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Young parents only please

Posted by chrisrva (My Page) on
Wed, Jan 3, 07 at 4:16

Dude,I mean no offense.Just seems like a bunch of older parents on here.I respect the older folks,but I need some younger parents advice here.
My girlfriend and me are gonna have a kid soon.She already has a son who is 6.I really care about her alot,and we have been making plans to move in together.
But,we feel we should have our own seperate living quarters in the house.I'll be havin the basement and her and her son upstairs.Gettin alot of weird responses from our friends about it though.
We have been dating 7 months and kinda wanted to go a little slower,and not rush movin in. But she is gettin kicked out of her other place,so we thought this was right.
I think it will be better this way.She knows her son is alot to handle and wants me to have some quiet once and a while and not feel like I have to be his parent.
After all I've read on this page and the step parent page,I'm kinda scared to be a step parent (which I kinda am even if we arent married) And I'm glad she's not expecting me to be right away.
I mean,things may change down the road,but now I'm happy I'll be havin some alone time.We're movin in this weekend,so no sense in sayin dont do it.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Young parents only please

I am a young parent, and I can see what you mean about all a lot of older parents on here. They usually have pretty good advice though :)

I think you are making a mature decision. No reason to jump into being a step father right away. This way you can be involved, but also have your own time. Are you going to move upstairs when the new baby arrives? She is going to need your help. You have only been dating 7 months, so I don't see anything wrong with taking things slowly. Learning to live with others takes time. You will be able to slowly see how things go, and make the transition. If you guys both agree on this, then it is right for you. Screw what your friends think, it's not their life.


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I think I'm an average aged parent, so I guess I won't answer. But, what is your idea of a young parent these days?

I would "think" it would be better to be asking the advice of a 27, or even 39 year old parent, over that of a 15 or 17 year old one. You may want to ask your question of people who have been there, done that and are a little wiser...You may be pleasantly surprised by their answers. But hey, that's just advice from an older person--LOL Good luck nonetheless.


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I know I haven't learned anything in the last 20 years -- so can I still count as young?


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You posted on a parent forum, I am a parent so I am going to give you advice whether you like it or not. Grow up. If you are old enough to have unprotected sex, get a girl pregnant, then be a man and take responsibility for your actions.

You want to hear from young parents. That's fine, but there are plenty of "young" parents who are doing the parenting thing the right way. They are putting their children first and not being selfish. Their needs come after the needs of their child. They put the needs of the child first. That's the way it goes if you are to be a good parent.

First, stop being selfish and make a family with this girl or get your own place. Don't give her false expectations if you don't know what you want. Sounds to me like you like your life the way it is - no kids, freedom, acting like a kid. When you have a child you become a parent. Period. Fun's over. No more partying and acting like a kid. You made this choice with your girlfriend to have this baby. What did you think was going to happen? I am assuming your girlfriend (I hope) knows what to expect if she already has a 6 year old child.

You are then responsible for that child, whether or not you are in residence with said child. Expect that you will be paying for the support of this child whether you stay with your girlfriend or not.

What I hope for your baby is that you and your girlfriend become good parents. You will be sacrificing daily. It is what all parents do. You don't get a do over in parenting. You need to get it right the first time.

Your girlfriend is in a very vulnerable spot being pregnant. Perhaps your living arrangement proposition may not seem so appealing to her once the baby is born and she is soley responsible while you are having your "quiet time". Heads up - parents, especially those of infants don't get much quiet time in the first few months.

Your post saddens me. I would think you would want advice from any parent who has had a successful relationship (married or not) and have or are raising their children to be good people. What kind of example are you setting? That is the question you should be asking yourself now, if not prior to this with your girlfriend already having a six year old.

I am sorry if this response is not what you want to hear, but what I have said is the truth and the truth is what you need to hear, not alot of advice from other children that happen to be parents as well.

I hope you have parents to support you emotionally with this as well. If you haven't taken advantage or are resisting their advice, think again. Most of us "older" parents find out that what our parents told us as teens was the truth and how in the dark we actually were at that age.


