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strangeasfiction posted 1/26/2014 07:08 AM

First post here. I'll attempt to provide the short version. For the last two years I have been traveling for work a lot and generally spending more time with work than I probably ought to have done. This coincided with our starting a family; we have two children, 3 and 1. Basically, my wife felt abandoned and 'checked out' of the marriage more than a year ago. I didn't know this until last month. I knew things at work had to change but I had no idea that my wife had apparently fallen out of love. As she puts it, she feels we are friends raising children. Right around Christmas I learn that she's been having a brief (two month) but serious affair. She explained most of the above to me. I was hurt and upset, of course, but mostly what I felt was a deep guilt for having been so blind. I immediately forgave her for the affair and turned my life around. She was 100% certain she was leaving me until this turnaround happened. I guess it was the last thing she expected. Anyway, I've been much more present in her life and, more importantly, in my kids' lives. I knew we still had serious issues to work out but I was hopeful the new me would cause her to be willing to work with me on those issues. Then two weeks ago comes the bombshell. She's pregnant. It's not mine.

The last two weeks have been a roller coaster of emotions. She says she loves the other guy, doesn't really love me, but also that she isn't sure what she wants to do or what is best for the kids. I'm so desperate to have the chance to save our marriage and I'm terrified of having half of my kids' years taken from me. I'm willing to accept the completely innocent and (added layer spoiler alert) interracial stepchild. She is quite confused as to what she wants and it will be a few months before she makes a decision. I know, I'm being blind to so many things here. Right now I'm just laser focused on keeping this family together. Healthy or not that's just where I am. Is this even possible? Can any marriage survive something like this? Am I crazy for holding on to a thread? I've seen a few stories on this site about wayward husbands impregnating the OW but I haven't seen any about the other way around.

This is the short version, obviously. I have my reasons to be hopeful despite what I'm hearing her say. Are they good reasons? Rhetorically perhaps but reality may be a different matter. Anyway, I know the OG and he wants to be a good dad no matter what. He claims he wants us to work things out but I know he'd be thrilled to have her all to himself. This is just such an extreme situation which (in my mind) came out of nowhere and reached maximum velocity so quickly. It's a lot to absorb.

We've been to counseling twice. The first time really broke the ice and we are at least taking. The prior three weeks was deadly quiet on any issues of substance. My wife, at present, is not willing to commit to reconciling so I'm not sure what good additional couple's counseling will do.

I need perspective, hope and support. I need a way to survive each day without wild emotional swings between hope and the darkest despair. I need to be present for my kids because I don't know how much time I have left with them. Of course, that makes our wonderful moments together bittersweet. I need some kind of happiness in my life even though the best possible outcome (we stay married for convenience) doesn't seem to include total happiness for me.

Anybody out there who has faced this? Their wife carrying her lover's child? I'm lost and confused. Not to mention totally panicked, bordering on depression, hollow, in deep pain and emasculated. I guess that sums it up. After all this, I still love her and I have for 15 years, 9.5 of those married to her.

Justgreatnews posted 1/26/2014 07:30 AM

You've got your work and decisions cut out for you.

Sure you'll get lots of advice, but in the end the decisions lie within you and your family. Counseling will help, surely, if both parties participate.

Under the circumstances you've outlined, I'd be unable to remain with her. Her current attitude, and the pregnancy would be more than I could overcome. That is me, not you, of course.

You can't fix this by yourself. It will require a hyper-committed marriage/spouse also, I'd think.

TOMTEFAR posted 1/26/2014 07:31 AM


This is though! Ifeel for you....

I have come acros a few stories like yours. There's a forum for that on marriagebuilders. Don't know what to tell you though. It's either a compleete doormat or a very very strong individual that tries R in this situation. Your's is the worst kind where it will be totaly obvious that you aren't the father. So everybody you meet will know and everybody will talk about it behind your backs. Are you strong enought to handle that?

Why is it that you want your W back so much?

Could you change your job such as you don't have to travel so much. Then you could īD your wife and still keep 50% with the kids?

Tex08 posted 1/26/2014 07:33 AM

I don't have any advice to offer but I can hear the despair and the cry out for assurance, advice, and hope... Just know that you have been heard... The weekends are very slow on SI but there will be lots of people reaching out to you soon so please don't get discouraged! Take care of yourself and your children for the moment being. The replies to your post will start rolling in, I promise!!

