Shortcuts: “My Boyfriend Jokes About Getting His Ex Pregnant”

It’s time again for Shortcuts. For every question, I’ll give my advice in just a few sentences, because sometimes the answer to a person’s question is so obvious and the need to hear it so great, being as clear and frank as possible is simply the best way to go.

I am about five weeks pregnant for my boyfriend of four months. He told me his ex-girlfriend is pregnant for him. Then later he told me he is only pulling my leg/ merely kidding. I am so worried and pray all the time for God to take control. I need your help because I am really confused whether or not he is truly pulling my leg or saying the truth. — Pregnant for Him

It’s fine to pray to God, but not at the exclusion of actually taking some control and responsibility of your own life. And that starts with figuring out how you want to proceed with your pregnancy, assuming the guy “you’re pregnant for” is an irresponsible tool who doesn’t take anything seriously and doesn’t plan to stick around to help you in any meaningful way. Are you prepared to raise a child on your own? If not, you better decide whether you want to terminate your pregnancy or find adoptive parents.

I have been dating this guy for a year and I haven’t met his kids or family. He met my entire family after four months. When I ask why I can’t meet them, he says it complicates things. His boys are his life and #1 priority and they will always come first, as they should. His ex is constantly putting him down and is always taking him to court for more money, when she is already getting a good chunk from him a month. He is unhappy with his job right now and unhappy that he is not making the money he made when he had is practice. He has admitted to me that he is scared of falling in love because he has been let down. He is an amazing man and father and I wouldn’t be with him this long if I didn’t think this would go somewhere. He knows I want marriage and kids and he is on the same page with that. I mentioned meeting his kids and family once before so he knows where I stand, but I don’t want to keep pressuring him. I love him and I can honestly say I have never loved someone until now. What do I do? — Getting Impatient

You’ve been together a year and you’ve only mentioned your desire to meet his family ONCE? I think you could probably mention it a few more times before you risk putting the pressure on and losing this guy, and, if not, then there probably isn’t the kind of potential here that you’re hoping for.

I have found proof that my husband of 20 years is answering personal ads from Craigslist. This is not the only time this has happened. He says nothing has ever happened physically, but I don’t believe him. I have lied to him about money issues but never once had the desire to cheat on him. I have told him I want out, but now he wants to see a marriage counselor. I wanted to the other times but he would not go. Am I wrong to say enough is enough? — Enough is Enough

You’ve invested 20 years already. What would a few more months hurt? If your husband is finally ready to go to counseling — go. If it doesn’t work out, you can leave the marriage knowing you at least gave it one last-ditch effort to save it.


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  1. yikes to LW1…your boyfriend has a heinous sense of humour!

  2. LW1: Honey, God isn’t going to save you. Take control of your own life. You need to spend the next ~8 months preparing to be a parent. That is a big deal and comes with tremendous responsibility. BTW, birth control. Use it in the future.

    LW2: Tell him that you want to meet his family. Expressing your desire to meet his family more than once is not pestering him, whereas nagging him once a day would be.

    LW3: WWS. Give counseling a try, but if you still want out afterward then get a divorce.

    1. Given that LW1’s writing suggests that English is not her first language, I wonder if she might be in a country where birth control is not readily accessible as it is here. There’s no distinct evidence of that, of course, but food for thought.

      1. KKZ, that’s very true. I had considered that hormonal birth control may not be available, but LW1 could use the Fertility Awareness Method. It’s pretty effective and very simple to use. I’m a big fan of it. 🙂

  3. LW1: Yes, let go and let God, but you also have to hold yourself accountable and make the best decisions for yourself. You can most definitely pray about it, and I encourage you to do so, but ultimately, you’re going to need to do things for yourself too… which I believe God wants you to do.

    1. lets_be_honest says:

      Ugh, this reminded me of a close friend from high school visiting me several years ago after I had my baby. Turned out he became a born again, and wandered around my apt. remarking about how grateful I must be to God for everything I have. It pissed me off so much. Yes, of course I’m grateful to God, but God wasn’t the one who worked full time, went to school full time, raised a baby alone…Grrr. Makes me annoyed just remembering him.

      1. I get really annoyed when people profusely thank God over and over again whenever THEY accomplish something, like winning an award. You’re being rewarded because of the work you did, not because of some divine intervention! Sheesh. (Sorry – atheist ranting.)

        I also reconnected with a friend from back in high school who I used to be really close with, but he was a year ahead of me and disappeared after he graduated. He was such a cool, funny, intelligent and likable guy. Well, found him on Facebook and started messaging him back and forth to catch us up on each other’s lives, just to find he was Born-Again. It was really disappointing to me, he was not the same guy I remembered at all and I quickly lost interest in rekindling the friendship (because, like many born-agains and evangelicals, he kept steering the relationship back to that topic and asking me about my beliefs).

      2. lets_be_honest says:

        Its really a shame. Basically, people just need to be able to find a balance between their faith and reality.

      3. I agree. I’m big on my faith, but you have to do things for yourself. I feel like some people “turn it over” to God solely because they don’t want to be responsible/hold themselves accountable which is not the way to do things.

      4. lets_be_honest says:

        Exactly. I mean, with some things that require inaction, I think its great to turn it over to God. It really helps those people that believe and have faith. For example, when a relative passes away. There’s nothing you can DO, but you can turn it over to God and believe that you will come out of it ok. I’m glad my mom has her faith for exactly that reason.

      5. Most definitely. I always try to pray because it does help me in a lot of ways. But say I’m in a bad relationship or something, I’m not going to say, “I’ve been praying to God to take control.” No, I’m going to say, “I’ve been praying, ‘Lord, please help me find the strength and courage to leave this man'” and then find a way to get out of the relationship.

