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Single Parenting/divorce with unborn baby?


Dear Mary

I am a 34 y old male. 12 years ago I married for the first time, got divorced after 5 years with a little girl who is now 8. My first wife was and still is a manipulative person who used my daughter against me many times to get at me, even though it was she who wanted a divorce to be with her ex-boyfriend (which proved to be a false hope anyway).

I was single for 4 years, then I married again, this time to a girl suggested by my family (my first choice was against their wish). She is 31, engaged to be married once, and has a history of problems within her family which I did not know about at the time, namely her father who was a dominating and irresponsible person in her life. Her fiance turned out to be no better, leaving her stranded for four years before finally calling the marriage off.

As it has turned out, apparently she married me because her father and family kind of forced her to and she accepted also due to my insistence. I have to say I fell in love with her very soon and was very reluctant to let go of her, she seemed such a decent and kind soul. Anyway my ex-wife proved to be a problem in this marriage, taunting her and planning schemes through my daughter to irritate her at every turn. Unfortunately my family augmented this problem by stupidily trying to dominate her by saying my ex-wife was better than her and focusing a lot on my daughter.

So in spite of all the support I did offer her, she has been asking for a divorce for a long time. At first I resisted but when I saw her anxieties were slowly eating her from inside, I agreed. Problem was I could not afford to give her sufficient financial support after the divorce so it was delayed several times and every time I thought she had refrained and come to her senses but I was wrong. In the middle of all this crisis she got pregnant. Now she insists that I let her keep the child but let her go at the same time, so that she could give birth and raise the child alone without him/her ever knowing about the father. I am worried about this child's future in this way, I would prefer an abortion and divorce but I am afraid of the terrible emotional strain and scar this act would have on her, as she loves to have a child (even to the point of wanting to be a single parent in a strange city with no suitable means of income). I dont know what to do. Is an abortion is the way to go? Or should I let her go with the child as she wishes? Please help me as I am at my wits' end...


Hello Mehdi,

Thank you for the email. Apologies for taking so long to answer your message.

The long and short of it, you cannot force her to undergo an abortion! If she does decide to have the baby, you should exercise your rights as the father to see your child and be a part of its life.

She cannot shut you out ... use the law and make it legal. I am unsure how the law applies in terms of where you are geographically.

I hope this helps and I wish you luck in your dealings.

Don't hesitate to talk to me if you have any questions.


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Mary van Ede


Anything related to single parenting - of boys and girls also from different fathers. The complications and challenges of dating as a single parent. The challenges of a half-sibling and single parenting.


I have two sons from one dad - they are now young adults. I dated a man and we had a child. We have since separated over 5 years ago. I have done a lot of reading and internet research on all the challenges related to single parenting and dating as a single parent.

Matric Business Administration.

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