Althea posted 1/26/2014 07:40 AM

strangeasfiction, I'm so sorry you are here, but it is a good place to have found. Weekends seem to be slow, but there will be others along. When my babies were the ages of yours, my husband worked crazy hours, and I felt abandoned, and it was a kind of betrayal. You agree to have children together, and then they are born and bam, it is suddenly supposed to be a one woman show. It is lonely. Here is the thing though, that isn't what made her cheat. In fact, it is almost certain there is NOTHING you could have done or not done that would have made her cheat. She could have talked to you, or asked for counseling, or asked for a divorce. Those were all options, and ones that would have far less horrible consequences for your family.

No matter how this turns out, it is a horrible roller coaster ride, and the mood swings and depression are horrible. I couldn't eat for 3 weeks. My advice is to stop trying to nice your wife back. She is in the fog right now and nothing you can do will bring her back. Eat, drink, get into individual counseling; and save all of your extra energy for your babies. You can't control her or the outcome of this situation. Hugs.

strangeasfiction posted 1/26/2014 07:57 AM

It's either a compleete doormat or a very very strong individual that tries R in this situation.

Yeah, I figured that out quickly. I like to think I'm the latter but I'm too close to really say for sure. The counselor said I was very mature. Great, but that won't mean anything to me if my life falls apart.
Your's is the worst kind where it will be totaly obvious that you aren't the father. So everybody you meet will know and everybody will talk about it behind your backs. Are you strong enought to handle that?

My wife and I agree that we don't really care what anyone else thinks. Having two kids already gives us the perspective as to what is really important in life. I expressed my desire that the OG just go away and I would adopt the child. That's not going to happen, though. This would be a stepchild like any other except conceived in reverse order. The OG would have joint custody and I wouldn't attempt to pass the kid off as my own even if we were of the same race.
Why is it that you want your W back so much?

Love? And because we had a lot of great years. She's been with this guy for two months. I don't want to underestimate the feelings involved but they haven't been in a real relationship. They sneak away at lunch sometimes and text all day. I may be living in a bit of a fantasy world but so is she. I don't want to stay to be a doormat the rest of my life. I want to stay because I think we can be great again and we can BOTH be happy.
Could you change your job such as you don't have to travel so much. Then you could īD your wife and still keep 50% with the kids?

Already working on it. It's totally doable. This is something I have to do whether we stay together or not. Right now, though, I'm not emotionally able to consider a future without our family together.

wanttogoforward posted 1/26/2014 08:12 AM

This is just an awful situation for you. I feel for you.... I really do... all you were doing was working for the benefit of your family. When my children were very young we were in a similar work situation. My H would get up before the children and return 5-6 days a week after they were in bed. He saw them maybe one day each week.... and he frequently left for work for a month or two at a time and he didn't see them at all during that time. I did not use this as an excuse to have an A though... sure I was lonely, felt overworked and abandoned... but I also knew how hard he was working for us and was also under a great deal of stress. He had very little say in his work hours and such at the time (govt).

That said.. is your wife willing to do the hard work needed?? SHE above all else needs to prove to you she wants this marriage as she is the one who left it emotionally and physically. Counseling is a good first step.... but in the end she needs to own her own actions or you will never repair the M. And she needs to go NC with the OM for this to start. She seems to be riding the fence and eating cake not able to decide. Force a decision... this does not mean your M is over.... it means that if she chooses the OM her 'fantastic' fantasy bubble may burst when reality sets in. Having two children around your love fest tends to stop the fantasy land real quick. As hard as this will be for you, perhaps it's what is needed to wake her up. She still thinks this guy is her savior and may even think she loves him. I personally think you cannot love someone that deeply after two months, and she may need that wake-up call, as hard as it will be on you and your children.
Just in case find out your rights. In many states that baby is YOURS legally, and you may have to pay support. I have read horror stories about such cases. See an attorney and get your ducks in order just in case. To be well informed is the best way to protect yourself and your own two children.

strangeasfiction posted 1/26/2014 08:17 AM

Thanks, hopeful - and everyone else. She did mention counseling more than a year ago. I'm gonna go halfsies on this one. I didn't see a need for counseling because I just thought it came down to me working too much. She never hinted that it was more than that. BUT, I now see that even just bringing it up was a cry for help. I was too blind to see it. I've been playing "what if" for the last month. Yes, I would have totally gone to counseling if I had known what she was really going through. I wish she had been more specific because that would have done it for me. But I'm way beyond the blame game other than blaming myself for being a moron.

strangeasfiction posted 1/26/2014 08:29 AM

Wanttogoforward - great post. This is the stuff I need to hear. If I were sure that my wife were sure and in a place to make a rational decision then this would be clearer to me. A total NC makes sense (to me) but there are obstacles. They work together. And, can I really tell these two parents-to-be that they can't talk? He wants to go to the first OB appointment. He has that right no matter what I say, doesn't he? Yes yes yes, the romance has to stop. But they are going to be involved for life no matter what. He wants to be fully involved as the kid's dad even if my marriage survives. Can I really demand a NC in this circumstance?