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Chrisrva...I can see why some of the older parents have a problem with this scenerio....but things are different these days. At least you are trying to help your girlfriend at all,when many guys would just run away.I think it's nice she was getting kicked out and you are helping her.
I think it is also good to have your own space until you are sure you want to be a step parent...it's not easy! Maybe if you do have your own space it will work out better for you since you wont feel so overwhelmed.
I agree with emmhip that 7 months dating isnt really that long and taking it slow is a good thing. And dont listen to people who critsize you and tel you to grow up.How do you know he HAD unprotected sex? Maybe the condom broke,or maybe it didnt,those things are not 100% effective you know.Maybe the girlfriend messed up her birth control.This sort of thing happens all the time.Good luck to you.


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Chris-

Time to step up to the plate. If you think that little boy can handle it, then go for it. But it might be confusing to see a "divide" between mom and that guy she digs in every other way! That said, if he's never seen you together, then it might not be that big of a deal.

Unfortunately, whether we like it or not, when we are involved with someone who has a child, we become involved with the child too, 100% of the time. By trying not to be, or hoping for a back door, that causes trouble (I have been there, trust me!).

Still, find what works best for you; and if that means sleeping in separate areas of the house, so be it. But trust me, you can't check out on that 6-year-old when it's too much to handle. I tried it, and not only did I feel bad, but it created so many other problems that required much much time to mend.


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Hey,thanks man for the responses except for labmomma.I never gave anyone false expectations.She was gettin kicked out of her place,so I offered to get a place with her to help her.I never told her we were getting married or anything.
Actually both of us are kinda against marriage.That's why I said YOUNGER PARENTS cuz people my age have different views on marriage now days.
Another thing,the kid is with his dad alot and I dont want to cross and bounderies.The kid doesnt really know me,and I'd feel weird making demands on him and stuff.Not my place.
The dad has him a couple times a week and on weekends and stuff.


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The thing is Chris, baby-to-be #2 is YOUR child, and that makes you a parent. The 6 year old is an entirely different issue, and if he were the only child involved, I wouldn't have any objections to your living arrangements. I have no moral objection to living together outside of marriage or bias against pre-marital sex.

As a parent, my only firm conviction in this is that if two people are old enough to decide to have sex, they need to be mature enough to handle the possible consequences (like pregnancy) like an adult. But you're still thinking like a kid. (Hmmmm - free sex upstairs, peace and quiet downstairs -- no strings -- this could work.)

But it really can't work. Are you making a commitment or not? Are you dipping your toe in the parenting water to see how you'll like it? (It ain't a lot of fun, the first few months.) Is this really the woman you want to spend the next 20 years joined-at-the-hip with? Or do you still want to be a bachelor?

Imagine how this will all play out... You're tired from a long day on the burger line and the baby won't stop screaming. Momma needs a break because she hasn't had one all day - the baby's been fussing all day and Momma's much more tired than you are... You're really looking forward to your 'peace and quiet' -- but it's gone. Deal or no deal, you'll have more energy in the evenings than she will. Not once a week, but 6 days out of 7. That's the reality of raising an infant. It'll get better in 7-8 months, then be back with a vengance when Baby starts to walk at 11-13 months or so. Then you're in for 2-3 years of toddler-chasing up and down the stairs, in and out of the street, etc.

Maybe Momma's young too? Maybe she wants a night out once or twice a week with her girlfriends? (Hey, she's got a built-in babysitter downstairs.) What - you don't want to? But it's YOUR kid!

You're not married -- So maybe you want to date a bit? Sounds reasonable - no strings, remember? Yeah. Until she clocks you with the frying pan.

OK - so things aren't working out after all. Are you going to throw her out of your apartment? The mother of your child? Or do you leave, sticking her with a place she can't afford and trashing your credit in the process?

Come to think of it, maybe I did learn something in those last 20 years...


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Coming from a young parent (a long time ago)

Chris - hopefully fatherhood will put you in a whole new perspective. It does that to some guys! That baby will need both you and mom on a fulltime basis. It's not fair if it all fell on mom, which would be easy to happen. The basement will sound good during those not so wonderful parent moments. It would to me if I had that option. :)

Glad the 6 y/o has his dad, who must also be young as well. Not all father's are there for the babies. Hope you will be. And where do the grandparents come in? Do you guys have addition family support?

Good of you to help get your girlfriend a place, though. Maybe you guys can figure out something that will work for all 4 involved. After all, this is serious business.


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Gee, Chris has probably run away now, with all those horror stories of parenting !

