Having a child usually marks the happiest moment in any parent's life. But what happens when the child in question does not seem to quite match up with the parents? These doctors share what happened when a baby looked nothing like the father. All stories have been edited for clarity.
Never Came Back
“I was shadowing in OBS/GYN and was present for a natural delivery. As soon as I got in there I could tell something was wrong; husband was standing away from the mom (usually they’re nearby or holding their hand). Apart from the mother pushing and the midwife instructing her on what to do, the room was in total silence, no words of encouragement from the husband. When the baby eventually came out it was clearly not his, both parents were white and the baby was as black as anyone you’ve ever seen.
The midwife explained that sometimes the pigmentation can be a little different immediately after birth and tried to make a joke of it but it fell flat. The baby was crying and was given to the mother. She started crying, the husband walked over to stand by the bed and looked at the kid. Then he started crying. I’m now standing away from them, awkwardly watching, unsure of whether I should start talking or make a joke or anything.
At this point the mother starts bawling. She keeps saying how sorry she is and the husband just leans down and kisses her on the forehead before turning and leaving the room sobbing to himself. I don’t think he ever came back.”
I Hope He Figured It Out
“I attended a birth where the notes on file had ‘DON’T MENTION GESTATIONAL AGE IN ROOM’ all over them. The mother was young and had been dating her boyfriend for around 8 months. She found out she was pregnant when she got out of a pool and her boyfriend said, ‘Babe. You look pregnant.’
That late in the game, ultrasound measurements get unreliable, so the initial scan had estimated around 22 weeks. A follow-up scan added around 2 months to this number, but this also didn’t line up with current boyfriend, so she leaned into her right to privacy and asked everyone to keep the actual gestational age private.
We were called to the room to deliver this baby with her, boyfriend and boyfriend’s mum in the room. The whole time I was reminding myself of the mum’s right to privacy and kept my mouth shut. A plump, very term baby came out, and we didn’t make any extra fuss about it. I kinda hope that the boyfriend’s mum twigged to the fact that this baby was not 8 weeks premature because I don’t think he would have.”
Doesn’t Add Up
Sonographer here. Antenatal scans. I was performing the dating scan for an Asian couple. I informed the happy couple of due dates and current weeks. ‘But that’s not possible’, says the father. I explain dates calculation as compared to rough dates of conception.
‘But I was away in XXX for XXX weeks. IT ISN’T MINE.’ Bad atmosphere. The partner walks out. Eventually he comes back in and stood up, said “I divorce thee”, three times and walked back out.
You develop a sense for the ones where paternity is in doubt even before you start the scans.
I Know I’m Not The Dad
“So my friend (male, 23) had this girlfriend (18) of 6 months. Long story short, they broke up because he found out she was cheating. A little later she shows up on his doorstep with her parents and is apparently pregnant, claiming he is the dad. They argue and the parents are just as trashy as her, so they take my friend to court. I testify that she was cheating and thus no way to know who the kids real father is now. The girl wanted half his stuff because they were living together for 3 months of the relationship and for him to pay child support when the kid was born.
Flash forward to the delivery day. At this point my friend is fuming. Within all the time that’s past, this girl has essentially ruined his life. She would show up in public places screaming it was his kid, she keyed his car, broke his house’s windows, this witch even went so far as to post on Facebook saying that he assaulted her on several occasions and threatened her with violence if she kept the kid.
So here I am with him in the delivery room because my friend is a ‘White Asian’ and the guy I caught her cheating with, a ‘White Australian.’ We just knew the facial features would not match, and he wanted me to be there as a testimony when he asked for a blood test after.
The baby was black.
I don’t think we ever laughed so dang hard in our lives. My friend went so far as to snap a selfie when he told the girl’s parents to go eff themselves and have fun raising that kid with a psycho. Did the blood test anyway, not his. Sued the family for defamation, the ex for harassment and got a restraining order.”
This Is Awkward
“We had a very sweet blond haired blue-eyed mom and dad along with their entire extended family in the room for a delivery one busy afternoon at work (think aunts, Uncles, cousins, Grandma and Grandpa too). The baby is born and as the doctor places her on the mom’s chest the first words out of her mouth are, ‘That’s not my baby! That’s not my baby!!’
