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DrJackiePhD, Doctor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 363
Experience:  I have been doing research in relational/interpersonal communication since 1998. My Ph.D. is in interpersonal communication.
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How to approach tell a child your not his dad

Resolved Question:

How to tell a child your not his

biological father, his mother and I are seperted over a year, after a 10 yr relationship, I have 2 younger girls with the same girl how is it going to affect them?

Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  adamd-mod replied 3 years ago.

Hello there,

I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.

I wonder whether you're ok with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.

Please note, I am just a moderator for this category, I can only try and find experts to help, I can't answer the question itself.

Thank you!

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I can wait

Expert:  adamd-mod replied 3 years ago.


We will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.

Thank you for your patience,


Expert:  DrJackiePhD replied 3 years ago.

I'm Dr. Jackie, a relationship/interpersonal communication expert. I would like to try to help.

First, I'm sure you have thought about this over an extended period of time. And no matter how you decide to do it, it won't be easy. However, you will be relieved once you tell him. The most important thing to repeat throughout the entire conversation is that you love him unconditionally and you love him the same as the other two children--the two girls.

Second, can I ask why you have decided now? Do you think he is old enough? I don't see an age indicated--this would help me give better recommendations because a 12-year-old child can process things differently than say a 6-year-old child.

Third, are you prepared to answer the questions about his biological father? I mean--are you and your now estranged wife ready to answer questions about why you are not his father/what happened, etc.? It will be natural for him to want to get to know his biological father (if that is even possible). If he is not a good/kind person, how will you handle all of this?


If you could answer these questions for me if you don't mind, especially his age and about his father, I can probably provide a better, clearer answer for you.

--Dr. Jackie
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Firstly the boy is 12years old and he hasnt much respect for me.


I do love him as my own, i have court order for access to the 2 girls.


I have zero communication with his mother,i communicate with his older sister who is 18 and by a differnt man again whom she doesnt know the identity.


I came into his life when he was 18mths and he has called me dad ever since! A mistake on me and his mothers part, i could be wrong but id say his biological dad wouldnt have much time for him

Expert:  DrJackiePhD replied 3 years ago.
I am sorry this is so difficult for you.

I am guessing his lack of respect is partly his age but also there must be resentment that his parents have split?

Knowing his age and his lack of respect and I'm guessing lack of seeing his much (is that true?), I'd say any way you tell him is going to be different.

Prepare yourself for the important following:

1) He will likely ask, "Why are you telling me now?" You are going to have to think about this--is it because he is old enough now and mature enough in your mind to tell him?

2) "Why didn't you tell me when I was younger?" Sometimes tweens and teens think they could have handled such information when younger. So you may have to think about how to phrase it / word it that you could not have told him when he was younger because he could not have handled it. Saying that would likely be offensive and make him angrier. So think about how you would respond.

3) "Who is my real dad?" If you are the one to tell him (in the best of all worlds, you and his mother would tell him together--he may even ask why she didn't tell him when the two of you split--again, think about how you are going to respond if he does ask that). Do you have the father's full real name? Do you have a location for the bio dad or at least a recent location? Be prepared if your son wants to try to start looking him up via social media.

Most importantly, as you already know, keep reassuring you will always be there to support him in every way you always have. And of course, be open and willing to talk about this if he wants to talk later about this.

Please let me know if this helps and if you want to chat more about this! I'm willing to help to make sure you are satisfied when you rate my help. Thanks!

--Dr. Jackie
DrJackiePhD, Doctor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 363
Experience: I have been doing research in relational/interpersonal communication since 1998. My Ph.D. is in interpersonal communication.
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