My partner has two children aged 4 and 5. His wife, by her own admission, cheated more times than she could remember. He has always had doubts that one/both children are his but obviously loves them very much and didn''t ever want to query it in case he was stopped from seeing them. He and his wife seperated when the children were just under 1.5 and 2.5 years old. She has stopped contact regularly and has often allowed more contact with the younger child than the older child. She treats the children very differently, giving the older child preferential treatment by far, adding to my partners concern that they may not be his.
At the moment, she has stopped contact again and finally he is going through solicitors to sort out a regular pattern of contact. However, she has threatened that she can ''turn his world upside down'' etc on regular occasions. Obviously, with his worries about the paternity of the child/ren he thinks this could be what she is talking about. Should he get a paternity test done so that she cannot spring any negative news on him later on? If it were found that one/both children were not biologically his, would he have a right to any contact with them? I know he worries a lot that one/both might not be his but doesn''t want to face up to what that might mean. However, I also feel it is unfair on the child/ren if they later have him removed from their life if he isn''t their father and that the longer it goes on the harder it would also be on him. On the other hand, if the test comes back that he is the father to both he can relax and enjoy them and ignore her threats. Does anyone have any advice?
Contact is primarily for the benefit of the children and as ''children of the family'' - whether your partner''s or not - they have a right to have contact with the person who they know as their father.
Should your partner have a paternity test? Does the result have any effect upon how he feels about them? If not, don''t bother.
I sounds like she is using this uncertainty as a means of controlling your partner. Obviously he shouldn''t allow that to happen, as they may well both be his biological children, and they need their father.
I think that you need specialist legal advice, so that you are fully aware of the possible outcomes and implications. But one thing to consider is that his ex might not really want to whole world knowing, if one of them isn''t his. I mean, it doesn''t reflect very well on her, does it? She might not be in a rush to drop that bombshell.
Charles - No, it wouldn''t affect how he feels about them. However, if he leaves it and in 2/3 years his wife reveals one/both aren''t his then it will be much harder on everyone and she would remove him from their lives.
DrDaddy - She doesn''t care what people think of her, scoring points on my partner would outweigh public opinion unfortunately.
Soulruler - Yes he pays maintenance for the children. He would be happy to continue to do so and see them even if one/both wasn''t biologically his, but the question is whether he''d legally have any right to do so?
I think he needs to take urgent advice very quickly. If he can prove that he was deceived by his wife and his wife''s new disclosures (meant to hurt no doubt) are correct and that he wouldn''t want to support a child that is not his then the sooner he establishes this the better.
I would think that if it is proven then he is not going to be allowed any involvement in the children''s lifes especially if as a result the money by way of support dries up.
I think he needs urgent advice and needs to get the conversations down in writing and if possible a response from the ex.
It would be "good" if she then denied that she had alleged that the children were not his and then a test proved that they weren''t as then basically she would be seen in true light.
I think it must be a heartbreaking decision for your partner - I can see that if they were still together he would accept them as his but under the circumstance of separation I also think maybe it is better for him to find out now and take the appropriate action.
It may be that he is the biological father of one or both and of course that will also be a very hard thing to take (by which I mean the horrible allegation from the ex that they are not his).
I would add that I have come across cases on this site where men have accepted that children were theirs when they were not and then made to continue to support them financially as they had not established early on that they did not wish to support financially and emotionally children that were not biologically theirs - sort of adoption by proxy.
So I think your partner needs to take action now otherwize this is likely to plague him in many ways for a long time (and will obviously affect you also).