      6. For me, I do thank God for the various good things in my life. Yes, I definitely work hard for things and accomplish much, and there is much that is within my control. But I believe that God provides opportunities, health, etc. There’s a lot in my life that was out of my control but has gone well, and I’m thankful for that.

      7. I recently read about a couple who are faces charges for letting two of their children die from treatable illnesses, because they prayed for God to heal the children instead of taking them to a doctor.

        Isn’t there something in the bible that says God helps those who help themselves? Sometimes, you’ve got to do more than pray!

      8. lets_be_honest says:

        I’ve heard lots of stories like that, and it makes me sick to my stomach. I’m all for praying, and believing in God, but I’m also all for being a reasonable human being.

      9. That is beyond ridiculous I mean yeah, pray, but take your kid the freaking doctor!!!

  4. LW3: If you’re truly over your marriage and want out, then yes, it’s totally fine to say enough is enough. I don’t see the point of wasting precious time – the 20 years you’ve invested are in the past, so-called “sunk costs”, and it’s only the future that matters. If you still have some hope for your marriage, on the other hand, then do try counseling.

  5. A whole lotta WWS.

    Also, what does it mean to be preganant “for” someone? Is this a common phrase that I’ve just never heard of? Seemed odd to me.

    1. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

      I think it’s a misspelling/mistyping. I’ve never heard of that expression.

      Unless she is from England or something like that “fall pregnant” letter a while back.

    2. I’ve heard it before. It’s just like saying pregnant by someone.
      There sure are a lot of ways of saying you’re pregnant though. I’d say it would make for a drinking game but the mommy and me groups might not approve.

      1. Ahh, ok. Because of the reference to God, I wondered if maybe it was a religious thing. Thanks! 🙂

      2. Sue Jones says:

        Right, like the Duggar’s. Where women are born to breed and men are born to lead….

      3. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        I found a bunch of news articles from Nigeria using the phrase “pregnant for” so it looks like thats a common saying there.

      4. Lemongrass says:

        This mommy approves.

    3. I think it’s a literal translation from another language – so for example we say pregnant by x, if you literally translate their saying though it becomes pregnant for x. but at the end of the day it means the same thing

      1. Yeah, “for” and “by” are both prepositions, so I can see them being transposed if the speaker originally spoke a language other than English. (Like, I remember learning French in college & memorizing parts of speech before the word meanings, so I can see that happening here as well)

    4. Temperance says:

      I’ve heard it before, but usually like “I am giving this man the awesome gift of carrying a baby”. It’s odd phrasing and doesn’t usually speak well of the person saying it.

  6. LW 1, stop praying that God will take control and take control yourself.

  7. I’m going to be cynical & say that LW1’s boyfriend ISN’T “joking”, but instead, testing the waters & desensitizing the LW to the idea of his ex also being pregnant “for” him.

    So LW, please find out if this is actually the truth. And if it’s not yet, I bet it will be soon. Also, why are you pregnant when you’ve only been dating for 4 months?

    1. This is exactly what I thought. He told her, she reacted badly, so he decided he was joking and is now trying to figure out how to lie about it going forward. I’d place money on the not joking.

  8. LW1- its impossible to know if you boyfriend was just joking or being serious and then covering it up with a joke. absolutely impossible for us with your tiny paragraph, and probably a little impossible for you too, up until something actually happens… so, what do you do? first, stop thinking that god will “take control” of your life- thats not how it works, and that is a very unfortunate think to be teaching people. have you heard the story of the drowning man who prays to god to be saved? you need to be proactive about your own life. doing nothing and praying to god will not help you, i promise you, no matter how religious and devoted you are. it just wont. then, i would take a good hard evaluation of your relationship. is your boyfriend otherwise a good partner? is he preparing for the baby? excited about the baby? or, on the flip side, is he shady? does he give excuses about why he is a shitty partner? ect. you need to figure it out. the only reason i say that he honestly could just be joking is that my boyfriend, if i ever got pregnant, would probably make similar jokes… but thats just his humor. he jokes like that. its not my favorite thing ever, but thats him, so i accept it. ultimately, you need to have some accountability and responsibility in your own life, regardless of your boyfriend and his other potential children. you are going to be a parent, you need to figure this out pretty quickly…

    LW2, this is the answer to every woman who has your problem- coming to jesus meeting time. he needs to understand the severity of all this- *especially!* if you are talking marriage and kids. honestly, you shouldnt even be at that point yet if you havent met his own children yet. he cant keep doing this double life thing- having his family and children in one life, and then building a marriage and kids with you too. and, also, what a cowardly response- “it complicates things”. that might have been the dealbreaker for me, right there. that is a d-bag move for sure.

    LW3, if “enough” has happened for you, then get out. everyone has a bullshit meter, and if your has been filled, just accept it. there is no shame in it… it seems like too little too late here…

    1. Agree with what you said about LW2 and the “it complicates things”. What would it complicate for this guy? I would think it would make things easier because that way when he gets the kids YOU can also be there instead of juggling two different people because they must never meet! It is a douche-y thing to say like Katie said because it’s the kind of thing that just shuts down the question. So ask again and ask him how it complicates his life.

    2. Aren’t we always telling LWs to use caution in introducing their kids to new partners and warning them that it DOES complicate things? Ref. yesterday’s letter with the 14-year-old still feeling some attachment to her father’s ex. I’d say “It complicates things” is not a problematic or cowardly answer but an honest one. Sure, he could be more specific. But as the father of his kids, he does sort of have the right to choose the timetable for meeting a new partner. That he hasn’t done so after a year is a little question-worthy but not automatically a bad sign.

      1. oh no i agree, and i actually think he is doing the right things in waiting, but the “it complicates things” is a cop out as its being used here. there is no discussion of what will get complicated, how it can be worked around, potential timelines, ect, ect, ect, all the while he is discussing marrying and having babies with her!

        so, its not that i disagree with what he is doing, i disagree with the way he is going about it all.

