Dr. Helen

By Helen Smith

Bio

Get Updates From Helen Smith

Hi All,

I am working on a book project and will be asking you from time to time for help on questions pertaining to various men’s issues. I am researching paternity fraud and wondered how my male readers would answer the following question. You will be able also be able to comment on the poll as well if you would like to elaborate or comment below. Here is the question and a list of possible answers:

If you found out tomorrow that your five-year-old son or daughter was not yours and had to pay 13 years of child support, how would you feel?

  
pollcode.com free polls 

PJ Media appreciates your comments that abide by the following guidelines:

1. Avoid profanities or foul language unless it is contained in a necessary quote or is relevant to the comment.

2. Stay on topic.

3. Disagree, but avoid ad hominem attacks.

4. Threats are treated seriously and reported to law enforcement.

5. Spam and advertising are not permitted in the comments area.

These guidelines are very general and cannot cover every possible situation. Please don't assume that PJ Media management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment. We reserve the right to filter or delete comments or to deny posting privileges entirely at our discretion. Please note that comments are reviewed by the editorial staff and may not be posted immediately. If you feel your comment was filtered inappropriately, please email us at story@pjmedia.com.

132 Comments, 58 Threads

  1. 1. proreason

    The part about child support is confusing. The term Child Support is usually only used when the parents are separated, but there is no other indication of separation.

    And if there is no separation, a bond would probably have developed between the man and the child, which makes the whole concept of support much more complex.

    So the issue wouldn’t be one of anger against “the system” but of anger at having been misleadingly forced into a bad economic and horrible emotional situation. I just don’t think many men would be thinking about or blaming “the system” in the situation you describe.

    • Xenocles

      I agree. If the child had been born and I never saw it but was child support under the assumption it was mine, I’d be ecstatic at the prospect of handing the burden off to the real father. Of course, I wouldn’t voluntarily wind up in that situation – if I had reason to believe the child was mine I’d make an effort to be involved in its life. Once I had a bond with the child I don’t think it would be right to simply cut it off because of its mother’s transgressions. I’d probably be angry at her for a while, though.

      • cj

        Legally, most States presume a child conceived or birthed during a marriage (or shack-up) or within the 9 month timeframe after a divorce, to be the product of the Father. The law does not recognize contrary DNA test results. If you were together, it’s yours, even when it’s not.

        I’ve raised (am raising) 5 children. Only one is my immediate progeny. Though I had doubts about her paternity during the pregnancy, she was born before genetic testing was developed, and there was little point in testing years later. I’d loved and raised her, she was mine and I was hers. I’ve also adopted 1 child, raised a step-child, and currently have custody of two grand-children. But it was by choice, not subterfuge.

        One thing I’ve noticed over the years is that men are far more willing to raise the children of other men than women are of other women’s children. Men adopt children at TEN times the rate that women do. Partially, this is because “Woman with child” is the “new norm”. They come as a package deal. Single males with children are pariahs to women. Even when a woman agrees to marry a man raising children, it is unlikely to last. All the “bad step-father” stories are blown out of proportion by the sheer numbers involved. Statistically, the “evil-stepmother” narratives are far more accurate. Women, generally, just do NOT raise other females children, with the exception of joint adoptions (for reasons of infertility). On the personal level, I am very familiar with this. After my first divorce, I was awarded custody of my daughter. When I remarried, my wife was atrocious toward my daughter (should’ve gotten out then). After my daughter left home, things settled down, a bit, and I raised the step-child that came with that package. My bio-daughter had a child, who was removed from her custody (for cause). I could not let my grandchild fester in Foster homes, so I fought for custody. Once I got custody of the infant, he was MY responsibility, not my wifes, at all. Things went back to the bad old days, with the new wife abusing the new child that was not hers. We divorced soon afterwards, and my now ex refused ALL contact with my grandchild, and further, terminated contact between us (my grandchild and myself) – and my step-daughter. Sheer cruelty, aimed towards me, but directly impacting the children.

        At this point, I have accepted custody of a second grandchild, and am remaining committed to staying a single father. I’ll not put these children through the hell of dating women who leave when they find out about the kids I’m raising. Nor will I marry and further expose the children to new animosities (at best) or outright cruelty, after the honeymoon phase is over. The risk to the kids is not worth it.

  2. 2. Victor

    The options in your survey are skewed towards the psychobabble.

    The obvious first step is to consult a competent attorney and explore

    1-suing the mother for fraud and getting back your investment so far

    2-forcing the biological father to pay child support for the next 13 years and to establish a college fund

    3-If the father is sterile then he may want to adopt the child, assume financial responsibility for it and make sure the biological father is out of the picture and stays away until the child is 18yrs old

    I do not see psychotherapy having any role or value in this case–unless the cuckold chooses option #3

    In that case the mother would be the client for psychotherapy

    But as science shows— psychotherapy is often much worse than a placebo

    – it would be a waste of money

    • Good points, thanks for bringing them up. Psychotherapy is not the answer to a legal case, but to an emotional one. However, there are a dearth of studies on how paternity fraud affects men psychologically.

      Here is the problem, you can’t sue the mother for fraud –the system is stacked against you, rarely can you sue and win claims agains the biological father. The medical profession will probably not even tell you if a child is not yours i.e. genetic counselors are 92% female and don’t typically tell men if tests find out he is not the father. Many times, our society and the misandrists that run it think that men have no feelings or that their feelings are not important; men are left to suffer alone after devastating news or extreme stress and committ suicide at a high rate or are unable to function. Their feelings and emotions are important and I believe should be studied more by universities and researchers. Society puts men’s feelings and rights in the family dead last after mom, child and the dog–that needs to change.

      • TedJ

        Great reply. You Blogger followers’ loss is PJMedia readers’ gain.

      • asdf

        I’d be deeply depressed, and very angry at my wife. Would I still love my child? Yes, I would; I think I would still take responsibility for her well-being. Interestingly, despite the adultery and fraud that such a deception implies, the way the law is written makes it likely that while I would have no chance at custody, child support would be very likely.

        Genes aren’t the only things we pass on to the next generation. We also pass along “memes”– our values and world-view.

        I think you’re confounding several issues in this poll. Obviously, this isn’t intended to be scientific, but even if we limit it to the father’s point of view, there’s the legal question, the attitude towards the child, towards the mother, towards the “other man”. There’s the reaction towards the mother’s betrayal, towards the legal system.

        How many men really know how the legal system handles these situations? Most readers here, surely, but in the general population? Might this vary by race? Does it matter who the real father is, or the context of the conception?

        Does it matter if there’s been a divorce in the interim? I’m not a lawyer, but I could see the argument the woman’s attorney might make that the ex-husband is enough of a father to owe child support, but not enough of a father to get any right to visitation or joint custody. (“Best interest of the child” can be a thin pretext for securing the “best interests of the mother”).

        I’d be interested to hear what women think about these issues, both in the abstract and if it happened to them. How often does this happen? I suspect more often than we’d like. But what are the general social expectations for a cuckold? “If a man you knew was in this situation and refused to pay child support, would you think less of him?” My intuition is that people would. What are the social expectations on the genetic father? I wouldn’t be at all surprised to find that they are far less. People look down on a cuckold, whereas the lothario is a manly rogue.

        So I love your area of research, and I’m eager to read your book.

      • another_anon

        “The medical profession will probably not even tell you if a child is not yours i.e. genetic counselors are 92% female and don’t typically tell men if tests find out he is not the father. ”

        Here’s a thought about that… According to these Wiki articles, occurences of paternity fraud outnumber adoptions:

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paternity_fraud#Occurrence

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adoption#Modern_period

        The deeply concerned [TM] insist that an adoptee know his/her bioparents for health and cultural reasons. What about the health of the children born to a cheating mother?

        There is obviously a crying need for mandatory DNA testing of mother, ‘father’ and chold at birth, with the requirement that mom give up the name of the sperm donor if needed. It’s for the children!

        • Gilligan

          Excellent point. Just as adopted children are entitled to know. Their genetic history, so are all children.

          That is why DNA testing should be manditory for all hospital births.

          It’s for the children.

    • Gawain's Ghost

      I don’t think you understant the law. The court does not allow evidence of any kind to question paternity in a marriage situation. Period. If she is your wife, they are your children. You will pay child support.

      There was this case in Dallas about a decade ago. This man married this woman. Four children and ten years later, they divorced. One of the children had cystic fibrosis, which is a genetic disease. So the man went to the doctor to get tested. Nope, you don’t have the recessive allele, the doctor told him. “But my son has cystic fibrosis,” he said. “Has it ever occurred to you that you’re not the father?”

      Turns out this woman had four children with four differnt men. Only one of the children was his. He sued, because he’s paying child support for three children he did not conceive. Denied. He appealed. Denied. He took the case to the state supreme court. Denied. He took the case to the federal appeals court. Denied. He took the case all the way to the US supreme court. Denied.

      The court does not allow evidence of any kind to question paternity in a marriage situation. So this man is stuck with paying child support, 30% of his income, for children that are not his. And there’s nothing he can do about it.

      They will confiscate your wages, withold your tax return, or send you to jail.

      The only solution is to change the law. Or don’t get married at all.

  3. 3. The Root '83

    Hi Hellen, welcome to PJM

    Didnt see any other comments so I thought I’d go into more detail rather than just vote. Hope you dont mind.

    Wow, tough question. My son just turned six…I think the answers you get will dove-tail rather neatly relative to what kind of relationship the men have with the mother, especially if “child support” is a required variable in sorting of the data. It might be difficult to plot a real trend without that type of context. Biaxial peaks, depending on their relationships is my guess

    In my case, we are married, though not before our son was born. If I found out now he wasnt mine, I’d be very sad and depressed because I’d WANT him to be ‘really mine” so much.

