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Ask Rene: My Father Has A Love Child, Now What? (VIDEO)

Hi Rene:

Recently, while trying to check my Facebook page on my parent’s computer, I came across a conversation my father was having with a girl who he called his daughter. So I kept reading and and realized that he has a love child, who is about my age. My father does not know that I know. This is a complete surprise because I thought that my parents had a great relationship.

I don’t know what to do. Should I tell my siblings about it? We’re all are in our 20’s. This has hurt me so bad and I don’t want them to feel the same way, but at the same time they are entitled to know right?

But what about my mom? They been married 32 years, I don’t want to destroy their marriage. Should I confront my father about it?

Confused in Chicago

Dear Confused:

Oh man, you probably figured out long before this that parents are not perfect. We make mistakes and some of them are big ones. This is one of those times. The hard part is that you are now carrying the burden of your father’s lapse in judgment and that’s a lot for anyone, much less someone your age.

My advice would be yes, talk to your siblings, if for no other reason than having some help to share the load. Regarding your mother? Well that’s a whole different situation. Here’s what I would advise….


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  1. caw

    February 28, 2012 at 8:31 am

    What should she do if her father passed away before it was discovered that there were twin love children? She thought that she was an only child for almost 50 years. Apparently the female twin was already trying to reach to the father secretly years before he passed away. What should the surprised daughter do? Should she reveal this to her mother and to her own son who adored his Grandpa? Should she tell any other family members like his last living brother? cousins?

  2. Rene Syler

    February 28, 2012 at 8:33 am

    @caw: There are a lot of what-if’s in your scenario, none of which have happened yet. And she’s not 50, she’s 20-ish. THX

  3. Dawn B

    February 28, 2012 at 9:02 am

    I agree with your advice that she needs to start with her father. Talk to him and get all the facts that he’s will to share. BUT if he hasn’t told his wife then I would find out why and (Not knowing all the facts here) I would tell him he needs to tell his wife or I would. She has a right to know if her marriage is built on a lie. There may be a good reason for him not telling the wife but it would have to be PRETTY MAJOR for me to keep it from her. I am not one to keep those kinds of secrets. Who knows, the mom may already know and since this happened 20 years ago, they may have worked through it and their marriage has survived and in that I agree with you on Rene, if their marriage is working despite this 20 year old “blip” it’s not the daughter’s business. Provided the husband has been honest about the love child.

  4. Carol the Long Winded

    February 28, 2012 at 10:09 am

    Don’t assume mom doesn’t know nor that their relationship isn’t great. Talk to dad first.

  5. Tracy

    February 28, 2012 at 11:34 am

    I agree, she needs to talk to dad first, even before she talks to her own siblings. If he does have a love child that’s about her age, then obviously it’s a mistake that was made a long time ago. But…after finding out information from dad, I would want to talk to mom also.

    I have a very close relationship with my mom, if I found out my dad had a love child years ago, I would talk to him first, get all the information I could, and if I found out that my mom didn’t know, I would want HIM to talk to her about it. It would actually really kill me to know about this type of information and NOT have my mom know about it when it affects her more than me.

  6. m.e. johnson

    February 28, 2012 at 12:18 pm

    I’m always looking at worst-case scenarios. What if the love child has a serious health issue, especially if it’s hereditary. Dad might be called on to pay a little or a lot. Love child could insert herself into a share of any estate.

    Meanwhile Confused, you have a half-sister. You share blood. If you were to meet, you might end up liking each other. And what of grandchildren? Will they meet and fall in love, not knowing they are related? Mention these things to your dad.

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Combing the aisles at Target in search of the best deal on Cheerios, it hit Rene Syler like the stench of a dirty diaper on a hot summer’s day. Not only is perfection overrated its utterly impossible! Suddenly empowered, she figuratively donned her cape, scooped up another taco kit for dinner and Good Enough Mother was born.

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