The baby in question, still attached at the umbilical cord, has beautiful dark curly black hair, and dark skin. The nurse looks at her and tells her that this is definitely her baby because ‘she’s still attached to you’ and she, not so quietly, tells the nurse, ‘There’s no way, I never slept with a black man! It’s not mine!’
The ‘father’ is standing there silent, not sure what to do. A long awkward silence fills the room.
We clean her and baby up as cheerfully as we can. We see the extended family filter out of the room and the ‘father’ leave to get a cig. About ten minutes later, a tall black guy walks up to our front desk asking how to get to the patient in question’s room.”
She Messed Up
“Paramedic here, our crew delivered a full birth in the back of our rig. We have 2 paramedics in the back with the PT, a driver, and I’m working on the laptop listening to info they are telling me to add to the report. All of a sudden, it goes kind of quiet, I hear the mother let out a very loud, ‘Oh no, it’s not white!’ (She was very white)
Few more seconds of silence, and I’m like, ‘?’
The driver alarm (beeping light on the center console sent from a button in the back) was pressed 2 times quickly, generally meaning to turn around to get info for the report. I turn from the front passenger seat to see a very dark skin colored baby (I’m guessing Cuban). I can’t see the mother’s face, but all I see is her shaking her head. She begins to worry, saying that ‘her husband is meeting us there at the hospital! He can’t see this!!!’ I just continue the report, not sure what the problem is, but I guess we’ll see when we get there.
Flash forward to the ER. We stop outside the ambulance bay, I get out to open the doors, and am met by another very white heavyset guy in a uniform shirt, dress pants and glasses, asked me if his wife was in there, and she was in labor when he was coming home.
Hospital policy dictates that we can’t have random people that we can’t confirm identity that close to the rig when opening doors for PT safety. Security is there quick, holds him back a bit. We open the doors, roll the PT and her newborn out. He takes one look, sees the color of the baby,
JAW DROP, LOOK OF DESPAIR. Like a 1,000 yard stare. Even security had a look like, ‘wow, that women really messed up, and this guy knows it now.’
Wife: ‘BABE, I can explain every bit of this!!! I know it looks weird, but I can!!!!’
We wheel her into ER. No sign of husband. Last I knew, the husband didn’t check into the hospital as a visitor. I’m assuming he went home to pack his stuff.
I Didn’t Want It To Be Mine
“I got a weird one, my previous neighbor was a nurse and delivered one where a buddy of mine was involved.
A buddy of mine she knew came in with his girlfriend who was in labor, my buddy was clearly not keen on having a kid but the mother didn’t want an abortion and was madly in love with my buddy to a point that it was obsession. So the girlfriend decided to keep it in order to keep him around.
The girlfriend was proper paranoid, delusional and an abusive head-case that made my buddy’s life awful for 18 months. He was at the point where I genuinely thought he might just run away or slip into depression and kill himself due to this woman. She insisted it was his and was expecting him to either marry her or (in her words to one of my mutual friends) ‘if he won’t love me I’ll just take him for all his money for the next 18 years.’
My neighbor said he looked like death while the baby was being delivered in the room. The baby comes out, my buddy and the girl who are both of English/Irish heritage looked and saw a Pacific Islander baby. Turns out the girlfriend was sleeping with one of the local rugby players on the low who knocked her up.
My neighbor said she has never seen someone who looked so emotionally and mentally broken do such a 180 in less than a minute. My neighbor looked back at him as he walked out of the room laughing maniacally with joy. Looked at my neighbor and said, ‘that’s not mine, thank goodness I’m free!’ She said he was spotted dancing down the hallway to the exit.
My buddy is doing ok now, he got a nice, smoking hot South African girlfriend who he has been with for 3 years. They are looking to buy a house together and get married soon.
His ex is now living with her parents in a small granny shack with the kid. The Pacific Islander baby daddy went MIA and last I heard is suspected to be hiding out on some island in his native land, Fiji.
Can’t blame the guy for leaving and I personally hope he is never found.”