    If we got divorced someday, especially while he is still very young, I’d be more concerned about his emotional development issues due to the break-up than I would ever be about the money. I love him, he’s the only child I ever experienced, and I’m the only Father Figure he’s known..Therefore in my case I’d do whatever I could to cushion him from hurt that our breakup would cause. He comes first no matter what. Child Support would matter nothing to me, I’d be more worried about school, housing, opportunities, and emotional development before I counted dollars and pennies.

    But for guys intentionally duped into paying for someone elses child? When they dont have custody? Or a relationship? Thats another category entirely.

    I sympathize with guys who get screwed, especially if its done maliciously purely for money, but my mind always goes to that innocent kid, who just needs love and stability….everyone gets hurt in a mess like that, but THEY get it the worst…its a heartbreaker no matter who’s “fault” it is, to see them pay for their “parents” mistakes

    The adults are the mistakes, not the kids.

    • cubanbob

      The bitch made the mistake, not the guy. Lets be clear about that point first.
      Now if the guy chooses to formally adopt the kid that is one thing. If not he should not be compelled to support the kid. In no ther fraud is the victim compelled to continue paying once the fraud is discovered.

      This is an area that smart libertarian lawyers for men’s issues should tackle: namely the due process and takings clauses of the constitution.

  4. 4. Dianna

    A child is a gift from the gods, no matter how he or she got here.

    That poll makes me uneasy.

    • “That poll makes me uneasy.”

      Then imagine how “uneasy” a man would feel to deal with such a betrayal.

    • Dystopia Max

      “A child is a gift from the gods, no matter how he or she got here.”

      *Disapproving Hank Hill stare*

      Wiccans…

    • Bob

      And lies and betrayals are gifts from the devil — which is what this poll is exploring. I applaud it, and the unmasking of the “shut up and take it like a man” trope that’s used to marginalize men’s rights and feelings.

    • MEM

      I agree – none of the possible answers to the poll question dealt with the fathers’ feelings towards the child (positive or negative).

    • Jeff

      Says the woman who is sure the child is hers…

    • Acksiom

      “That poll makes me uneasy.”

      [shrug]

      So?

    • Toads

      The poll makes you uneasy BECAUSE you cheated on your husband!!

      Now this is what you should really be uneasy about :

      If there is ONE thing that can turn mild-mannered Bob the Accountant into a knife-wielding lunatic, it is finding out that ‘his’ child was fathered by someone else that his slut wife had sex with.

      Dianna has just proved why 99% of women don’t deserve the right to vote. Helen can be an honorary ‘man’ with voting rights. But womankind in general has no moral fiber whatsoever.

    • crella

      So….your fiance gives you a beautiful diamond, a rock, for your engagement. You wear it for years.You get a thrill when you look at it, feeling the love that went into choosing such a ring. One day at a class reunion someone recognizes it as the same ring he gave a stripper he used to be engaged to….

      A child is a direct product of sexual intercourse. The man has to look at the child and wonder who Mommy’s been with. THAT should make you uneasy.

    • darkam

      Does your husband suspect that you cuckolded him?

      Cuckoldry is the female version of rape.

    • BioSuperior

      Women should be aware that technology is fast removing biological superiority for both sexes.

      Say you want to have kids after 30 and therefore freeze your eggs at age 20 because you plan to do IVF later. A technician takes some of your eggs and fertilizes them, and then pays $30k to have a woman in India bring the child to term. He raises the child for two years, and then sues you for Child support. A paternity test proves your the mother.

      How do you feel?

      You have surgery to remove an ovarian cyst…and the doctor takes a few eggs along the way…. How do you feel?

  5. 5. gavin

    happily married for 29 yrs,but the thought that any of my off spring were not fruit of my lions is disturbing .at the moment they all seem to show my faults and also show useful and good qualities that i have let slide.
    A man i work with has a grandson by a man of no redeeming qualities and is trying to make him into a good human.

  6. 6. QuantumSam

    You all get a failing grade. Being a parent is more than genetics, hence I love my daughter. It does not matter that I share no genetic material with her, but I have loved her since I first saw her at age 10 months. She is seven and she is my daughter…period.

    If I were raising a child and found out that my wife had cheated on me and the child was not genetically mine, I would be upset/pissed at my wife, but I am still the parent…still the father…and I would still treat the child exactly as if the childwere my natual offspring.

    The parent/child relationship is as much nature as it is nuture…it is as much the pruduct of biology as it is of love.

    If you would love your child differently after all that time just because you are not genetically related, then you aren’t/haven’t been/would not be much good as a parent.

    • BobH

      No, you’re the one with the failing grade! Being the sperm donor IS the definition of being a father. Your definition of father is nothing more than feminazi BS allowing women to extort resources from men while still thinking of themselves as wonderfully caring and giving people who are only concerned with the welfare of innocent children. Meanwhile, most of them seem to support a woman’s right to “choose”.

      Having said that, after five years, I suspect that I would be pretty attached to the kid.

      • Chaos

        So by your definition all those men who have adopted do not deserve to be fathers?

    • Keith

      Hi Sam,

      Thank you very much.

      As an adopted child, I have no doubt who my parents are: they are the couple who raised me. (About the couple who conceived me and placed me for adoption — I certainly appreciate that, but I simply don’t view them as my parents.)

    • Father of 2

      Learning that your wife deceived you in the most intimate manner is an age-old source of fury and depression. Will it only be her emotional attachment to another man that upsets you?

      Discovering that another man used “your wife” to father “his” child, and your labor to pay for his child has also been viewed as more than an accounting transaction in civilized societies where child rearing is not communal.

      For that child you will give up evenings, weekends, resources, sleep, and the likely ability to father your “own” child. In today’s society, you will be obligated to pay for that child until he or she turns 18 (maybe longer).

      It won’t matter that you need a new car, a vacation, or health care. Or that you want to marry someone who does not want you, because your income is directed by law to another man’s child.

      How will you feel as your 40′s or 50′s slip away, your last productive years, as the other man “the Dad”-takes the vacations you could not, marries a woman when you could not, and lives a healthier life because he can afford higher grade medical care when you cannot?

      How will you feel when the grown child wants to meet his or her father? The one you proably feel they should disdain and avoid- but they won’t. They can’t. Because biological ties are powerful things too.

      Will you invite “Dad” to your house? To the wedding of the child that you raised and paid for? Will you feel betrayed if “your child” asks you to invite “Dad.” How could you not?

      Of course you will be fond of any child you raise. You may love the child as you say, and that is praiseworthy.

      But its utopian and ahistorical to suggest that a man should cheerfully raise and pay for kids from 1 or 2 other men. It ignores biology. The urge to build and pass on something of yourself.

      • TedJ

        Great points. The system is stacked against men when it comes to this issue. Deadbeat dads should be subjected to the rigors of the law. But making a man an indentured servant to a woman and someone else’s child is horribly unjust. As you pointed out, it can equate to a lifetime of pain and shame.

        • SKent

          In those cases, the man should always be let off the fiscal hook, as a fundamental and incontrovertible rule. It should be grounds for no fault divorce (if married at the time) with a minimal percentage of anything going to the mother.

          Then, IF HE SO CHOOSES, the man can continue caring for the child, mother even, financially and/or otherwise, and enjoy some pride in doing so. If he chooses not to, that is his option and the chips fall (for mother and child) where they may from that point on with no further strings attached.

          When forced to pay, there will always be bitterness, even (especially) if he would have agreed to care for the child anyways.

          You can’t legislate kind or noble behavior. The attempt to do so is evil.

    • Adoptive Father

      I agree with you, QuantumSam: “If you would love your child differently after all that time just because you are not genetically related, then you aren’t/haven’t been/would not be much good as a parent.” My three children are adopted siblings. This fact is not why I think this way, though. I established my thinking on this many years ago with the “Baby Richard” case (I believe that was the name) in Chicago. A little boy raised for several years with adoptive parents wrenched away by a bio-dad via the courts. It was this travesty of justice that made me think deeply about parenthood long before we adopted or even considered it. Dr. Helen’s poll is strangely worded but if my wife were unfaithful, as I take it the example goes, I would certainly be very angry about the deception. I would hope that my Christian faith would allow me to be forgiving with my REPENTANT bride. But the status of my child (the term alone should telegraph my thinking) would be unchanged. If my feelings about my unfaithful bride began to change how I felt about my child, then I would need to reassess those feelings in light of morality. My feelings cannot be the ultimate arbiter for my actions. Feelings come and go. They are by nature ephemeral, barring obsession – which is mentally unhealthy. Morality is fixed by our Maker. I need to judge my feelings by His standard.

      I recall reading of two couples whose children were mistakenly and tragically switched at the hospital. I believe it was months later that this was discovered. Certainly after that amount of time the parent-child bond is solidified. Were I in that position as a parent I would lobby strongly for maintaining the status quo even though the genetics are incorrect. As in the “Baby Richards” case, emotional ties far outweigh genetic bonds.

      Our culture needs to think ethically rather than genetically. This seems common sense to me. I am here to help them become good people, citizens worthy of their call by God and productive members of this great country – whether my sperm was involved or not. Thinking ethically also involves some “wisdom of Solomon” in our legal system pertaining to father’s rights when marriages go awry. Sometimes the father should be custodial parent as opposed to the mother. It requires a Judge to use his God-given wisdom to determine the best course. This is not the present situation, as we all know. Not all cases fit the present cookie-cutter legal approach.

  7. 7. A. Tarsot

    Minor error in sentence three: “be able also be able….”

