Holly Willoughby baffled by advice given to new mum by Vanessa Feltz

Marie Claire Dorking

Holly Willoughby was seemingly left baffled by Vanessa Feltz’s advice to a new mum who was struggling to co-parent with her baby’s dad.

A caller rang into ITV’s ‘This Morning’ asking for advice about whether she was being unreasonable to give her partner an ultimatum over their three-month-old.

She said her partner had been ignoring her calls and not regularly seeing the child and asked if she was being fair in telling her partner to step up and be a dad or get out of her life.

The woman, who gave her name as ‘Karen’, explained that the couple currently live apart, and she was finding it difficult to get the baby’s dad to help with parenting duties.

“He never comes over to see him, he ignores me when I call him, I have another son so it’s very hard to do everything. I just get on with it. Am I being unfair giving him an ultimatum?” she asked.

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Giving her advice, agony aunt, Vanessa she should give her partner more of a chance to step up to the parenting plate.

“Well the baby’s only three months old so there are dads and mums that find it very hard to bond with a new baby,” she said.

Holly Willoughby seemed shocked by parenting advice given by Vanessa Feltz on This Morning [Photo: Getty]
Holly Willoughby seemed shocked by parenting advice given by Vanessa Feltz on This Morning [Photo: Getty]

She went on to say that she thought it might be easier for the dad when the baby gets a little bit older.

“Lots of people of all sexes say ‘I don’t very much like new babies’. So I’d give a longer chance,” she said suggesting, to Holly and co-presenter, Phillip Schofield’s surprise, that the new mum wait 18 months for a relationship to “spring up.”

“Obviously you live separately, you’ve got separate lives I’d try to incorporate him as gently as possible and see whether a relationship should form,” she continued.

She suggested the mum try to organise an arrangement to go to the park for a picnic.

Looking shocked Holly replied: “I just think that when you’ve got a three-month-old baby and you’re exhausted and you’re doing everything on your own, the hurt and pain.”

“I get that you don’t want to close the door because it’s so important for the child to have a relationship with their father – I get that,” she continued looking sceptical.

“Give him a chance to step up!” Vanessa responded.

Before an unsure Holly interjected: “But to keep trying to organise picnics?”

“It would be great if he could become a dad,” Phil conceded. “But after six months? Biff him!”

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Holly has plenty of parenting experience considering she is a mum-of-three to Harry (9), Belle, (7), and Chester, (4) with her husband Dan Baldwin.

Although she often offers advice to viewers on parenting dilemmas Holly is often questioned about her own family decisions.

When news broke that she would present ‘I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!’ fans took to social media to question the career move and what it would mean for her children.

And the TV presenter also drew criticism for deciding to step down from her debut lifestyle brand just weeks before the launch date in order to spend more time with her family.

The ‘This Morning’ viewer wasn’t the only one who is struggling with co-parenting issues. Last week a mum took to Mumsnet to express her fury after discovering her four-year-old son regularly shares a bed with her ex-boyfriend and his new partner.

Parents regularly go online to crowd-source opinions on divisive parenting issues, such as whether it’s OK to have a favourite child and whether it’s safe to leave your newborn child alone while you shower.

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