Boy Becomes Father at 13 - "I Thought It Would Be Good to Have a Baby"

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Looking and sounding more like an older brother than a dad (his voice hasn't broken yet), here's 13-year-old Alfie Patten tenderly cradling his newborn daughter, Maisie, who was born on Monday. Alfie says he's up for the challenge. "I didn't know what it would be like to be a dad," he said. "I will be good, though, and care for it."

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When this baby-faced, 4-foot tall boy was asked how he plans to provide for the baby financially, he replied, "What's financially?" Asked what he'll do about money, he says "I don't know," and looks away. Diapers cost "a lot," Alfie thinks, but he's not sure how he's going to pay for them. "I don't really get pocket money. My dad sometimes gives me £10."

Clearly, Alfie, Maisie, and her mom, 15-year-old Chantelle Stedman, will need to be supported by their parents. The three are currently living with Chantelle's parents and her five brothers. Her father, Steve, is jobless.

It might just be the adults that got everyone into this situation. "The Stedmans let the kids run wild on the street until all hours, they have no control over them," a neighbor told The Daily Mail. Alfie was often encouraged to stay overnight -- even keeping a school uniform there -- despite the fact that Alfie's mother lives nearby, and despite the fact he was only 12. Who's watching who here?

A lot of parents feel daunted by the responsibilities of parenthood, but for Alfie, ignorance just might be bliss. He seems determined to be the best dad he can be, while being woefully unaware about how his life has changed. "Everyone is telling him things and it's going round in his head," said Alfie's dad, Dennis. "It hasn't really dawned on him. He hasn't got a clue of what the baby means and can't explain how he feels. All he knows is mum and dad will help...They have no idea what lies ahead."

Still, Alfie wanted to be the first to hold the baby, born at 7 lbs 3 oz, and he spent every day at the hospital after Maisie was born. The kid deserves some credit for stepping up and wanting to be a dad, even if he's still a boy.

Dad Dennis says the next thing on the agenda is a "birds and bees" talk between him and Alfie. Seems like too little, too late. Chantelle reportedly became pregnant after one night of unprotected sex; Alfie was 12 at the time.

Tell us what you think about Alfie becoming a father at age 13.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.