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Question
Posted by: Manners | 2012/01/20

Wife cheated and had a child

i recently discovered by accident that my wife had an affair 15 years ago and had a baby with the man. all along i thought the child was mine. we have another child who is 12 years old. i now have doubts on the paternity. i am devasted. how do i deal with this?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Of course this is a devastating discovery, because you were cheated in so many ways - there was an affair, a failure to take preautions, you were lied to for years about the affair, and the child produced by the affair was passed off as your own child.
Oaternity tests can clarify whether either or both children are yours. But remember that the children are totally innocent, and their needs must be carefully protected. In effect, if you are not the biofather of the oldest child, you are effectively his/her adoptive father, and to him you are the only dad he/she has ever had.
There may be legal issues about arranging to formally adopt him, so as to protect his rights as your son.
See a counsellor to help you work out how best to cope with this, and what to do about the marriage.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: pk | 2012/01/28

The situation must be extremely painful for you . There is however. a small chance that your wife has made up the whole story to get you to divorce her for reasons of her own . It is therefore of the utmost importance that before you do anything,you have a DNA test done . Once you have the results you can decide how you want to proceed .

Reply to pk
Posted by: Sharon | 2012/01/27

THERE IS NOT GREATER PAIN MY DEAR, ASK GOD FOR STRENGTH AND COURAGE TO MOVE FORWARD, LET TIME HEAL YOUR PAIN AND WHEN THE TIMEIS RIGHT, YOU WILL MAKE THE RIGHT DECISION, ONLY YOU CAN MAKE AN HONEST DECISION, NO ONE HAS TO TELL YOU WHAT YOU DO, ITS BETTER IF YOU SUFFER THE CONSEQUENCES OF THE DECISION YOU HAVE MADE,UNLIKE SUFFERING THE CONSEQUENCES OF A DECISION SOMEONE ELSE HAS INFLUENCED YOU TO MAKE, YOU KNOW WHAT YOU FEEL, I CAN ONLY IMAGINE WHAT IT MIGHT BE LIKE.

Reply to Sharon
Posted by: Maphoko | 2012/01/27

I think it''s better to cut your losses and move on. There is nothing there for you anymore. Even if you did try to work things out, you need to ask yourself if you will ever be able to trust her again. As for the kids, I really feel sorry for them because, for them to find out the truth after so many years will be devastating to them, esp if theirs was a close relationship with the father they''ve come to know all these years  you.

Reply to Maphoko
Posted by: Sisi | 2012/01/27

Askies. This is just too painful. I support Motlalentwa. I don''t believe in the " for the sake of the innocent children policy"  at all because one day they will remind you that you are not their father. Their parents can also just take them at anytime after sucking you dry and claim their biological right. You will be told that every child deserves to be with their mother and father. So it''s best to learn to accept your defeat like a gentleman and remove yourself from this situation. However you need to sue them both from all the costs of raising their children. I''m sure with a good lawyer you can kick her out of your house without paying her a cent.

Reply to Sisi
Posted by: Shelley | 2012/01/27

I''ve seen a lot of emotional type responses to your posting, and while the feeling behind them may well be of good intent, I''m not sure that they really help you right now.
First you need to know if she is still continuing the affair or affairs, and if not, when did they stop. I personally don''t believe that a marrage can be saved when there is a betrayal such as this over many years, but if she recognised her mistake and has been faithful and a good wife to you for the last 10+ years, you may wish to weigh that against the indiscressions of 15 years ago.
Should you choose to try and save the marriage, you will both need to see a marriage counsellor to help you work through the feelings of betrayal and rebuilding the trust.
Either way, how and what you tell the children will need to be carefully thought out. Keep in mind that you have been a father to them in the only way that really matters so don''t let her betrayal cloud your feelings towards them, they are not to blame here. Also remember, learning of this, especially during their teenage years when they are working out their identities, will be highly traumatic to them as well and they will naturally fear what it will all mean for them and whether you will still love them. They will likely also need counselling through the process.
If you decide to end the marriage, seek good legal council. The minefield of divorce is not one to be taken lightly and can be financially crucifying if your wife decides to fight you for the estate. Make sure you protect yourself.
Finally, it will be very easy to fall into a dark space during this time. Make sure you have friends and family around you who will support you and help you get through this difficult time.
If I can give you any measure of hope, it would be to tell you that you will get through this in time, as difficult and impossible as it might seem now. And whether you believe me or not, it may just be that this event is the catalyst that ultimately brings you to a completely different, and much happier life. Good luck to you, I wish you strength through all of this.

Reply to Shelley
Posted by: Royal | 2012/01/27

We cannot tell/suggest to you what to do as this is a very sensitive matter that involves two people and one of them made a mistake. And anyway from the man''s point of view who does not make mistakes. We all have one way or the other made mistakes in the past or even currently. My advise is whatever the decision you come to please don''t let the grass (children) suffer in the process. There''s a thing called forgiveness quoted even in the Bible especially if you think that you still love your wife. And if you choose to divorce her because you think the mistake is unbearable do not let the children suffer because someone mentioned that this would haunt you for the rest of your life. But also your wife should help you find a solution to this problem. I know of married couples who found one another in bed with someone else and they have reconciled with each other and forgiven each other and currently staying together. I know that we cannot generalize about this and that each situation got to be treated differently. My emphasis is that the solution to this problem lies on the finger tips of both of them.