I think you sound like you want to do the right thing, Chris, and I think you should work on that.

Just remember, whatever happens, you have a child, and YOU are responsible for that child forever. It is not all bad, its a lot of fun and joy, (when you get a good night's sleep).

Good luck to you.

Sorry, I am an oldie...45 and two teenagers.

Want to know what happens when they are teenagers ??

Please, please look after you little treasure, you are truly blessed, and this child needs a dad who loves him and will provide for him.

All the best.


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I think we (and by that I mean some of you) should ease up on Chris. First of all, we don't know that he works in a "burger line", nor do we know his exact age. His girlfriend has a 6 year old, so I am assuming he is older than "15 or 17". And, your life doesn't end when you have kids (let's scare the crap out him!), it changes, but it isn't the end of fun. We also don't know how far along in the pregnancy his girlfriend is. She could only be three months, giving them six months of time to see if the living situation works or not. I am 28 and have a 4 year old and a 9 month old. I wasn't married when I was 24 and had the four year old (although I had been with her father for 5 years, and we are married now). Sure, my life changed, for the better. My pregnancy wasn't planned, life doesn't always work that way. I say try it out, move upstairs when the 6 year old is comfortable with him, and the baby is born. Let's cut the guy a little slack.


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I wonder why you are getting wierd responses from your friends?
Bottom line, you are acting like a child. You want to have your fun without paying any consequences. Why didn't you think about possible consequences when you were "having fun?"
I say don't get married, live in the basement but help out with the rent and maybe watch the kid that's yours sometimes.
Really doesn't matter because in 2 or 3 years you will be on to other immature actions for which you refuse to take responsibility and your GF will be then a single mother of 2....hopefully sueing you for child support.
Did you really come here and expect the majority of people to tell you that what you are doing is OK and mature and a responsible way to behave and that they were proud of you for refusing to be saddled with the care of any kid that is not your's?
Linda C


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Dude, wisdom comes from experience for a reason. Do not be so quick to dismiss the wisdom born of experience, and the lessons others have learned and the high price they have paid through bad decisions. It is priceless and can save you and your child YEARS of GRIEF. It is a dense and foolish student unwilling to consider the value of advice from others who have walked in his shoes.

coolmama...not so cool advice. stunningly bad actually. He forfeited the option to take things slowly when he fathered a child. He needs to step up to the plate and become a man. Why should his girlfriend get stuck with all of the responsibility of taking care of HIS CHILD? Why should it seem like he is doing her a favor helping her out? As if her life, her dreams and desires take a back road to his? As if her life has less value than his, and she is stuck, but he gets to do what he wants? Are you kidding me?!???? Where is her "alone time" or her getting the option to decide whether she wants to hang with this dude for long?

Dude, your child is going to have a hard life with your thinking. While other parents are striving to give their children all the advantages in life to help them succeed, your child will be stuck with parents who are just kind of hanging out, and may or may not be hangin out together next year. Because if it is a drag, might just find someone else to hang with for awhile dude. Not the kind of life and family that makes a kid feel real secure and safe is it?

Several are just telling you what you want to hear. But the ones who are challenging your thinking are the ones who are telling you the truth, as hard as it is to hear. Because your thinking is not in the best interest of your child. You may or may not want the responsibility of being a step parent. But when you chose a woman with a child, to be the mother of your child...well now you end up a father to at least one of those children. And it is time to become a man, ready or not. It is sad to see a full grown man act like a teenager. this is that time in life where you will see what you are made of, and what kind of human being you will choose to be.


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Dude...I could tell you what you want to hear. I could tell you that you deserve that separate "alone" space, and what a great guy you are to help this girl out...to do her the favor of letting her stay with you. I could tell you that it is OK that neither of you are into commitment/marriage, and that she should have no expectations of you because you never promised her marriage/commitment or anything. I could tell you not to listen when people are critical of your choices and ignore them when they tell you to grow up... BUT I would be LYING TO YOU...telling you what you want to hear...instead of having the guts to tell you the truth.

Your girlfriend is experiencing the most profound experience a woman can go through. Her body is being stretched completely out of shape, she is going to experience incredible pain, and she will be bringing into the world a fully dependant human being...who will be dependant on her for at least the next 20 or more years of her life...and maybe longer!!! And your response is "I never told her we were getting married or anything" and I have only known her for 7 months and kinda want to take things slow, and not rush movin in, but she got kicked out of her place, so you are doing her a favor and helping her out. This is totally whacked out man!!!!!!

