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Husband had a daughter from an affair

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cookiezandcream posted 11/24/2020 01:15 AM

A few years ago my husband had to return home across the country to visit family and got in with a female friend he knew from high school. Long story short, he cheated and she got pregnant.

In a way we're lucky I suppose. My husband paid support until she got married and her husband adopted the kid. So we were even allowed to end financial support.

Despite this ending about as well as it possibly could have for us, I can't accurately explain how much this screwed up my life. It caused me to become an alcoholic and I'm only now in recovery. I became suicidal. We have a kid of our own and just thinking that he has a half sibling out there that he'll probably find out about and want to know about hurts me.

This child is an intense source of misery and suffering for me because it means this nightmare can never really end. The affair may have ended years ago but things will never be the same. It may go dormant for awhile but it will pop up again and again. There can be no real moving on.

My husband chose not to have a relationship at all with the child other than paying support because I clearly cannot handle it. I'd have to leave. I've not used that as leverage. I'd never said, "If you have a relationship, I'm leaving." It's just a fact that I wouldn't be able to withstand it and I would have to back out.

I know with 23 and Me and the like our kid will likely find out one day. I can't handle questions about it. I'll break. If our kids have a relationship later in life I won't be able to have the other child involved in anything family related. It's just too painful. Even if there was a casual mention of her name I'd think to myself, "Oh, yeah, that time my life was wrecked and was impossible to ever really correct again."

It's a horrible situation because I can't help feel this way. I just know I wouldn't be able to live with my husband's affair daughter being part of my life at all, and if that happened I would have to break away from my own family a great deal.

If it was just an affair, it would have sucked but it would have ended when he returned home. I could leave it in the past. But he created a person that will potentially and probably come and go for years. It's made the affair present and relevant forever.

What's more, I have no support for this. There's forums everywhere for infidelity but not a lot for this situation. Google returns some discussion about it but it just doesn't seem to occur very often (thankfully) but does leave those of us who are living through this extra layer of hell pretty alone.

Bigger posted 11/24/2020 02:50 AM

There is a thread in the I Can Relate forum specifically for those that are dealing with affairs that lead to a child. I suggest you seek guidance there.
I want to address a couple of issues:

Great that you are dealing with your alcoholism. That is the bravest and most positive thing you can do because as an active alcoholic then IMHO you canít deal with the issues in a conclusive and positive way. If you can then put the other issues aside, especially the child and what she might or might not do in the future. Focus on your real issues Ė the ones you are dealing with NOW and let the future bring itís own issues in their own time.
No Ė the daughter did not cause you to be an alcoholic. The affair definitely added to the pressure that made you activate your illness, but it didnít make you and alcoholic. You are an alcoholic. Your goal should be to be a recovering alcoholic. IMHO best way to do that is to go seriously into same-gender AA, sponsor, 12 stepsÖ

Final issue: The daughter is not the enemy. She is an innocent bystander and didnít ask for this or cause this.

Tortured posted 11/24/2020 04:31 AM

One great thing about this forum is realising you are not alone.... we all found our way here because on the commonality of infidelity and it suxs that it is the gift that keeps on giving.

And although there might be some variances to the circumstances there are definitely commonalities in the emotions felt by people. For many of us there are Ďremindersí and triggers to the pain and trauma we experienced. As a person that separated, Iím not waiting for a date in the future to arrive where I have to deal with something uncomfortable, Iím dealing with it every day in the struggles as a single parent. Finances, job, kids.... every day is now different from my old life and thatís not easy. I miss not even having my kids for their whole birthday etc. Yes itís a different struggle from yours, but many of us have struggles that keep going.

You do need to get some help with your mindset to help your future. Perhaps look for IC for yourself.

Regarding the child.... she is like you .... innocent. If you are with your husband then you have found forgiveness for him and yet he was the person that caused this. The child is likely to be traumatised too when they discover their own father choose not to have anything to do with them for something that was not their fault. Your kids also will find our in the future they have a half sibling that they didnít grow with. Itís not your kids fault either. Also your husband lied to you at least... you will never know what lies he told the mother of the child to get her into bed... maybe he even told her his marriage was over. He was prepared to lie to you, so heís highly capable of lying to the other women too. Be mindful before you conclude the OW is a bitch. My xWH cheated with women who didnít know I existed... I canít be mad at them for his lies. They got caught too. Place the blame on the people responsible and not everyone else. It will help you deal with all the other victims of his deceit. Iím not pretending this will be an easy ride.... Iím just suggesting itís something you ARE capable of dealing with. You have already proved you are strong by surviving the infidelity.

