While it is extremely painful to deal with an affair on its own, when a child is produced as a result of this affair it can seem absolutely impossible. This is really a heartbreaking situation and makes everything all the more complicated. While it will take some work, you can find healing and even become happy again.
Dealing with a child of an affair
When you first discover that your spouse is having an affair, one of the first things that may occur is the offending spouse may break contact with the paramour. The spouse will try to avoid social situations where the other will be, avoid calls and refuse to see the lover again. This is much harder to do if there is a child involved.
Fathering a child is a responsibility that can not be taken lightly. Co-parenting is not acceptable and the father may have to end up only taking responsibility for the baby financially. If your spouse wants to see the baby, it can get very tricky since the ex-paramour will be a part of the equation.
There are agreements that can be worked out so that the father can see the child but the arrangements should be made with a third-party. Any connection with the child should be done through a friend or relative so that a pickup or drop-off of the child does not involve the ex-paramour at all.
Discussions can be made about the child as long as you are involved as well. This means that any telephone discussions should be held with you listening in and you should have direct access to any e-mails, letters or documents. You'll need to have total transparency when dealing with the child in order to save your marriage.
This total transparency needs to be maintained on all levels. While it is especially important when dealing with the child and the issues involved, there must be transparency in every aspect of your relationship. There can be no more lies, not even small ones.
Small lies tend to cover up underlining important issues. If there are any lies involved, this is an indication that there was a defect topic that needs to be discussed.
It can be very difficult to get the lines of communication open again after an affair. You may have to set up a certain time and place to meet on a regular basis in order to communicate. You may want to have a weekly coffee meeting where you leave the house together and head to a coffee shop. It is easy for the regular routine of life to get in the way of communication and this is the most important thing you need to do for your marriage.
What to discuss
The only thing you should be discussing during this open communication time is your relationship. It is not the right time to talk about the mundane things. Here are some topics of communication that should be addressed.
- Sharing more details about yourself so that your partner can understand you better.
- Changes you would like to see in the marriage.
- Changes you could both make to improve the relationship.
- Specific goals for the marriage.
When you first find out that a child is involved, on top of the emotional pain involved with finding out about the affair, you may feel like you are about to break apart. This is the time to address your emotional well-being by taking care of yourself. Take some time to do things that you enjoy and nurture yourself. You can get through this roller coaster of emotions by being good to yourself and getting distracted in other areas.