When should I be honest with my daughter about her bio father?

For the people who are saying from day 1, obviously she did not do that and she can’t go back and change that fact. So how about give advice on the situation at hand. Not what she should have done. That bell can’t be unrung.


If you’re thinking about it, you should do it. I told mine when she was 10, and it was bad. I wish I had been honest the entire time, It’s been 10 years since I told her and their relationship hasn’t changed. There is never going to be a better time then the present.


Best she know as young as possible. Nothing changes the fact that your partner is her dad, by blood or not.
I knew my whole life that my step dad wasn’t my biological father, and growing up it was absolutely a necessity for me as an individual to know this.
If I had found out when I was mid to late teens, I wouldn’t be speaking to my parents now, I’d probably been on a spiralling path, of drug and alcohol abuse.
Thankfully my mum, knew I’d be a head case when I was growing into my teens, she never hid the fact.
For that I will be eternally grateful.

The sooner the better.
I took child psychology in college and actually studied to effects of adoption on a child. And I also have a son who was adopted by his father and never really knew his biological father.

Never ever ever ever ever keep adoption a secret. Why? Because it makes it seem like you’re trying to hide something. Or that it was necessary for it to “be hidden” that they were adopted. It sounds illogical, but in a child’s brain they process that as shame. And the shame can manifest as anger or depression.
The fact that your daughter is being adopted is a beautiful happy and exciting thing. It should be handled that way too. She should know all about her adoption story and how much love she has from her dad even though he wasn’t part of the creation process.

My son was about 4 when I explained it to him. And I told him that babies are a gift to a mommy and a daddy. But he was a gift for just me and I shared him with his daddy and to make it official he was going to be adopted.

I came out of an abusive marriage 7 months pregnant. He spent maybe a total of 24 hours with his bio dad if you add up all the visits before he fled the state.

I leave our conversations about his biological father open always. As he got older he asked me questions. And I answer them as honestly as I can but try to leave the emotional side of it at bay.
Curiosity is super normal as well and it should not be discouraged. Half of this tiny person is a world she knows nothing about and she’s allowed to have questions and want to know. The best thing you can do as her mom is support her.


I told my son when he was 10. He knew something was different, but he took it well. You will know when it’s the right time.


She’s not ready yet. My son was six when he found out and he was still too young. I would say maybe 7-8ish BUT I recommend going to a counseling to see if she is ready. I had a plan to see if a counselor thought he was ready but something happened and my son found out.


I told my kids from day one. They were 2 & 3 when I met my late husabnd. My oldest sons dad wasn’t in the picture at all at the time. My daughters was but when he wanted to. They grew up calling my husband dad & even to this day, after hes been gone almost 2 years, they still talk about him as their dad! Tell her because if you don’t, someone else will and that might confuse her even more.


First of all, most women have some type of daddy issues. It’s not some weird uncommon thing anymore. Tell her the truth when you feel like she is old enough to understand it all but don’t wait so long that she feels betrayed and lied to. Then she will not only have daddy issues but mommy issues, as well. You know your child. Make sure she has access to counseling and a good support system. Everything will be just fine.


I just went through the same thing with my husband and his daughter. I am not her bio mom but I am all she knows. She is 9 and we just explained to her the dimmed down truth with facts only and she understood perfectly and had questions and has 100% moved on and it has only been a few weeks. To her I’m still “mommy” because her definition of what a mommy is is the person that takes care of you when sick and gets you ready for school and feeds you and comes to her ballgames. We waited to tell her because her maturity level is a little less than that of other children her age (which is fine!) but we wanted to make sure she could fully understand before we tried to explain it to her.

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We sought counseling as I worked into that transition. She was 10 and one day I just came out with it. Our counselor asked her colleagues their opinions as well and they all agreed telling her “her story” was best. Coming out with a lie later in life can be traumatic and hurtful.

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I have 5 kids. 10, 9, 7, 6, and 4. My youngest doesn’t know her bio dad and believes my bf is her dad and he treats her like his baby. The older 4 know their dad and they love my bf and he treats them like his kids. Their dad isn’t in the picture and when it comes to their baby sister they don’t talk about their dad and they never question her belief that my bf is her dad. I honestly have no plan to tell her that he isn’t her bio dad. Because he never wanted her, and did everything to get me to miscarriage and would tell me she shouldn’t be alive. So he is insignificant in her life.

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My daughter has two special men in her life. Her daddy who is her guardian angel and her dada who is the man helping me raise her. Eventually I will explain in detail why two men have these titles but she will know as my other kids call him by his name. But he has been in her life since she was born.

I think only you will know when the time is right based on your child’s maturity.

