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Dad Stunned After His Wife Admits She Planned Their ‘Surprise’ Pregnancy To Keep Him From Leaving Her

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We do all sorts of strange things for love. For some people, unfortunately, all limits are off―even if it means hurting someone else.

A husband and father explained how he was unsure what to do next after he discovered what his wife had been willing to do to save their relationship.

He wrote into the “Relationship Advice” subReddit, looking for advice on how he should respond.

The OP (Original Poster) “throwRA-lifeisalie” stated to the sub: 

“My (39[male]) wife (38[female]) admitted that she planned our supposed surprise pregnancy and I don’t know how I feel.”

The OP explained his relationship with his wife has already ended once before. But when they found out they were expecting a baby, they decided to work it out. 

“My wife and I started dating in 2015 and dated for 3 years. in early 2018, I started feeling like we were drifting apart and that the relationship was reaching its natural conclusion and I ended the relationship.”

“less than a month later, she told me she found out she was pregnant. at the time it was presented like it was an accidental pregnancy and that was the story I believed.”

With the arrival of their son, their relationship appeared to be stronger and happier than ever.

“Our son was born in September of 2018 and we got married in May of last year. We have a pretty happy marriage overall. I will say right now that I am the more hands on parent and more involved, but I’ve never had any reason to doubt that my wife loves our son.”

“I just always wanted to be a dad and have kids and she never saw it in her life plan (another part of the reason why I felt like things weren’t going to work, because I really prioritized having a family). The dynamic does work for us and like I said I never had any reason to suspect that she didn’t love our son or enjoy being a mom.”

A secret in their marriage surfaced only when the OP began to talk about having more kids. 

“Basically, this came to pass because I was talking about having a second child. I’m one of 8 (3 full siblings, 4 much younger half siblings) and I always wanted to have at least 2/3 kids, which my wife knows. so I brought up having more kids because we’re getting older, and our son is old enough now that it seems like a possibility.”

“after dismissing me for several days, tonight my wife admitted that she actually planned her pregnancy with our son but that she didn’t really want the baby at all, she just wanted to keep me around/knew that if she was pregnant I wouldn’t break up with her/knew that I would get back together with her, but she planned it just so I would stay with her and she doesn’t actually enjoy having him, she just wanted to be with me.”

The OP wondered what he should do with the feelings the confession brought up.

“this hurt and upset me a lot, and I honestly don’t know how to feel. on one hand I feel like, well, everyone got what they wanted so it’s fine, right? but at the same time, I feel like I’ve been lied to for years AND the fact that my wife admitted to not enjoying our son is weighing on my heart.”

“is it unreasonable for me to feel this way?”

“what would you do if you were in my shoes? i wish I could go back to before I knew this and just continue living my life the way it was… but I don’t know if I can now.”

Fellow Redditors wrote in and expressed their condolences for the OP and for his son.

Some were overwhelmed at the wife’s decision to use a child to manipulate the OP.

“This is one of the worst things she could have done. She used an innocent baby’s life to manipulate you instead of accepting that you weren’t meant to be and move on. And even now, she doesn’t really see anything wrong with it.”

“Time to put all plans on hold, and go to individual and couple’s counseling. Chances are [high] that you won’t get over this…..”

“Your poor son.”airaqua

“This is pretty much the exact reason myself and my three other siblings were conceived, to, and I quote from my mom ‘shut my dad up’ about having children and to keep him around.”

“I have moved on from it. Even though my mom felt that way through most of our childhoods, she seems to enjoy having us around as adult children now. So the lack of warmth was weird as a kid, but now that I am older I have processed it and understand.”

“All of it makes me appreciate and love my dad even more. You will be ok, and your son will be ok too, and he will appreciate your great love for him.”represent_represent

“My initial reaction is get full custody and take your son far away.”

“It’s not just your son but your wife lied and deceived you in order to manipulate you in to something that at the time you didn’t actually want and your son is paying the price. She is lowest of low. Do you really want to be in a relationship with someone who could do this? What else might they do if desperate? What role model will she be for your kid(s).”

“If you stay note that kids are smart. He will pick up on the fact that his mum doesn’t like him much because she felt forced to have him. And definitely don’t have any more kids as I am guessing she will end up playing ‘favourites’ to ones she did actually want making things a million times worse.”

“Def therapy and lots of it.”nessa_ac

Other Redditors speculated the mother would at some point let it slip that she didn’t want her son, much like their own mothers had. 

“My mom got drunk one night and told me she didn’t want me when I was born and that’s why she always treated me ‘differently’.”

“[By] ‘differently’ she meant that she liked her sons better and although I kind of already knew that, hearing [it] out loud stung.”

“There’s no way she’s gonna keep it a secret. Even if she never ever says a word the kid will pick up on it eventually.”Novel_Fox

“My childhood sucked a** and I wasn’t even sure I wanted kids because I was told my whole life not to have any or they will ruin your life. I didn’t know how to play with my daughter, either. I had to look up nursery rhymes to sing to her and I really wish I read books to her more often. But I worked hard not to be like my parents and my daughter is happy and well adjusted.”

“I would hope that she didn’t feel guilty for having a better life than I had. Maybe feel blessed, but definitely not guilty.”msomnipotent

“My mom wasn’t drunk when she told me that she only had me to save her marriage and that when it failed anyways she always held it against me bc the one thing I was born to do I failed at. I think I was just moving in to middle school when she told me bc those years are super fuzzy and of what I do remember I was just severely depressed and angry.”

“Bottom line, some people just weren’t meant to be parents and don’t deserve the children they produce. I’m sorry you had to find out the way you did…I just hope OP can get his son some therapy to help him cope an”fluttermun

Others stressed that the OP’s son would figure it out no matter what. 

“He will feel it anyway, even if his mum never says anything. He will grow up feeling unwanted by her and never understand why or what’s missing exactly.”Jollydancer

“most likely? he already knows it. and he’s already getting mental issues from it that will haunt him and ruin his relationships in the future. children are literal sponges that soak up every last piece of information so that they can learn. they pick up on this stuff too, even if they can’t yet explain it.”soursheep

“Even if she never lets it slip, kids aren’t stupid. They can feel the love or indifference.”ThrowAway-MakeMyDay

The husband and wife clearly need to discuss the true gravity of this situation, and decide what they need to do so they can begin to move forward.

McKenzie Lynn Tozan

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan lives in North Chicago, where she works as a poet, freelance writer, and editor. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Western Michigan University, and her BA in English from Indiana University South Bend. Her poems have appeared in Rogue Agent, Whale Road Review, the James Franco Review, Thank You for Swallowing, and elsewhere; and her essays and book reviews have appeared with Memoir Mixtapes, The Rumpus, BookPage, and Motherly, among others. When she's not reading and writing, she's in her garden or spending time with her family. For more, visit www.mckenzielynntozan.com.