Dear B. Scott:
My live-in girlfriend is pregnant, but the baby isn’t mine. We split up about six months ago but she still lives with me because she’s in between jobs and is trying to get her life together. Everything’s fine, but since we’ve been “on a break” she hooked up with her ex-boyfriend and now she’s four months pregnant with his baby. I’m having a hard time dealing with the whole thing and I honestly don’t think it’s fair for me to basically support her and a newborn. I feel like I’m being taken advantage of and I don’t want this baby/baby mama situation in my house or in my life. But I have love for her and I can’t kick a pregnant woman out on the street! What do I do?
Dear Love Muffin,
Something must be in the water, because ‘on a break’ babies seem to be the trend this year, and hopefully you two will be able to maintain some level of friendship. It takes a good man to help take care of a woman he’s no longer romantically involved with while she tries to get it together, so I commend you for that.
I can completely understand why her pregnancy would be weighing heavily on your spirit. You’re absolutely right -- it’s not fair to you plus this is one of those situations that you never think is going to happen until it happens.
It sounds like to me that she’s become accustomed to your kindness and relies on you to help her get by. It all fine and dandy, so to speak, when it was just her, but now you’re adding another life into the equation. It’s time to re-evaluate your relationship with her.
I suggest you sit her down and get a few things straight. Ask her what her plan is, find out how she intends to raise her child and co-parent with the child’s father. Explain to her that you’re willing to help her to a certain extent, but she needs a concrete plan towards getting her own place and becoming financially stable. The best thing you can do at this point is to help her think through her new reality. Encourage her to connect with a broader support system, including her family and other friends.
At the end of the day, she’s a grown woman and this baby is her (and the baby daddy’s) responsibility -- not yours.
Above all, make sure she knows you’re coming from a place of love and not judgment. This won’t resolve itself overnight, but if you two can commit to a mutually agreeable plan, it can all work out in the long run.
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