Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
I'm the Other Woman, by accident (seriously). HELP.(214 Posts)
I feel like such an utter idiot. Last year my marriage was ending and I started a brief fling with a man in an open marriage - let's call him Somebody Else's DH (SEDH?!). I wasn't ready to jump into a proper relationship but really wanted, well, sex with a nice and trustworthy person who I liked. So it worked well. It was all totally open and above board - his wife was on the online dating site too to keep an eye on him, and checked out my profile and okayed him to go ahead. He came with some 'terms and conditions' that he was very clear about - not a long-term thing, nothing at the expense of his home life (eg we only met when he was staying away from home for work), safe sex, nothing in their home town or near his workplace, and no new kids. Wife would call him to say goodnight etc, knew exactly where he was and what he was doing etc.
To be honest I thought this all sounded very grown up and reasonable and I was impressed that they had such a loving and trusting relationship. We had our fling. It was great fun and I never felt funny about it at all. I knew SEDH had a fantastic relationship with his wife, and that they had several young DCs, and basically a great life. The only thing I feel mildly funny about is that SEDH isn't going to keep in touch with me afterwards, because that's part of his T&Cs, but at the same time I understand that this seems reasonable.
Fast forward to the end of it (four months on, I was feeling ready to be properly single and maybe meet somebody else who was properly single) and we are having a last shag. SEDH does something risky with the condom. I panic and freak out afterwards. SEDH then says some other slightly odd things the same evening that make me wonder if (a) he has become slightly inappropriately attached to me, and (b) that he was aware of the risk he has taken with the condom. Nevertheless, we say our goodbyes in the morning and proceed to our separate lives. I take a morning after pill just to be safe.
You know where this is going, right?
I don't think about it again until nine days later, when, on the train back from a work trip, I begin to feel distinctly queasy and ye olde F-cups are aching in a suspiciously pregnant kind of way. I get home and pee on a stick. It's positive. I'm pregnant.
I don't abort, although SEDH strongly urges me to. The back story here is that I had spent many years TTC in my marriage but had never been able to, including requisite sad MC story, and really can't bring myself to now I find myself finally "successful", if a positive pregnancy test can be called that under these deeply inappropriate circumstances. However, being pregnant does feel quite miraculous and rather right. I am excited about being a mum. I will cope with being a single mum.
SEDH doesn't tell his wife. He is terrified that she will leave him. Understandably in some ways, he doesn't want to risk losing or hurting his wonderful family. Fair enough, I think (though I'm not impressed - I thought they were such a lovely couple but clearly there is a trust issue lurking here!) but I say that if I was his wife I would be deeply unimpressed.
I have the 12-week scan and it seems more likely now that it's viable. I urge SEDH to tell his wife. He doesn't. Then the anomaly scan at 20 weeks. I urge SEDH to tell his wife - at this point I'm really quite upset about the whole situation, on my own part, but also on hers. He still doesn't tell her. Surely, the longer he leaves telling her, the more of a big betrayal it becomes and the more likely that it would wreck everything? I tell SEDH that I won't lie to a child about who their father is, and that at some point in the future it is quite likely to all come out. He seems to think this buys him a bit of time until his DCs are older and less vulnerable (the youngest is now a toddler).
I'm now in my third trimester. SEDH still hasn't told his DW that he's got another woman pregnant. He hasn't offered to support me in any way - in the meantime, I've been made redundant (total and utter shock) and have had to move back in with my parents. I am in two minds about whether I would want to pursue him for child support in any case, but under the circumstances if I did it would also mean his wife finds out everything and frankly at this stage I suspect she would (and perhaps should) seriously consider leaving him.
WHAT DO I DO?! I just don't know what the right thing is here. Leave it and abandon all contact and hope he behaves better towards his family in future? Continue contact, feeling guilty as it is behind his DW's back although there is now nothing going on between us, in the interests of having my as-yet-unborn DC have some vague contact with its father? Something else?
Forget the man in this and do what you think is the right thing for you & your baby. What he does and who he tells and so forth is entirely his problem, not yours. If he wants to lie about the baby or maintaining contact etc. that's also his problem. (Although his DW must be stupid if she thought this wasn't a reasonable risk of her DH shagging around... ) Of course he supports the baby financially.... he's probably not going to be around as Dear Old Dad in any meaningful sense so money is the next best thing
Congratulations and good luck.
Its down to him to tell his wife. id cut all contact till the baby is born and then send him a picture with a note on to say that he is free to visit as long as it is all out in the open. lies lead to heartache.
It's up to him to tell his wife-their relationship is not your responsibility. I really don't think he will be playing any active part in your DC's life.
However he has a duty to pay towards this DC's upkeep and he should either pay it voluntary or through CSA.
