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The Story Behind New Daddy


Alice C. Bateman

I have two beautiful little boys, Matthew and Daniel, right now aged five and six. Their Daddy has had nothing to do with us since Matthew was about six months old, and Danny only barely three months in the womb. Long enough for him to know I was pregnant, but...

Although I have seven children, and people probably think all I do is you-know-what, I have never been very sexually active, and never have engaged in casual sex. I'm an all or nothing type of person, and any relationship for me has to have the potential of being 'the one.'

Matthew and Daniel's father and I had been friends for over ten years - even worked together for a couple of years in there somewhere, and I had always admired him. Early in 1995 we got romantically involved, and within sixteen days I knew I was pregnant. I was involved in writing the beginning of my novel In Her Terror at the time, and he was unemployed, and kept yelling at me to get a job - but I was pregnant.

One night he told me I had to choose between him and my older children, and sorry, but children are helpless and dependent on their Mom, and adults can fend for themselves, so I told him that of course, given the choice in no uncertain terms, I chose my children. I was left to carry the baby and give birth on my own, and I came to terms with it, after a lot of pain and pleading.

Shortly after Matthew was born, we phoned his father's older daughter, to let her know she had a baby brother. She, in turn, called their father, and I allowed him to come and visit me and Matthew and my girls in our new home in Hamilton. I welcomed him, because I still loved him, and we had this brand new person we had made between us, my beautiful little Matthew.

He refused to marry, which I couldn't understand, but being the nineties where things are a little more relaxed, I went along with him, and he came to visit us every few weeks for about six months. Before I could agree with my doctor about what birth control I should be using, I became pregnant with Danny.

One Sunday morning, after a nice weekend together, he had an argument with Krystal, then ten years old, and stormed out of the house, never to be heard from again. I subsequently found out that the name I knew their Dad by was one of about nine or ten aliases he'd used since being in Canada - he is a New Englander - and that he was in some kind of trouble with the American authorities. My putting his real name and his alias and address into the government computers for the Income Protection people {for child support, which has never come, of course}, caused the American 'suits' to get hot on his tail.

I also found out he wouldn't get married because he couldn't, because he'd been married and never divorced in the States...

I don't know what he did to have the authorities after him, and even though it is very sad sometimes that the little boys don't have their Daddy, I try to devote enough of myself to them that they don't feel the lack very often. However, the day I was taking Matthew to register and meet his teacher for Junior Kindergarten, I started crying because he doesn't have a Daddy to share this special time with. He took a picture of me and his Dad, with him as a baby on my lap, to show his new teacher. He handles it very well now, although when he was younger he would get very angry. It's hard to know what to tell him; I just have to tell him the truth.

I did phone their Dad one Christmastime, when he still lived in the same place, after Daniel was born. I told him that I had all his children under one roof, because his daughter was visiting us, and he might want to say something to them. He hung up.

With his attitudes and his past, which he lied about to me over and over, we are better off without him, but "Where can I buy a New Daddy?"

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