cant get a divorce while youre pregnant, even if you were already seperated, you cannot name someone other that your husband on the birth certificate, although you can leave it blank and give baby your maiden name. i dont know how it is in other states though
I got divorced in Texas while pregnant, I had to sign a form and have my ex sign a form that stated that the child I was pregnant with was not his.

I think you have to have residency in whatever state you are filing a divorce in, so I don't know if it would be wise to move to GA and then file, unless your ex is the one filing from VA, that would work.

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#22 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 08:40 AM
 
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Please be careful not to generalize about single parents - we are a very diverse group of people. For instance, MY husband (bio-father of my child, although never my co-parent) left ME (for a new wife). I didn't do anything wrong by not psychically predicting his leaving. No guilt or poor choices here!
Very true - Thank You! I guess according to singin'intherain I should have known that my husband would cheat on me and walk out on me after ten years of marriage and three kids - how on earth did I not see that coming?!
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#23 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 10:48 AM
 
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I plan on getting a divorce asap, and not mentioning that I'm pregnant. This early on, it's entirely conceivable that I wouldn't even know.
Read the divorce petition (the blank one that you'll be filing) carefully. In most states, including mine, both the petition and its answer (so, the papers both spouses must sign, under oath, to start the divorce process) ask: "is the wife pregnant?" In which case it wouldn't matter that "This early on, it's entirely conceivable that I wouldn't even know" - the only question is whether you ARE pregnant. Period. So since you do know, you would have to say "yes."

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#24 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 02:32 PM
 
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I'm surprised, because on a single parent's board it should be obvious that most of us are guilty of making a poor choice of coparents.
Well ouch!

Just because my husband and I grew apart and fell out of love with each other doesn't mean he is a poor parent or a poor choice. Lots of people have marriages that end but continue to be good parents separately.
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#25 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 03:58 PM
 
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Me again! You know what else?! This comment:

Quote:
I'm surprised, because on a single parent's board it should be obvious that most of us are guilty of making a poor choice of coparents.
is also extremely offensive to Single Mother's By Choice - I'm not one, but my hat's off to those lovely ladies!

There are a lot of roads that have led us to Single Motherhood, and accusing us of making "poor choices" is not only insulting, but yet one more instance of the "Mommy Wars" rearing it's ugly head, in my opinion...
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#26 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 07:06 PM
 
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i suspect that if he doesn't hear from me i the next few months he will end up going to costa rica (a violation of his parole, which means he would have to stay there until his parole is up, 4 years.) This is something he had been talking about doing before we found out about the pregnancy.

Whew....... he's a character, to say the least.....



Definitely move to Georgia, ASAP! And don't call him...if he really has good intentions, he'll be able to find you later on. Or if he just wants to bully you around and treat you badly, hopefully he'll try doing it in Costa Rica.
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#27 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 07:08 PM
 
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: for you

Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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#28 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 07:34 PM
 
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I thought the OP had sole custody of her toddler due to abuse issues.

I'm sorry about all these judgemental comments. When I said what I did about the unprotected sex and living situation it wasn't to judge or condemn you. I understand that you have had a rough time and you may feel you have few options and no safety net. Considering the way people close to you have treated you I wonder if your friends in GA are a good source of support or if this might be the time to strike out on your own. Sometimes a fresh start in a new place with no one but yourself to rely on is a lifesaver. You will need to name the new father because you are going to run into massive issues with your x otherwise but I wouldn't give him more than an email address for you and have it be one you only check every so often. You don't need that energy all day everyday. Can you find a shelter in a new place and just disappear (other than court dates of course) and make a new woman of yourself. It's all there you just need to pull it out.
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#29 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 07:52 PM
 
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Originally Posted by BoringTales View Post
You were having extra-marital unprotected sex with some strange guy with a shady past while breastfeeding? Do you know what kind of danger you have put your nursing child in? Have you been tested for stds?

If you are still legally married I think that the automatic legal assumption is that your husband is the father of any children born into that marriage.
I have to agree with this.

I would not automaticly put the any father's name down. It is kind of sad your husband may have to pay child support for a child that isn't his. If you can get away with saying you don't know do so. That way ex-husband has no way of getting custody. Also if you write down clearly he is not the father then you don't have to worry about the laws catching up with you when/if they change.

I also think you need to get some help. You are making the same choices over and over again. Until you change yourself and why you are pick loosers you are going to find yourself in this mess over and over again. Stay out of relationships until you fix yourself.
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#30 of 131 Old 05-08-2009, 08:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by PoppyMama View Post
I thought the OP had sole custody of her toddler due to abuse issues.
IIRC OP has temporary sole custody (with visitation by her husband) of their son, because he didn't have notice of the court date and she was the only one who showed up.

The only thing you owe to others is to behave with integrity.
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