Obviously you are not into commitment/marriage etc., so I would highly advise you to read the step parent forum. But I want you to read it from a different perspective. Do NOT read it from the perspective of you as a step parent, but from the perspective of your future girlfriends, who may one day step parent YOUR CHILD a few years down the road, when you decide to hang with someone else...or she does, since neither of you are into marriage/commitment, and you are now a few girlfriends down the road, and she is with some other dude, (who may or may not be good to your kid). And your newest girlfriend (down the road) hates your child (read the step parent forum...and you will read this over and over again). And you, are caught between two women, over your child, whom I hope you adore. Or there could be another possible outcome from those who are not into commitment.

There are hundreds of thousands of children in foster care...abandoned because people did not want to step up to the plate and do the right thing. You are not committed, and what if she too decides her life was easier with just one child...and two is too hard? That you decide to hang with someone else, and she decides it is too hard to go it alone as a single mother of two children? No one plans for their baby to end up in some foster home somewhere. And yet their are hundreds of thousands of children who are abandoned because no one was willing to step up to the plate and do the right thing. I am hoping that when you look into the eyes of your beautiful child, that you will finally become a man, and will promise your child that you will protect it in this world, no matter what.


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I commend you for coming to this forum. Bnicebkind gave you some excellent advice. Print it out, save it and read it from time to time. It is very hard work being a parent. I really wish you all the best. I hope you have a healthy and happy baby. Babies bring a lot of joy to the world. And all the hard work is worth it.


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The other option that appears to have fallen off the planet is adoption.

What a wonderful gift to give a child you cannot care for properly -- two parents who ache for a child and are prepared and committed to raise it to the very best of their abilities, to provide a secure and loving family.

Why does no one openly advocate adoption anymore? No, it's not the only option. But there seems to be enormous social pressure to "keep your baby" -- ready or not, willing or not, able or not.


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sweeby...this is well worth mentioning as an option, especially in a situation where neither seem that committed to the idea of becoming parents, and all that entails. And neither seem that interested in actually becoming a family to raise this child.


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I know many adulte who were adopted and I know many who have adopted children....and I know others who were not able to adopt because of age or finances.
I know more than a few people who have spent thousands and thousands of dollars trying to concieve, only to end up seeking a child to adopt.
What a gift a child is! And the difference in the life a child will have with 2 parents who really really want to love and spend time raising him or her and the live of a child who has a single mother who can't offer perhaps good medical care, good schools and most of all the time to love and nurture a child.
The mother of a relative of mine gave a child up for adoption when she was in college. She is now in a position, with a husbamd to care for and love 3 children.
Linda C


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I can't help but feel that the time for "taking it slow" as you put it, would have been BEFORE you got your girlfrind pregnant. Unfortunately, you weren't thinking clearly at that point, and it is too late now to go shutting the stable door as the horse has well and truly bolted.
I personally am not against the concept of people being in a committed relationship without the benefit of clergy, but also feel that on the whole, once children are in the picture it's better for the children that a legal relationship exists. If something was to happen to either parent it would be messier legally if the parents were not married. Children need two parents to give them different persepectives, and single parenthood is a lot of hard work with no respite.
If you go ahead with your "separate living areas" plan, I certainly hope that changes once your baby is born. Your GF is going to need all the help she can get- it's work enough for two people to care for a baby, let alone for one person who already has a little one. Leaving your GF to shoulder the burden alone is pretty selfish, especially as you helped contribute to the situation by getting her pregnant. Will she have equal opportunities for "alone, quiet time"? I certainly hope so.
As far as the six year old goes, if you're sharing a house (at the minimum) with his mother, you need to establish some kind of relationship with him, though not necessarity a "dad" type one. If he was an adult sharing your home you would expect to have some interaction with him, and even to reasonably make the demands of common courtesy on him (while according him the same common courtesy).
I don't know how old you are (you sound very young), but it's time to act like a grown up now since you have chosen to do one of the biggest grown up things- father a child.