Reply to Royal
Posted by: Doreen | 2012/01/27

Sorry for the discovery you had after 15 years, I would suggest that you adopt the innocent children and make her pay maintenance on both children and they must rip off her pension money to repay the pain you suffered and she must repay all the monies you have spent through the children.

Reply to Doreen
Posted by: PG | 2012/01/27

I can imagine myself in your situation and understand how painful and confusing this will be for you. Suggest you see a professional counsellor, get out of their lives and give yourself some time to think things over. Time to think things over will not only heal you but also help you make a more sensible decision. I''m sure the children will always remain in your heart and theirs as well.

Reply to PG
Posted by: SIDNEY COAD WILLIAMS | 2012/01/27

ONCE A CHEATER ALWAYS A CHEATER. YOU HAVE TO DECIDE WHETHER TO DIVORCE HER. OR NOT. THIS IS A PERSONAL MATTER.
AS FAR AS THE CHILD OR CHILDREN ARE CONCERNED THE BEST WAY TO ASCERTAIN WHO IS THE FATHER IS, IS BY DNA TESTING.
IF THE DNA TESTS CONFIRM THAT YOU ARE NOT THE FATHER THEN YOU SHOULD CONSULT AN ATTORNEY TO SEE WHAT FINANCIAL STEPS YOU CAN TAKE IF THE DNA TESTS ESTABLISHES THAT SOMEONE ELSE IN THE FATHER THEN THEY SHOULD BE FINANCIALLY RESPONSIBLE.
SIDNEY COAD WILLIAMS

Reply to SIDNEY COAD WILLIAMS
Posted by: Dees | 2012/01/27

I would like to what made this sick woman confess after 15 years!! I think she needs help! She does not deserve you!
End this Fairy Tale - Divorce Her!

Reply to Dees
Posted by: Renegade | 2012/01/27

As devastating as this story is, the children are innocent and I am sure you love them totally. Please don''t severe ties with them, as they will be as devastated as you are if you did that. However, you should seek help as has been suggested. There is so much anger, betrayal, pain and unhappiness to work through, and perhaps then you will be able to make a rational decision as to the road forward with your marriage. I hope all be well in your world again.

Reply to Renegade
Posted by: T | 2012/01/27

I cannot imagine the pain you are going through. I am speechless. To have peace of mind, if I were you I was going to leave all of them. She doesn''t love and she has has no respect of you. Kids are innocent but they will be a reminder because the mother will want to her kids. Maybe the their father will out an claim them. But the choice is in your hands, search yourself to see if you can leave without them. Please before you go any farther see a professional counsellor or Church Minister for healing in your heart.

Reply to T
Posted by: LadyK | 2012/01/27

I can imagine the pain you are going through, the children are innocent. Leave her to suffer the pain and life will never end there.

Reply to LadyK
Posted by: BOMI | 2012/01/27

OBVIOUSLY YOUR WIFE IS A LIAR AND A CHEATER, I SAY CUT YOUR LOSSES AND RUN...HES BEEN HAVING A FIFTEEN YEARS AFFAIR WITH ANOTHER MAN/// YHO, DONT KNOW WHAT ID DO IF WERE YOU. SHE DOESNT RESPECT NOR DOES SHE LOVE YOU. HER VOWS ON HER WEDDING DAY MEANS THAT SHE WAS FOOLING YOU AND GOD. PERIOD. YOU DESERVE BETTER.

Reply to BOMI
Posted by: Motlalentwa | 2012/01/25

Leave her with the kids, they are not yours, she chose to have two kids with the guy now set her free so that she can be able to go and live with the guy. Pain will go away with time. I am asking myself how can you be so dead.

Reply to Motlalentwa
Posted by: almost mad | 2012/01/23

I think you need to leave her, not the kids though. the children are innocent. First make arrangments to adopt them, then leave her.

Reply to almost mad
Posted by: Manners | 2012/01/23

i have since discovered that the second child is not mine. my wife continued the affair with the same guy and had the second child. she only confessed to this two days ago. i have never felt so much pain in my life, it seems like life has no meaning anymore for me. has anybody been through this? how did they handle it?

Reply to Manners
Posted by: Chris758 | 2012/01/20

That is a bad situation but please do not blame the child!!! And yes, I would also worry about the second child!!

As for her and your relationship.......you will never trust her again and will always ask yourself how many times she cheated on you. Get professional help and medication!!! You will not survive without it.

Reply to Chris758
Posted by: ja | 2012/01/20

divorce her the pain will haunt you for the rest of your life.

Reply to ja
Posted by: XXX | 2012/01/20

Tough to find this out so much later but I''m sure you love the child as if she was your own anyway-how sure are u that it is not yours anyhow!
As tough as it might be,it is a long time ago and hopefully your wife has not gone that route again.
You might want to speak to a psychologist or marriage counsellor to help you .
Best of luck

Reply to XXX
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/01/20

Of course this is a devastating discovery, because you were cheated in so many ways - there was an affair, a failure to take preautions, you were lied to for years about the affair, and the child produced by the affair was passed off as your own child.
Oaternity tests can clarify whether either or both children are yours. But remember that the children are totally innocent, and their needs must be carefully protected. In effect, if you are not the biofather of the oldest child, you are effectively his/her adoptive father, and to him you are the only dad he/she has ever had.
There may be legal issues about arranging to formally adopt him, so as to protect his rights as your son.
See a counsellor to help you work out how best to cope with this, and what to do about the marriage.

Reply to cybershrink

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