When Should a Man You're Dating Tell You He's Expecting a Child?

Dominique Perry & Sarunas J. Jackson
By Veronica Wells 

This week, “Insecure” fans were surprised to learn that Dominque Perry, the actress who played Tasha the bank teller, gave birth to a child fathered by her castmate Sarunas J. Jackson, (the man who plays Dro.)

There was a shock factor associated with this revelation not only because no one would have put these two together but also because there was more than a little bit of drama surrounding the entire situation. When Dominque first shared the news of her pregnancy, she made it clear that she was under the impression that she’d have to go it alone...

And shared this message on instagram:


Since the drama of her child’s birth unfolded, Perry has altered the caption (and deleted other photos from her page,) removing a previous version that said, "Let’s take over this world young Queen…just the 2 of us.

Secondly, the news was met with strong reactions because there was another woman, MTV reality personality, Kaylen Zahara, who claimed that though she had previously dated Sarunas, she learned that he was expecting a child like the rest of us did, on The Shade Room. 

She wrote on Instagram,
“Ladies listen to your intuition! These dudes will be in your crib, eating your food & laying up with you, taking you on dates, etc but got kids on the way without you knowing. TUH. These insecure men can’t never keep it 100. Congrats tho.” 
Drama. 

Since then, Zahara has received additional information from Jackson and decided that she overreacted in blasting him like that. Now, she wants to take the high road and doesn’t want to share the details.

Too late, sis. 

The childishness spawned by social media is not the issue here. I’m bringing this drama to your plate because the entire scenario spawned a pretty interesting conversation at my office. 

When should a man you’re dating disclose the fact that he’s expecting a child? 

I thought the answer was simple. As soon as possible, like second date at the latest. Having a child changes your life in every way imaginable. It affects the time you’ll be able to spend with me, the money you’ll be able to invest in dates and other plans, the people I’ll have to interact with—meaning the child and his/her mother, and it affects the emotions of all parties involved. There’s a good chance you could end up loving a man’s child. And if the relationship doesn’t work out, it can be extremely difficult, emotionally and logistically for both the adults and children involved, to maintain a connection with a child that is not yours. Children change lives. And they don’t have to be yours to do so. I am definitely one of those women who did not want to date a man with children for all the reasons I listed above. Relationships with just two people are hard enough. 

Having a child also speaks to a lifestyle that dating partners should know about. The same way you would want to know if the man you’re dating doesn’t have a job or believes Bill Cosby was taken down because he was trying to buy NBC. It will shape the trajectory of your dating life. 

But a friend and coworker could understand why a man might not want to share this type of information early in the game. She likened it to sharing the fact that you’re living with an incurable STD. The information can scare people away before you get a chance to know and like them. She said it becomes a particular issue when the man doesn’t know if the baby in question is even his child. 

I can understand that if you’re unsure, why share? But I think we can argue that any decent human being should be actively pursuing information that lets him know whether or not his sperm is helping to bring another soul into the world. It’s a big deal. 

And withholding that type of “big deal” information takes away my options in a dating situation. Let me know the truth of your situation so I can decide if I want to ride out or run. 



Most importantly though, a person’s lack of interest in or outright denial of their child speaks volumes not only about your character but how you’ll treat me in a romantic relationship. If you can’t be bothered to talk about your own flesh and blood, then what type of care and concern can I expect for you to show me?

When should a guy tell the woman he's dating that he's expecting a child?
Veronica Wells is the culture editor at MadameNoire.com. She is also the author of “Bettah Days” and the creator of the website NoSugarNoCreamMag. You can follow her on Facebook and on Instagram and Twitter @VDubShrug.

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