Do it when she is young.I found out at 25 and it has devastated me to this day.I am now almost 50.It tears your world apart.

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I told my daughter the moment she turned 6years old the sooner you tell them the better sometimes it’s best to tell the truth so that they can know their biological family also it depends on your daughter whether she wants to know them…so tell her the truth I did it and I’m glad my daughter and my husband has the best bond ever

I experienced this same scenario. My mom told me when I was in 4th grade. As an adult, I wish I had never known


Do it now, so it’s always part of her story. Just keep expanding on it as she gets older and has more questions. She will be so upset if you wait and she finds out as a teenager.


Before she has a chance to find out on her own. You want her to get that information from you - not a relative or social media or by finding photos of your wedding when she’s in them.

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ive known people who are still messed up because they actually rember been sat down and told this, i decided to tell me son when he was very young and he brings it up now and again now at 6 bbut its letting other people know he says “when i was a baby i had a different daddy who wasnt ready to be a adult yet so instead i now have my daddy and my daddy picked to be my daddy my daddy loves me” obviously he will obviously have different emotions and reactions as he grows but since around 2ish that is what hes knows and thats what he is happy with

I was in the same exact boat. My daughter is 9, and told her the truth. One: I would have rather her heard the truth from me than anyone else (his other “bio” children started saying things.) Two: there is never a right time for something like that. At first she felt betrayed and hurt, but as time went out she let it go pretty quickly because she never knew the man and she said how can she miss someone she never knew.

This happened to me and my brother when we were little. I was 2 when he left so I didn’t remember him. We grew up calling my step dad “daddy”. When we asked questions, my parents were honest with us. My bio dad was in prison, wanted nothing to do with us, and my step-dad was raising us. Now, my bio dad did have a chance to meet me later but chickened out. That’s on him. I say, as long as you are honest and open with your children (at their level of comprehension), everything will be fine. For now, just let them be 4.

I was 12 or 13 and found out by accident. I was HUMILIATED and felt stupid for not knowing, so please find the right time to tell. I loved my dad and lost him 3 years ago. I actually found it harder to forgive my mother for the betrayal and still work to forgive her and I’m 53!

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I’m not sure there’s a magical age, but my ex husband found out when he was 25. I don’t think he’s ever really forgiven his parents. It’s been nearly 21 years. My advice based on that is be honest once you think your child will understand.

I was around 7 or eight when I started asking questions, my mom was very honest with me, and only told me what I asked. As I got older and asked more questions she always told me.:heart::heart::heart:

I am in this situation as well. My 6 year old has no inclination ok n of her bio father. And our families have decided that it will stay that way. His family has a set of boundaries that they are not allowed to cross and my husband has been an exceptional father. We are expecting our second child and she noticed that the baby will have a different last name. We told her that when she was born, daddy and mommy weren’t married yet so we gave her my last name. And we will all be making the transition to my husbands last name at the same time. She will probably never know and unless she asks, I dont plan on telling her.

I suggest u wait until she is capable of mature conversation. My child was age 9 when we had that discussion. She was looking through some old photos and found one of bio mom holding her so we had to talk about it. But I explained that my love for her was so very special because I chose to be her mom and love her as my own

It’s actually better to tell them young, so they can process and ask questions about it as they grow as opposed to learning at an older age and feeling betrayed and lied too… Went through this with my daughter.

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My mother waited to tell me until I was 7 years old. She knew at that point I was able to understand and then I went about my day. I would do it when they’re young because they could get really pissed if they suddenly find out at like 15-16 years old that the man they thought was their doesn’t actually wasn’t. That could potentially lead to ALOT of heartache and problems

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Drop little hints like when talking about family and grandparents say things like, you are lucky because your daddy chose you, it doesnt have to be a great drama and if shes told age appropriate bits as she grows up, things like photos of the day you met daddy for the first time, then she will understand from that she didnt have him from birth and when she asks who her bio dad is you can then decide how much she should know. Good luck x

ASAP Don’t put it off! My friends mom didn’t tell her till she was about 10 their relationship never recovered completely my daughter is 10 and she’s known about her father since she was born. Hiding things only create doubt and hurts relationships

My world change when they told me. Some people are right, it depends on the emotional maturity of the child. My world changed in my eyes, not for the better. Make sure she understands how special she is. That although her bio wanted nothing to do with her , her current father saw such a beautiful and wonderful baby that he decided to be her father no matter what. :heart:

Now! Shes 4, she will take it much easier now than later on. Tell her he chose to be her daddy, but she does have a biological father somewhere too. You do it now, bring it into conversation every now and again and you wont have any problems. You leave it till shes older, and shes gonna be mad and very upset.

