Thursday, October 1, 2009

Apples Ain't Oranges,
and I Might Be A Grandmother

Men, what emotions do you think you'd feel and do when a girlfriend you really love gets pregnant, and you want to keep it but she doesn't? She already has one baby. She tells you she's going to abort your baby and return to her ex, who happens to be the father of her first baby that you've come love like your own.

Then later, you learn from her myspace page at a friend's house - since you two are no longer friends on that site - that she had a second baby... and give or take a month, it seems to be right around the time yours was due.

However, unlike her first child, there are no pics of it.


Yeah. I might be a grandmother.

Or might not. In 2007, my son's ex, Stephanie, was digging on my son Xavier until her baby's father got out of jail. All three of them were 19 and clueless about good adult decision-making in general. I try not to judge them harshly, because I was also pretty stupid at that age, and as I wrote about that situation in this compelling article, I hate the number 19.

My best guess is that she wished upon a star this unborn baby would be fathered by Boyfriend #1. The short story is she still had feelings for him, along with a child, which was a major factor in her wanting to try it again. The mystery question later became was she juggling both guys before she got pregnant, or after she said told Xavier he had gotten her pregnant?

Or a worse scenario: The pill she took to induce the abortion didn't work, and she changed her mind rather than go through with it again. That would be tragic, because if so, that kid, regardless of the father, is probably physically messed up, which could be one explanation why it's pic isn't on her myspace page.

The possibility of the missing baby pics on her myspace could be she remembers how enraged my son became when she effed over dumped him, and wants no part of him in her life.

I learned this in the summer, when I was up to my neck in problems from my now ex-landlord and at the tail end of a mid-life crisis.

I asked him then, "Whatcha gonna do?"



"Nothing. After what I went through, she'll just make me crazy again."

Given that the whole family was already bugging out from wondering where we'd be living soon, I dropped it.

Last week he mentioned it again. The house we live in now was made for fun. Cozy patio and nice backyard, and perfect for entertaining and cookouts. He's had a new girlfriend over a month and is happy more days than not. On one of those not days, he brought it up again.

"I've always wanted to be a father," he said quietly. "I wonder if that baby is mine."

I instantly knew what he was talking about, then thought of how he got laid off from his job last week, and then how when you've got a lot extra free time, you have more time to think about the things that matter.

"Are you going to try to find out?", I asked.

With a somewhat sad, yet wise finality in his voice, he said, "She knows how to find me."

He also knows he has no money to support it if it his child. That must hurt. Since he's not stupid and needs his pride to function well, I didn't mention it.

I think of how differently men and women talk about the more painful and tough issues, at least many of the ones I've known and worked with in my life. Most young women, including myself before I learned better, think that if they were the guy in that situation, they'd be openly dissecting that ish from every angle, the conversation would go on for hours, and probably with several people. Tears, tissue, and followup talks, are a given.

But men ain't women.


10/02/2009 Addendum: I kept this post short, but to understand it better, please read Hard Rocks Love 6: Abortion Blues. It's one of my best and most compelling articles. It tells how abortion touched my family over three generations, including Xavier. You'll find his story in Chapters 1-9, and 25-28 plus the Epilogue.


  1. Quick note to readers: This was on my mind this afternoon. I'll continue or finish the Mid-Life Crisis series in two or three days.

  2. Relationships are hard and complex. They are also unique. Therefore, it's very difficult for me to generalize across gender about how a man or woman may feel.

    As a former counselor, I've seen it go different ways. Sometimes, men have wanted the baby and sometimes not, mostly for financial reasons. Sometimes women have wanted the baby and sometimes not, oftentimes because she wasn't ready to handle the responsibility.

  3. Mac, Thanks for dropping by. So true what you said, and that the feelings may be same in both genders, depending on the situation. I was trying to bring out, however, how males and females express or communicate their emotions, as a generality.

  4. That's tough.

    Surely, they have some mutual friend of a friend and he can find out a little about the babies health at least.

    I know that sounds crass but it is an even harder responsibility when you add handicap into the mix and young men are not the most obliging or knowledgeable about those sorts of responsibilities.

    The only problem with the "She knows where I'm at" nonchalance is the fact that his could be child, does not. What if BF #1 figures it out and wants not part of it? What then? The mother will spew hatred and animosities about your son and the child will naturally believe everything she says.

    I have a sister from my fathers first marriage, whom I have never met. Due mostly to the fact that her mother hated my father for whatever reasons and told her not to like him either. I am 34, she is 39 and he is since deceased. Sad!

  5. Hi TriState! Nice to hear from you; I gotta swing by your blog too!

    No, what you said about "when you add handicap into the mix..." doesn't sound crass in the least. The truth is the truth. Young women aren't a whole lot better in coping, but 1) having carried the child, they already have a relationship with it, and 2) short of giving the child to social services, they don't have the option to run away.

