He Didn’t Tell Me He Has A Child

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Dear Meredith,

I've been in a long- distance relationship for a year and it's been fantastic. He's a great guy – the type of guy every woman wants. He lives in my hometown, and I'm far away because of school and work.

We are both in our 20s and understand that there is so much more we have to accomplish on our own. We are together because we want to grow together, but our careers come first because we are so young. We've talked about marriage and kids. But recently, two months after our one-year anniversary, he told me he had a child with an ex-girlfriend, and that child is 4 years old now. The reason I never knew was because he hasn't seen the child since she was five months old. I feel extremely bad for his situation because it is not his fault that the child is not with him. He wanted to be there for the baby, but the mother didn't want him around and left. He said that he begged the mother to try and work it out but she wasn't interested.

He wants to reconnect with the child (not the mother) once he is financially stable. He doesn't deny the fact that we talked about having children often and he never said anything. I'm extremely confused about what to do because I do love him and I know no one is perfect. But the man I loved lied to me because he didn't want to hurt me. How do I get past the fact that he lied about such an important fact? Should I continue this journey with him? Because I still see myself growing with him, but again, in the back of my mind, I remember his lie and it kills me.

— He Lied

I can't tell you whether you should forgive the lie because everyone has different limits when it comes to dishonesty. Frankly, if some guy lied about having a kid for an entire year, I'd be gone. But others might be capable of letting it go. If you're on the fence about what your gut can handle, give it some time. You'll either continue to obsess about the lie, or you'll start to feel better about your life with this man.

But please understand that forgiveness isn't the only issue. Even if you decide that you can get over this massive omission, you must consider how this child would affect your future. Are you on board with dealing with your boyfriend's ex and child for the rest of your life? Are you open to your boyfriend supporting this kid emotionally and financially? What if his relationship with the child dictates where you work and live? This would be forever, right? Think about what that really means.

Readers? Should she continue this relationship?

— Meredith