The1stWife posted 11/24/2020 04:37 AM

You are living in fear. And that is causing irrational behavior and anxiety.

The child may never contact your H ever. It is possible.

The child may never know about your H as being the father. Her parents may never tell her. Or she may decide not to exercise her right to contact him b/c she was raised by two good parents.

You are living with fear that these events will occur. Think about adoptive parents. They run the same risk. They may fear the birth parents will come waltzing into their childís life and the adoptive parents will be left behind. It is possible but it doesnít always happen or happen in the way you think it does.

Your H can decline to meet with her if he ever gets that request. Your H can choose a number of options that do not include you having anything to do with this child.

I know someone who became pregnant by a married man. She has the child but was a single mom. NEver saw the birth father again. He never told his wife. I often wonder if that child even knows who her birth father is. Child is 30ish now.

Stop letting this fear and anxiety control you.

landclark posted 11/24/2020 08:18 AM

I have a half brother I found out about 2016. We texted a few times and that was really it. We havenít spoken since. Granted I knew my dad was technically my stepdad and my bio dad was out there someplace presumably carrying on with life which includes kids, which depending on the age of the child she may know as well. I never looked for my bio dad though. My mom was actually the one who tracked him down and wanted me to have a relationship with him. I didnít care.

Anyway, I donít really care if either bio dad or half brother are in my life or not. I donít actively seek then out or invite them to events. Weíve never physically met. I never did one or those DNA things until this year at 46 and that was only because my WH bought it for me.

I say that to say youíre focusing on something that honestly may never happen. Even if your child finds out about a sibling, they may not care. Your husbands bio daughter may never seek him out.

Focus on the now. Focus on getting yourself healthy again and get the alcoholism under control. Focus on what you can control. Try to stop stressing about something that may never happen. You have a kid now that needs their mom.

The child is likely to be traumatised too when they discover their own father choose not to have anything to do with them for something that was not their fault.

I just want to add that I was not traumatized by knowing my bio dad took off when he found out my mom was pregnant. I had a dad who loved me and cared for me growing up. Sounds like the daughter may have that as well. So there was no trauma.

[This message edited by landclark at 8:27 AM, November 24th (Tuesday)]

josiep posted 11/24/2020 08:45 AM

Once you get established with AA and have the alcohol out of your system for awhile, the spiritual and emotional sides of you will begin to heal as well and you will find out that you will be able to handle meeting her someday if it happens. Your whole life will change when you get rid of the alcohol and begin to live the AA way. You will find peace and serenity and happiness.

Take it one day at a time and trust that the way it has worked for millions of others will also work for you.

I wish you well.

HellFire posted 11/24/2020 11:52 AM

It's perfectly okay to feel the way you do.

Its unfair for anyone to tell you to get over it,or tell you not to be angry with the OW. With Facebook, Instagram, etc, if a woman has an affair with a man who says he isn't married, and she claims she didn't know, either she has never heard of the internet, never spoken to any of his family and friends, and is willfully ignorant of the red flags waving in her face.

No one here knows how they would deal with this unless they are dealing with it.

Yes, the child is an innocent victim. So are you. So are your children.

There is a thread in the ICR forum for women in your position. You will find great support there, and a lot less judgment.

[This message edited by HellFire at 11:53 AM, November 24th (Tuesday)]

HDENUFF75 posted 11/24/2020 18:37 PM

Cookiezandcream I am in a similar situation. I also do not want anything to do with the OC. My WH does not have a relationship with this child. Not because of any ultimatum I have given him but because it is too upsetting to me. I did however tell him I would not be raising the child. Post in the other forum everyone else is referring to and we can rant away. My heart breaks for you. Having a OC makes it more difficult

cookiezandcream posted 11/24/2020 19:14 PM

Where is this other topic? I actually searched before posting this in case there was one and I never saw it.

The1stWife posted 11/24/2020 19:18 PM

Look under the I Can Relate topic heading. It is in there.

cookiezandcream posted 11/24/2020 20:45 PM

The topic actually appears to be closed - is there a reason for that?