      2. lets_be_honest says:

        I’m all for using caution. A year though? When they’ve already discussed wanting marriage and children someday? That’s extreme.

      3. I’m not really qualified to speak to the timeline based on my own life experience. My general thought is that no one outside the relationship can really decide how long is too long.

        He did give some other reasons than “it complicates things” that are worth examining – afraid to fall in love again, unhappy about finances, a divorce that doesn’t seem completely settled. He seems cautious – which, to me, doesn’t say “not serious” but it could explain why he’s dragging his heels or showing uncertainty over this issue.

      4. but then why is marriage and babies on the table for discussion? how can they be “on the same page” about that but he is still working through these issues?

        maybe like someone else said, he just isnt *as* serious as she is… but whatever the case is, they need to get on the same page. they arent even in the same book right now.

  9. LW3: I believe lieing about money is JUST as bad as cheating (which may or may not have happened). You are on equal footing. why wouldn’t you try to work out the sins on both of your sides?

  10. LW 1: if you are excited and financially prepared to be a single parent, by all means have this baby. If not, don’t. Or plan for an adoption.

    LW 2: how is it possible to date man for a year and never meet his kids? They’re presumably minors and spend a great deal of time with him. I’d say you are not in a very serious relationship. If you want to explore something more, talk to your guy and see if he’s open to making a real commitment, with an eye to a future with you.

    1. I agree about LW2 not being in a very serious relationship. It’s one thing to put the kids first & want to avoid complicating things, BUT he isn’t giving her any timeline at all…WHILE saying things like, “I’m scared to fall in love.” It seems like he’s not quite ready to get as serious as she wants to be right now.

      1. yea, thats what i dont get either- the waiting to meet his kids, which is totally fine, but then at the same time discussing marriage and their own kids- that doesnt work. its like, one or the other. you cant be taking both of those paths at once.

  11. Now I have that “Jesus Take the Wheel” song in my head after LW1. What God did was give you reason and free will. So take responsibility for your own life. Four months is not a long enough time to know someone before having a baby with them. Hell if you can’t even tell if the guy is joking or not then you don’t know him well enough to say he’s your boyfriend much less to have a baby with him. All we know about him is he doesn’t use birth control and is – at best – wildly inappropriate – or at worst someone who just randomly impregnates women and then moves on. Think about if you are ready to raise this baby alone without any support – financial or otherwise – from him. Because you won’t be able to rely on much by means of child support from a man with likely multiple children unless he is particularly wealthy. And who knows how long he will be part of your life. So can you do it all in your own? If not, think about your options. And invest in birth control in the future.

    1. Avatar photo findingtheearth says:

      –in reference to child support and multiple children- I believe you are correct and they structure amounts paid by the order in which the children are born (unless there is an extreme situation with one). So, Child A will get more $ than Child B. And this guy could be one of those wonderful ones that job hop every 3 month to avoid paying child support or purposely work at a job beneath their skill set so they don’t make a lot of money.

      1. Temperance says:

        In my experience, almost every dude with more than 2 baby moms is like this.

      1. Love!

  12. Avatar photo Addie Pray says:

    LW1, come on that’s kind of funny!
    LW2, WWS.
    LW 3, I don’t think you’re wrong to say enough is enough. I’d be really angry, creeped out, and a whole host of other emotions if my husband of 20 years was answering personal ads! But why not also go to counseling? It doesn’t mean you have to stay in the marriage. Counseling could help you know for sure you want out, to the extent you have doubts. And if you decide you definitely want to divorce, counseling could help the divorce process go smoothly.

  13. Sue Jones says:

    First of all, the atrocious use of the English language in these letters is appalling. THIS is what happens when we cut funding for education! Women get “pregnant for” men they barely know, and people have to pay so much $ “a month” etc. Really girls, aim higher, learn to write a better English sentence and your job prospects, relationship options, as well as choice in men will improve and you won’t be having these same idiotic problems. LW1, what are you, a breeding cow? Who the hell gets “pregnant for” someone after only 4 months? Seriously? Get an abortion, go back to school and educate yourself and start making better choices!

    1. LW1 is clearly ESL. I would love to see how bad my grammar is in another language.

      1. She is probably in a totally different country.

      2. Sue Jones says:

        Still, if she is living in the US and wants to improve her life prospects, she should terminate the pregnancy, ditch the insensitive dude who wants to make her his chattel, go to community college, and take ESL classes/ professional classes until she can improve her grammar and career options. Then and only then when she can fully support herself, should she even think about breeding with someone who presumably also has educated himself so that they can actually successfully raise a child together and not merely perpetuate another generation in uneducated poverty. If she is from/living in the middle east where women are treated like garbage no matter what they do, then she has my sympathies.

      3. Umm, you’re certainly filling in a lot of the blanks….

      4. The internet is everywhere. You should have lead with your last line. If you are so educated, look at the phrasing and the inflated language she is using. Those kind of translations usually come from Africa and/or Asia. Maybe some Latin countries like Argentina. Chances are she is very intelligent and marginalized. She is overwhelmed and reaching out to this community and you berate her for existing? be careful with that point of view.

      5. Oh sweet, so she isn’t allowed to communicate with anyone until she finishes her ESL classes at the local community college. How in the world is she ever going to get anythign done? I hope he doesn’t beat her as well, because how is she going to tell the police that the man she fell pregnant for is trying to kill her, they won’t even know what to do, because it is so hard to figure out what she is saying.

      6. you misspelled anything. go back to school! 🙂

      7. Darn it, I’ve been to school three times already to get that word right, and I never do!

      8. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

        Someone had a bit too much bitch in their coffee this morning….