All three of you sound as mad as a bag of frogs if you thought what you were doing was a good idea.
Cut contact and concentrate on your pregnancy.
She was 'mature' enough to endorse this... She's part of it all... I would be telling her. You will need that maintenence
As HeySS says why haven't you contacted her.
That's all a bloody mess and it was always going to be a bloody mess. And be honest - you always were the OW.
You need to put him to one side and put baby as priority. You cannot go on like this orherwise there is a good chance the chaos will continue with baby being dragged through it during their childhood.
Be strong now and put a halt to this craziness.
Does he have another "OW" to replace you in this open marriage? Same thing could happen again !!!
In 2 minds about pursuing him for child support? So who is going to buy stuff the kid needs? You are without work, so benefits then? Just to save him some awkwardness?
Grow up, face motherhood and do the right thing by your child. Its not about you and him (and his oh so sophisticated and modern arrangements) it's about your baby.
Tell him you'll be expecting maintenance, tell the csa and get on with it.
It's not up to you to tell his wife, that is up to him.
I would def ensure you get maintenance from him but do it officially.
He doesn't have a choice re providing, although it is more complicated to pursue him in these circumstances.
He sounds like a selfish coward. I'm sure you're under no illusions about how this will go.
He will not step up without court pressure. His relationship with his wife is neither your responsibility nor your business.
Cut your losses and enjoy your baby. You can be everything s/he needs.
Why shouldn't she tell the wife? It's no secret she exists! The wife would know there was a chance of pregnancy, it won't be a great shock and maybe she needs to realise her 'liberal' way of thinking, is in fact, backfiring!
What he tells her is nothing to do with you. And if he did tell her, it doesn't mean he will come running to you, even if she chucks him out.
I'm sorry, but I have zero sympathy with this. You are not a victim here. You played with fire and got burned. Unfortunately, you decided to bring a baby into the mess and now you are going to have to deal with raising a child alone.
Cut contact and go via the CSA. Concentrate on your baby. Life is not a soap opera.
What Horry said.
Congratulations though and I wish you well with the rest of your pregnancy and the arrival of your baby.
Hm, this is interesting food for thought.
I don't think I have any way of contacting SEDH's wife any more - he has decided that the risks of open marriage are not worth it for him any more (ha! no kidding!) and both of them have deleted their profiles on the dating site. I keep mine up there in case she finds out and wants to get in touch. I know his name and employer but not their home contact details or anything.
I'm not on benefits - my redundancy money will easily cover me for a year so long as I am living with my parents, who are happy to have me here, and I am quite employable so I hope to be in a better position after a year of maternity leave. I don't need the money, strictly speaking, although who knows what the future will hold. An offer of help would have been nice, though, and the fact that no offer was forthcoming does say something about SEDH I think.
When it comes to putting my DC first though... surely his other DCs also have to be considered here? To be honest I am wondering whether I should cut all contact at this stage and leave the whole thing alone entirely.
I am failing to see how you are the OW now unless you are still sleeping with him and his wife thinks you no longer are.
I know this is going to sound silly but did you ever speak to/meet his wife? If not how do you know he didn't just have 2 email accounts himself?
You didn't do this from what you say he deliberately sabitaged the condom. That was a malicious act.
Why are you considering not asking for him to pay his fair share of what he deliberately created?
You're hardly the other woman by accident. You knew he was married with a family.
The whole situation is bizarre.
Do what needs to be done for the child's sake. As another poster said, you will need the maintenance money.
If you don't "need" the maintenance money put it a savings account for your DC they will certainly need it when older for university etc
Gosh, Whocansay - you really think I'd WANT a man like that running to me?!
The other thing I don't particularly need is sympathy - I'm quite happy with my decision not to abort. But I what I do want is advice on what the right thing is to do here, as regards SEDH and the knock-on effects on his family as well as mine. I really just want to deal with the whole situation in the most graceful way possible.
Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.
But you said he did something weird with the condom, what did he do?? did he take it off? because in that case and he should take responsability!
Xales, it doesn't sound silly at all - I briefly wondered that myself. But then I remembered that I had heard him on the phone to his DW when she rang to say goodnight, and he was definitely being honest about where he was and who with etc.
I suppose the child support thing is because I don't "need the money" myself. Although the redundancy was a bit of a shock, I'm quite fiercely independent (eg, though living with parents, I am still paying my way). But doha, you're quite right, and maybe it is worth thinking about what a DC might need themselves in future for a good start in life.
I would stop worrying about the right thing for his family and concentrate on the right thing for yours (ie you and your new baby). Your main focus should be getting maintenance from him (because you'll need it). Has he said whether he wants to be a part of your child's life? Do you want him to be?
I'm gonna go against the grain here.. You were fooling round with a married man, you chose to keep his baby, I think you should go it alone.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.