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General Dating Questions/Girlfriend with newborn



In the past years you've helped me tremendously with my relationships that have come and gone, as well as your book. Currently I am in a heartbreaking situation that involves a newborn and my girlfriend.

My girlfriend and I had our little daughter just over a month ago, and have been struggling very badly with serious fighting and leaving both of us depressed and seemingly wanting out.. Eventually, she told me to leave and she left as well to stay with her father for a week, which is about 2 hours away. Her father is a great guy and he and I have always had a great relationship. I also have been staying someplace else.

Yesterday, she came home with my little girl and I was able to come over, and see the both of them. Everything was very civil and I was so very happy to see my little girl, and also to see my girlfriend. However, there was a distinct wall she was putting up, she had told me previously that she did not want to discuss our relationship that day, so I did not bring it up. But it was like a giant elephant in the room. Honestly, it hurts to be around her and feel that lack of emotion from her. It feels like shes got me blocked out emotionally. I am certain that she is hiding it, but she has asked me to continue to stay at the place that I am staying right now. But for me, this can only be temporary.. Even though I can come over and see my little girl, it tears my heart out when I have to leave.

All this leaves me wondering, where to do I go from here? Do I move my things out, get my own place, and let the relationship go? Its very difficult to feel like I am in limbo. When I came to our house, all our pictures together were still up, and even on Facebook we are still in a relationship, and all our special pictures together (maturnity photos and whatnot) are still there. I am just very confused as how I play this. I obviously do not want our family to split up. She has agreed to see our couples therapist in a week, which is promising.

I know that if there is anyone that can give me solid advice on how I handle this with her, it will be you..

Do I continue to give her space? And let her slowly come back to me? Or do I plan on moving out completely, and addressing custody right and all of that... This is very tough.

Any advice is very greatly appreciated.

ANSWER: Hello Thomas!

I'm sorry to hear you're going through all of this.

Let's first be clear: it's YOU who is in "limbo" - not her. From her actions, she appears to have made her choice and it doesn't involve you. Understanding that may not feel very good but it gives you some clear direction as to your next steps, based on what you want.

Let's also be clear about this: ultimately, this isn't about you or your girlfriend or the drama between you. It's about your daughter and what's best for her. You may be hurting and it can be difficult to keep focus but then, that's why you've come to me, right?

We should be absolutely clear on this fact as well: when it comes to custody, you have absolutely NO "rights" whatsoever. You can't (and won't) get custody - primary or secondary - unless you could prove that she is absolutely unfit as a parent and frankly, even then, you'd be somewhere around the last choice as seen by any Florida court. That's the reality and you need to let that sink in.

Now, if you were married to her, that would be a slightly (but not much!) different situation. For the purposes of this response, let's just take custody off the table. It's extremely unlikely and would cost you many thousands of dollars just to prove that to yourself.

I'm glad she's agreed to go to counseling, but I have the feeling that she's doing it only to prove that things are over - not to reconcile.

So, that's the foundation you have to work from. Much of it may seem bleak but at least you have the facts. The next step is to decide what you want - exclusive of the people involved.

In other words, consider this: if you weren't a daddy and this girl wasn't in the picture, what would your "perfect life" look like? Would you have children? Would you be married? Would you be living with your girlfriend, etc.? All of these questions will help you to give a clearer picture of what you really want. That should drive your next step.

If (according to the previous consideration) you'd not be in a committed relationship you'd have difference choices to make than if you would be. If being in that relationship and having a family together are your goals then this relationship is definitely worth fighting for. If not, it's best to clean things up easily and quickly and remain as close as possible to your daughter. There are many considerations with either of these choices.

Based on being absolutely clear on your own choice of direction I can give you some other general guidance but frankly, this is something we should cover in a personal session as there are just too many individual issues to consider here in writing.

Again, be aware that this is about the best situation for your daughter - even if that isn't the best thing for you or your girlfriend. Also, you have absolutely no parental rights beyond what your girlfriend gives you. If you aren't in the picture as the boyfriend, she's eventually going to meet someone else who she'll want your daughter to think of as "daddy".

Best regards...

Dr. Dennis W. Neder
CEO/Executive Producer
BAM! Productions
Remington Publications
Producers: "BAM! TV" and “Love and Sex”
Publishers: "Being a Man in a Woman's World I, II & III”

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I believe sincerely that this relationship is worth fighting for. And I do believe that it would be the best outcome for our daughter if we could work things out through couseling, which she has said she would like to do (go to counseling). I would at least like that opportunity.

How could we set up a personal session?

Thank you,  


Hello again Thomas!

Actually, I think that's your best choice but; for obvious reasons, I can't make it for you - you have to make it.

To set up a personal coaching session, go here:

From there I recommend you get 1 or 2 hours (we can break that up into multiple sessions). The goal of which will be to explore your options and get you ready for counseling so that you get the maximum benefit from it.

Best regards...

Dr. Dennis W. Neder
CEO/Executive Producer
BAM! Productions
Remington Publications
Producers: "BAM! TV" and “Love and Sex”
Publishers: "Being a Man in a Woman's World I, II & III”

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Dr. Dennis W. Neder


I'm able to answer any sort of question related to the approach, meeting people, dating, sex, relationships, break-ups, non-legal marriage and divorce questions, and anything in between. I've helped over 30,000 people with their individual issues. IMPORTANT: Please, PLEASE don't ask me, "what was he thinking..." or "why did he say..." types of questions! I DO NOT READ MINDS! There are 1,001 reasons why someone does what they do, says what they say or thinks what they think. If you *REALLY* want to know what they were thinking, saying or why they were acting that way - go ask them! Be sure to check out my FAQ's on my website at: You can email me directly at:


I am the author of the books "Being a Man in a Woman`s World I & II" and "1001 Places and Techniques to Meet Great Women" and 11 others. I`ve spent the last 20 years studying the art and science of every aspect of relationships, and have answered over 30,000 letters from readers all over the world. My main focus is men`s relationships with women, but I also have many female readers and answer questions for them regularly as well.

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