In Summary
  • Should one undertake this responsibility with full knowledge of not being the biological parent, and in the absence of legal documents sanctioning such a relationship, then that individual assumes parental position of either mother or father, through the concept of contract by conduct.
  • However, the law allows such persons without biological connection as herein explained to sign a parental responsibility agreement before a court of competent jurisdiction or pursue an adoption process.
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Hi Eric, 

I have a female friend who happened to fall in love with "a stranger". I refer to him as a stranger because after se close to one year of dating, he never revealed to her the location of his house in Nairobi, his rural home, where he works, his age, his networks (friends and relatives) marital status among other relevant information.

During that time, he kept promising this girl so many things that never came to materialise. These included things like paying her rent, son's school fees, upkeep (shopping and other care).  In the process, instead, he was the one taking the girl's money. He asked the girl to allow him to change the son's names on the original birth certificate to reflect him as the father so that he could enroll him (son) and the mother in a health insurance scheme.

But after a short period, he took the girl’s phone and disappeared for months only to show up when the girl was  in another relationship. He's been threatening the girl with death. Lately, he sent her an email asking whether she knew the repercussions of changing the son's name.

My question is, can anyone like the way I have explained above make such changes, if yes, what's the legal procedure of doing so? Secondly, how can the girl stop this guy from causing her unnecessary distraction that's likely to affect her current relationship?


Kind regards,


Alinory Kwena.



Dear Alinory,

Relationships are meant to create joy, bliss and mutual benefits between people. Nonetheless, unfortunate events sometimes kill the intended symbiosis. Stories of broken relationships are heart-breaking and distressful especially for those directly affected.

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