My mom told my sister when she was 4. And said the best part was that he chose to be her dad and she was wanted and extra loved.

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I told my son at 10 and it broke him, he felt so abondoned even though he didn’t know him or that the man that was abusing his mom wasn’t his Dad. He hates me to this day because I lied to him for so long. He has a awesome relationship with both of them but does not talk to me. He has not known I will probably never tell him how much that hurts me that he chose my abusers when the reasons I left them both was to protect him and his sisters. Go with your gut as every situation is different you will know when it’s best for you to catch her with whatever feels she may have because of it. Best of luck

When you feel the timing is right!
I was adopted and my parents told me at a young age, it didn’t effect me but everyone handles/processes things differently!

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My adopted child always knew she was adopted. I told her about her biological mother the whole time she was growing up. I think it is easiest to never keep that a secret.

I was that little girl and I honestly wish I never knew. I would have rather thought my stepdad was my real dad because knowing he wasnt and not knowing my real dad and him not wanting a relationship with me was really hard…but every family is different and your circumstances may very well be different. Just do what you think is right in your heart mama but dont put this on her when shes so little. She doesnt need that confusion at such a young age if he doesnt want to be in her life.

I would be honest with her now. I’m adopted and my parents told me from birth.

The man who raised me isn’t my bio dad, but at the end of the day he’s my dad. I found out on accident when I was around 11-12 years old, I found a picture of me and my sperm donor at my grandmothers house and of course I had a million questions. My parents finally told me the truth and yea, I was hurt and confused but my DAD held me and told me I was HIS daughter, blood or not. Wait until you think your kid is old enough to handle that kind of information

Best to let her grow up knowing. The older she gets, the harder it will be to tell her. Might as well get it over with.

Now is not the right time…when she’s older and can understand…you may… Don’t confuse her and rob him of that joy… he’s been there for you and her…let sleeping dogs lie…tons of love…:heart:

Im having the same struggle… my daughter just turned 5 and thinks my 7 yr olds dad is her dad… 2 problems though… 1. I have no clue who could be her bio dad (tested a few men already) and 2. My soon to be ex husband pretty walked out of their lives almost 2 years ago. It’s heart breaking for both my 7 and 5 yr olds.

My sister grew up thinking my Dad was her Dad, when she was about 14 (think - could of been before) Her real Dad died and her Sister came to tell us, my Parents thought it would be the time to tell her the truth (her Dad never wanted to know her) Only you know when the time is right. All the best for the future for you & your Daughter x

Its never to early she’ll understand my 5 year old understands the person she calls daddy isn’t her dad but that doesn’t make him less of her daddy.

Ive told my son since the begining he was 1 when my husband came into the picture and hes 7 now but still know who his bio dad is and his dad is. I couldnt imagine not telling him even if his bio dad wasnt in his life (hes barley in it but somewhat in it) secrets definitely have an impact on kids and the longer you wait the worse it could be. I know some kids who quit talking to their parents all together once 18 due to this big of a secret. I would tell soon especially once they go to school and start learning about biology and where they come from. Ive seen school do blood test and other things leading kids to finiding out before their parents tild them which is even worse.

I have been with my husband since my kids was 4 months, 2 years, and 3 yrs old. I’ve always told them and even the baby knew. They knew he was their stepdad and their real daddy died

I told my daughter when she was mature enough to understand what “biological” means. I think the proper maturity level hits different kids at different ages. For my daughter, it was 7-8ish.

there will never be a right time. if he is not in her life then leave it alone. when shee comes to you …then you havE the talk. (WHEN SHEE COMES TO YOU).

I would probably give her age appropriate info as she starts asking where babies come from. Let her know her step dad chose her to be his kid

I told my daughter that my husband was not her father when she was 13. She was angry that I didn’t tell her sooner. But… it all made sense to her why her step-dad was a crappy dad after all.

Tell your child now I made the mistake of waiting till my child was older what an awful shock that was for her children accept things easier when young but I went along with my ex husband he didn’t want her to know please dont delay

I am adopted and luckily my parents always told me. I went to a support group and so many people were angry because they found out later in life

So, here is the thing … Her “Real Daddy” is the guy who raised her. The guy who donated the sperm is her biological father. I had this same situation with my son. My husband adopted him when he was 3 but had raised him since he was 7 months old. We let my son know that “Daddy” adopted him, as soon as he could understand what that meant. We didn’t get into the biology of things until much later. What he knew was that Daddy chose to be his dad and would always choose him. He ultimately met his bio dad when he was 14 and they have somewhat of a relationship now as adults, but his Dad will always be his Dad. Just don’t try to hide anything, be honest. She will ask questions and you answer them with the age appropriate info.

