When it comes to infidelity within a marriage, the insecurities that reign as a result are exceptionally difficult to deal with and overcome.

Beyond the fact that it completely breaks the foundation of your relationship, a lack of confidence and trust in your partner creates a very unsafe environment for both individuals.

Couples that are seeking to deal with infidelity in an amorous way, find that they must go back to the basics and build that foundation back up, which takes an enormous amount of effort on both parties.

Now, when a couple experiences infidelity resulting in pregnancy, it feels like any attempt to fix the situation will be futile since there will always be a permanent reminder – the child.

In this article, we will take a look at a few routes that a couple can take and provide some tips on how to deal with this difficult situation so that it no longer feels impossible.

What You Should Be Doing First and Foremost

1. The first step that should be done is ask for a paternity test to be done to ensure that the child is indeed the result of the affair between your husband/wife and their affair partner.

Although it can be pretty easy to just “assume so” it is better to know for certain as there have been instances where all parties involved are wrong which creates further devastation down the road.

2. The second step should be for the individual who engaged in the affair to stop the affair, if healing the marriage is the end-goal.

3. The third step is to try not to think in absolutes. It is best to remember that there are many variables at play here and what will work best will be dependent on each individual involved and what route the couple wants to take.

4. The fourth step is to decide on when to make the betrayed spouse aware of the child. If the woman in question is only a few months pregnant, there is a lot of time to decide what the best course of action is.

Keep in mind that if this child is kept a secret from the father or mother but they are able to develop a relationship with the child, this is going to cause immense damage to the child and the adult when the truth is found out.

5. The fifth step is to understand that depending on what your country or state/region laws are, you may be required to support the child financially if you are the mother or father.

6. The sixth step is to not fall prey to the line of thinking that you must be involved in the child’s life as that is what is best for the child because you are the father or mother.

This is not always the case, as the continual involvement of the biological parent can result in the affair partner keeping hope that they will leave their current husband/wife and be with them. Beyond this, it can completely stall the couple from healing.

If the couple is working on healing their marriage after the affair, ideally the husband and wife should make decisions together on how involved to be with the child and the affair partner, if at all.

Possible Routes A Couple Can Go After Infidelity Resulting in Pregnancy

There are generally three accepted routes that a couple can go. The first is to break off all contact completely with the affair partner and child, the second is to integrate the child into the family, and the third is to dissolve the marriage if healing seems impossible.

Scenario One Always Seems Like the Best

Having your partner completely break off the affair and lose all contact with the affair partner always seems like the perfect solution. Creating a clean break is often cited what is best for the marriage as this reaffirms that the individual involved in the affair is dedicated to their marriage.

However, there can be a lot of issues revolving around this that a couple must think about.

• The father or mother of the child may experience shame or guilt for not being there for their child. If the affair partner is vindictive or negative in demeanor, they may prey on this and play it up. Try to reinforce that they are doing the right thing in the long-term for their marriage.

• Understand that the adulterous partner may end up lying as this is the only way to keep both you and their affair partner happy. This will be the result of the need to resolve the immediate crisis.

• If the adulterous partner wants to save the marriage, they will cut off all contact with the affair partner. However, shame and guilt may drive them to second guess this, which can lead to the above point, lying.

• Understand that the adulterous partner will need to mourn the baby and the bond or potential bond that they could have had with the child. Many individuals will mistake this mourning period as a need to be involved with the child – this is not the case.

• The innocent individual will feel an immense amount of anger, betrayal, and sorrow. Understand that they may threaten to end the relationship, may throw out ultimatums, and will certainly doubt everything. This is natural as their world has been upended.

Scenario Two – Integrate the Child into the Family

If the adulterous partner truly wants to be involved in the child’s life and you find compassion in yourself to choose to take this route with them, then building trust is possible if there is complete transparency.

However, please be aware of the following issues.

• The mistress may be looking to pull your partner away from you by having the child. Permitting that the adulterous partner understands this and shuts this down at every turn, then this pitfall can be avoided.

• Understand that the adulterous partner cannot have a relationship with the child without having some form of relationship with the mother. As the child gets older, this will be less the case, but until then, access to the baby will be directly through the mistress.

This can cause a rift between the married partners as the mistress (most likely) will attempt to bar the wife at every point.

• Everyone involved needs there to be clear communication if it is to work. If the mistress has a hidden agenda or the adulterous partner just wants to keep the peace, then this will not work and will not be healthy for anyone involved.

Scenario Three – Dissolve the Marriage.

Think long and hard about the two above routes. If neither of them seems to work for you as a couple, then it may be time to think about dissolving the marriage and moving on.

Tips for Working Through the Above Routes

• Please understand that it is natural to be angry (on all sides) but try not to say nasty things to one another or take out your anger on one another. This is asking a lot of you, as you will be in shock and you will be undeniably hurt and confused, but it’s important if you want to seek healing as a couple.

• If you are the innocent party, try not to indulge in magical thinking such as “once all contact is broken, everything will be fine,” or “if he truly loved me, he wouldn’t think twice about XYZ” as breaking bad habits takes time and it is perfectly acceptable to want to save the marriage but to also want to know how the child is doing.

• Try to break the future into manageable chunks as thinking too long-term can cause you to catastrophize in thinking. Understand that there will be different solutions required as the child grows up and so focusing on only the next few months is the best way to go about the situation.

• Do not set arbitrary tests such as, “any contact and we’re done” as this is going to place a lot of stress, frustration, and pressure on the adulterous individual. In so long as transparency and communication occur, any contact can be considered as a setback rather than as a deal breaker.

Finally, choose to keep talking. You will inevitably argue, so please try to not make every argument be about the child as this can cause more shame and guilt.

The best thing you can do if you are a couple dealing with infidelity that has resulted in a pregnancy is to get into marriage counseling as soon as possible to help you figure out the best route going forward for your marriage and the child in question.

Author's Bio: 

C Mellie Smith specializes in providing her readers with tools and resources to help them overcome the pain and uncertainty when one partner cheats. Don't let an affair end the most important relationship you have ever had. Get the help you need by visiting: InfidelityHealing.com