Legally we are going to take the steps to ensure the state does not automatically presume I am the father. I've read enough horror stories about child support, etc to know that. The kid will have the OG's last name in any case.

annb posted 1/26/2014 08:31 AM

Hi welcome to SI. I am so so sorry for the painful situation you are in.

First and foremost, do NOT accept blame for her actions. She is an adult, she owns the affair 100%. You are responsible for 50% of the marriage, she is responsible for her choice to have an affair. Please stop feeling guilty, my WH traveled a great deal for his job and I also felt lonely and abandoned raising my three children like a single mother. I did not cheat, nor do thousands of others whose spouse takes them away from home due to work.

Secondly, if she is still sneaking around with OM, you might as well close the door to R. While your situation presents a completely different set of issues, there is never any room for three in a marriage. Your wife is fence-sitting, give her a great big push. IMO you are being way too kind. It is she who should be pleading with you to save your marriage and trying to do everything to help you move forward. Start with a huge dose of with an attorney to find out what your rights are, like yesterday. You do not have to file, but knowledge is power.

Right now she is in control, please put yourself in the driver's seat. You cannot nice her back into the marriage, many times the only way back is a huge dose of reality. Show her you can make it with or without her. Start the 180 like yesterday. Focus on YOU and your needs. Focus on your children.

Continue to read and post, there is also a great thread in the I Can Relate forum for Betrayed Men only. Great group of guys who might be able to steer you through this nightmare.


Edited to add: They work together? Time for her to quit and find a new job. I'd make it a requirement for reconciliation if that's the route YOU decide you want to take.

[This message edited by annb at 8:41 AM, January 26th (Sunday)]

mike7 posted 1/26/2014 09:13 AM

this is going to sound heartless, but I think you need to hear a few perspectives. Your life has been turned upside down. I'm very sorry for you. I think you're being a doormat.

Your wife didn't just have an affair. She purposely didn't use protection. Now, she's pregnant. she's not offering to get an abortion. She's forcing you to be involved with someone else's child. What was your crime? You worked too much? Really?

She wants him and you in her life. He will always be there. You will never know if she's seeing him on the side.

She is not remorseful. she's blaming you for the affair when she could have done many different things. Really, her cheating has nothing to do with you.

Do you want to share your wife? Because you will be.

Right now.. you are shocked and stunned. You see someone taking your wife from you and you're doing everything you can to prevent that from happening. It's understandable. No one, NO ONE, wants their spouse taken from them.

But she is forcing this shit sandwich down your throat. She said she loves him. She's having his baby. He will always, ALWAYS be in your life. They'll probably continue to have sex.

You're being treated like a cuckold, a doormat.

Is this what you want? If it is, then by all means, beg and plead, and cry and whine to have her FORGIVE YOU for heavens sake.

She should be begging you to FORGIVE HER.

I don't think you should. She's crossed way too many lines to indicate that she has any love or respect for you or her family.

and it's not just you that she's betrayed. What about your children? Did they ask for this?

i think you need to move on.

I'm sorry.. but that's my advice.

confused615 posted 1/26/2014 09:16 AM

^^^THIS^^^ don't care what other people think. I get that, I don't either. But what about your children? They will clearly know mommy cheated on daddy, and this child is the result. And the man she cheated on daddy with..well they see him EOW when he comes to get his kid.

I feel terrible for you..I really do. But your children? My heart breaks for them.

ETA: Oh..and can tell her NO CONTACT with the OM if you stay married to her. There is a thread in the ICR forum for people in your situation..dealing with an OC(other child). Usually it is a WH with an OC, but there are a few BH's in your situation. You can absolutely insist they not talk directly. An email account can be set up for any communication..and communication can be only between you and OM.

[This message edited by confused615 at 9:18 AM, January 26th (Sunday)]

yearsofpain25 posted 1/26/2014 09:22 AM

Hi strangeasfiction,

I'm very sorry that you are here, but welcome. That is a tough tough situation you are in. I may not be the best person to give advice, my situation is different than most, but I'll throw my .02 in from a different perspective.

