It’s bad enough to find out your spouse has had an affair, but to add to it the daily reminder that a child resulted from the union can be very difficult to deal with. On one hand the child is completely innocent, but unfortunately due to your spouse’s choices the child is a reminder of something very painful and emotional for you. To overcome this situation in a way that is both fair to the child, and fair to you is going to be very difficult, but believe it or not, not impossible.

No More Cheating

Your spouse needs to understand that there cannot be anymore cheating. They cannot be with the mother of their child in that way anymore because you are married. If they want your marriage to come out on top and strong, they have to stop the affair no matter what has happened.

A child does not make the affair right, and a child isn’t a reason to break up a marriage. Besides that a relationship started due to an affair with a child is doomed to failure anyway. It’s important to realize, if you both still love each other, that the future is in your marriage and making that work.

No More Lies

Ensure that your spouse realizes that regardless of the situation there cannot be more lies if your marriage is to survive. If you are accepting of the responsibility he owes to the child it is less likely that your spouse will hide things from you from this moment forward. By accepting the child into your life and opening your heart up to the child you will form a bond and a united front with your spouse.

Your spouse needs to feel free to talk about the situation, legal proceedings, and the child to you. If he can’t, he will lie. Not always to hide things, but to protect your feelings. This is not a good way to take a marriage forward that you want to survive. You have to learn to separate the affair from the result of a child in your mind. The child is innocent and special regardless of how it got here.

Find an Intermediary

The child is innocent and still needs both parents even if it’s a visitation issue. You can accept the child into your life but it’s important to keep communication with your spouse and the person he had the affair with to a minimum. It’s best to find a go-between such as a counselor.

Many family social services centers offer visitation pickup and drop off destinations for younger children. Once the child is older pick up and drop-offs can be done at school to avoid contact. As distance and time come between the present and the affair, you’ll find it easier to deal with the situation. Don’t waste time blaming the child. You may even come to love and accept the child.

Open Your Heart To The Child

It might seem like the best course of action is for your spouse to never see the child, or to see the child without you around. But, nothing could be further from the truth. This will create a wide rift in your marriage that cannot ever be closed. Instead, find a way to open up your heart to this innocent child who has not asked to be born into a broken home from day one. If nothing else, you can be a good example of a loving, forgiving, safe place to fall – which it what home is, after all.

It’s okay to be angry. Be angry at your spouse. Be angry at his mistress if she even knew he was married. But, never be angry at the child. Find healthy ways to let go of the aggression you feel such as in counseling, or by expressing it to your spouse, but ensure that your anger never rubs off on the child.

Nip Resentment in The Bud

In any situation where there is a step-parent, especially (unfortunately) when the step-parent is a woman who is seen as a mother figure it’s easy for the other parent, the father to dump all the responsibility on her. It’s somehow accepted in our society for moms to do the mom thing, and dads do the dad thing, even in situations where the mom doing the mom thing is not even the mom! This can be a breeding ground for resentments.

Instead, create a new paradigm. It’s okay to do mom things, but make your spouse be a better father to not only this child but all the children. On his weekends with the child, if you need to, it’s okay to take some time off to visit your folks. But, don’t take your own kids away, they will resent the extra time the other child gets with their father. Instead, let the father have all his kids at once so he can be a true father.

It’s even better if you can learn to do this while staying at home and not leaving. So many times women see their husbands falling down on the job of fatherhood but we give them an easy out by doing it ourselves. When it’s your own kids you’ll build enough resentment but when it’s also someone else’s child even more resentments will build. Don’t allow that to happen. Demand that your spouse be a full contributor as a parent.

Let Go of Money Issues

Child support is part and parcel to having a child in a divorce situation, and while this wasn’t a divorce a child was born who needs support. Your spouse will have no choice but to pay child support for the child unless he has custody which more than likely will never happen unless the mother is completely unfit, abusive, and on drugs. Even then, it’s not likely. So, let go of money issues.

It will be hard at first. Child support is based on the custodial parent’s income and the non-custodial parent’s income using a formula particular to each state. Your income is only included in very specific situations such as if your spouse is unemployed or a stay at home parent, and then all of it won’t be considered instead an amount that your spouse could earn if employed based on education will be computed. So, there is no way out of paying support. It is a must. It’s important because the child needs the money.

It seems like a lot of money when you’re paying it, but when you’re receiving it, it seems to barely cover child care. So be realistic and honest about this situation. This is not a punishment; this is a responsibility because children have a right to live at least close to their parents’ combined ability. Don’t try to fight this, it won’t work and will only cause more problems.

Finally, it’s important to forgive your spouse enough to allow them to freely love and show love to their child. In fact, if you let yourself you will also find that you can love the child. It will feel good doing the right thing, and your marriage will become stronger.

Author's Bio: 

C Mellie Smith knows from first-hand experience the uncertainty and emotional pain of dealing with an unfaithful spouse. Get the help you need to swim out of the downward spiral and move forward. Visit today and download your free report to get started on the road to recovery.