That .01 Percent
“I’m working in a hospital in Germany as a nurse. When I was a student, I worked at the birth station. There was a woman who just gave birth. I came in the room after the birth because they were fighting. When I came in the room, I saw the baby and it had light brown skin and dark hair but the father was a ginger. We tried to calm them down. They did a test and he was the true father. Life is crazy, never thought something like this could really happen. When they came a few weeks later to control, they had broken up. He didn’t trust the test and said there is chance with 99.9%. I was shocked.”
Saved His Life
“A friend of my cousin and his wife were having a child and were pretty excited about it until the child came out. This non-father is British and so is the woman, the child that came out obviously had Asian descent. The non-father noticed immediately when looking at ‘his’ son’s eyes. He started screaming, asking if he had been cheated on or if his wife was secretly part Chinese. Then just laid there crying claiming ‘she didn’t cheat.’ One week later the non-father had taken the paternity test and the fiancé had admitted she cheated on him.
2 weeks after the child had been born, the non-father invited some friends over (including my cousin) for a drink. My cousin walked in on him hanging but not dead. We found out later that the non-father had planned to kill himself and have his body found immediately after he died (bad move). However, my cousin came to his house quick enough to save his life. Fortunately the non-father was released from a mental institute recently and I believe he’s actually fairly healthy.”
I Think I’m A Dad
“My brother had a surprise baby this way. He and a coworker had a random hookup while she was broken up with her ex. She gets back with her ex and ends up pregnant. Flash forward to the delivery day, the day my brother sends me a picture of a random baby out of the blue and says, ‘I think I am a dad.’
She is white, her boyfriend is black and my brother is white. Baby came out looking very, very white.
I don’t know how it went down in the hospital room but I know they separated very soon after. My brother went to visit her in the hospital and asked her if she would let him take a paternity test. She agreed and it came back positive a week later.
And that’s how I got my surprise nephew.
Everyone is fine. My brother took full responsibility from day one. They ended up dating and having another child together. They are now separated with full split custody (no courts involved).”
Dodged A Bullet
“Ok, story from a friend of my brothers. She worked as a nurse and a woman and her husband came in. They were both white, and she delivered a child that was black. The husband immediately starts saying ‘what the eff’ while she is going on and on about dormant traits and everything.
He orders a DNA test. While this is going on, her mother and stepdad show up. The stepdad is black, after the testing is done, the DNA test ends up showing that the baby is the stepdad’s. Her husband instantly dropped her and cut ties.”
“I have a white friend who is a superman of a dad. When his third child was born, she was obviously of mixed race. His white wife had an affair with a black man. The wife also had substance abuse issues before this pregnancy and was no longer dependable or stable as a mother. So my friend immediately divorced her and took custody of the kids. ALL of them. He’s been raising his two bio kids and the third child who isn’t technically his for the past decade. She’s his princess, and he loves her exactly like the other two.
Also, the biological dad (to the third child) waived his rights immediately when he found out about her birth. He was mom’s dealer and their fling was a one time thing that resulted in pregnancy. He had zero interest in fatherhood.”
Never Seen Again
“A birth of the couple’s third child. The couple was white, the baby was obviously of Pacific Islander descent.
Everyone went very quiet. The nurse telling me the story said she took a moment of silence as she realized what had happened, then she tried to act normally but was waiting for the outburst. She said the tension was unreal.
The guy stared (for a minute) at a child that was very obviously not his. The mum was already in tears and talking very fast.
‘Dad’ stood up, looked around for a minute, then left the room. Never said a word. He wasn’t seen again at the hospital and the mum spent the rest of the day on her phone. The nurse doesn’t think she ever found him.
The last part is even more distantly related gossip, but allegedly, the father cut all ties immediately, only speaking in regard to care of his 2 actual kids only through his lawyer. He was very much into raising/looking after his actual kids, but wanted nothing further to do with the mum or the kid that wasn’t his.
If any of that is true, I take my hat off to the guy.”
A Strange Situation
“I worked labor and delivery.
Had a very young mother come in, accompanied by her parents. She was just 12-13 and parents looked stuffy and kept telling her she should’ve had an abortion, she was too young, etc. Her mother was silent the whole time but leaked tears for her constantly.