First, all the advice above is very sound. You need to find an attorney immediately to find out what your options are. This does not mean you have to make a decision one way or the other. You need options for your own sanity.

Your wife is clearly in the driver seat and you will need to change and put yourself and your kids first if any decisions are going to be made. With this situation doesn't sound like you could make a decision right now if you wanted to. You need to start making decisions. There are no good or bad or right or wrong, just decisions that you need to control.

Your wife is the key. What was she like before the A? Was she narcissistic? Does she make a lot of decisions based upon what is the benefit for her and not you as a couple? If she is narcissistic, unfortunately, that may be your answer. I grew up in a house where my mother was/is narcissistic. I won't bore you with all the details. If you want them you can click on the smiley face on my post. It's very long and complicated. The point is that my narcissistic mother was in the driver seat making decisions on what was best for her. Not the family. 25 years later she's still talking about the other guy.

Point is, if other guy is crow baring his way into your marriage and using his unborn child to do so, and further she's letting him, you and your kids will never have peace of mind. They're way to young now to comprehend what is going on now, but much later down the line they are going to realize what happened and the decisions, or lack there of, are going to effect what they see.

My .02 on his right to be around is this. And this may not be a popular view. The mother is the one that is in control of all things with the unborn baby. There are many stories out there the father was not allowed to participate in the pregnancy. He should not be allowed to either. Sure he should be allowed to be part of his son's life, but that is not part of what she is going through now. The fact that other guy is using this pregnancy, and she is using this to keep contact with other guy, well quite frankly that is your answer. They still want to be together and they are in the driver seat. If they keep going like this and you try and reconcile with her, there is a strong chance that you, for years to come will always be wondering what they are up to. There has to be no contact and no "wonderment", for lack of a better word, as to what they are up to. Complete transparency on her part. She needs to close the door on him with no contact during the pregnancy, one of them has to switch their job, and shared custody later has to be handled by a mediator. Anything less than any of that should not be acceptable to you. Push her off the fence and force her to make a decision about you as a couple one way or the other. That will give you the answer you need to know if you can R. Unless she's narcissistic. If that's the case then speaking from experience, for you and your kids, get out now.

One more thing, you are going to get lots of advice from many people here. Some good, some bad, some beautiful, and some ugly. Take what works best for YOU. By taking care of yourself and what works best for you, you will ultimately be taking care of those two kids you already have. There are no good decisions or bad decisions. Just decisions. Pick yourself up off the floor and make some.

I feel for you strange. I really do. I want to see this mess work out for you. Wishing you all the luck and warmth in the world. Sounds like you are already a strong guy. Use that attribute.


k9lover1 posted 1/26/2014 09:25 AM

I agree with Mike7. You are the one in a fog. You think you love this woman - really? Do you really love the woman she is today? Maybe you love what you used to have, but the woman today is sleeping with another man, telling you she doesn't love you.

You need to wake up.

What about this. Let her go to her new lover and live happily every after. You file for joint custody of the children.

Then.....if you feel like its the next step, find someone that will adore you and only sleep with you and only share her love with you.

strangeasfiction posted 1/26/2014 10:19 AM

I'm warning everyone. I have an amazing ability to rationalize just about anything. This isn't a good thing. don't care what other people think. I get that, I don't either. But what about your children? They will clearly know mommy cheated on daddy, and this child is the result. And the man she cheated on daddy with..well they see him EOW when he comes to get his kid.

Yes, of course we/I are thinking about the children. Eventually they will figure this out whether we stay together or not.

My WS feels terribly guilty. That's not saying much but at least there's a conscience deep down in there somewhere. She even says she knows what the right thing to do is. Yes, I'm lost in a fog but she's not seeing things clearly, either. She's full of hormones, guilt, stress, etc.

I don't love what she has done. But I do love her. Things will have to change on her end for that love to continue. I think it's too soon for either one of us to make a final decision. As much as I might not see reality, she is much further removed from it. She hasn't thought through all of the implications.

The PA has ended as of D Day. If that were still going on we'd be done.

confused615 posted 1/26/2014 10:23 AM

How do you know the PA is over?

strangeasfiction posted 1/26/2014 10:31 AM

How do you know the PA is over?

