Marriage Builders®
Let me preface this by saying that H and I have has fidelity issues in the past. Mostly internet/text, long distance between himself and other women. He has admitted that one time he had a meet set up with a woman and it fell through at the last moment. The pattern is that they're "just friends"... Until they're not.

This past fall he met a girl via a "strictly platonic" ad on craigslist. They started as friends and things progressively got more intimate. I kept noticing her name on his screen, but figured (hoped) that she was just a friend. But still, since he was letting her know when he was going to bed each night, texting constantly and turning his phone away from me or turning it off when I'd walk up, I was suspicious.

He gave me his phone so he could play kickball with friends in the rain the other night and I looked... He was talking about how he loved certain things they did and planning other meets and there was also mention of her breasts being off limits in the near future because of the baby.

It didn't even occur to me that the child could be his.

I confronted him Saturday night and he told me that yes, he was having a son and that he would be here late this month if he didn't decide to come early.

I saw the love and excitement in his eyes... He's always wanted a son. I asked to see the ultrasound. Sounds cheesy and fake but I fell in love with him too. I'm obviously still heartbroken and having some severe anxiety and trust issues, but I want to keep my family together.

Fast forward to yesterday morning... She lets him know that this is it, water broke and she's heading to the hospital.

I'm nervous, excited, sad, betrayed, worried about the child, the mom, sorry that H can't be there... When they can finally talk, he tells her I know and that I'm ok. That I'm excited and scared and want to meet them both. Obviously, she's afraid I'm going to make a scene, but I don't have that in me. I'm nervous she won't like me and as a result won't let me see him.

He got her calmed down and she agreed that I could come too. I have the new parents a few minutes without me. Felt like a lifetime. I went in and told her that I was so sorry that he couldn't be there for her.

We had a good talk and I fell more and more in love with the baby. He's beautiful and I see our other kids in him. She's a sweetheart too. I can see why they clicked.

So... We're planning on couples counseling, therapy for the kids, complete transparency with each other. The three of us are a team for our son... (yeah, I'm already claiming him too). I'm anticipating some major blowback from H's mother, but I'm standing with him to protect our son and his mama from the nastiness that H's mother can spew. We're hoping to meet with our pastor for some guidance on that because we're members of H's mom's church and he could direct us to scripture that would comfort her.

So... I need guidance on how to (and how not to) introduce our two children together to their brother. And if you've got it, advice on getting H's mom to accept her newest grandchild.
Flagler, do I understand correctly that you and your husband are going to stay in contact with his affair partner?

If so, won't that tear your heart out? Dr. Harley usually doesn't advise that if you want to recover your marriage. It would be like revictimizing you over and over again. frown
Originally Posted By: Flagler
I'm obviously still heartbroken and having some severe anxiety and trust issues, but I want to keep my family together.

Fast forward to yesterday morning... She lets him know that this is it, water broke and she's heading to the hospital.


I would expect the heartbreak, severe anxiety, and total lack of trust to continue and get worse the longer your husband continues this relationship/affair. I would expect that you may need to get prescription anxiety medicine. I'd encourage you to see a doctor about prescribing antidepressants, and make plans to separate from your husband until and unless he ends his relationship/affair.
Originally Posted By: Flagler
I confronted him Saturday night and he told me that yes, he was having a son and that he would be here late this month if he didn't decide to come early.

I saw the love and excitement in his eyes... He's always wanted a son.


I am so sorry. Was that devastating to you? Please tell us more about how you feel about this because we need to talk about how you are going to cope.

Flagler I would encourage you to get in touch with Dr. Harley on his radio show by sending an email to mbradio@marriagebuilders.com . Dr. Harley is a clinical psychologist and can help you a lot with the minefield that your husband has dragged you into.
Flagler do you have Dr. Harley's book, Surviving an Affair?

Do you have the Marriage Builders app? I think you need to get some of the great marriage recovery information Dr. Harley puts out on that show for free every day. It is sooo helpful.
Originally Posted By: Flagler
Let me preface this by saying that H and I have has fidelity issues in the past. Mostly internet/text, long distance between himself and other women. He has admitted that one time he had a meet set up with a woman and it fell through at the last moment. The pattern is that they're "just friends"... Until they're not.

This past fall he met a girl via a "strictly platonic" ad on craigslist. They started as friends and things progressively got more intimate. I kept noticing her name on his screen, but figured (hoped) that she was just a friend. But still, since he was letting her know when he was going to bed each night, texting constantly and turning his phone away from me or turning it off when I'd walk up, I was suspicious.

He gave me his phone so he could play kickball with friends in the rain the other night and I looked... He was talking about how he loved certain things they did and planning other meets and there was also mention of her breasts being off limits in the near future because of the baby.

It didn't even occur to me that the child could be his.

I confronted him Saturday night and he told me that yes, he was having a son and that he would be here late this month if he didn't decide to come early.

