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Agony Auncle: How do I tell my girlfriend about my secret daughter?

4 mins read

Question: How should I break it to my girlfriend of three years that I have a daughter in Germany I’ve only met twice and never talked about?

Some background: Basically I was travelling/working in Germany during a gap year between high school and uni. Met a girl and we had this causal thing for a couple of months. Long story short she got pregnant wanted to have the kid, but her family (ultra conservative and religiously Christian) didn’t want me involved for being Scottish and Catholic.

She followed her family’s wishes and I have had little contact with her and the kid since she was born and have briefly met her twice when I went back to Germany for a little bit. My ex is now engaged to a guy and basically going to formally adopt our daughter. It kind of hurts that I never had the chance to truly know her, but I have really little feelings for our daughter due to never having her in my life.

Answer: You were put in a tricky situation due to your ex’s strict parents. This must have been particularly tough to deal with at such a young age. Your daughter is not a part of your life (through no fault of your own). Now that your ex is engaged, you no longer have to worry about your daughter lacking a father figure.

However, it’s clear that this is something that is weighing on you. I believe honesty is the best policy here. Tell your girlfriend everything so she can get the full picture and the best chance to understand your situation. Always choose to talk in person rather than over text when it comes to serious topics like this – it’s easy to misunderstand or blow things out of proportion when messaging. Also, make sure that you are both in the right headspace to discuss it and that you have her full attention.

There is a chance that having a child is a deal-breaker for your girlfriend, or that she disagrees with the way you’ve handled the situation with your daughter. But wouldn’t you rather tell her yourself now, rather than her finding out about it behind your back years down the line? Whatever her reaction is, be patient. This will be a lot for her to take in, so be open to any questions she may have. If it comes down to it and you do break up over this, don’t beat yourself up over it. You deserve someone who accepts and understands every part of you, including your past.

Best of luck with your relationship and I hope you can spend more time with your daughter in the future if you wish to pursue that.

– Agony Auncle.

Disclaimer: I am not a professional, just a student giving out advice for fun. I don’t claim any responsibility for the outcomes of the situations submitted to me.

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Feature image credit: Ciara Tait.

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Film, media and journalism student. I like writing about my inability to eat gluten.

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