  8. 8. TMink

    I was pondering the question when it hit me, MY children are not really mine! We used donor embryos for our triplets, so they are not genetically my or my wife’s offspring. But this is not problem, because there is no fraud involved! It is the fraud of the conception and the injustice of the forced support that causes the problem.

    Someone on the former blog had suggested that the father be given the option to have the child on his own with the former wife paying child support (HAH! 60% of women never pay court ordered child support)or the option of leaving the child with the mother with no further obligations. That works for me.

    But just for fun, where is the sin involved? Well, the mom would likely be guilty of adultery, certainly of lying, the bio father would be an adulterer, and the court would be offending God by perpetrating injustice against the (in this scenario) innocent father.

    Yuck!

    Trey

    • Micha Elyi

      Consent has such a transformative power. It decides the difference between “rape!” and “making love.” It turns the child of a stranger’s seed into “my son.”

      Feminist intellectuals have explored consent, what it is and its implications, to some considerable degree. A large part of their work in that area transfers easily to the topic of paternity fraud.

  9. I’m distressed by some of the comments made already by people who fail to consider the issue far more deeply.

    “A child is a gift from the Gods, no matter how he or she got there.”

    So what?

    “If you would love your child differently after all that time just because you are not genetically related, then you aren’t/haven’t been/would not be much good as a parent.”

    Really? When something you hold so near and dear turns out to be a big, fat lie… having a potentially negative physical, mental, emotional reaction to such life-affecting news would somehow automatically mean that you would not be much good as a parent? Sounds to me like you have no true concept of just how devastating such news can be on an individual and none of it has anything to do with their knowledge, skills, and abilities as a parent.

    To answer your question first – I have no idea how I would feel. I can surmise with reasonable certainty that I would be emotionally and psychologically devastated. From the very moment I first held out how much I wanted to have children “when I grow up” – it comes from a deeply held belief about loving, caring, nurturing children and helping them to grow into successful adulthood. It also had to do with carrying on the family tree and having something born of YOUR heart, soul, and genetic material.

    To later learn that such a sacred dream that you believed to have been realized in all of those arenas was rooting in fraud and falsehood is very nearly impossible to meet with nary a care, as at least one commenter above intimated. In fact, one’s ability to simply cast aside such news because you love the child just as though they were born from your loins would have me questioning their mental make-up.

    As for what I would be capable of doing in the aftermath of such a scenario, I truly have no idea. I would like to believe I could manage the devastation and carry on as I always have. However, I’m not sure it’s possible for anyone to be able to completely wipe out the reality that when you look at the child, whatever you established in terms of emotional bond, love, nurturing, etc. etc. would also be accompanied by the sting of deceit and betrayal. It would also be accompanied by visions of infidelity. It would also be accompanied by the heartbreak that a child you believed to be born of you in every way – just isn’t. As I sit here writing this, I can’t think of a greater betrayal in life and, no matter how you analyze this, that child is forever a representation of it.

    Finally, it is because of all of these deeper issues and the unknowns associated with them that I could never pass judgment on another individual no matter what he would choose in the aftermath of such devastating news. It is not logical nor fair to indict their ability as a parent if things were to change, even as dramatically as “walking away.”

    The short answer is: I know how I would feel. Pretty torn up. I don’t know what the longer-term actions would be in the aftermath. Frankly, I don’t see how anyone could know, but I’m sure most of your answers will be the righteous, “I would get over it do the ‘right’ thing and everything would be hunky-dory.”

  10. 10. Anonymous

    I would be too shattered to answer any poll.

  11. 11. TedJ

    The responses to this poll will vary because everyone has a unique family experience. The reader is left to make several assumptions about the situation in which this child was conceived and the family structure that is currently in place. The respondent will use their own experiences when commenting on how they would react. I imagine Dr. Smith knew that when she posed the question.

    Generally speaking, if my wife and I were married and had a child and after several years of raising that child I found out that my wife had 1) cheated on me and 2) she suspected the child was not mine and let me develop a paternal bond anyway, I would be absolutely devastated. First by the fact that my wife had gone outside our marriage to find love, companionship, or physical pleasure or whatever. That would forever destroy my trust in the person I was supposed to have the most trust in and it would make me feel like there was something wrong with me. Second, if she suspected that the child was not mine and let me raise it as my own, I would be disgusted by her cowardice and I would feel that the paternal relationship I had developed was hollow and based upon a lie. She would have destroyed multiple relationships. Maybe the bio-dad isn’t a creep. Maybe he didn’t know my cheating wife was married. Maybe he would feel betrayed that his child was being raised by another man and that he was being cheated out of his paternal rights. In this situation, I would leave her and her child and start over. These relationships would be a smoldering wreck, I couldn’t see myself wanting to continue with that family. Which is a paradox to my real life situation.

    My personal situation is that I walked into a relationship with a woman who already had children. My wife made several bad choices in men before she met me. One of those children I have raised since he was 2, he is now 11. We have since had two other children. If I were to find out that one of those two other children were not mine, I would feel all of the betrayal, shame, and pain that I described earlier. However, I would now blame myself for this. I would think, and probably rightfully so, that my wife was a psychopath incapable of forming meaningful relationships with anyone. This is where my actions would differ from the first hypothetical situation, I would do everything I could to form a strong family bond with all of the children and try my best to keep them from being pyschopaths themselves.

    How would I do that, I don’t know? This situation begets another tough question. Is it better to keep kids in a house with an extremely unhealthy husband/wife relationship or better to be a dad from a distance? The deck is stacked against dads in this situation as well. The mom almost always gets the kids in a divorce. Being a husband and a dad are the two most important roles I have filled in my life. If my wife destroyed the husband/wife relationship, I hope that my role as a dad would still be strong and would continue as normally as possible.

    Great question, I will follow other’s comments on this topic.

  12. 12. Your Inner Voice

    As I have “kept it in my pants” for the last twenty-five or so years of my adulthood that feeling is a discovery I won’t ever deal with personally. As Rush is fond of saying, “Abstinence works every time it’s tried.”

    If people do not practice morality they end up paying for it, and often so do the people around them. People who do not teach morality to their children, descending from a Lawgiver,really don’t love their children as much as they might claim to love them.

    A society that has, mostly, given up on upholding a universal societal moral standard(with a 40% single parent birthrate I’d say we’re about there) especially a society that calls itself “democratic”, is nothing more than an amorphous mob ready to implode in self-destruction.

    Those who do not believe universal social behavioral standards are appropriate, and accede to the moral relativism of human secularist self-worship acknowledge no God nor moral/legal authority but themselves. When society at large has accepted a standard of NO standards anarchy is at hand, followed shortly by totalitarian dictatorship, and/or defeat and enslavement by a foreign power.

    No self-proclaimed “conservative” is a conservative, in reality, if they hold to situational ethics/moral relativism of the church-of-self in human secularist practices, as it is the exact opposite of what conservatism means.
    Obama has just as much “right” to force America (might makes “right” in the church-of-self) to Marxism, as his godless self-proclaimed “fiscal conservative” foes have to resist him. He “means well”, in his own eyes, and that is all the reason he needs, like Stalin/Lenin/Mao/Ho Chi Mihn/Pol Pot/Castro/and etc. The world is governed by the aggressive use of force(Rush again)which must always be applied in societies not governed voluntarily and democratically by themselves, and their acceptance of universal mores of behavior.

    At a personal level, the inability of the individual to restrain himself/herself in behavior, and the acquiescence of society to a general lack of restraint on the claims of “freedom” – misbehavior without consequences – enslaves everyone to the increasing force necessary to keep the criminals from exercising their “free will” from ending whatever country where such moral abandon has run amok. Libertine behavior has both immediate and long-term consequences, recorded over and over throughout history, and America, on its present course, is destined soon to join all of the other deceased civilizations, whence how I feel about being tricked into raising a dependent not of my blood becomes quite irrelevant in the big picture of DOOM.

    • TedJ

      Adult sexuality is not immoral per se and I reject the idea that abstinence is the only morally correct path. Your decision to “keep it in your pants” for twenty five years is a personal one. Human beings are naturally sexual. It is an important function of our survival as a species and there are many positives that come from a healthy sexual relationship. You have decided this isn’t something that will enrich your life. That’s fine it is your decision but do not assume that makes you morally superior to someone who hasn’t made that choice.

      I would also say that you should be careful about juding others on how they define a healthy sexual relationship. If two consenting adults are doing what makes them feel good, they are not hurting other adults or children, and they are not engaging in high risk activities that could spread diseases, then what they do is none of my or anyone else’s business in my opinion.

      Going back to the morality of sexually active adults, if your actions result in the conception of a child then you are morally responsbile for that child. If you fail to be the father/mother of that child, then your actions are ultimately immoral. What you are suggesting is a macro solution to a micro problem. The family unit has been torn a sunder and attacked by the state. There are many reasons why and how this has happened and it varies by community as well. Saying that we should just all learn to “keep it in our pants” is not a real solution. It might be for you personally but it is not based upon reality and goes against human nature.

      • Lyn87

        “you are morally responsbile for that child. If you fail to be the father/mother of that child, then your actions are ultimately immoral”

        That is an assertion. Since you can only declare someone else’s conduct moral or immoral by appealing to a higher moral authority, upon what higher moral authority do you base that assertion?

        • TedJ

          What a loopity loop argument. If you want to argue the source of morality and how it has a different meaning to everyone, I will not engage you on that. If you think I am wrong, just say it. Here’s my assertion. If you father a child or are the mother of a child, you are responsible for that child. That is a basic social norm that almost every person in America will agree with. If you don’t agree with it, just say it. Don’t try to get into some circular argument about God or moral relativism.

