Question:

I had an affair and became pregnant. I came clean with my husband, and he forgives me and wants to raise the baby as his own, which is wonderful. It's me that's having a terrible time with forgiving myself and accepting this child. I feel no bond whatsoever, and it's all because of the circumstances she was conceived. My husband is telling everyone his vasectomy failed, and we are expecting. I am just so ashamed and beside myself every single day. I have all these questions in my mind about when the child grows up, to tell her the truth or let the bio dad have part in her life? I just don't know. I messed up and feel like now I'm bringing a lifetime full of hurt for a child into the mess. Please help.


Answer:

Yes, you messed up and it had consequences. But why do you plan to burden this child with your problems? What crime did he commit? My point is that the child is innocent. She deserves love from her mother and her father -- and by father I don't mean the sperm donor. The adulterer should have nothing to do with the child.

State laws still give favor to husband at the time of birth. Your husband's name goes down on the birth certificate and that should be the end of the matter.

I disagree with your husband lying about the cause of your pregnancy. You don't fix one problem with another. "And why not say, "Let us do evil that good may come"? -- as we are slanderously reported and as some affirm that we say. Their condemnation is just" (Romans 3:8). You simply say that you are expecting and if someone says, "I thought you had a vasectomy?" You merely shrug and say, "Sometimes things happen." It is a non-answer, but it is what nosy questions deserve.

When the child grows up, you say nothing to her that would undermined her belief that your husband is her father, because in reality he will be her father. Genetics does not make a father. The fact that your husband is willing make this child his own is wonderful! It is no different from an adoption.

You might run into problems if the sperm donor is greatly different from your husband in complexion. But that is something you can handle later when the child notices. If the child asks, you can simply state that what makes a father is the man who raises you. After she is an adult, and if she asks, you tell her the simple truth: you committed adultery, she was conceived and her father decided he wanted both his wife and child as his own because he loves them both from the depths of his heart. If the now adult child wants details, politely tell her that the matter is long closed and no longer matters.

For you, at the minimum, treat this child as you would an adopted child, but I'm positive that if you let yourself you can treat her as who she is, your very own child, sent from God to remind you that He can make blessings even out of tragedy. "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose" (Romans 8:28).

"Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins" (James 5:19-20).