Drew Sidora and Ralph Pittman reveal their son’s thoughts on the stalled adoption.
Drew Sidora of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” fantasises about the day her husband, Ralph Pittman, legally adopts her son, Josiah — aka “Jojo” — from a previous relationship.
However, according to his stepfather, the 11-year-old is content with the current situation.
“I walked over to Jojo and asked him the question. ‘Do you want me to adopt you?’ I asked. ‘What would change?’ he asked. ‘Nothing would change,’ I said. Page Six has an exclusive joint interview with Pittman, 39, and Sidora, 37.
“And he said, ‘So why are we doing it then?'” recalls the entrepreneur.
“We have no reason to do it.” He already has my surname, so there’s no benefit to adopting him for Jojo — he’s already mine.”
Pittman changed his mind about adopting Josiah after speaking with the teen’s biological father, who seemed open to developing a deeper relationship with his son in the future.
This decision was made after Sidora expressed her strong desire for the adoption to take place on “RHOA,” citing her ex’s lack of involvement in co-parenting.
“In an ideal world, Ralph would simply walk in and make that commitment.” But I want Ralph to make the decision. “I would never force him to do it and… then he ends up with resentment,” says the “Winner” singer, who married Pittman in 2014.
“I don’t want that to happen. So I put that conversation on hold. Of course, I would love for that to happen in the future,” she adds. “I understand what Ralph is saying to some extent. And I’ve just decided to accept it and see where it takes us.”
Sidora, on the other hand, can’t help but wonder what might happen to Josiah if “God forbid, something happens to me,” she says.
“What happens legally?” Sidora then turns to her husband and says, “I would like you to have custody of him.”
Pittman claims that Josiah will “always” be his son no matter what. “I don’t need to go through the legal process to prove that he’s my son,” he says confidently. “He’s already my child.” He addresses me as “Dad.”
The handsome “Househusband,” who also has two young children with Sidora, Machai and Aniya, does not want to jeopardise his relationship with Josiah by making a decision without the middle schooler’s input.
“One thing I would despise the most is for Jojo to grow up and have that come-to-Jesus conversation with his father, asking, ‘Why weren’t you in my life?'” “And then the father says, ‘Well, because they actually took me away from you,'” he explains.
“This is something I always say. I have a lot to teach Jojo. But I can’t teach him where he is or who he is biologically. I can’t teach him about his ancestors.”
But, as Pittman points out, he can “love him” and is willing to revisit adoption discussions when Josiah is ready.
“Jojo is 11 years old and extremely bright and intelligent. He’s gotten to the point where he knows exactly what he likes and dislikes. So, if Jojo comes in and says, ‘Dad, I want you to adopt me because I understand what adoption means and this is exactly why I want to do it,’ we can have that conversation,” he says.
“But that should be entirely Jojo’s decision,” Pittman continues, Sidora nodding in agreement. “And it should be well thought out, uninfluenced by anyone else, and something that he genuinely wants in light of all the different dynamics — including his biological father.”
Pittman’s forthcoming book, “The Step in Parenting,” which will be available in stores on January 31, 2023, details the triumphs and challenges of his step-parenting journey.
“I’m married to a woman who has a biological child who is not mine. “That’s difficult,” he admits. “When you have a biological child together, isn’t it usually 50/50?” When you are a stepparent, you have no say. You have to earn the right to have a voice, and that voice will almost always be inferior to your mate’s.”
“You have to prepare yourself because there is no instruction manual that can teach you how to be a stepparent — and I’m just trying to help by sharing my experiences,” the new author adds.
Check out this week’s episode of Page Six’s “Virtual Reali-Tea” podcast for more from Pittman and Sidora.
“The Real Housewives of Atlanta” airs on Bravo on Sundays at 8 p.m. ET.