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chrisrva...I imagine that these were not the responses you wanted, and you were hoping that "youth" would lack the insight of experience and just tell you what you wanted to hear. I imagine that your friends, are young, and yet their responses were not the support you had hoped for. Bottom line...you don't want to take responsibilty for your child, or have this girlfriend of yours depend on you. You are treating her like "just some girl who is knocked up" and you see yourself as this guy doing her a favor, sort of. Instead, she has a far more sacred role than "some girl" - she will forever be the mother of YOUR son or daughter. She will forever be connected to you through your beautiful child. your child is a new human being, who will look at you as the most perfect person on this planet if you take good care of your child. We are all petrified when discovering that we are actually going to be a parent, and have someone that depends on us so much. But you will look at this child, and feel a love that you have never before known, and you will want to be a better human being just for them. A child loves with such unconditional, beautiful love, and will light up your world with their innocence and smile. But if you truly are not able to do this, talk to her about letting a family who can, give your child the best life possible. only you two know in your hearts what is best.

please respond so that others know that you took the time to actually read the responses they took the time to write.


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The only reason my friends were sayin stuff about it was cuz they said Dude now you're gonna be stuck watching her kid all the time.
I dont think it's fair sayin I got her knocked up either.I used protection,it didnt work.She should have been on somethin to to prevent it too.
And I will be there for my kid when it's born.


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I'm curious as to why you wanted feedback/advice from the younger parents. I suspect that it's one of two things: either you know what is the right thing to do, and you think that the younger generation won't nudge you to do it, or, you think that us oldies only have sex for procreation within a marital relationship and we immediately rush to confession afterwards, so we'd have no idea where you're coming from. If you're thinking along the lines of the latter, then I have news for you. We're not judging you, and we do know what you are going through. We've had sex for fun, we've had it outside of a marriage, and we've had unwanted outcomes. Your generation didn't invent sex or broken condoms. The thing about being older is that you learn from life, and you have a lot of wisdom to pass on to those who haven't lived through the consequences yet. We have a lot to offer you, so I hope that you'll take our advice seriously. We're not as different as you think we are.

Ever hear the expression "there's no such thing as a free lunch". It's true. *Everything* has a cost. The cost of sex is that you have to accept whatever comes as a result of it, good or bad. Bad things include things like aids, warts, and unwanted pregancies. In all of those examples, you can't blame the other person. When you have sex, you have to take your own precautions, which you did, and you have to accept it if your precaution didn't work, which it didn't. That's life, and that's what you will learn as you grow older. You have to take responsibility. This is not her fault. It's a 50/50 deal.

You don't have to marry her. You don't have to stay with her forever. But you have to take responsibility for your child. What kind of dad do/did you have? If not so great, then you want to do it better. If great, then model that. This child will always only have you as their dad. They may end up having a step-father, but you can't count on that guy being great. *You* have to be great. Your child is counting on you.

Remember too that this child never asked to be conceived. This child is coming into this world because you and your girlfriend had sex. Not the child's fault. Be good to this child.

I have no problems with parents of children splitting up, or not getting married, but I do feel that a stable environment is best for a child. Confusion about who is in their life isn't good. Just keep in mind your ideal life growing up. Think a lot about it. How would your life be in a perfect world. Strive to give that to your child. This isn't just about your dating situation with a girl, more importantly this is about a life that you are creating for a child. Make it a great one!


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chrisva -DUDE your friends have a point. Graphic - when your girlfriend comes home from the hospital giving birth to your child, she is going to be sore, tired, etc. I don't know whether you know anything about pregnancy or the birth process. IF NOT, take the classes offered for the birthing process. It will shed some light on what you are about to watch your girlfriend go through. You are part of this - it doesn't matter how your girlfriend got pregnant. Sh#t happens. Suck it up.

You are in the big leagues now. I am very worried about the way you view all of these changes. Not with much enthusiasm is the way you are coming across. It sounds to me as if you haven't really accepted the hand you have been dealt, are acting immaturely and are in need of some trained objective 3rd party help. Your kids are going to pick up on your attitude. They won't know specifically what you are angry about, but they will know something isn't right. Is that fair to them. They didn't ask to be born.

If you won't do it for you, do it for your child to be. I think once you have this baby (I hope) you will see things from a different perspective.

