‘We’ve just had a beautiful baby girl – but I’m desperate to dump my girlfriend’

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couple

Dear Coleen,

I’m a man in my early 30s and my long-term girlfriend and I recently became parents. I love our daughter beyond words, but I’ve realised I don’t want to be in this relationship any more.

I actually had these feelings before I found out my partner was pregnant, but the baby changed the situation and I decided to keep going, hoping I’d have a change of heart, but sadly I haven’t.

I confided in my mum about how I feel, but she didn’t react how I expected and called me selfish for thinking of leaving my girlfriend and child.

It breaks my heart that I’m in this position and wish I felt differently, but I know I don’t want to be with my girlfriend for the rest of my life.

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Nothing dramatic has happened to make me feel like this – there’s no other woman on the scene – but my feelings have changed over time and if the baby hadn’t come along, I would have ended the relationship.

What should I do? My mum has made me feel even worse about an already bad situation.

Coleen says,

I’m not sure I can make you feel better about yourself, or the ­situation. It is a bit like trying to close the stable door when the horse has already bolted.

It’s too late – the baby is here now and I think what your mum is trying to say is that if you were thinking about ending the relationship, you should have made sure you didn’t get your girlfriend pregnant.

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So, I think she’s right – that is a bit selfish. And your mum might also be worried about how a break-up will affect her relationship with her granddaughter.

All you can do now is be honest with your girlfriend and reassure her that you’ll still be there to support her and you’ll be as good a dad as you can possibly be. You can’t walk away from that responsibility now.

I don’t think it’s fair on her for you to stay in the relationship and deny her the opportunity of meeting someone who’s great for her.

Hanging around for the baby won’t change how you feel, it’ll just make both of you miserable in the long term. But you are a father now, so make sure you step up.

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