I am 29 and my husband is 33. We have been married for almost four years. When I met him, he did not talk much about his past relationship. But two years down the line, he told me that he had a baby boy with his ex. Last year, we had a conflict and he told me on my face that I was bragging, yet I did not have his baby. I was hurt. Early December, he told me that he wanted to bring his child back into his life, so that we could live with the child, who is now aged eight. I did not have a problem with that. What surprised me was that the child turned out to be a girl. Worse still, he later told me that some people were advising him to get another woman who would bear him a child. He does not want to disclose who his advisors are. My worry is, what if he goes back to his ex now that I am yet to get a child? I am so worried because we are not even officially married. Please, I need your advice.
I sympathise with you in your current situation. It is clear that your husband did not make full disclosure regarding the true nature and state of his past relationship, especially the existence of a baby girl. When a spouse has not shared a serious issue such as a child from a previous relationship, there could be issues of trust and fear to open up to their partner due to various reasons.
He could have been influenced by the fear of losing you in case he was open about having had a child with someone else. However, I also sense that he is frustrated now that you have not conceived after being married for this long. This is an issue that you both need to discuss openly and be candid with each other.
With marriage comes commitment to walk together regardless of the challenges that one may face or what may come your way. When two people come together, they choose to live together and share life without any pre-conditions. Although the African society places high value on children, they do not make a marriage complete. Yes, children are a gift from God and add joy to the family but one can still have a difficult marriage, even with children in the union.
You cannot determine how your husband will respond and the decisions that he will make but your role is to love him and to set parameters within which you should relate. Let him know that you have nothing against the girl and are willing to bring her up as you would raise your own child. The child did not choose to be born out of wedlock, so don’t blame them but love them and seek to help them have a normal life. They have not committed any crime against you. Don’t live in fear of the other woman coming back but focus on building your home and growing your family.
After four years, could there be a reason you have not had a child? There might be need to seek medical advice or get someone to walk with you. Seek out a mentor couple or people that both of you look up to, who have strong marriages. Take some time out and bring up the conversation in a manner that is non-threatening and open.
Lastly, seek to build some common relationships with couples that are about the same level as you are so that you have a support system around you as a couple. It’s always helpful to have people that both of you trust, who you can turn to in moments like these.