I know you don't want to hear from me, but I think that's because I am hitting to close to the truth that you know but aren't willing to face head on. Believe me, facing things head on works much better. When you work through each issue/problem, one at at time, it is much easier than letting them pile up. At that point you are looking at a mountain of mistakes/problems/issues. Tempers are flaring and nothing constructive gets done.

Perhaps you aren't ready to marry. Don't.

Perhaps you aren't ready to be a step-parent. Be honest about it. Don't live with your girlfriend if you don't want to be a step-parent. The young child your girlfriend already has doesn't realize all of this is going on and is looking at you as an authority figure, someone he can count on. If he can't, or if you don't feel comfortable being that person, don't give him false expectations. It will only screw him up in the future.

I think you all need counseling and I am not being disrespectful. I think everyone deserves respect - you, your girlfriend and both children. I am getting the impression that you feel backed against the wall and really you are, so reach out for a little help. This was a first attempt posting on this parents forum, but we, as well-intentioned as we may be, aren't experts and don't know you. Seek advice from someone who can really help you. Your parents, therapist, clergy, anyone who is willing to help you deal with this unexpected turn of events. I know you are laughing at this point. I don't know why I am even wasting my time, I guess I am hoping that you may at some point wake up.

I wish you all the best.


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Okay, now you guys are making me feel like I was too lax on Chris. But I think what you have all been saying is very worthwhile information, and I totally see where you are coming from. Chris, whatever you decide to do, I wish you the best of luck. I hope you can become a great step parent and great parent.


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Chris...one last point because it is important. Her 6 year old is not just some kid...he is about to be your childs brother...for life. Regardless of whether you two marry or not, this boy is going to be an important person in the life of "your" child...for the REST OF HIS LIFE. So in your life, he is and always will be more than just some kid.

Take things one day at a time. Breathe deep. Again, we all freak out when we find out we are actually going to be a parent. It is one of the most incredible experiences you will have in your lifetime. Just take it one day at a time, and let us know how you are doing once your baby arrives. And since you are so young, I will remind you that if the baby is crying, DO NOT EVER, EVER SHAKE A BABY!!!! Things that help are a walk outside in fresh air, playing music softly so it does not startle the baby. You can have your girl friend, or someone who has recently had a baby come and help to answer your questions. There are tons of books on the market that will answer alot of your questions. The feelings of being overwhelmed and scared pass after the first few weeks after the baby is born. hopefully, you will look your child in the eyes, and promise to be the best dad any kid was EVER lucky enough to get! your son or daughter will make you want to be a better human being. It will make you want to do it better than your own dad. Do it right, and you will never regret this child. I wish you the best.


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Bnicenkind made a good point, amongs all the other good points from other posters, you little baby already has an older brother. Be respectful of that relationship.

Perhaps he also has grandparents, and cousins and aunts and uncles, who also will care about him.

Remember he has an extended family who might want to be a part of his life.


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Chris..In some ways i can see how you feel.Like about the "You didnt just knock her up" thing.She also made herself a willing participant and could have used protection too.All true.

But,if you love or even like your girlfriend,you are going to have to get used to having her son around.Mommies and babies are a package deal.

It is a hard adjustment,I know.
But you can get through this.There is lots of support in the step parent section too if you have other issues.
I think all of this wont be such a big issue when you see your baby...they have a way of bringing people together.Good luck to you Chris,I hope it works out.


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In regards to this girl using protection - I think that the time to inquire, and be concerned about, her use of protection, would have been before sex, not after pregnancy. It's a moot point now, and suggesting that her birth control, or lack thereof, should be an issue at all, shows a lack of maturity and responsibility. If you didn't know her well enough to know wether or not she was taking birth control, you probably shouldn't be sleeping with her. You don't know what other secrets could be in store for you. All it takes is one time with the wrong person to get something a heck of a lot more stressful than a baby.

Again, Chris, I am not judging you - I am telling you, from experience, to be careful. Let this be a wake-up call for you.

Best wishes and I sincerely wish you and your girlfriend the best.


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One more thought Chris, that is important since you two sound so young and can affect the health of your son or daughter. I do not know if she has access to health care, but make sure that if not, she is taking pre-natal vitamins, so that the baby is getting what it needs to be healthy.


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RE: Young parents only please

Troll?

Here is a link that might be useful: Chris's Other Post


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