Espionage, basically. And confidential informants.

stronger08 posted 1/26/2014 10:45 AM

I don't think you realize that every time you look at the child it is going to bring right back to her A. And IMHO your M is still on rocky ground to begin with. Bringing an innocent child into this terrible mix is not only a bad idea, its totally irresponsible for your WW to selfishly think that this kid can have a normal life. I understand that you love your WW. And I can understand that you want to do everything possible to keep your M. But you really need to ask yourself if by agreeing to raise this child your not using it for your own selfish purposes. I personally know a person who was born of an A. And his paternal father was never in the picture. But the man who raised him and who was the BS had nothing but distain and hatred for him. His childhood was basically one horror after another. And yes he was a biracial child as well. This man went through so much trauma it caused him to seek comfort in alcohol and drugs for most of his young life. He is sober now for many years and still feels that he should have been given up for adoption. Like you his father at first accepted him. But over the years he became nothing but an irritant and a target of his violent rage. And to boot it never stopped his mother from being the neighborhood slut. His father passed away recently and as he had not spoken to his parents for many years he simply did not care. I can tell you this, this man wishes he was never born and the saddest part is he is a very good man. Something to consider my friend.

gonnabe2016 posted 1/26/2014 11:28 AM

Right now that man has NO rights to the child. None.

And right now it sounds as if you are a third wheel in your own marriage. Those 2 are basking in the *we're pregnant* glow over lunches and texting each other all day.....while you are on the outside looking in -- and taking the brunt of all of the *not-so-fun* aspects of the pregnancy

I, personally, don't see that you will be able to successfully navigate this situation in the manner which you have proposed, however, *I'm* not *you* -- maybe this WILL work okay for you.
What I DO know is that in order for there to be a chance of this being okay for you in the long-term, you and your WW are going to have to be the decision-makers (OM doesn't get a vote). And you and WW are going to have to be EQUAL decision-makers -- NOT, WW tells *you* what is going to happen and you 'go-along' with it.

Don't make any type of final decisions right now that are going to have legal impact....and this situation is a massive legal mine-field and it doesn't sound as if you really have a clue about any of it. Re-read these 2 statements that you made:

I expressed my desire that the OG just go away and I would adopt the child.

Legally we are going to take the steps to ensure the state does not automatically presume I am the father

If OG *goes away* and your WW keeps her trap shut, you don't have to adopt the kid. It is presumed to be a child of the marriage. In other words, yours (legally, if not biologically)
But then why would you talk about adopting the child if you are thinking of taking legal steps to ensure that the presumption won't exist? You'll disavow the child, and then adopt him/her? That doesn't make any sense.

This situation is a total mess. IMO, if your WW and this OG want to claim that child as *theirs*, then she needs to pack her shit and leave. Carrying that OC in her belly doesn't negate the fact that her primary relationship right now is still with YOU.

Shake your tail down to the nearest decent-sized family law firm and get some answers on this legal stuff. Lay out all of your different proposed scenarios and get advice/guidance on how each of those options will *look* for your future.
You cannot make good and reliable decisions without having good and reliable information.

Junior posted 1/26/2014 11:30 AM

Yop and Mike7 have laid this out pretty clearly. WW is in love and pregnant after only two months? Seriously? It appears that she want's the $ stability you offer and to keep the OM around. Given the examples of her recent decision making abilities and deceptions OM will be hanging around just waiting for another crack at your WW. At some point she'll probably oblige then you may have two or more of his kids to deal with. Ready for that?

Oh sure he wants to be a good father. I'm gonna man up and take care of my kid, blah blah blah.... Just keeping his foot in your door. Let him start by cutting checks to cover all the maternity expenses and her insurance premiums. If they felt so entitled to be screwing around with each other they can pay for it. In every way including financially.

Were it me I'd go to a lawyer and start the process of filing for D Monday and tell her that. You don't have to follow through if you decide not to later. She needs a reality blast right in her face. Then I'd give her the option of getting an abortion, adoption or her being his. I'm not the most tolerant person in the world when it comes to this crap, obviously.

I, like yop grew up in a cheating parent environment and it sucked. Believe me there are worse things for your children and the unborn one than you two getting a divorce. Seeing you groveling and being abused by your wife and OM will not give them a good foundation to build their own relationships upon.

I'm sorry this happened to you and no matter what you will be facing ups and downs emotionally. No way around it. Took me years to get past my experience with this and I just walked in on a drunken ONS in progress. Nowhere close to your level of betrayal. I still have trust issues in general.

Take care, keep posting and try to keep a clear head about what's really happening here. The wife you loved and marriage as you knew it are gone. No matter what happens you're starting over, with her or without.

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