Mad Men star January Jones has been spotted out on the town with her brand new baby boy Xander (looking amazing, of course), and while we all want to get a glimpse of that little dude when he's not covered by a blanket, there's something else I'm even more interested in finding out. Who is Xander's father? Since Jones decided to leave the baby's father's name off the birth certificate, we still don't know who made Betty Draper Francis' baby.
Maybe because I'm on Team Don, but I'm finding this whole scenario very distressing. I know it's none of my business (I know!), yet I can't help but wonder why Jones, or any mother, would intentionally leave the father's identity blank. Won't Xander need to have that information, in legal form, at some point?
Apparently it's a lot more complicated than that, as I found out through digging through lots of single mom forums and legal-ese sites. In California, where Jones resides, if you are not married to the father of your baby, you cannot put his name on the birth certificate unless he fills out a "Declaration of Paternity" at the hospital. He can also do this later to amend the birth certificate, but he has to be present. You can't just pretend Brad Pitt is your baby daddy willy-nilly. Huh.
Now we have the question of what father wouldn't want to be present and accounted for when it comes to the birth of his child? Perhaps a married man, or just a big ol' jerk. Big ol' jerk accounts for many of the explanations single moms have given for not filling out that part of the form, or asking the father of their child to do the same. Of course, there are the sperm donor explanations too, which make perfect sense. While it may be hard to understand how that can benefit a child -- short of keeping an abuser, addict, or other unsavory character away from your baby -- many women claim it makes life easier to just ignore an uninvolved dad.
Whether or not this is Jones' reasoning for leaving the big blank spot, we may never know. Regardless, I hope Xander has plenty of love and support so he never knows that his father was unwilling or unable to be involved in his life.
Would you leave the "father" part blank on a birth certificate?
Image via AMC