Dear Counsellor | I have a secret
Q: I have a major problem with my two children. They are now in university and they are on to my secret. They have different surnames and I told them both that their father is dead. Now, they do not believe the story and want to know more about their 'dead' fathers. I fell in love with my boss, but he was married. He was my first love. Both children belong to him, but because he was married and respectable in society I could not give the children his surname. I promised him that it would be our secret. He treated us very well. I have a nice two-bedroom apartment and a new car. He provides for the children. He is paying the tuition fees at university. They call him uncle and they respect him. He has his wife and children, and it is still not convenient for them to know the truth about him. Sometimes I would not mind coming clean to the children, but he is bitterly against it. The first time I saw him very angry was when I jokingly told him that the children know that he is their father. I am afraid that the children will find out, whether I tell them or not. What should I do?
A: The children have a right to know who their father is. That right supercedes the promise you made to your married lover to keep it secret. You need to come clean and accept your mistakes without making any excuses. You have to prepare for the children to dislike you and consider you untrustworthy. In addition, when they learn that their uncle is their father, then it could lead to other issues of trust. They might find him despicable. It was very deceitful and disgraceful how you were callous towards your children for your own selfish lust and financial stability. Perhaps they might be mature and can handle this awful secret. Hopefully, you have ended a sexual relationship with the married man.
Your children will need professional counselling to overcome this deceit.