      9. Love that phrase. Stealing it.

      10. lets_be_honest says:

        Seriously Sue, all you know for sure is that the guy made a joke (ok, that’s not for sure, but still). So because a guy possibly makes a joke once, and she is from another country presumably, she should terminate the pregnancy? And go to college? Your being way unfair and way unreasonable. Hop off the horse! You usually don’t comment this harshly.

      1. Sue Jones says:

        My grandparents were immigrants from Eastern Europe. My father and mother were both 1st generation Americans, so that makes me only 2nd generation. I am all for immigration reform so that children of immigrants, legal or not, can easily get a great education. My father earned his bachelors degree, fought in a US war and received his professional degree on the GI bill and became a very successful professional. This opened up opportunities for myself and my siblings. We are all highly educated. Without that I wonder where we would be if our only options were to find a man, and get “pregnant for” some loser we had only known a few months. I realize that now there really is no GI bill and that education is wickedly expensive. Change that, make a fantastic education available to everyone who wants it, and see how the immigrant population goes from being a drain on society to supporting a great society. We are already taking steps to do that in the state where I live. Even “illegal” immigrants, who have graduated from high school here can now get in state tuition! Fantastic plan! OK , I am stepping off of my soapbox now.

      2. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        And this is related to the LW how? You’re story is great, kudos to your parents, but you are making some SERIOUS assumptions and leaps about this LW. For all we know she mistyped or Wendy edited the letter in a wonky way. There is no need to be condecending and rude and advocate for an abortion when you really know nothing about her.

      3. Sue Jones says:

        My comments stem from the contents of her letter, that LW1 gets pregnant “for” someone she barely knows and is planning on raising a child with him. And when he shows himself to be less than trustworthy and sensitive, she “prays to God” instead of being able to make a rational decision based upon facts. I see someone not used to taking responsibility for her own actions, and perhaps that is a cultural conditioning for women in general, but bitchez, times are different now, and we have options! LW1 is at a turning point in her life where she can move forward with life improving plans, or get caught in a possible quagmire of having a baby with an irresponsible man too soon, eventual single parenthood, poverty, etc.

        Perhaps she really doesn’t understand the value of education and moving forward in her life. If you come from a background that doesn’t support that, then it is difficult to make that transition. What would you tell her? Go ahead and have the baby with this dude and it will all just work out because God is watching out for you? Really? Seriously? Like we see that happening ALL the time! (eyeroll). God (if she exists) helps those who help themselves.

      4. iseeshiny says:

        Somehow I don’t get the feeling that you went on this tirade out of a genuine wish to be helpful to the LW.

      5. “LW1 is at a turning point her life where use can move forward with life improving plans, or get caught in a possible quagmire of having a baby with an irresponsible man”. THIS is what you should have said instead of couching it in your tirade about proper education and grammar etc..

        Of course none of us think that she should stay with a guy if he is a deadbeat. But you fail to consider whether she wants to keep the baby or not or whether she believes in abortion. LW1 needs to consider whether this person is the proper partner and if not, decide what she wants to do from there. I’m with you on 4 months not being enough time (no matter who the guy) and I would very likely get an abortion, but that is my choice. Also, if this woman is in her late 30s-40s (I don’t think she is but maybe..) then it could be one of her last chances to be pregnant, who’s to say she’s wrong to take that if she wants a child.

        I want you to know that I’m with you on the deplorable treatment of women and education for women in certain countries but berating the LW about that doesn’t help anyone. I agree that there are places and cultures where women are treated like breeding cows and that is sad.

      6. haha I made a big mistake. I meant to write “where she can move forward” not “where use to move forward”. I’m so uneducated!

      7. Go Back to school! you uneducated deadbeat drain on society! 🙂

      8. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        Some one woke up on the wrong side of the bed today.

      9. lets_be_honest says:

        Making joke = Loser, untrustworthy, insensitive, irresponsible. Got it.

        Oh boy, just got to the part about how she’ll be in poverty for being a single parent. I’m going to step away slowly now.

      10. Um. So what???

        You don’t know anything about this LW. I personally didn’t think the letter sounded ESL.

      11. Temperance says:

        I didn’t think it was ESL, either. I’ve met lots of women who speak like that.

      12. If only we could all get a fantastic education and then we would all be just like Sue Jones! Get off your high horse, the LW is writing a letter to a casual internet forum not for a job prospect. I’m sure despite your fantastic education (that you only wish others could have) you make grammar mistakes, especially when you are not militantly policing your wording (unless you always militantly police, I wouldn’t put it past you).

      13. For the record, this letter is better written than applications I did get for a prospective job I was offering…from college educated people.

      14. Why do you assume she’s within US (or Canada, UK, Western Europe for that matter) borders as an immigrant? That makes no sense. Wendy has readers from all around the world, and I bet you anything that “pregnant for” is either a mis-translation, or a legitimate phrase in another country’s dialect of English.

      15. I figured it was British. They have all kinds of phrases that make me laugh.

      16. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        My googling lead my to some news sites in Africa using the phrase “Pregnant for” in their articles. So my guess is it’s a common phrase used there, probably coming from a botched English translation.

      17. We were taught in Spanish class to use “por” to mean “by”, so I wouldn’t be surprised if “I’m pregnant by my boyfriend” is “Estoy embarazada por mi novio” or something. Which could then be translated into English as “for my boyfriend.” (Disclaimer: I was always terrible at that language, so if that’s completely wrong, someone please say so.)

      18. Seriously. Judge much?

        I’m pretty sure my sis accidentally got pregnant her first semester of college, so she dropped out to raise her child. She married the father and they now have their second child. The sis works at a dr’s office and the BIL is an electrician or something. Their oldest daughter, who is now in second grade, is the youngest in her class, gets straight A’s, is one of the best readers in her class and is kind and fair. In fact, she was chosen to read the first reading in church for her First Communion ceremony. There were words in that reading I couldn’t even pronounce. I’m pretty sure she’s on the road to do something great. My sis doesn’t have a higher degree other than high school, but she is doing well and certainly wants her children to do better.

