What do you do when a child is born because one spouse had an extramarital affair? How do you handle the betrayal AND the birth of a child as a result of one partner cheating on another?
These are questions we receive here at Marriage Missions from time to time, and they’re very, very tough ones! It’s difficult to even know how to start, but we’re going to attempt to do so, because it’s a situation that needs to be dealt with.
As we address this issue, please be very prayerful as you read what we are sharing with you. Every situation is different. And for this reason, what you do, may need to be different for you, than for other people in a similar situation. Allow the Holy Spirit to be your Wonderful Counselor. Pay attention to how specifically He guides you, in light of what others may tell you and what you read here. But above all, make sure you follow God’s ways, above mans.
We will offer some things here for you to consider. Pray, read, and glean through what you read to apply what you believe God is telling you to use in your life. There are a few things that are for sure, and then there are some things that will be written, that will be basic counsel, which you can take or leave.
Some things that are for sure are:
• The cheating has to stop. The lies have to stop. God did not create us to lie and cheat on each other. He hates actions which demonstrate unfaithfulness.
“Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.
“You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator” (Colossians 3:5-10).
• Each day can bring a new beginning. And whether you and your spouse decide to reconcile or not, it is time for everyone to start living in Truth.
“Come back to your senses as you ought, and stop sinning; for there are some who are ignorant of God —I say this to your shame” (1 Corinthians 15:34).
“Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully, for we are all members of one body” (Ephesians 4:25).
• There is a child who is now involved in an affair that started in sin, and yet the child is completely innocent. The Bible says that children are “a gift from God.” And they are. Even if they were conceived because of a situation that was not pure or a situation that was hurtful, this child is created in the image of God and should not be treated as if he or she is lesser of a human being. Jesus Himself, showed how He valued children as a priority and a blessing, and so should we.
“See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven” (Matthew 18:10).
The following is advice, which we consider to be sound, given by Dr Phil McGraw (from the Dr Phil Show), to a man who was having difficulty in accepting a child who was born because of his spouse’s affair. Prayerfully consider what he advises:
“Don’t let your feelings about the affair reflect on your treatment of the child. The child is innocent, and had nothing to do with the actions of your partner.”
“Though it may be difficult, don’t withhold affection from the child. By keeping the child at arm’s length, you are punishing him for something he didn’t do.”
“Give yourself permission to own your feelings. Having feelings of anger doesn’t make you the bad guy in this situation. It’s painful to deal with an affair, and when that affair results in a child who becomes part of your life, you may feel like everything is being dumped on you.”
You need to do what you can to work through the stages of grief, anger and mourning, because the changes that have come upon your marriage, as a result of infidelity.
On the Marriage Missions web site, we have provided many articles, testimonies, suggested resources and web site links that you can take advantage of, to help you on this difficult journey. But we pray that, whatever you do, you will work to keep your feelings from “punishing” the child in some way.
There are so many issues to work through when a child comes as a result of an affair. And it’s not possible to cover them all in an article such as this. But we have provided for you below, a couple of links to different web site articles, which you can read through to give you additional information to pray about. We hope they will help you to make wise decisions for the future of your relationship, as well as the child’s role in your lives.
You may or may not agree with the entire content given in each article (we personally don’t agree with everything in the first article listed below). But please prayerfully consider what is written and glean what you believe God would have you do (and don’t use what you feel is contrary to God’s will for your life).
To read an article posted on the Marriage Builders web site, written by Dr Willard Harley, please click onto the link provided below:
Another article can be found on the Beyond Affairs web site, written by Anne Bercht. Please click onto the link below to read:
To read through a Forum which comes from the 2-in-2-1.co.uk web site, please click onto the following:
And finally, the following is a Youtube interview, aired on a CBN broadcast, where Bob and talk of her affair and how it led to a child being born, as a result:
This article was written by Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International.
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