DEAR DEIDRE: MY husband has hurt me in the cruellest way possible: Having a baby with his mistress.
I’m 49 and we’ve been married for 20 years. He’s 48 and was always adamant he didn’t want children.
Though I’d have liked kids, I accepted his decision because I loved him and I didn’t want to lose him.
Now I’m menopausal and it’s too late for me.
Last year, I discovered he’d been cheating throughout our marriage.
He admitted to three affairs and even told me he loved the latest woman he was seeing, adding that he was attracted to her mind.
She’s younger and prettier than me, so it felt like a rejection on every level.
He agreed to stop seeing her, so we could work on repairing our marriage. We even got our sex life back on track.
But then she contacted him saying she was pregnant with his baby and intended to keep it.
When he told me this news, it felt like I’d been kicked in the guts.
I told him that even though I understood he had to support his child, I didn’t want him to have any contact with the woman or his baby. He agreed.
We’ve been trying to work things out, but I know that since the baby was born a few months ago, he has been sneaking out to see them.
Each time he goes, it hurts — a deep pain I can’t describe.
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I haven’t yet said anything to him because I can’t face having another argument.
I keep thinking that if only I’d known about his affairs, I could have left years ago and perhaps had the chance to meet someone else and have a family of my own.
Part of me feels like I should call it quits. But then I will have wasted 20 years of my life. How can I get over this?
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DEIDRE SAYS: Your husband’s betrayal has turned your life upside-down and made you question your entire marriage, as well as your decision not to have kids.
You are grieving for the children you will never have. But the fact you both chose to work on your marriage after you discovered his betrayal suggests that, on some level, you do want to be together.
If this is still the case, you need to talk to him about your feelings.
My support packs on Cheating and Can’t Be Faithful should help you both gain a greater insight into what happened and find ways to repair your relationship.
The baby is an innocent party in this situation and it is not fair to deprive him or her of a father who wants to be part of their life.
But equally, you don’t have to stay with your husband if this is too painful for you.
Some relationship counselling – either alone or together – could really help at this time. Contact Relate (relate.org.uk).
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