I thought this was brought up a couple days ago…I would tell her once she’s a teenager and is more capable of deciding things for herself cause as far as I know that’s around the same age kids get to decide who they want to stay with if their parents are divorced or separated maybe even 16 my daughter has never met her bio he’s never called her or seen her she’s 5 and she was a planned pregnancy even buuuut she knows that my fiancé isn’t her bio but he still plans to adopt her at some point maybe when she’s old enough to actually know what that all means

The sooner they know the better. Then it’s not a super huge reveal and they don’t feel like you lied to them their whole life.

When my son was 14 he told his older brother that everyone has a father to be born, but the person that takes care of you and is there for you is your dad. So anytime just tell them don’t you want this is Daddy but you have a father out there somewhere, and maybe someday you’ll meet him, and leave it at that

We didn’t tell my daughter until I was pregnant with her little brother and she started asking questions about me being pregnant with her. I wasn’t going to lie I her so I told her the truth at 9 yrs old

My son is 4. I have never hindered him from his bio dad. He doesn’t understand why his sister gets to go to their dads house but he doesn’t, so I have since decided it would be best for her not to go either. I told him it was too much on the 2 children we have together, if he wasn’t going to get both for visits then he wasn’t getting either. My boyfriend is my son’s daddy. He’s been here since day 1. My daughter doesn’t want to go to her dad’s without her brother anyhow so it wasn’t a hard decision. They’ll realize when they are older who is really there for them. I’d just wait until she starts to ask questions if she hasn’t already been acclimated to her bio dad. Just keep a list of things like diseases that run in his family and whatnot so she has it for when she’s older.

Id wait untill shes at least 7… My daughter is 12 and she was asking bout her dad when she was 6 and 7 i have not ever lied to her and when she asks i answer her and if she decides she wants to meet him we will make arrangements

Not at 4. She has no concept of what that means


I would say that is too young. I would wait until she asks if she does. My son’s father hasnt been in his life since he was 2. He is now 14. He still has not asked about him. When the time is right, you will know. But wait until she asks. Until then i would just leave it as your fiance because that is all she knows esp with the bio dad not being involved.

Not to worry at all. When the kid is old would be much better because by the she can understand and appreciate your decision to get her anew Dad. Pls relax wai. Thee days kids are smart

Wait… My daughter is almost 9 and I’m in the same boat… Her sperm donor has never been in her life or the rest of his family… but my husband has more than stepped up to the job. I may never tell her until she comes to me about it.

Sounds like me. I met my late husband when my son was three. He had claimed him as his dad before we even dicussed it. My son’s bio dad wants nothing to do with him and says bad things about my boy. He’ll never meet him!!

I wouldn’t if she doesnt know the bio this is her father and will be her father he chose not to have anything to do with unless circumstances change i wouldnt plus shes 4 thats too young to bring something like that up

No two children are the same so there is no correct age the answer is when you realize her maturity level is where it needs to be handled very emotionally confusing situations. That is typically teenage years

My 3&5 girls know they’re dad but my 3yo especially loves her stepdad more as “dad” I always introduced it as families being different. Some have 2 moms or 4 parents etc. we’re lucky enough to have a bio dad and dad.

My daughters 4 and she thinks she’s 2 dad’s. She’s happy enough with it for now , so when she’s older and asks more I will explain. She’s in contact with her bio dad .

I would have always told him that he wasn’t his birth daddy and explained the situation

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Son son is 5 this year he calls his step dad “dad” but I have always made it known to him that he has 2 dads, but in saying that his bio dad has never stepped up and never been consistent in his life.

I’m not sure I would tell him. My oldest granddaughter was told at age three. It really messed with her emotionally.

I think 4 is to young… When she is 6 or 7 tell a bed time story about a girl who live with her mom and her mom has a man that love her like a daughter but is not her daughter… ((Tell her what love is and how much he love her and go on…)) TAKE IS SLOWLY BUT RIGHT NOW LET HER BE A KID…

Is she asking??? My 8yr old knows her dad doesn’t want to be a daddy. Does she get it, no bc she has asked a few times. She begs me to date so she can get a daddy. :worried:

Before she starts school for sure. My fiance grew up thinking his stepdad was his bio dad until he was in school at like 8 or 9 years old and the school screwed up and told him. He was more upset that he was lied to about it than anything

Your a good mom Karla. Be proud of the life you have given for your children. We learn by living, one step at a time.

Involve her in the anniversaries from now on instead of the day became a couple it’s the day he came in your lives and you’s all became a family. She will realise she was there first and when she’s old enough to comprehend that that means he’s not her bio parent she will ask her questions when she’s ready

Believe it or not, she may already know . I’ve worked with children my whole life . You’d be surprised .