        People work with what they have. I don’t think it’s fair to negatively judge everyone for it.

      19. lets_be_honest says:

        Thank you for saying all that.

      20. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

        Accidental pregnancies can have wonderful outcomes: My husband’s cousin got pregnant with her boyfriend of a couple months at age 16. They had another 2 years later. Those kids are now 18 and 20, they are still together and have had a wonderful life (so far, obviously they are still young!) While it wasn’t the life that they planned on it and there were hardships that wouldn’t have occurred if she didn’t get pregnant so young it isn’t always a bad thing. I know they wouldn’t take it back if they could.

      21. You’re welcome.

        You have no idea how proud I am of my sis and nieces. They didn’t do the typical right way to do things now a days, but they’re all thriving. And my nieces are both super smart. It’s crazy how smart they are and my sis is happy.

        It really bothers me that they might be looked down upon because my sister had her children young, didn’t graduate college, and isn’t living the typical liberal way of living. I say fuck you to anyone who judges them. You have no idea.

    2. In the LW’s defense, I think that way of phrasing it is accepted in other countries/cultures.

      1. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        I did some googling and it appears that it’s common to say “pregnant for him” in some African countries (Nigeria for one).

      2. I was in Kenya a year and a half ago and they used those kind of terms. Also the inflated “God” rhetoric.

      3. Sue Jones says:

        If LW1 is in Africa I can excuse the poor grammar because many girls stop attending school once menarche hits because they do not have adequate sanitary supplies or running water. They start missing school when they have their period and end up dropping out altogether. But the gist of my advice still stands. Don’t have this baby with this man, and try to further your education if at all possible. Time to start a non-profit NGO to further education for African girls, I suppose! Or donate more $$ to the Heifer foundation!

      4. but she probably has great grammar in swahili. she isn’t trying to get a telemarketing job she is looking for direction.

      5. What’s going on here? Why do you keep doubling down on your ridiculous statements? Did someone ask you to excuse her? YOU DON’T KNOW WHERE SHE IS FROM. KEEP YOUR ETHNOCENTRICITY AND JUDGEMENTS TO YOURSELF. “Pregnant for” might not be typically spoken where you live but that is more of a reflection of your worldliness than anything else. For someone advocating education you’ve shown a special brand of ignorance here yourself.

      6. All the Africans I know have Masters Degrees or PHDs.

      7. Sue Jones says:

        You can bet the ones with Masters or PhD’s aren’t getting “pregnant for” anybody!

      8. lets_be_honest says:

        Its a fucking figure of speech. You sound like an asshole and an idiot.

      9. If you think that only the things in the world that you personally are familiar with are the only things valid… then there is something seriously wrong with you… and you might want to further your own education a little yourself.

      10. lets_be_honest says:

        p.s. I know plenty of women who has graduate degrees and got pregnant accidentally and/or have made dumb decisions to keep a guy around.

      11. lets_be_honest says:

        lol, women who has

      12. My mom is from Mexico (born and raised). She got her college degree in Mexico City before going on to get her PhD in biochemistry in Europe. English is her second language, and yes, it’s obvious. She gets nuances like prepositions confused even after her PhD studies (taught in English) and 30+ years in this country. Your logic that grammar mistakes MUST mean someone is uneducated or unintelligent is ignorant.

      13. Eagle Eye says:

        My bf’s mother is the same way, English is her 3rd language, even after getting multiple degrees in this country (including an engineering phd) and generally having lived here for 40 odd years, she still makes silly mistakes, especially in her emails.

      14. oh yea, good point copa- my boss is the same way. sometimes he forgets words, or needs me to explain idioms and stuff, or he will say something in spanish, translate it directly, and then explain why it makes sense in mexico… and he’s lived here for 25 years!

        its really interesting to me, just like with the brain and how it processes language and everything. people who are bilingual are objectively smarter, they have more neurological pathways to get to different places, so its interesting to see it in action, and then the “issues” it can cause

      15. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        Some of the dumbest people I know are Phd candidates and some of the smartest I know barley have high school diploma’s.

    3. Um if I moved to Spain/France/Germany/China/wherever my grammar would be atrocious. I have a wonderful education that most people in Canada and the States don’t get. Also I say “a month” sometimes, I can’t figure out “who v whom” every time and so many people out there always make the mistake of “him and I vs. him and me”.

      She is not saying she is pregnant FOR him, she is saying she is pregnant BY him. Give her a break. As if you’ve never made a grammar mistake in your adult life before, let alone in a language you don’t speak natively (I’m assuming LW is not originally from US/Canada).

      1. Sue Jones says:

        It is one thing to say a phrase wrong in casual language. Another thing entirely to WRITE a phrase wrong, assuming that you have time to go over it and edit it.

      2. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        Seriously Sue, google it. It’s a commonly used phrasing in Africa. Give the poor girl a break.

      3. iseeshiny says:

        Is it so hard to say, yeah, maybe I was a little harsh?

      4. Haha. I think it’s safe to say you’ve never learned a foreign language well enough to communicate with native speakers. Writing does tend to be easier, but mastery of another language is very difficult. Guess your wonderful education was a little lacking…

      5. Maybe she doesn’t want to edit the damn thing because it’s just a casual internet forum where you don’t expect grammar nazis to hang out!

      6. 6napkinburger says:

        I agree with you in general about editing being important and I fully agree that precision of language is very important (though sometimes I feel like I’m in the Giver). And I’ll even agree that I rolled my eyes/sighed when reading the LW1’s letter, especially about getting pregnant FOR someone. But letters to wendy and the responses are really more like speaking than writing, and they should be judged according to speech norms rather than writing norms. Sure “a month” isn’t proper written syntax, but it is more than acceptable according to speaking norms, even among the highly educated.

