I'm pregnant by best friend's dad; JOAN'S SOLUTION.
Q I'VE been having a fling with my best friend's father.
It started as a laugh when he offered to help me decorate my new flat and we both agreed it wasn't serious. But now I'm pregnant and I don't know what to do.
He isn't married or in a relationship, but he is nearly 50. I don't know how he'll take it, but I know my friend will hate it and me as well. She's never approved of me seeing her dad, although I told her it wasn't sexual and we just enjoyed each other's company.
In fact, we've only had sex a couple of times so I can hardly believe what's happened. I don't love him and I don't think he loves me either. I don't want an abortion, but the thought of being a single mum is also frightening, so what do I do?
A RIGHT. You already know three things. You are pregnant. You want to keep the baby. You don't want to marry his or her father.
So you start by telling your lover all of the above. While I'm not saying the relationship, if you can call it that, is exactly ideal far less wise, at least there are no complications such as a wife to worry about or a marriage to be destroyed by this news.
That doesn't mean it won't come as a shock to your lover and not necessarily a welcome one. I've no more idea than you have about how he'll take the news, but it's time to find out. You never know, he may be thrilled or even quite proud about this obvious proof of his virility.
Nor should you feel you have to apologise for what's happened. You didn't plan it. Besides, if your sugar daddy didn't want to risk a pregnancy he is certainly old enough to know how to prevent one.
I agree with you that marriage isn't on. As you admit, this wasn't some grand passionate affair - just something you did while waiting for the paint to dry.
But it is still his child and you and the baby are both entitled to his support, during and after the pregnancy.
Hopefully, he will be more than happy to provide it and to be able to play a significant part in raising his child.
Kids on the whole do better with two parents, even when those parents are neither a co-habiting nor married couple.
I know he's a lot older than you are, but 50 these days is hardly decrepit.
In fact, there are many dads - I give you our Prime Minister - of his age who are doting fathers, well able to do their fair share of the childcare.
If, however, he seems reluctant to accept the pregnancy, neither should you allow him to escape his responsibilities, either emotional or financial towards his child.
The decision on whether to go ahead and have the baby is yours and yours alone. He has no right to persuade you to have a termination. It works the other way as well.
Should you decide to have an abortion, again, it would be down to you.
But it seems pretty clear to me that while you aren't exactly pleased about the baby, you do want to have him or her.
So yes, the thought of being a single mum is scary, but you will not necessarily be alone. Apart from the father, there will be your own family.
They, too, might be shocked, not so much by the pregnancy itself - not when there are as many kids born out of marriage these days as within it - but by who the dad is.
But like most families, they'll rally round and help. I doubt they'll reject you or the babe. That brings me to your friend, your lover's daughter. There's no point in pretending it won't be difficult for her.
She's already made it clear she doesn't like you seeing her father. Father/daughter relationships are often pretty fraught, as well as complicated and you've made hers with her father doubly so.
You've forced her to accept he's not just good old dad, but a person with his own needs and desires.
So she's not going to like it. There will probably be some jealousy as well. Just as a toddler sometimes finds it hard to accept a new baby brother or sister, she too might resent this unexpected addition.
But for all that she/he will be her wee half sibling and, at the end of the day, what you and her father do together, isn't really her business. So you take a deep breath and tell him he's the daddy. Again.