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To My Single Moms: Dealing With BDD. Why Is It So Hard?

If there is one hallmark of the single mom experience, it is usually baby daddy drama (BDD). I know they like to put it off on us, but our children’s father give us mad drama too! Even if you have “wasband woes,” like me, it can be downright taxing. When mine acts up he is affectionately downgraded to  “the sperm donor” status.

Either way, for the sake of our children we deal with a lot of well, …crap. My girlfriend and I often have this debate about dealing with the BD. She gets caught up in all of these character issues—how he is sometimes late, how he lies, yadda, yadda, yadda as reasons why he shouldn’t see his child. Those are really HER issues with him and have little to do with their daughter. She’s three, for crying out loud—As long as Daddy shows up, plays a few games and gets her a happy meal every now and then—she is good!  The little girl comes home happy from her visit, even if her father lied about why he was 10 minutes late!

She also gets caught up in how he does everything “wrong”—this is code language for, ‘he doesn’t do it my way’ or ‘he doesn’t do it the way I told him to do it.’ I know this because I used to speak this language fluently. But again, this has nothing to do with her child. Outside of any health and safety issues, I’ve tried to let go of my control issues. 

Men do things differently, ladies. And by differently I mean, not as good as us. In fact, according to the latest Census data, the number of men out there (even happily married, engaged fathers living with their children) who do things exactly as moms do it, is a whopping THREE, maybe FOUR.   

Case in point: My wasband, who is British, was charged with regular dinner duty while I was writing my first book.  The things he made, including pizza with baked beans on the side, would hardly constitute dinner by any stretch of the imagination. It used to drive me up the wall. But the kids ate it.  And nobody got sick.

The way I see it, it is not up to me to dictate what constitutes dinner—heck, I’ve made my own creative definitions a few times myself.  And it’s not up to me to create roadblocks in their relationship with their father either. First of all, my kids are very smart—they will (and already have) started seeing their father’s flaws. They sure as heck know mine. It is his job to craft his own relationship, good, bad or indifferent and clean up the messes he creates.  Sometimes that includes disappointment—which is just real life! It is my job to just let it happen.  

Sometimes I slip up too, and end up in angry black woman mode. But I try to catch myself. Sometimes I feel angry that he gets to be the fun weekend Dad while I’m the overworked, exhausted mom trying to hold it down all week.

Why is it so hard to separate our emotions and let go of our control issues when it comes to dealing with the BD?

Comments
One Response to “To My Single Moms: Dealing With BDD. Why Is It So Hard?”
  1. April Chapman says:

    I think it is difficult for many women to give up their control issues when it comes to the “Baby Daddy” because many are still struggling with their own hurt/bitterness.resentment regarding the outcome of the relationship they had with the “Baby Daddy.” Many women feel that since they couldn’t control him staying or “doing right” then at least I can control what he does when it comes to the kids. It makes her feel like she still has the upper hand in something. Many women can’t deal with or understand the fact that they have children with a man, but for whatever reason, they do not have the man. The control issue is a way to punish the man in many instances. But like Kimberly said, those issues should have nothing to do with the relationship the father has with the kids. My father was down right awful to my mother. He failed to provide for me financially after the divorce and his presence in my life was scarce, by mother allowed me to form my own opinions about my father’s character. She didn’t bash him or talk negatively about him. When he didn’t show up, I knew it wasn’t her fault and eventually I understood that it was him. So let the BD do what he does in his own way. The bottom line is kids need a dad and women need to acknowledge this.

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