I saw the love and excitement in his eyes... He's always wanted a son. I asked to see the ultrasound. Sounds cheesy and fake but I fell in love with him too. I'm obviously still heartbroken and having some severe anxiety and trust issues, but I want to keep my family together.

Fast forward to yesterday morning... She lets him know that this is it, water broke and she's heading to the hospital.

I'm nervous, excited, sad, betrayed, worried about the child, the mom, sorry that H can't be there... When they can finally talk, he tells her I know and that I'm ok. That I'm excited and scared and want to meet them both. Obviously, she's afraid I'm going to make a scene, but I don't have that in me. I'm nervous she won't like me and as a result won't let me see him.

He got her calmed down and she agreed that I could come too. I have the new parents a few minutes without me. Felt like a lifetime. I went in and told her that I was so sorry that he couldn't be there for her.

We had a good talk and I fell more and more in love with the baby. He's beautiful and I see our other kids in him. She's a sweetheart too. I can see why they clicked.

So... We're planning on couples counseling, therapy for the kids, complete transparency with each other. The three of us are a team for our son... (yeah, I'm already claiming him too). I'm anticipating some major blowback from H's mother, but I'm standing with him to protect our son and his mama from the nastiness that H's mother can spew. We're hoping to meet with our pastor for some guidance on that because we're members of H's mom's church and he could direct us to scripture that would comfort her.

So... I need guidance on how to (and how not to) introduce our two children together to their brother. And if you've got it, advice on getting H's mom to accept her newest grandchild.

Welcome to MB, but why have you come to a marriage-building site - a site about marriage - for advice on this?
Flagler, although you find yourself in an seemingly intractable dilemma, the answer is really rather simple. Your wayward husband has to make a choice. Either his future will include the other child and not you, or it will include you and not the other child. Nothing else works. This OC is not your stepson. He is the product of an affair. That is what is meant when such a child is called "illegitimate".
Originally Posted By: Flagler
So... We're planning on couples counseling, therapy for the kids, complete transparency with each other. The three of us are a team for our son... (yeah, I'm already claiming him too). I'm anticipating some major blowback from H's mother, but I'm standing with him to protect our son and his mama from the nastiness that H's mother can spew. We're hoping to meet with our pastor for some guidance on that because we're members of H's mom's church and he could direct us to scripture that would comfort her.


Flagler, welcome to Marriage Builders. Our objective on this forum is to save the marriage. Unfortunately, you have chosen a path that will wreck your marriage and your children's family. Everyone loses in that scenario. Everyone, including the OC and your husband's mistress. There is no virtue in destroying your marriage and your children's family for a child that does not even know your H. All the "counseling" in the world will not prevent this. Your marriage won't survive the continued contact between your H and his lover. No marriage will survive that.

You have essentially chosen to sacrifice your marriage and your children's family for this OC. I realize there are no good choices in this situation, but the best choice is for him to protect the marriage and your children's family.

By staying in touch with his lover, he wrecks your children's family and makes it much less likely this OW can find a husband to help her father this child. Having some creepy married man hang around will discourage any decent men, making it harder for her to find a partner to help her parent this child. It also means the affair will be ongoing.

Please listen to Dr Bill Harley, clinical psychologist and founder of Marriage Builders. He addresses this issue:

radio clip here

and post here:

Originally Posted By: Dr Bill Harley
I am revising SAA and it should be in print sometime in 2011, and the problem you raise will be included in it. But it's particularly difficult to address because of our no-contact-with-the-ex-lover rule on the one hand, and the need of a child to have contact with their natural parents on the other. Our radio archives have more on this subject than anything I've written so far, because we've had several listeners call in with this problem, and I describe the approach I take.

As you probably already know by now, I tilt toward keeping the marriage healthy at the possible expense of the child not having adequate contact with the OM. I recommend that at the time of birth, the other man not be mentioned on the birth certificate unless he demands it. That makes your husband the legal parent of the child. If he does demand being on the birth certificate, I recommend that he pay child support until the child is 19. If the OM wants visitation, I recommend that it be done with transparency, so his own family knows what's going on. A mediator, paid by him, is to pick up and deliver the child so that you and your husband never have to have any contact with him.

In almost all cases that I've witnessed, the OM isn't willing to be named on the birth certificate, pay the child support, or make the situation known to his family. Under those conditions, I highly suggest that he not be able to visit his child until he or she is an adult. If an attempt is made, I suggest getting a restraining order. While that policy seems very rigid and uncaring toward the child, the alternatives are usually disastrous. Having an old lover around, the cause of your husband's greatest sadness, has such an devastating effect on the marriage that few survive.

Having heard from some of the couples who have followed this way of thinking, and others who have done the opposite, I am confident that it is the best approach to your situation.

Best wishes,
Willard F. Harley, Jr.
© Marriage BuildersĀ® Forums