          • Lyn87

            I see you refused to just answer my simple question (as I suspected you would). The fact is that you told “Your Inner Voice” that he has no right to impose his stance of morality on others because morality is a personal choice. But when you declare the actions of others to be moral or immoral you are doing the exact same thing. When I pointed that out it is not a “loopity loop argument;” it is pointing out the logical error you made when you assert that others have no right to decide “moral vs. immoral” for others, but that you do. Either you believe in a transcendent moral code or you do not. If you don’t believe in a transcendent moral code you cannot make moral assertions to apply to others (which is precisely what you did). Since you DID, in fact, make a moral assertion that you think should apply to others, I simply asked you for the source of the code YOU think gives you the right to declare the actions of others to be moral or immoral. Pretty simple question: if you have an answer for it.

            What you have demonstrated is that if someone has a different moral code than you, then morality is personal. But it YOU feel that something someone else does is immoral, well… it just is, and you’re fine with asserting that the actions of other are moral or immoral.

            I have pointed out you logical error. If you are that uncomfortable answering my question, perhaps you ought to re-think your position.

          • TedJ

            Lyn87, loop-de-loop-de-loop. And as predicted, you would go into some rant about moral relativism.

            I would be willing to guess that between 95% and 99% of Americans would say that if you are the mother or father of a child, you have a moral responsibility to provide for it either directly or indirectly.

            If that is indeed the case, than it is an overwhelmingly accpeted social norm. If you disagree, say so. Don’t create some circular convoluted argument about moral relativism.

  13. 13. MochaLite

    I’m female. Glancing through the tag lines on Instapundit, I saw: “How would you feel if you found out you were raising another man’s child?”

    Before it fully registered, I thought “Good grief, what would I want with more than one husband and more than one set of children??” Then I realized this wasn’t a question for me.

    • Sorry, I think the question only fits male readers! Hopefully, no women out there are raising a child they are unsure is their own.

      • M. Report

        I recall one case of newborns switched at the hospital, in which the error
        was discovered 12 years later. One of the mothers said of the situation:
        I feel for the other woman, but her child has not been well a day in her
        life, and I want my (healthy) daughter back; Can you blame her ?

        • Micha Elyi

          M. Report, you shared a valuable insight. Such cases are the closest that any female has gotten to the emotional turmoil a man can experience due to a paternity fraud perpetrated on him. And because such cases are not deliberate and not done by a spouse (or long-term intimate partner) no female can really understand the half of it!

          I too recall switched-at-birth cases in which at least one of the bio-moms went hysterical to dump the ‘wrong’ child and grab the ‘right’ one. So much for the selfless, giving love that females often talk about. Once again we see females taking for granted that men will live up to a higher standard than females choose for themselves. Diana’s earlier remark is an example of a female who’d rather talk around an issue than address the issue.

      • Mike James

        So, did you hear the one about the blonde who had her pregnancy test come back positive, but she wasn’t sure that the baby was hers?

  14. 14. Kelly

    It isn’t the child’s fault, it isn’t the mans fault. In this situation if the father is determined to be a fit parent and wants full custody of the child, custody should be given to the father and the woman should be forced to pay child support. She has shown herself to be untrustworthy, a liar and unfit to parent by her fraud. If the father determines he doesn’t want a relationship with the child, that’s sad and I can’t say I admire him much, but he should be able to walk away. Frankly, I’m tired of woman wanting choice for themselves, but want to take it away from a man.

    • Toads

      No, it is the woman’s fault. The fact that you are trying to blame the man even though YOU, the woman, are harming the child shows that women are not fit to have the right to vote.

  15. 15. Mike Giles

    The first thing I would ask is are you still married or did you ever get married, and do you have any other children together? The situation where the oldest child isn’t your, but the other children are puts a different spin on the question. As does the situation where the child who isn’t yours is one of the middle children.

  16. 16. Mike M.

    The problem is that this poll does not offer the option to pick more than one choice. Anger at the woman who deceived you into feeding, housing, clothing, and raising a child that is not yours is entirely appropriate. But anger at the legal system that forces you to continue to do so is also quite deserved.

    We’ll leave out adoption. That is a free choice to accept responsibility for raising a child. Quite different from a fraud.

    • gb_in_tx

      That’s my take on it. The system is busted, it stinks to high heaven. And you were betrayed and lied to.

  17. 17. joe

    Something similar has happened to me and I know at least one other man this has happened to. In the other guys case, he knew all along, loved the wife and never said anything, raised the kid (loved the kid like his others) even after he divorced the mother. I don’t think the kid (now an adult) even knows he isnt’ the biodad. In my case, I learned later after my daughter was older teen – I loved her anyway and “so what” who her biodad is – she was (and still is) mine. We remain very close in spite of divorce from her mother. I got a lovely daughter and the biodad got nothing (maybe relief that it worked out the way it did). This is really common – mothers who screw around have a shot at picking the father (or used to before tests), married men have no choice anyway, I guess a DNA test proving the husband isn’t the father can be used in a divorce case, but he is still on the hook for child support even with DNA test – so why not “lay back and enjoy it” as the old saying goes? I also raised a daughter who I knew wasn’t my biokid (stepdaughter) and we are closer than with my natural children (she is mid 30′s now). Kids come along and need daddies. Thats how things work.

    • Frederick O Stephenson

      It’s ok to live your life as a moron as long as you understand that the world doesn’t really sing “Kum ba yah” when all the nasty bad men are not around (or when they are in jail for not paying child support for someone else’s child). Keeping your child’s genetic heritage secret does no one any favors. It is clearly understood that human beings are by nature sexual animals. That point however, is irrelevant unless you think that is all they are. In which case screw around all you want and keep it secret. Allow your sons and daughters (or someone else’s) to intermarry with all the genetic riot that will result. Just don’t make me pay for your moron behavior.

    • gb_in_tx

      The issue isn’t really about the relationship with the child. Nobody is seriously finding fault with the child, who has obviously done nothing wrong. The issues are about the betrayal on the part of the female, and the injustice of having the state force a male to provide support for a child that he didn’t father and can prove that he didn’t father.

      If the male chooses to raise the child or provide support for the child of his own volition that’s his prerogative. But the state shouldn’t force him to. If the state were to force anyone to pay, it should be the bio-father.

  18. 18. QET

    An interesting choice of age for your poll. At 5, there has been just enough time to seriously bond with the child while ensuring that there is a sufficiently long period of required financial support remaining to weight the financial aspect suitably to your purpose. Considered alone, the economics-motivated outrage must decline with each passing year (I suspect most people will not be able to be as upset about money already spent prior to the discovery as about future spending) and the father-child bond likely will strengthen. I can say with some confidence that were I to discover this today about my 15 year old child, who has never known a father but me, I could more easily resign myself to the fact and look past it than if my child were 5, or 2. But the things that surprise me about the comments and poll responses so far are (i) the tendency to evaluate the whole situation as a financial proposition, and (ii) to the extent a personal relationship is mentioned, it is the relationship with the wife and not with the child that matters.

  19. It would not affect my love for the child, but if mom lied to me, she’d have to refund me all the money she duped me into paying, and then I can decide whether to keep paying for the child (which I probably would). But mom is in hot water.

    • In a just world I agree she should have to pay back what you were defrauded. Mom can get the money back for the child from the actual father.

      I’d go a step further and suggest making paternity fraud an actual crime. Require mothers to file out a form when doing the state birth certificate itemizing all potential fathers (men she slept with +/- 2 weeks of conception). All men would be notified they’ve been named as the possible father and would know that they’re 1 of x amount of possible candidates. This would serve two purposes:

      1. letting men know that they might have a child in the world who would otherwise be ignorant of the fact

      2. letting the man who thought he was the father know his SO slept with other men around the time of conception so he doesn’t get duped into thinking he’s the only one who could be the child’s father

      Later, if mom didn’t fill out this form dutifully and lies about the paternity, if it’s later discovered the man is NOT the child’s father then she’d be looking at a stiff fine and jail time for attempted fraud and perjury.

    • In a just world I agree she should have to pay back what you were defrauded. Mom can get the money back for the child from the actual father.

      I’d go a step further and suggest making paternity fraud an actual crime. Require mothers to file out a form when doing the state birth certificate itemizing all potential fathers (men she slept with +/- 2 weeks of conception). All men would be notified they’ve been named as the possible father and would know that they’re 1 of x amount of possible candidates. This would serve two purposes: A) Letting men know that they might have a child in the world who would otherwise be ignorant of the fact and B) Letting the man who thought he was the father know his SO slept with other men around the time of conception so he doesn’t get duped into thinking he’s the only one who could be the child’s father

      Later, if mom didn’t fill out this form dutifully and lies about the paternity, if it’s later discovered the man is NOT the child’s father then she’d be looking at a stiff fine and jail time for attempted fraud and perjury.

  20. 20. Douglas

    The question is so incomplete as to be misleading and I’m sure different people are answering it with different interpretations.

    What’s the reference to child support? The question says nothing about whether the respondent is still married or otherwise with the mother.

    Has the respondent been with the mother until now? Why else is the reference to child support 13 years? Wouldn’t the real question be 18 years?

    And what judge anywhere would make a man who’s not married or living with a woman pay child support for a child that is not his/hers? That’s what the question seems to propose.

    I’m happy to answer, but the question needs to make sense.

    And I would not use the results you’ve received: the respondents probably are mentally filling in the massive blanks left in the question in 10 different ways.

    (If this is Glenn’s fault for not linking to the page that has more information about the poll, a “HEH” to him.)

  21. 21. Mike James

    If I found out something like this, things would become very bad for the mother. I would try not to let a child who, through no fault of its’ own, was the centerpiece of such a devastating outrage.

    But things would start, and would continue to be, as hard on the dirty lying mother as I could make them, and the onus to make sure no bad effects spill over into the child’s life would very much weigh on her. There is no tolerating this sort of thing, not once, not ever!