      7. I am assuming that she isn’t here currently. She could be anywhere, ya know?

    4. Um… I was going to make fun of LW1’s language a bit (mostly the part where she explains to us that “just pulling my leg” is “merely kidding”), but now I am thinking better of it because I don’t think she needs to be exposed to any more snobbery. Calling her a breeding cow and telling her straight up to get an abortion is pretty shocking.

      Also, using “a month” in place of “per month” is a very common idiom even among highly educated people, in my experience.

      1. I agree with you that “a month” is very common. I have a Bachelor’s in English (educated enough for you, Sue?) and don’t even bat my eye at “a month/per month.” That’s how everyone around me talks, and I’ve never paid attention but I’m sure I say it all the time too with no thought as to whether it’s correct. And gasp! I have a Bachelor’s Degree in English, so I should definitely know better!

        Every grammar Nazi has their own (SORRY! his or her own) pet peeve words, though…

      2. Oh gosh. “I have a degree I have a degree!” This is what happens when I don’t re-read my comments before posting… Sorry.

      3. Haha I didn’t even notice. And yeah I am a grad student in English and a grammar Nazi and that one doesn’t bother me. I believe it’s idiomatically correct, though not formal. I had no idea “pregnant for” was correct in other cultures, so this thread has been informative.

        I do have some potentially unreasonable pet peeves (when people say “I will never step foot in this place again” instead of “set foot,” for example). But, um, I still wouldn’t tell them to get an abortion because of it!

      4. lets_be_honest says:

        LOL’d at your last sentence.

      5. Ummm… I didn’t realize that saying something like “Once a month” was wrong until just now. I’m 31, born and raised in the USA and have a college degree.

    5. Well my goodness gracious Ms. Sue Jones, I guess you’re appalled by my mother who has been living in the United States for the last 40 years because she sometimes is grammatically incorrect? Get off your high horse. You choose THIS letter to get up in arms about? Geez Louise, we have had PLENTY of letters that were full of misspelling and grammatical errors. GET OVER IT. You certainly tried to fill in a lot of blanks about this particular LW, and while a lot of us aren’t fond of her decision-making, you definitely take it to another level. Stop judging. Look at yourself first before becoming all high and mighty toward another individual. And yes, I read all your comments and responses in this thread.

      1. landygirl beat me to it!

        Facepalm Friday ™ indeed!

  14. Avatar photo BriarRose says:

    Is “pregnant by him” kind of like “hot for him”? All I can imagine now is some pregnant lady moaning excitedly, “I am soooooooooo pregnant for him!!”.

    LW2: How do you know if he’s an amazing father if you’ve never seen him interact with his kids? One year is way too long to wait to meet his kids. You two have no concept of what your relationship would be like with kids in the mix, so you truly have no idea if you’re compatible long-term. You need to make it clear to him that this needs to happen soon. If he can’t agree to that, you’re wasting your time.

    1. lets_be_honest says:

      I think we should work that into our vocab. I’m going to go home tonight and call Peter to let him know how pregnant I am for him. I bet he’ll be so happy.

      I’m so pregnant for this Friday too. TGIF!

  15. Avatar photo iwannatalktosampson says:

    Lw 1 – I feel you. I be singing Jesus take the wheeeeeeel all the time lately. While taking tequila shots – I’m fairly certain he’s hearing my prayers. Don’t listen to these haters – your plan is foolproof

    1. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

      (But no tequilla shots for you LW1!!)

      1. Avatar photo iwannatalktosampson says:

        You can take tequila shots while pregnant as long as you pray that the alcohol will circumvent the baby during the digestion process. Fact. Google it.

      2. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

        Thats what I did!

      3. findingtheearth says:

        Whilst preggo, i mentioned to my doc that i really missed wine. And then we started talking about pain options for delivery. He advised that back in the day the IVs were filled in alcohol.

        And did anyone else reading Bringing up Bebe? She mentions a champagne bar in her hospital in France after her first kid was born. I was filled with so much jealousy. Stupid American health care.

      4. i know someone who still drank wine while pregnant… isnt that like a thing now? americans are starting to be ok with that?

        we talked about it a while ago…

      5. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

        I was joking about the tequila but I drank wine while pregnant. Not much- only ever 1/4-1/3 of a glass an evening. No harm will come from a little bit. I also drink wine while breastfeeding. I’m “European” about it.

      6. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        I plan on being “European” about it too 🙂

      7. i cant remember if i mentioned this back in that discussion, but did you guys know that when america was first colonized all they drank was a low-alcohol beer? the alcohol purified the water, and otherwise everyone would have probably died from all the bacteria in dirty water. everyone, pregnant ladies, men, small children, drank beer. thats all they drank.

      8. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

        They offered me morphine in the hospital before I was even in active labour. Yet you are a monster if you dare to drink coffee while pregnant.

      9. Eagle Eye says:

        Ugh, my poor friend got bitched out at a coffee shop for ordering a coffee while pregnant, she’s working full time/ going to school full time and she just lost it, I was there and it was amazing!

      10. oh what did she say??? you have to tell that story!

      11. lets_be_honest says:

        Since you clearly are not cut out to care for your baby now that I hear you had a cup of coffee while pregnant, can I just be first in line to adopt?

      12. Eagle Eye says:

        Hah, I don’t remember much, it was all such a blur of my very large, very calm friend just ranting about how it was her body and her baby and her graduate degree and if she wanted a cup of coffee she was going to get a cup of damn coffee!

      13. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

        I dared to drink coffee every day of my pregnancy, LBH. Now that I think about it, maybe thats why he’s so squirmy.
        Eagle Eye- no one dared to question anything I did while I was pregnant. I kinda wished someone did so that I could get away with having a meltdown on a stranger in public. You can’t do that any other time!