    About your perception of his nonchalance, however. Either I somehow failed to convey that he has strong feelings about the whole situation, or you proved my subtle point that "apples" and "oranges" express their feelings differently, ie, less talk does not necessarily mean less emotions.

    I love subtlety, and lately I've been experimenting with using more of it. Maybe I used too much?

    If you or anyone else wants the whole story, read Chapter 1 thru 9, then 25 thru 28 plus the epilogue of my story, Abortion Blues. It's one of my best, so a comment there would be appreciated.

  6. He shouldn't think of as the responsibility of the mother to let him know about his seed.

    The mere possibility that he might have a seed running around the world should have him running and jumping trying to figure out what's up, regardless of his job prospects. It's an awesome blessing and responsibility to be a father, and any man who fails to acknowledge his blessings or responsibilities will find problems down the road.

  7. Great post,

    I think American culture has an effect on how we behave. Many men don't want to appear vulnerable and talk about emotional issues with one another. Many men are worried about being perceived as weak and simply don't trust other men enough to be honest about their emotions. If think you about it, many black men didn't grow with a man in the home, therefore many of us probably never got positive feedback from another man when we showed vulnerability.

    American/Hip-Hop/inner city culture seems to require it's young men not to feel fear or pain. The myth that culture permeates requires them to keep everything inside, which eventually leads to someone blowing up when they can't take it anymore.

    I think men generally go to a woman they trust when they want to talk. Hence why your son spoke to you about what he was feeling.

  8. I read the previous post you referred me to and I must say that I was completely in the wrong.

    What an emotional drain it has already taken on everyone, without adding more into the mix.

    On a side note, since the girl did call you to tell you abort her bleeding and she had the child within a 2 month window, it only seems logical on an outsiders point of view that her new baby is most likely with BF #1.

    With the drama this girl creates and the cruel way she first treated him with those phone calls, all for her own amusement, I so hope he can quickly put this past him and forget she ever existed.

    With my new knowledge, I take my nonchalance statement and am more on the mind set of "Whatever may be, may be"

    I hope all ends well and he is able to move on to bigger and brighter things.

    On a side note, I do believe the Army, if he is still serious about it, will help you get your GED.

  9. TriState Saver, Thank you for reading my earlier piece on this situation.

    Yeah, it was really hard on us all. She was cruel the way she dealt with him when she ended it, and it was sooo unnecessary, not to mention unexpected, once her ex got back into the picture.

    This story is not complete, and I have a feeling he'll find out on his on initiative and not from my interference within 6 to 12 months.

    And yeah, I'd love to see him get his GED and enlist, b/c he'd be a helluva soldier, and I think the next war we have will be legit.

    Big Man, Read me n' TriSaver's comments, and better, that past post. I will say that I agree with you 100%. Truly. Meanwhile, I'm waiting to see how he'll handle it on his own, and that it's still on his mind is a good sign.

    Truth, You hit the nail on the head, all of it. Thank you.

    PS - I'll be glad when you return to blogging.

  10. I feel for your boy. I really do! Even though not having the child may be the best thing for him, your son, to his credit, has that longing to be a Father. That's good! The Eff'd up part of it is that everyone must be united on the issue of the child you mentioned, if she gets the state involved one day it could come and leave alot of damage on your sons life not to mention anyone he may be involved in. But hopefully your son will be strong and capable.

  11. Kit,

    I've been there where your son is at almost the very age. Yes, and it's tough to deal with when one longs for the days of old where a father was present. But you know what? Tell him to stop thinking about it and focus HIS life and bettering himself.

    I think he has the right idea about the whole thing - she knows where to find him. People are often hard on Black men or young Black men for situations like this, but they almost always forget that the female bears some of the responsibility.

    Xavier can only worry about what he can control, and that would be his life. Tell him not to get caught up with that silly chick and what she has or is doing.

  12. Mista Jaycee, you said, "if she gets the state involved..."

    One thing he's going for him is that I saved the emails from her and I. When she began talking about abortion, I offered to take the baby but she and Xavier would have joint custody. Can't do any better than that, so she can't ever say to Child Support that he disappeared or that she doesn't know how to reach him or me.

    Rippa, I'm so glad you shared your thoughts too. Even though I agree with Big Man saying, "The mere possibility that he might have a seed running around the world should have him running and jumping trying to figure out what's up", I also agree you, who validated my son's sadly spoken words, "she knows where to find me."

    The backstory is she deliberately pushed him to the brink of insanity the way she dumped him when she returned to her ex, and the baby may or may not be his. Dirt usually comes out in the wash, so the truth eventually will too.


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