    I refuse to be suckered into supporting some sleazy b@$#@^&$ get, or if suckered, to continue to be made use of in such a manner. Too bad if this affects the mother in a bad way, she could never suffer the way a man deceived like this suffers.

    It’s called cuckoldry.

  22. My answer involves a key assumption and few options:

    Assumption: Prior to discovery, I have been raising this child in a loving/caring family with my wife.

    Bottom line is that I assume I have a loving bond with this child, and I would not casually cast this away based upon the child’s natural parentage. First, I would seek legal protection against the natural father seeking any sort of claim on the child or parenting rights. What happens with regard to the mother is another matter.

    I would (of course) be devistated by the betayal, but if this was a one-time affair and I had confidence it was not indicative of a behavior pattern I would try to continue in the marriage, for the sake of my child, if nothing else.

    If, however, there was evidence of continual betrayal I would probably seek divorce. In a perfect world, I would seek joint custody unless the mother’s behavior patterns indicated lack of stability or danger to the child (e.g. a young daughter being exposed to random, serial unknown boyfriends), in which case I would seek full custody. In a joint custody case, the natural father should be liable for child support paid to the mother.

    I know, ain’t gonna happen, but I said perfect world. I likely would find myself trapped in a crappy marriage situation simply to guarantee contact with my (semi-adopted) child and to protect him/her from a worse situation.

  23. 23. Anon

    Anger at the mother. I assume broken trust.

    The child is innocent and loved.

  24. 24. bgarrett

    I probably DID raise another mans child and I DID raise another.
    The woman I married had a daughter, so obviously I felt it was ok to raise her. Then we (or she) had a son who I suspect was the result of her constant cheating. We had another son and when my wife left, I raised both boys by myself and loved every minute of it. To answer your question, I AM the older boys father. I am the only father he is aware of and therefore he is MY son.

  25. 25. M. Report

    I would not care that the child was not biologically mine;
    I would, while the child was not around, make it clear to
    my ex-wife/current co-parent that if she left me, she would
    not get a penny from me in child support, let alone alimony.

    • Eric

      Well, that’s the problem, isn’t it? You don’t get to make that decision unless you’re willing to become some sort of fugitive and/or spend the rest of your days in jail. That’s the worst sort of Pyrrhic victory.

      • M. Report

        Think of it as Marital Assured Destruction (MAD);
        If the threat is believed, it will not be tested.

  26. 26. D.J.

    I know that I would be angry at my wife were this to occur, but I hope and pray that we would be able to make things work. On the other hand, we went into our marriage knowing that we would take our wedding vows seriously: To have and to hold, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, forsaking all others, so long as we both shall live. Though we both gave those vows, we do not consider it a contract where if one person violates it the other can get out: I’ve committed to do these things no matter what she does, and she’s committed to do them no matter what I do.

    I don’t know if I would want to tell the child, or not. In this situation, I might end up pursing adoption to cement in law the rights and responsibilities that I had exercised before in good faith, but only having them legally since I as married to the child’s mother.

    Thinking on your initial question, I wonder if you are envisioning this scenerio:

    1) Wife has Child by Lover, and passes it off to Husband as his own.
    2) Eventually, Husband finds out that Child is not his, and divorces wife.
    3) Since X amount of time has passed since the Child’s birth, Husband is forced to pay child support to Wife on behalf of Child.

    In that case, I would be exceedingly angry at the system as well. While there is (and should be) a presumption that the mother’s husband is the biological father, the statute of limitations for a test should start when the Husband has reason to suspect the Wife of having had an affair–not when the Child is born.

  27. 27. KareninPA

    These are chilling comments. If you can break the heart of an innocent 5-year-old, who’d be losing the only father he’s ever known, you’re as bad your cheating wife. No, you’re worse.

    • TedJ

      The betrayal, shame, and anger would probably make a man a poor father. How is it worse for that man to reject a child that is not his and was raised on a lie? You are completely ignoring the father’s feelings, which is the point that Dr. Smith was making here.

    • Mike James

      Cry me a river. Guess what, men aren’t domestic animals, and cuckoldry is as serious as a heart attack, and the days of women acting as if they can make use of any old schmoe, as some sort of uncomplaining draft horse, to raise the result of a woman’s dirty betrayal, are not going to last forever.

      This isn’t about your strawman of breaking a child’s heart, (unsurprising mischaracterization, that, and boy, does it stink), but how a man feels when his nose is rubbed in a fairly unforgivable betrayal, made even more unforgivable by an unjust system of law which forces a man into slavery to pay for someone else’s good time with the Town Bycycle.

      She screws someone else, makes an innocent man into a debt peon, and the man is the bad guy. You’re detestable.

      • gb_in_tx

        “She screws someone else, makes an innocent man into a debt peon, and the man is the bad guy. You’re detestable.”

        Thumbs Up.

      • KareninPA

        I’m detestable? Because I’m thinking about how it would feel to be five years old and have your Dad reject you? Somehow your words don’t sting.

        I’m not ignoring the man’s feelings, not at all. It would be a terrible betrayal of trust.
        I reacted the many commenters who said they’d turn their back on the child. After five years. I just hope they are speaking theoretically, and without much ability to imagine the 5-year-old.
        There was a case like this some years ago. Gig Young, the actor, divorced his wife and had himself declared not the father of his 6-year-old son. I remember thinking, who could do this to a 6-year-old?

        • Toads

          Yes, you are detestable. Cuckolding a man is the equivalent of raping.

          The fact that you are putting both the child and the man below your own selfish, slutty whims shows how women are morally empty, and a society that allows women the right to vote goes downhill quickly.

        • TedJ

          By declaring that the man who was duped is “worse” than the woman who betrayed him, you are passing judgement on that man and dismissing the impact of this situation on him.

          I agree, the innocent victim of this situation is the child. I have taken other people’s children into my home and provided them with support and a stable environment that hopefully will give them a chance to have a normal life. I did that knowing that they were not my children. Trust is at the foundation of all the relationships that I have with the people I am close to.

          Consider this, in order for fraud to be committed the offender must knowingly be doing something wrong and intentionally trying to hide the facts. From my perspective, in this scenario, fraudulently passing off a child to a man as his own would absolutely destroy the foundation of my relationship with the mother and consequently cause irrepairable harm to the relationship with the child. If I could not continue to have a relationship with the child because of this situation, somehow I am “worse” than the person who perpetrated this web of lies and pain?

          I disagree with your opinion and stand by my original comment. I think you are dismissing the impact that this situation has on the man.

        • Micha Elyi

          Since you asked, yes you’re detestable.

          Now man up and own it instead of squirming, dodging, hiding behind a child, and making excuses. When stuck in a hole, stop digging.

    • Russ

      Awesome! You managed to find a way to blame the man for the woman’s outrageous and vile behavior. You must be good at Twister being able to bend like that.

    • Frederick O Stephenson

      I have to admit, part of me wants more people like you to keep their child’s genetic heritage a secret. The more problems society has because of this behavior the more money people will put into genetic disease and malformation research (and I’ll finally have a safe place to put my retirement savings). Perhaps when antibiotics are made completely useless we will finally have a technology that will allow us to fix genetic problems instead of the slash and burn medicine we have now. So, keep screwing around with whomever you wish and keep it secret by all means “to protect the children” just remember, when you vote to enslave others economically, please also vote to spend some of that money on research projects that might help resolve the problems your secrecy causes.

    • Acksiom

      “These are chilling comments.”

      Good. Be chilled. Pay attention to that feeling, because it’s trying to warn you about your own bad behavior.

      “If you can break the heart of an innocent 5-year-old, who’d be losing the only father he’s ever known, you’re as bad your cheating wife. No, you’re worse.”

      Good. Go ahead and not only be “worse”, guys, but do it with a clear conscience.

      Why? Because knowing the truth is clearly in the child’s best interests overall, regardless of how much it may hurt in the short term. If that’s “worse”, then sell me a subscription to the Worse Newsletter and a membership in the Worse Association. Get me a Worse Decal for my car. And a pack of Worse T-shirts too.

      Isn’t it funny how telling the truth about something as important as paternity is only “worse” when it threatens someone else’s privileges?

      Because that’s what really going on here; KareninPA and those like her just want to keep benefiting from their combined abuse of both men and children.

      That’s what their behavior clearly indicates.

      KareninPA, and people like her, are putting their own interests ahead of those of the children. That’s why they want to shame you into putting both your best interests and those of the children involved behind their own

      That’s all her comments are really about — getting you to put both your best interests and those of the children involved behind her own.

      And that’s why she calls telling children the truth about their paternity — one of the most critically important facts of the existence — “worse”.

      What she means is, “worse” for her, and those like her.

      • KareninPA

        Not my interests. My kids are my husband’s.

        • Acksiom

          Of course the lying is in your interest. They don’t have to be your children. You, as a woman, benefit regardless from the general acceptance of the lie that telling the truth about something as important as paternity is “worse” for a child than deceiving them. That’s why you’re trying to promote it here. As a woman, you benefit from it.

          Isn’t it funny how telling the truth about something as important as paternity is only “worse” when it threatens someone else’s privileges?

          Because that’s what really going on here; KareninPA and those like her just want to keep benefiting from their combined abuse of both men and children.

          That’s what their behavior clearly indicates.

          KareninPA, and people like her, are putting their own interests ahead of those of the children. That’s why they want to shame you into putting both your best interests and those of the children involved behind their own.

          That’s all her comments are really about — getting you to put both your best interests and those of the children involved behind her own.

          And that’s why she calls telling children the truth about their paternity — one of the most critically important facts of their existence — “worse”.

