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Carolyn Hax “the Mistress”: Will the Children of Her New Husband Always Call Her “the Mistress”?



Hello, Carolyn: My spouse just completely changed our life. Someone claiming to be his child approached him.

Years after we were married, he had a one-night stand. I never crossed paths with this individual again, and suddenly, bingo!

I am inconsolable and furious. We have two children, ages 37 and 35. It turns out this person is 33 years old. As a result, I was caring for our two young children at home one night when he lost his mind.

We would rather keep this a secret from our loved ones. I thought we had committed to a no-contact policy, but he’s been corresponding with this individual for weeks. I feel misled and hurt.

They expect us to form a couple and live together happily. My guess is no. Just what do you think about Statement by an Unidentified Person

Anonymous: If you’re angry, that’s OK with me.

If you don’t want to acknowledge “this surprising person” or share this information with your kids, that’s fine with me. In my opinion, “behaved like an idiot” accurately describes what transpired.

If your spouse secretly spoke with you after a “no contact” order was in place, I would consider it a new betrayal when he most needed to win back your confidence.

Furthering these perfectly reasonable stances, I argue, will injure you more than anybody else in this disaster.

Why? All of it occurred because of it. Attempting to ignore the infidelity, the kid, or the suffering will not make them go away. To your children, understanding this will only get heavier if you keep it from them.

Yet, it will bring in significant hidden weight.

So, let yourself feel furious for as long as you need to and distance yourself from this person as much as you want and can.

Then, as the anger subsides (again, counseling may be helpful, specifically for you), you may want to consider doing the polar opposite of what your first desire to get rid of this suggested.

Think about allowing the father and kid to stay in touch and talk to this individual in person. You should tell your kids the good news and push them to meet their new sibling as soon as they’re ready.

Remember that “one huge joyful family” might be the result even if “one big unhappy family” is the cause. Remember that no one is perfect and that even the most courageous people make mistakes.

Through one transforming act of forgiveness and inclusion, you can provide grace not just to your spouse and a now-grown kid who had no voice in existence but also to yourself.

A lifetime supply of lemonade.

Hello, Carolyn: My spouse “Chuck” has been ailing for a long time and is currently in a critical condition. He has a lot of doctor’s appointments, and I try to get him to all of them and perform other chores around the house. And I take care of him, which is a lot of work because of all the drugs he has to take and the special diet he has to follow.

Our kids are eager to visit him because his condition has worsened recently. To make things easier for Grandpa and me, three of our four children are only bringing one or two of their children with them on this visit.

Carolyn Hax “the Mistress”

Our eldest son married a considerably younger woman who already had four children from a prior relationship. There are three kids the son will be leaving with his ex-wife. So that her kids don’t feel left out, his wife insisted he brings them all.

Is this right when several of Grandpa’s “real” grandkids stay home to take care of him while I work overtime?

Tired Grandma

Old and weary Grandma: They’re all “real” grandchildren. Young people are young, families are families, and love is love.

Your quotation marks suggest that you may already be aware of this, but the subject matter is too crucial for that.

It’s still a minor matter compared to the more significant issue, which is bringing five grandchildren along — to protect their feelings?! — is a symptom of fundamentally skewed priorities.

You bring up fairness, but that’s not the issue; it’s a matter of respect.

In other words, Chuck and the grown children take up most of the visitation time rather than your grandkids. When Chuck’s health is at risk from the strain of having too many guests, the grandchildren have little choice but to stay at home with you.

Therefore, a line must be drawn and strictly enforced. Set a rule that everyone in the family must abide by, such as “no more than one or two grandchildren at a time” or “no one under the age of X.”

Make it clear that you and your husband love your grandkids very much but that you cannot comfortably entertain more than two or three people at your house at once.

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