While she labored, I received a call from a very young boy who said he was her boyfriend. His voice was trembling as he explained that her father wouldn’t come to the hospital. I explained that I couldn’t give out information, but he could talk to her afterward. I went in, told her he had called, and she showed me a picture of him. He was white, straight red hair, pimply and tiny–the runt of the litter. About an hour later, her phys ed teacher stopped by to check on her, which I thought was odd.
We didn’t get many teachers checking on students. He was as opposite of the boyfriend as he could get: tall, very muscular, beautiful smile, and rich, chocolate brown skin. The girl’s father accompanied her to the delivery room. Odd, but ok. The more she pushed, the louder she cried. In between, she kept saying ‘Sorry daddy’. Finally, out slid a very beautiful, chocolate brown baby boy. I thought her father was going to pass out on my delivery room floor. I did my usual ‘it’s a boy!’ and said nothing else. I handed him off to a nursery nurse and got dad a chair. The new mom said ‘I’m sorry daddy,’ over and over again. Her mom, now frowned up, came to see the baby, took one look, started asking God for forgiveness, and left. I sent her dad home a short bit later, admonishing him to react at home, not here. I set up a time for our counselor to meet with him before I left. After talking to new mom, she admitted her gym teacher had been giving her ‘special treatment’. I explained coitus to her, and she said she’d only kissed the boyfriend but had stayed after school to be with her gym teacher. I’m state mandated to report child abuse, so I did. Two weeks later, with her world shattered, her baby was given up for adoption. I wish her the best. Of note, this was 1989.”
I Felt Terrible
I used to work with a guy whose wife was pregnant. Near time for delivery, everyone at our place of business had a big party with gifts, money, etc.
So big day comes, water breaks, they get in the car to go to hospital. She breaks the news on the way there that it’s not his, the kid is another race, and if he could just drop her off at the hospital and then leave, that would be great.
He took a few days off work, found a new apartment, moved out, filed for divorce, etc. He called in to work and told someone what happened, news spread pretty fast. All the congratulations cards and such were cleaned up and thrown away. Every one was very sensitive to his pain.
Except, somehow, I don’t know how, I did not get the news.
So on his first day back, I walked into the office he shared with 6-7 other guys and said ‘Hey hey, Daddio, how’s fatherhood so far? Getting any sleep? Got some pictures? Let’s see the little tike!’
He slowly lifted his head to look at me with a painful look. The room was dead silent. One of his workmates stood up, grabbed my arm and walked me out of the room, shushing me. ‘What happened, ‘ I asked, ‘Did it die? What’s the problem?’
When he told me, I about died myself. I still feel bad for the dude and it’s been 30 years.
“In high school, my gym teacher was married to the biology teacher, who was also fantastic friends with my math teacher (always saw them chatting and walking together). Well, the bio teacher got pregnant and when she brought the baby in, there was an un-ignorable resemblance to the math teacher. Her husband ended up driving to the nearest hospital and shooting himself dead in the parking lot. Was a big scandal at our relatively small private school. One of a few actually.”
“I worked as a lab tech before I became a nurse. We had a set of twins in the NICU that were super early and the mom was still in the OR getting sewed up from the cesarean. I was drawing Baby B’s blood when mom was wheeled over to Baby A’s isolette. She was crying and said, ‘Oh thank god you’re not black! I have been so worried the last 7 months.’
So newborn babies, especially when they’re born early, are very pink, almost red. So even if a baby was part-black, their skin isn’t necessarily dark yet. But looking at these babies, it was obvious they were going to be black. The shape of the face, the texture of the hair, and Baby B that I was working on had an intense Mongolian spot.
A few weeks later, my NICU nurse friend told me that the babies were now on a ‘no-info status’ meaning security alert, can’t give anyone information about them, can’t refer to them by name, etc. She said there was a huge fight because the mom’s husband (white guy) obviously noticed that the babies were half black and that mom had cheated on him and got pregnant. The real dad (black guy) came in and didn’t realize the mom was even married.
Those poor babies.”