Dear Bunmi,

Since we split early in the year, my ex and I shared custody of our four-year-old daughter. This has worked out well, but she has started refering to her dad’s new girlfriend as ‘mummy’. I don’t have anything against the woman, but my daughter has only known her for a couple of months. The worst part is that I’ve never seen them correcting her. I want to stop taking her there for a while. I know it’s wrong, but I’m her only mummy.


by e-mail.

Dear Naomi,

I understand how hard this must be for you, especially as your ex has only been with his girlfriend for a couple of months. I would suggest you sit down with him for a non-confrontational, non-judgemental chat. Maybe it would help to say you’re grateful his girlfriend is making bonds with your little girl, but it’s very important he understands that calling his partner Mummy could be quite confusing to her. Let him know that you really want his new partner and your child to have a close relationship. Maybe you could suggest that they all came up with a special name just for his girlfriend.

Stopping her from seeing her dad will only create bad feelings. Mums and dads need to appear united (even if they’re not) with regards to their children.

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