      14. Eagle Eye says:

        Actually, like that’s how it worked until about 150-100 years ago – everyone drank light beer and wine because they knew it was safe. It wasn’t until they figured out about bacteria and how to kill them that we really learned how to purify our water so that it was safe for drinking. And even then, that’s essentially the problem with cholera, not safe drinking water.

      15. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        Yeah, I knew that. Lots of things are over-sensationalized these days. A beer here and there is most likely not going to hurt my baby anymore than all the toxins in the air, preservatives in food, microwave radiation, etc etc etc. Everyting in moderation peeps.

      16. lets_be_honest says:

        Even peeps should be eaten in moderation. Good point GG!

      17. findingtheearth says:

        I breastfeed and drink wine on occasion. I did lots of research, and then remembered history, and realized we all survived somehow and a glass or two a week won’t hurt me or the lil.

      18. I’m going to be “European” while gardening tonight 🙂

      19. lets_be_honest says:

        Yes, its becoming much more common to have a glass or two of wine while pregnant.

      20. One of my friends has had a few sips here and there during her (current) pregnancy. It makes me super uncomfortable but I haven’t said anything. :\

    2. Sue Jones says:

      Haha! Hang in there IWTTS.

  16. LW2: I don’t think a year is that ridiculous, but it’s problematic because you guys haven’t really discussed where the relationship is going. That’s always important, but particularly when you’re seeing someone who has a lot of baggage. My friend just married a guy with kids, and it took him a really long time to get to the point where he wanted to be married again. I’m not saying that you should wait around, but just that you may find that even if this guy really likes you, he may not be prepared for another marriage, especially if this stuff is still dragging out in court. If you find that you guys want different things, then it’s probably time to move on.

    LW3: If you think you’d be happy saving the marriage, then try it. But if you know for sure that you’re done, then don’t feel like you have to do it just because of all the time you’ve “invested.”

  17. Bittergaymark says:

    LW1) If God fucking gave a damn, you wouldn’t be pregnant to begin with.

    LW2) Smart single parents DON’T rush the meeting of the family…

    LW3) Newsflash. Repeatedly lying about money is JUST as bad as interactively cruising Craigslist.

  18. LW1, I have a story for you… perhaps you should consider this when you are placing your faith in God’s will (apologies for formatting in advance, who knows what this will look like once I hit submit;))

    The Story of the Man At Sea
    There was once a man stranded at sea.

    He kept treading water to keep himself afloat, hoping that the Lord would save him from his predicament.

    Shortly, a speedboat whizzed by and noticed this drowning man. Naturally, the speedboat driver offered to rescue this man.

    “Thanks, but no thanks mate. My God will save me. I’m waiting for my God to save me,” the drowning man said.

    The speedboat driver was obviously surprised, but since it was so apparent that this drowning man refused to accept his help, he decided to speed away, never to return.

    Not long after, a large ocean liner sailed by.

    The captain was observant enough to notice the drowning man, and ordered some of his men to lower a dinghy off the side of the liner to rescue him.

    When the men in the dinghy reached the drowning man, he once again refused their help.

    “No worries mates, you guys go ahead. I’m certain that my God will save me,” he said.

    The men in the dinghy looked at each other, shrugged their shoulders, and headed back towards the ocean liner.

    A few hours later, a helicopter arrived and noticed the drowning man.

    A rope ladder was lowered down for the drowning man to climb up onto the helicopter.

    Once again, this man refused the offer, and waved the helicopter away.

    “My God will come save me soon!” he shouted.

    And so the helicopter flew away.

    Shortly after, this man finally drowned due to sheer exhaustion.

    When he went to Heaven, the first thing he did was to question God.

    “Why did you not come to rescue me, Lord?” he interrogated.

    The Lord, with patience and grace, replied, “Well, there was this speedboat I sent, followed by the ocean liner and then the helicopter…”

    1. LW, thats the story of the drowning man i was talking about!!

  19. Avatar photo findingtheearth says:

    1- I have a twisted sense of humor (Thank you South Park!), but this is just over the top. Ask him straight out. Also, babies are a lot of effing work. Are you ready for that and possibly doing it on your own? A baby is not a joke, and if you aren’t ready, don’t be having one.

    2- A year and no kiddo meetings? Is this a serious relationship? That just seems bizarre to me. How often does he have visitation? If this is serious and its been a year, you need to be having some conversations with him. Also, find him a better divorce lawyer.

    3- If this isn’t the first time you have caught him doing this and you truly don’t think counseling would help, move on. Cheaters don’t tend to change.

    1. lets_be_honest says:

      re find him a better divorce lawyer…comments like that rub me the wrong way. Most likely he’s simply pay child support which is a percentage across the board, unless they worked out some agreement outside of court, which it sounds like they didn’t. Sorry, but if you’re broke because you are supporting your kids, I really don’t feel bad for you.

      1. Avatar photo findingtheearth says:

        My thought was that the LW said she keeps taking him back to Court for more money. I have seen both men and women repeatedly attempt to drain the other party of money so that they will just give up and get some ridiculously high amount of child support. A recalculation because of new employment can be necessary, but continuing to attempt to take him to the cleaners as a method of petty revenge is unnecessary. Supporting your children is a necessity, but if you can’t make your own life worth living because your child support payments are beyond your means, that is not fair either.

      2. lets_be_honest says:

        I just don’t think its really possible to take someone to the cleaners over child support. Its % based.

      3. It’s possible; I know someone it’s happening to. He’s in sales, and sales in his industry have been going down since the divorce. However, for some reason, the child support payments are based on his income in the year before the divorce and he can’t get them re-assessed. So now he’s paying an insane amount of his salary on child support, to the point where he is broke after the payment is made. To add to this, his ex doesn’t spend the money on the kids, she spends it on herself. So he also needs to save up his money to buy them winter coats and boots, school supplies, etc, because otherwise the kids won’t have them. The ex is a piece of work.