That is something she should’ve always known, so it does not need explaining.
My daughter does not belong to my husband.
We were together since she was 2.
A ton of my younger family members don’t know he’s not her father.
She has always known.
She’s not going to come to me heartbroken wondering why I lied to her.
She’s 26 and grateful I handled it the way I did.
I can’t imagine doing it any other way


I started letting mine know since the day they learned to interact and communicate with people. It’s always best to let them know early. Because one day,someone will ask them or your kids will find out from someone.and you don’t want that to happen. It has to come from you. And don’t lie that their father was dead or something-because one day they will dig in to more of their biological father and you will end up the bad cop. Let the kid know about your past. And let them know that people change. And when they ask, just answer. Don’t beat around the bush and lie or avoid. It’s always better that way.

Tell her. Gently. Your dad chose you but the man who made you wasn’t equipped to raise you.

My son grew up knowing we wasn’t his bio parents and my brother grew up knowing we had different dads

Same situation except stepdad was present from birth. At a very early age we started to casually mention biological dad in converstions. Like “oh you have pretty eyes like biological dad”. I would answer questions as they came up. I was always positive, never an ugly word said. She recently turned 19 and I again, very casually, asked if she ever wanted to meet her biological. Opened up dialog. I will support her decision. Still hard. Still heartbreaking, but no secrets. My husband found out as a young adult that his siblings were from another dad. Was devastating.

When she is old enough to understand four may not be that age

My sons father walked out when he was 6 months meet my husband when he was 2 and i have always been honest with him. And he is 14 now.

Younger the better is what I believe. It’s hard and never easy situation but being honest is better than waiting too long and they hate you for it. You never want secrets.

My son is 19… I told him when he was in high school.

I married my ex husband when our daughter was 11 months old. We soon parted ways, and divorced and he never saw her again until she was almost 17. Her dads 3rd wife’s daughter told her that her step dad was my daughters dad. As my child grew I never told her anyone was her dad as I was in a live in relationship for several years she called my bf by his name. There is NO time to lie to a child. There IS a time to inform them of th4em parentage because if ever they have a need for a blood transfusion they will need to know. Underaged is not the time for their little minds to learn and understand. Most of you will instinctively know when its time, others will one day hear their child ask and still others will have to make the decision after discussing it with the new dad. Warning…after my daughter met her real dad she never wanted anything more to do with him and hasn’t for several years. I NEVER EVER bad mothed him to her or where she would hear it EVER.

If you wait until she is older she will resent you for lying to her and hiding it from her. You need to do it while she’s still young enough not to feel lied to and betrayed.

I was told i was adopted at 5 yrs old before i started school

Soon. It’s good to be chosen and that’s what your fiancé did. He chose her.

Tell her now before she gets older. She maybe angry you kept it from her. Does she know a man and a woman make a baby? Just tell her the ingredients didn’t come from him but he’s just as much her dad for being there and doing all the daddy stuff. I mean she’s 4 so, that might be an easier way to break the news.

I waited until my daughter was older around 8 or so … she could fully understand and we could talk about it

I was adopted from birth and I grew up just knowing… I think now is better than finding out when they’re older. I would have been pissed if I was lied to

Sometime before the first event in their life that they will have the birth certificate in hand . That would be driver license time or passport application

I am having the same struggle. I think it up depends on the entire situation. Every time my husband and I want to sit down with her , some new drama with her biological father or a family tragedy occurs. She is now 14. Long story short, her bio has been locked up or out of state since I was pregnant with her. He is now in jail for additional domestic violence after almost killing his most recent victim. He is extremely violent and dangerous. He will never be part of her life. I had a protection order for years. I am pretty sure that her relationship with my husbad will not change. Her older brother has the same dad she does. He has always known. He has no want or interest in knowing the bio dad. He is now 18 and has read the papers and seen the reports. We are moving out of state this year since he will be released again soon and apparently has me on a hit list. He is very crazy and has not changed, sad I dont think he ever will. You cannot judge unless you have been there. Once we are safely out of state this summer we will have the talk. My husband has been her daddy since she was 6 weeks old.

Maybe little to young to understand at the moment maybe couple years :thinking:

I personally waited until she was old enough to understand and ask questions.

I’d say between 6-8 depending on HER maturity

Something simple and age appropriate

The person who raised her , is her dad but i wouldn’t dwell to much for now shes 4 .

The man who loves her as his own and has been there for her IS her father. It takes more than a sperm donor to be a father.

She will find out when she is an adult and reads her birth certificate