HeHadADoubleLife posted 11/24/2020 21:04 PM

I think if a certain thread isnít active for a while it may be closed.

If you start another post in general asking for a mod, they can help reopen it.

Bigger posted 11/25/2020 06:08 AM

SI has a policy of not allowing us to post links.
Since this is a link to a forum within SI and is only done to aid the original poster in finding the correct forum then I hope I am forgiven.


HouseOfPlane posted 11/25/2020 10:12 AM

CandC, just want to share a story. Two, actually.

Thanks to 23andMe I now know that I have an uncle and a cousin that I never knew about.

The uncle was from a philandering biological Grandfather (who I never met) who had a ONS with some woman some where who then got pregnant and put the child up for adoption, and he led a good life with good parents. But he always wondered...finally along came DNA testing, and he discovered his brothers and sisters (7!). Unfortunately, all but 2 have passed. What a loss to him.

And the cousin...she's from an uncle who left and disappeared to Alaska, after time in prison. Again, 23andMe. She believed her parents were both her parents, thought she was Irish because her (step)dad was Irish. Her mom never told her. Deep family secrets. Her biological father passed away already. She is desperate to learn more about him, any tidbits at all. My heart breaks for her.

I feel for you, so much. But I also feel for the child. She's as innocent as you are.

Sending strength!

DragnHeart posted 11/25/2020 10:38 AM


Yes the child is innocent but can we at least offer cookiezandcream some support and an opportunity to vent without invalidating her damn feelings?

She is under NO obligation to accept this child into her family.

She doesnt have to even like her or acknowledge her.

What's more, I have no support for this. There's forums everywhere for infidelity but not a lot for this situation. Google returns some discussion about it but it just doesn't seem to occur very often (thankfully) but does leave those of us who are living through this extra layer of hell pretty alone.

Im sorry you feel alone. I myself am mot in this situation but i hope you can get the support you need in the I Can Relate thread for other children.

HouseOfPlane posted 11/25/2020 11:20 AM


Yes the child is innocent but can we at least offer cookiezandcream some support and an opportunity to vent without invalidating her damn feelings?

You're right.

C&C, I (think I) understand where you are coming from, based on watching all of the train wrecks in my own family. It's like an unexploded bomb sitting in the front yard. Ticking away...

You are being forced to live two lives too. To be in on the lie. And lies will eat you from the inside-out.

I hope you can find a way to live honestly, one way or another. With your WH or not. It's so much of a burden for you to bear otherwise, one you shouldn't have to.

landclark posted 11/25/2020 12:06 PM

Yes the child is innocent but can we at least offer cookiezandcream some support and an opportunity to vent without invalidating her damn feelings?

Well said, and also maybe stop trying to make her feel guilty. I highly doubt most people who talk a big children first game are going to welcome a child from an affair with open arms. I sure AF wouldnít.

HDENUFF75 posted 11/25/2020 13:33 PM

Thanks to all of you who have been supportive. We are made to feel guilty for not welcoming the child into our lives . I donít think you ever know what you would do unless you are placed in the exact situation.

Inshreds posted 11/25/2020 13:40 PM

I agree with DragnHeart. The child may be innocent but I would not and could not raise it nor have it a part of MY life. If I put myself in your shoes, I would be feeling the same as you.
Wishing you peace.

ThisIsSoLonely posted 11/25/2020 15:52 PM

Why not have your H address this with your child? He made this mess, it is his responsibility to deal with it. Unfortunately that means allowing your child to know it has a half-sibling. My neighbor recently confessed to the girl (now 24 year old woman) he raised as his own, but was not his biological child, that she indeed is not his blood relative. She was furious - after doing one of those DNA tests you are talking about - not only to find out that her father was not her father (which is not your situation), but to find out that she had been cheated out of knowing she had 2 siblings (this is the similar part if my reading of your story is correct).

My half sister is the result of an affair, so I do know what I'm talking about. I would be really _____ing angry if I was not aware of her existence.

It's a shit show for you - but there is no reason why your WH should not deal with this with your child and leave you out of it. He can even explain to your child your feelings about it. Keeping more secrets will not help - but he needs to man up and address this with his/your children otherwise you are just perpetuating more lies, and we all know how that turns out.

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