  20. Older and (hopefully) wiser says:

    Lw, I am also a person who prays but I don’t understand what you’re praying for. For God to take control? What does that mean? That He should he should make your boyfriend a committed father? God gave us free will so that’s his choice. And you have choices to make. Yes, whether the baby comes to term and is healthy may be something to pray for and you could pray for the wisdom to make the right choice. But your boyfriend’s choices are his own. It sounds to me like you need to be prepared to be a single mother with no support if you choose to keep the baby.

    1. sarolabelle says:

      She probably is praying for a miscarriage.

  21. sarolabelle says:

    I think we need to realize that the first LW is not in this country. She will probably take Wendy’s advice and use Google Translate to make it into her own language. And that’s cool. Congrats to Wendy for having global presence.

    I agrees with Wendy’s advice 100%.

    1. I just hope Wendy’s advice translates well to the LW’s own native language, whatever that may be. If some of us are facepalming over her word choices here, I can only imagine how she’s going to do with translating the advice back, especially since Wendy used American colloquialisms like “irresponsible tool” and “stick around.” Who knows how that will read in another language?

      My favorite example is the German word for “hovercraft.” Luftkissenfahrtzeug. It literally translates to “airpillowdrivething.” I probably didn’t spell it correctly because I’ve only ever heard it said aloud, not written out.

      1. And that’s why German is an awesome language. A friend was taking German in college, and learned that the word for “mullet” translates to “shortfrontlongback”

      2. I’ve heard that Mandarin Chinese is equally awesome/ridiculous – that the word for “table” is something like “plank with four legs.” (Might have been chair, I can’t quite remember clearly.)

        My mom’s native language is Swiss, which is a spoken but not written dialect of German. So when Swiss people write, it’s in proper “High German” but when they speak, the pronunciation and language choices are Swiss. So I’ve been exposed to a lot of funny mis-translations and attempts to translate a popular saying from one language to the other. We call it “Swinglish” in my family. 🙂

        And the Swiss dialects vary so much from region to region too! Like, every valley in the Alps has its own language. My godmother lives in Liechetenstein on the Swiss border and I remember when we visited as a kid, hearing the distinct differences in my mom’s pronunciation and hers. There’s a word that basically translates to “y’know?”, something to tack on to the end of a sentence. My mom and most of the people I heard in Luzern said it “gow” and my godmother said “gell.” Even as a kid this fascinated me! I’m such a nerd.

        I just wish I’d picked up more German/Swiss growing up. My dad works for a company that does a lot of business with Switzerland so he speaks it some too. I can usually understand the basic gist of what’s being said if I’m listening, but I can barely form a coherent sentence myself. German wasn’t offered while I was in school, I took Spanish instead and I LOVE it but I feel I’m starting to lose my fluency. I’ve started reaching out to people lately to ask them to practice, and just found out my backyard neighbor is Panamanian and welcomes me to speak Spanish with him anytime I want. Yay!

        (?Alguien habla espanol aqui, y quiere practicar conmigo, en el forum tal vez?)

      3. genau! one of my favorite german words!

      4. That’s the one! I need to start using it in English. 🙂

        As a side note, when I played the Sims a lot, I started slipping Simlish words into my normal vocab. Nothing says “I spend way too much time in a virtual reality world” like adopting its made-up nonsense language…

      5. My Spanish is definitely starting to go and I’m slightly horrified. I learned it as a kid at the same time I learned English (Mexican mother), but it was my preferred language until I started going to kindergarten. Spanish was still part of my life regularly through high school, then in college I majored in it. I haven’t had many opportunities to use it since. A few months back at work, I was asked to call some clients in Puerto Rico on behalf of our accounting department. “No big deal,” I thought to myself. Until, HOLY CRAP! I realized I’m SO rusty. Ugh. Luckily I’m the only one at the company that speaks even a little bit of Spanish but it qas quite horrifying. I’ve also been the one to do email correspondence with them, which goes much, much better, and I’m secretly living in fear of the next time I’m asked to place a call. Haha.

        (Cool story, bro.)

      6. Avatar photo iwannatalktosampson says:

        I went to a French emersion school when I lived in Canada and was fluent in French. Now I can say like 4 words, it makes me so sad.

      7. Avatar photo landygirl says:

        Her choice of words is the least Facepalmable thing about her letter.

      8. lets_be_honest says:

        Kissing farts? Gross KKZ.

      9. iseeshiny says:

        English is my SIL’s third language, German is her second, and she was translating something someone else had said for me in her first language, and she translated “test-drive” as “test-fart” and it was hilarious. Especially because there was a room full of adults cracking up, and her six year old was like, “You said farts weren’t funny, Mom!”

        But seriously, farts are always funny.

      10. Hope so, too. But I will say that in my experience, reading a language is a lot easier than forming the sentences yourself. So, maybe that will be the case here….

      11. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

        I took Spanish for 9 years. I’ve lost pretty much all of the ability to write and speak it, but I can still understand the spoken and written. So yeah, we have no idea why the English is broken- we shouldn’t berate her for it.

  22. I know I’m more religious than most on here. To preface, I’m not trying to force my views on anyone. LW1, here’s my take on things.

    I once heard an analogy between God and man that has stuck with me: God is the engine and a man or woman is the spark plug. In other words, God provides you with the opportunities and potential to do great things, but only once that person sparks that potential and does something with it will something great happen. You take what you are given and you make an effort to do good things and you will find more opportunities and more potential. You can’t rely on God to do that for you. He works WITH you, not for you.

    In this situation, you need to do what is right for YOU and your baby. You say you’re worried — that right there should be your sign that there’s something wrong and needs to change. If your gut tells you something is wrong, then something is wrong. It’s time for you to take initiative.

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