          What she really means is that it would be “worse” for her, and those like her. She doesn’t really care about the children; she’s just trying to protect her own elitist privileges as a woman — at the children’s expense.

          Remember, the lying, cheating, betraying mother and her lover are the ones responsible for the child’s broken heart. Not the innocent, putative father. The innocent, putative father who tells the truth is the one who really cares for the child in all this. Because he’s doing what’s really best for the child — giving the child the truth, among everyone else’s lies.

          KareninPA and those like her want to invert that for their own benefit — at the expense of the child. They don’t really care about the children; they just want to get away with abusing their elite privileges. They just want to escape the consequences of the lying, deceitful child abuse, regardless of how much more lying, deceitful abuse the child has to endure as a result.

    • TMink

      The lying, conning, manipulative mom broke the child’s heart by her sin. In cases like this, the sins of the mother are visited upon the child. Parents are responsible for their children, not the community, not the government. Poor women have multiple children by multiple men and then those of us who are responsible pick up the tab for the trainwreck that is that child’s life.

      Responsible adults use one of 16 kinds of birth control freely available to avoid bringing children into a bad environment. Irresponsible adults spew them out like a puppy mill. They should be sterilized after two children they cannot support. The children should be adopted out or left to voluntary charity. It would be a mess, but it would stop the puppy milling.

      Trey

    • R7 Rocket

      Of course, a cheating slut would find these comments “chilling”.

  28. 28. John X. Wassisname

    I have two wonderful grown children who were conceived via artificial insemination. We both wanted kids & my swimmers didn’t work, plus there was an RH issue. But that’s irrelevant to your question.

    My guess is that five years in I would have formed a strong enough attachment to “my” son that I would want to see it through. Having been betrayed by his mother, I can’t imagine ever trusting her without reservation again. Submandave is on the right track.

  29. 29. Difster

    I would do everything in my power, including using fraud, framing and entrapment to get full custody of that child. I wouldn’t love the child any less, but I’m not about to pay for a lie like that when the government demands that I do.

    Clearly the only option is to get custody. I would not however resort to violence to achieve that end.

    • Micha Elyi

      Yet if you did “resort to violence” and then caught out, were I one of your jurors I can see voting you ‘guilty’ could be very difficult.

  30. 30. Alex

    I would like to turn the situation around a little bit: Imagine that you’re a single man who discovers that a woman whom he had a relationship with five years ago now has a daughter and that you’re the biological father. Would you want a relationship with the child? Would you have the right to have a relationship with the child? What if the woman was married and had passed off her husband as the father?

    The reason I ask this is because whenever someone says “Oh, I’m still her father” or “a father is different from the sperm donor” is ignoring the harm that is done by denying a man the right to be a father to his biological children.

  31. 31. Seamus

    If I learned my two children were not mine I would be devastated and angry. After considering the circumstances of whether or not to continue the marriage and my role as father…I’m not sure what course of action I would take. Just considering such a betrayal is very depressing. My first thought is to leave, her and her children. My second thought is to consult with family, pastor and perhaps a counselor. While I may be able to continue to love and care for the children I would never be able to completely forgive my wife. I’m afraid distrust would always be lurking beneath my veneer of complacency. I fear it would erupt in recriminations when ever there was disagreement.

    If I left the marriage I would end my role as parent… and nothing on God’s green earth would compel me to pay child support. Let the bio-dad step up and take responsibility for his actions. Unfortunately, the liberal establishment would disregard the issue. They seem to care only about the Mother, not the children, or Mothers would be held accountable for their use of those support funds. Fat chance of that. I regard child support as almost a racket used by many to not only punish their exe’s and stigmatized them as a deadbeat Dads, even if payments are accurate and timely. In many cases I have observed child support is not based on one’s ability to pay and it severely impacts a defendant’s right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

    Unless one is wealthy, he would have to pay and wait for years until those children reached their majority before he could even think of affording a new family. But I must admit, if it were me, I would never ever remarry. Think JFK or WJC.

    • TedJ

      “…and nothing on God’s green earth would compel me to pay child support.”

      What about the threat of going to jail?

      • Toads

        While prison is horrible (and The Bradley Amendment ruthlessly jails men who lose their jobs and cannot pay alimony masked as child support), the system might only change if enough men decide to break the system by overflowing the prisons.

        A man in prison costs the state $60,000/year. Out in the workforce, the man might be paying $20,000/year in taxes, only to keep the evil feminist regime going. In going to prison, he is causing a net loss of $80,000/year to the state.

        Now, if millions of men decide they will brave prison in order to battle this evil, the system implodes on itself quickly.

        It might be the only way. Appealing to female morality and common sense is futile, since women do not possess these traits.

        • TedJ

          I think that it is far more likely that the state will just build more prisons. Not to mention the fact that you now have a criminal record and must account for that year of “unemployment” to your future employer. I would not become a martyr for that cause, its not like it is going to go anywhere anytime soon anyway.

          You either get thrown to the lions or pay a tax for your freedom. I would pay up and try to fight it in court.

          • R7 Rocket

            The state cannot build more prisons if it’s going broke. And it certainly cannot enforce its laws if it can no longer pay its legions. Ancient Rome learned this the hard way.

  32. 32. Bart Hall (Kansas, USA)

    In Kansas adultery is a misdemeanor, punishable by 30 days, $1000 fine, and double damages to the aggrieved party. A child is incontrovertible proof of adultery, and under Kansas law biological paternity results in mandatory support.

    IOW Kansas law has it about right, and the putative scenario would be very unlikely to occur. If you’re the biological father, you pay support unless you’ve gone through a formal relinquishment and some other person has adopted the child.

    If, in contrast to the putative scenario, my relationship was in good shape then I believe some forgiveness would be in order and I would continue to love the child. I would, however, not only make the perp pay, but press charges simply to reinforce the message that if you’re getting it wet and intruding on a marriage there’s gonna be consequences.

    • Micha Elyi

      In your (hypothetical) anger at another man, you’re omitting the fact that the female in your relationship, Bart, is 50% of the perpetrators who wronged you. Are you ok with letting half of the perps off the hook?

  33. 33. Nathan

    Your poll includes both “None of the Above” and “Other” as options. I’m unsure whether the inclusion of both is methodologically sound. Will you treat these as identical in your results?

  34. 34. Jeff

    I voted for anger and fury, as that’s pretty much the only guaranteed reaction I could imagine. Everything else depends on specifics.

    Since this has not happened to me (and I hope never does), I believe I would perceive my relationship with my child to be the most “true” relationship of them all, and would more fiercely defend it. I do not believe is punishing for the sins of the father (or mother); the child is blameless.

    Whether I divorced the mother immediately, after the child reaches maturity, or at all depends on the nature of the infidelity. But if so, custody is mine!

  35. 35. Silent Witness

    As the adult child, almost senior citizen, of a fine woman and another man, not her husband, I’d try to live up to the only father I knew. My Mom’s husband. Did he ever tell me? Nope. My Mom did, 5 years after his death and one year after my son was born.

    Did he ever let me know I was different than my siblings? Nope.

    Was it easy? I can only imagine.

    How would I react? A bit of anger, then forgiveness for my wife.

    Then buckle up, buttercup! The teen years are upon us.

  36. 36. SFC B

    I find it interesting that most everyone is assuming a marriage. The question doesn’t ask that.

    I think the far more-plausible scenario for this would be a man who is paying child support for a child be believed to be his, but with a woman to whom he wasn’t married (baby’s mama).

    Not having ever been in such a situation I can’t say with 100% certainty what I’d do, but I can guess on a couple likely courses of action.

    1. I’d be furious at the system that required me to keep paying. If I wanted to keep paying because I care for the child and want to remain in its life, fine. But it would be a wholly voluntary relationship that I maintain at my discresion. That a man can be forced into an 18+ year financial relationship with a person to whom they would otherwise owe zero responsibility to is disgusting.

    2. I’d probably be more hurt by than angry at the mother. I think betrayal of trust is one of the more terrible things you can do to a person. This is a betrayal with huge emotional and financial consquences.

    3. I’d likely wind up teaching the child a very harsh lesson about life. If given a one-time choice between maintaing the relationship with the child, but being on the hook financially for 13 more years, or having to end the relationship, but also be freed from the financial obligation, I’d choose the latter; consquences to the child be damned. The “bad guy” in this morality tale isn’t me. It’s the mother and the biological father who caused this. They can deal with the fall-out for their child. I have my own life to begin living.

    • TedJ

      Great point. I made the assumption of marriage because I think that in California paternity has to be established for support and custody decisions when you are not married. There are times when the infidelity happens before marriage and the pregnancy motivates the woman and the unsuspecting father to get married. Paternity is then assumed once the couple are married.

  37. 37. k. block

    i recently met a wonderful woman on an airplane, sho has an incurable cancer, and a wonderful attitude. amzing life — was abuse and at 16 married and satayed married to the 20-year-old-son of her foster parents — didn’t “have to” marry.
    anyhow she siad that when her eldest son was 18 and his girlfriend was 17, the sone told his mother that the girlfriend was pregant. the mother asked if it was his, and he said yes. the mother said that then he had to marry her and he did. ashe was very excited about this first grandchild. two years later it came out that her son was not the real father and the real father came forward. The grandmother strongly regrets pushing her son to marry. the son and his wife had two more children before they divorced. it has been very difficult for the grandmother and her son, and the whole family. since the biological father has to approve any visits out of state, she rarely sees her grrandson. her son has limited time with the boy too. the real father is neglectful , so sad all the way around.

  38. 38. Toads

    The lesson here for every man reading this is that women want ENTIRELY different rules for men than would apply to women. They want hypocrisy that benefits women to be hardwired into the law.

    Anyone who understands how women really think will inevitably question the wisdom of giving voting rights to such morally empty and selfish creatures.

  39. 39. Holdfast

    Why don’t you ask Prince Charles?

  40. 40. Don

    This issue has effected me directly. To say the courts are skewed in favor of the mother is a charitable term. In my case, the mother let the truth slip out and DNA testing confirmed her admission. Nonetheless, attempts to sue for fraud were fruitless. Even if you win, you lose. To make matters worse, the free state attorney for the Mother was insistent that I should still pay the remaining 11 yrs support, even though I was not the father and the mother knew all along who the father was. For anyone currently in this situation, I wish you only Good Luck. You will need it.

  41. 41. Whiz

    Helen, real world example… a friend’s son was married and in the military, his wife was and is a slut (sorry, no better way to put it). Only the middle daughter is his, other two had different fathers, she doesn’t know who the last one is out of. All three were born while they were married. At the divorce, the court (Ohio) awarded shared custody of his daughter and ordered child support (although he hardly works anyway) and NO support for the other two, even though he is the only Dad they ever knew. Sometimes there is fairness.

  42. Strange. Nobody is talking about the two real issues.
    1. What is the future of my relationship with the wife? Do I immediately move out and find a divorce lawyer? Or do I forgive her for a single transgression that took place 5 years ago? This all depends upon the kind of marriage I had been experiencing. The right kind of marriage would incline me to forget and forgive, the wrong kind and you can guess where the relationship is going.
    2. What’s the future of my relationship with the child. If I love the child and the child loves me, that’s one thing. On that case if I decide to forget and forgive the wife, then my love for the child makes considerations of the expense of raising it seem petty and scrooge like. If I decide to divorce, I’ll want custody of the child.
    On the other hand, if the child is bratty and unpleasant, and/or I am into things other than children, then perhaps she gets custody after the divorce. If the marriage survives this horrible event, the child probably has to stay in the household, ’cause society frowns on pitching 5 year olds out on the street. My relationship with the child will of course have a lot to do with my relationship with the wife.
    To be real about it, if I have a strong relationship with the child, it will survive the emotional blow of learning I’m not the biological father. If the relationship with the child is weak or unpleasant, then it’s out of my life with the divorce. In the unlikely circumstance my relationship with the wife is so strong that we stay together, even if the child is bratty, then and only then do I have an opportunity to resent the cost of raising another man’s child.
    This survey question makes me wonder about the worth of the projected book.

  43. 43. JorgXMcKie

    I would be disappointed in my wife, I think. I can’t imagine not loving a child I had helped raise, no matter what. But I would be disappointed that my wife could be so deceptive. That would force me to wonder what else she had deceived me about.

    I can’t imagine my actual wife doing that, since she’s so honest it hurts. However, if by some chance she ended up pregnant with another man’s child I would expect her to be honest about it [and hopefully regretful for any damage done to our relationship] because that’s the sort of person she is. That could be overcome. Being deceptive about it would be much, much harder to live with.

  44. 44. Brock

    This poll needs check-boxes, not radio buttons. And options for filing lawsuits against all of the other adults involved.

  45. 45. AndyJ

    The question of divorce really needs to be examined. Right now, any woman can claim the man has harmed her, threatened her and that she is in fear of her life. That gets the TRO issued without examination. The man is in the position of “proving-the-negative”…How does one prove that something never happened-?

    Children are collateral damage. The mother’s action leaves them in limbo. The mother gets custody without question. Any fight for joint custody requires the destruction of the mother’s character…How can a man do that and still be worthy of the child’s affection-?

    The subject of biological paternity is irrelevant. If the man is in the home when the child arrives he becomes the father. He can either man-up or walk away. If he stays he accepts the child as his and protects, provides and nurtures that child…and never stops worrying about them… Anything else is simply male-ego is not worthy of a grown-up man. Man-Children may want to protest etc…But…an obligation is an obligation…and an obligation to a child defines the character of the man… Why do women waste time with men-children of shallow and unformed character-?

    • Oligonicella

      AndyJ

      “The subject of biological paternity is irrelevant.”

      And I say it is relevant, thus negating your opinion from on high.

      “He can either man-up or walk away.”

      No he can’t. One reason your argument fails is empirical. The man *cannot* walk away, that’s the entire point.

      “Man-Children may want to protest etc…But…an obligation is an obligation…and an obligation to a child defines the character of the man…”

      Oh, what pompous bullshit. There is no “obligation” in the case of fraud. You’re just playing the “for the children” card.

      “Why do women waste time with men-children of shallow and unformed character-?”

      Because they’re “exciting” and “dangerous” and having his baby makes her feel like part of it. Oh, you meant the man who married her, supports the household and brings in the paycheck?

      Sorry, I thought you were directing your ire at the perps, not the victim.

  46. 46. MarkD

    If I were unfaithful, perhaps my response might be different. I’m not, and I’m about as certain as I can be that my kids are genetically mine and in any case they are up, grown, and out on their own. So my response is anger and depression.

    I willingly spent the best years of my life providing for my family. To learn it was all a lie? Where would I go to get my life back? That can’t be done, but there can be justice outside the legal system. Would I do it? Let’s just say that I’m not the sort to even contemplate what I might be capable of.

    Saying it was a five year old makes it easier. I’d walk. Want money? There wouldn’t be any. Jail? I’d be someplace without an extradition treaty, but if they did get me, I’d rot before I’d pay a dime. Anger doesn’t begin to cover it.

  47. 47. Lee

    Dr. Helen,

    I was surprised at your list of possible answers and think you could have put a bit more thought into them. The survey will not be much use if 74% respond with “other.”

    Your scenario does not include information about the biological father. His location, continued relationship with the mother or with the child would heavily influence my reaction. With the information you provided, I’d be popping blood vessels over the mother’s betrayal, but I would continue to support the child as my own. Whatever may have gone on, the child is innocent of her mother’s misdeeds and I’d just quietly eat sh*t and do what I could to let the child have as normal a life as possible. On the other hand, if the mother was living with the child and bio father and I was not allowed to remain in position as the father, that would change my attitude. Because I live in Maryland, I think I live in the only state that I could do something about it.

  48. 48. Ron

    It really is about the deception, and the shock of discovery, isn’t it? My wife and I have twins from my sperm and a donor ovum. We know something about the donor but could never track her down and don’t want to. The kids (now 12) learned about the “helper mom” a couple of years ago and were curious but not upset. My wife evidently rarely thinks about it. Once she started to give her own medical history to an ER doc before she caught herself.

    I guess my bottom line is, I could get over the shock (and maybe the marriage would end) but I couldn’t get over the kid. If the price of custody was child support I’d be happy to pay.

  49. 49. joe in houston

    it did happen to me. i was angry at the mother. he wasn’t 5, as in the poll, he was 11. at first i still wanted to raise him, but after the ex continued taunting me by telling him how i wasn’t his father, i severed all ties to the boy. some may see this as a failing, i see it as self preservation. and to those that question whether or not the courts will make a non-biological parent pay child support, pay attention, YES THEY WILL! they see you as nothing more than a source of cash for the child. it seems that a person in these situations should be able to sue the real father for child support for having had to raise the brat in the first place. also to those that equate this thing with adoption are being disingenuous to say the least. in this situation you don’t get a choice.

  50. 50. Voluble

    I think most men would experience a combination of emotions from those alternative answers and not just one. I would be mad at the system AND mad at the mother. But it is not even as simple as that. I would not only be mad at the mother for the betrayal, lying etc… that lead her to have a child with another man but I would also be mad at her for availing herself of a corrupt system to victimize me yet again. The latter is by far the greater evil because it would not be done in a moment of passion or because she has mixed, ambivalent emotions about our relationship blah, blah, blah.

    No, she would be making a cold and calculated decision to screw me over for years or decades with no moral justification for it whatsoever. And I would be powerless too stop her by any legal means. I have never been in this situation but I think you would try to reason with your assailant (to no avail naturally since you would have no leverage and if she were capable of reason she would never have started down such a path) and then you would set about ruining your own life because there would be no way you could ever live with yourself after having been stripped of you both your masculinity and any control whatsoever over your future.

    If you come out of that period then you might be OK but a lot of guys would just stay angry and bitter for the rest of their lives.

    BTW Helen, you should really ask these questions to women with the roles reversed and see what kind of answers you get. I suspect that both sexes would find the hypothetical scenario untenable. But in practice… well, let’s just say that there is a reason that chivalry is considered a male virtue.

  51. 51. Random Blowhard

    Other – Be declared bankrupt and renounce my citizenship. Move to New Zealand with my PM’s and start over.

  52. 52. greyghost

    Due to society not holding women to any standards at all there is no legal or moral check on women doing this sort of thing. The only real check ios to understand the selfish nature of women. If she believed she was gong to be killed or disfigured she wouldn’t try that stunt. It only happens to good guys. As long as women get a pass on this it will continue. And all misery from the man turning his back on a child he was raising is purely at the hands of the lieing slut. All sympathy goes to the man and child. And the requirement to restore politeness is on the woman. All women commenting know this will never happen.

  53. 53. Nemo

    Has anyone here read “Moll Flanders”? A lady is separated at birth from her mother and discovers decades later, to her horror, that her husband – the father of her children – is her brother.

    Mandatory DNA testing at birth will establish, with almost 100% accuracy, the true identity of the father. Public registration of the biological parents will eliminate the possibility of such “accidental incest”. If you know that the girl next door is your half-sister, then you will invite another young lady to the prom.

    It also eliminates the need for much of the work done by expensive lawyers and family court judges. As an additional bonus, it makes it much easier to establish a medical history for all children, which is increasingly important as the genetic causes of many diseases are revealed by scienctific progress.

    Alll this for $79 – Google “DNA paternity testing” and that’s the lowest price. The legal costs boost it to about $230, but this is still cheaper than one month’s child support, and definitely cheaper than running a courtroom for an hour.

    It’s cheaper than the existing court system. It establishes a medical history for all children. It eliminates a possible path to incest.

    Oh, it also would render this entire discussion about raising another man’s child moot – every man would KNOW who the father really was and could make up his own mind.

    If women truly cared more about their children than themselves, then they would insist on mandatory DNA testing at birth and public registration becoming the law of the land immediately.

  54. 54. voorst van der braaten

    Having gone through the divorce legal game with a “bored” now-ex-spouse that quit the relationship when our child was toddling, I’ve come to view the poor slobs that make the news every few months when one of ‘em goes into a fast-food joint where his ex, the kids and her new man are eating, pulls out a piece and blows them away, in a different light.

    No longer are they “crazy”; in fact, that is a very rational response to an unbelievably biased system that takes away most other options men of ordinary means have available. The only problem they’ve got is what I call “bad impulse control”.

    Now, imagining a situation where a judge barred any consideration of the fact that the kid’s not the “father’s”, and requiring “dad” to pay for his entire productive earning years an amount far in excess of what’s actually required to “support the child” (what a load of bullshit these computer-derived amounts are), it’d be easier to rationalize stalking the judge and taking something of value from him, like maybe his life, and then killing the cheating ex-spouse who conspired to put this one over on the “dad”. I’d want a piece of every bastard that set up the judgement to hose me so thoroughly if I was the loser in those shoes, and whatever “love” there was for the kid would be tainted by the filter of his mother’s betrayal. That’s life.

    It’s ugly, but it’s hardly “crazy” given the system as it is. I can’t say I’d blame a guy for reacting in extremis this way; being on his jury would be a real challenge! When the system and its human enablers stack it up so high against an individual, sometimes the individual will crack and lose control; it’s not so easy to blame anyone for that.

    The kid can then go live with and be raised by his “real” father, and the judge’s survivors can experience some of what their provider had been doling out onto untold numbers of the unwashed masses before that one slob with bad impulse control got put on his docket.

  55. 55. Oligonicella

    Adoptive Father
    “It requires a Judge to use his God-given wisdom to determine the best course.”

    Unfortunately, this is where everything turns to crap.

  56. 56. Old Patriot

    My wife and I could only have one child of our own, but we love children. We planned to have six, if we could afford them. We’ve adopted two children, and now have permanent custody of a third. I don’t mind rearing “other people’s children’, because I’ve been doing it for 35 years. That’s why I voted “none of the above”. That’s why I also abhor abortion: many would-be parents are denied the blessing of children because there aren’t enough babies available, or social services organizations create such a hurdle it’s almost impossible to adopt. I’m pretty sure our current 6-YO is going to be our last, since my wife and I are both over 65 and partially or fully disabled. Of course, that’s what we thought of our 25-YO daughter, too…

    As for your study, I think that if a man loves children, it won’t matter much unless the mother uses it as a weapon against him. If it happened more than once, though, I’d be very concerned.

  57. 57. don

    There is an old Steve Martin move, A Simple Twist Of Fate that nibbles on this subject.

  58. 58. andrew

    “If you found out tomorrow that your five-year-old son or daughter was not yours and had to pay 13 years of child support, how would you feel?”

    Your question is too vague.

    You have not clarified whether the wife has one husband living or two husbands living.

    In a savage society, or clan/tribe society, or matriarchal society, there is no such thing as wedlock. Accordingly a man can have as many so-called “wives” as he wants, because there is no such thing as wedlock, and a woman can have as many so-called “husbands” as she wants, because, again, there is no such thing as wedlock. That is, the mother and father of a child is always known. Because the mother is always the woman who gives birth to the child, and the father is almost always the brother of the mother, or if there is no suitable brother, then a suitable uncle or cousin of the mother of the child.

    In a matriarchal society there is no awareness, or at least recognition, that a man has any physical part in the creation of a child. A good example of this are many of the eastern woodland American Indian tribes of the North American continent.

    Although, in most civilized societies, or family/nation societies, or patriarchal societies, a man can have as many wives living, or co-wives living, as he wants, a woman can only have a maximum of two husbands living. That is, the mother is always the woman who gives birth to the child, but the father of the child is always in query unless some custom to answer the question is put in place.

    A patriarchal society is a society with no awareness, or at least recognition, that a woman has any physical part in the conception of a child, other than carrying the child through pregnancy and birth. A good example of this is in the use of the word “seed” throughout the old testament and the new testament. In a patriarchal society “seed” and therefore children are created by man. A woman can never have any part creating children, she can only carry children, birth children, and nurse children. Therefore, theoretically, in a patriarchal society the father of a child is never known, which is an impossible situation, as in a theoretical patriarchal society the father of a child must always be known.

    The only way out of this conundrum of the patriarchal society, is to create the custom of wedlock. This custom of wedlock immediately establishes that the wife’s husband, or one of her two husbands, at the time of the wife’s pregnancy, is also the father of the child.

    With one exception, all world religions or civilizations are based upon either two pillars, or just one or other of the previously mentioned two pillars: the pillar of polygamy/incest, and/or the pillar of castration/sodomy.

    The one exception is western religion. Or western civilization, or enlightened civilization, or protestant civilization, or christian civilization, or hellenic civilization, or mycenaean civilization, or minoan civilization.

    Western religion or western civilization is unique in that it is the only civilization that insists that every man of the demos, or democracy, must have one wife living. That means castratos, or papists, or Opus Dei, is forbidden. That also means that polygamists, or mahometans, or Saudi Arabia, is forbidden.

    Also western religion or western civilization is unique in that it is the only civilization that allows every woman to have either no husband, or one husband, or two husbands.

    Putting aside linear ‘A’ and linear ‘B’ for the purpose of this discussion, the written history of western civilization starts with the hellenes, and specifically the first known hellenic city/state: Sparta. And the last know city/state: Sparta. For as far as we know, Sparta is where hellenic civilization began, and Sparta is certainly where hellenic civilization came to a close.

    Spartan men were part of the demos, and therefore required to be in wedlock with no more than one wife living at some point in their lives.

    So monogamy was mandated for spartan men, but bigamy was forbidden under any circumstances to spartan men, and so was divorce forbidden to spartan men.

    However nonandry, or monandry, or diandry, was allowed to spartan women, but divorce was forbidden to spartan women.

    If a wife in wedlock with a husband, bore that husband a healthy son, therefore fulfilling the fundamental demand of patriarchal society, then that wife could take a second husband in wedlock.

    That first born son, or any other sons, and also any daughters, that the wife bore while only in wedlock her first husband, remained the progeny of that first husband. However, whilst married to both husbands, any further sons borne by the wife became the progeny of her second husband, and any further daughters borne by the wife became the progeny of her first husband.

    Therefore, a wife’s second husband can only have sons: a wife’s first husband can not have any more sons as soon as his wife takes her second husband in wedlock. Irrespective of whether a wife has taken only one husband in wedlock or two husbands in wedlock, all of the wife’s daughters are always the progeny of the first husband.

    In the eyes of patriarchal society, both a wife’s husbands are equal, because the first husband has a son, and the second husband either has a son or has the opportunity to have a son. But on a practical level the two husbands are unequal because the second husband can never have a daughter.

    The seemingly unsurmountable problem of spartan wedlock is that divorce is forbidden to both spartan men and spartan women. Because if a wife does not bear a healthy son for her first husband, then the concept of civilized society or patriarchy is thwarted for the first husband. Or if the wife does bear a healthy son for her first husband but does not bear a healthy son for her second husband, then the concept of civilized society or patriarchy will be thwarted for the second husband.

    But not only did spartan women have the right to two husbands, but also Sparta itself had the right to two royal families and therefore two kings. The powers of the two kings were limited, but one power each king always retained was the power to grant, or refuse to grant, the authority for a husband with a wife living, to adopt a son.

    The new testament states that Mary had two husbands, but Mary only had one husband when she gave birth to her first born son, Jesus Christ, in Bethlehem. The bible says that Mary had a total of five sons, and also daughters: so at least two daughters. It is not stated in the new testament which of the two husbands had which children. Obviously the first husband was the purported father of God the Son, Jesus Christ, and the actual father of the two or more daughters. But which of the two husbands was which father of which of the remaining four sons of Mary is never clarified in the new testament.

    Most denominations claim the new testament is never mistaken, with one exception: the new testament got confused when it stated that Mary had two husbands. Instead, most denominations claim that although the new testament states that Mary had two husbands, what the new testament actually meant to state was that Mary only had one husband.

    Martin Luther did state that a wife could have two husbands at the same time, but only if the wife had had no children with the first husband and she had that first husband’s permission to marry her second husband. That appears to conflict with the position that a wife who has a healthy son with her first husband, may then take a second husband if she so wishes.

    Some have said that Mary was not a christian, but was a jewess, and that in the old testament jews practiced polygamy, not diandry.

    Needless to say, I do not accept that Mary was not a Christian.

    To return to your question.

    “If you found out tomorrow that your five-year-old son or daughter was not yours and had to pay 13 years of child support, how would you feel?”

    You are unable to ask your question of any husband unless you initially establish:

    Whether the wife had some or all of her children in wedlock or not.

    Whether the wife had at any time, two husbands living during any pregnancy or birth, and also whether the child born as a result of that pregnancy or birth was either a son or a daughter.

    Please clarify your question, and ask it again.

Leave a Reply

We know you're busy. Sign up for our Daily Digest email to get a quick look each day at our editors' picks and readers' favorite stories. (You will receive an email asking you to verify your email address. If you have previously subscribed, no verification email will be sent.)