My husband doesn't know about my first child


March 26, 2018

Dear Pastor,

I am a 40-year-old woman. When I was 17, I got pregnant for a family member and my parents sent me to Kingston. I stayed in Kingston until I had my baby. I did not come back to my parents until the baby was five months old. Other family members took the child. I gave him up because I did not want to have anything to do with the man who got me pregnant. He got me pregnant the first time we had sex, and he left and went abroad. If he had stayed in Jamaica, I am sure my father would have killed him.

I was just a young girl, and he did that to me. I stayed away from men until I was 24 years old. I met a guy, and we liked each other. He asked me if I had children and I told him no. That is what my parents told me to do. My mother told me that if I tell a man that I have a child, he would ask me where the child is. But if I say I don't have any children, he couldn't ask me that.

After this man and I got married and we had our first child together, a girl who went to school with me told him that I had a child before. He told her that she was mistaken. It is always on my mind that I lied to this man and that I should tell him the truth; and if he wants to leave me, it would be up to him. As far as I am concerned, the only child I have is the one that both of us have together. I have never seen that child again. I still have not told my husband the truth. Should I tell him?

Please give me your advice.


Dear H.G.,

I regret hearing that you had sex with a family member and you became pregnant. You have not said that he raped you, but perhaps that is what you meant to say. You were sent to Kingston because your parents were ashamed to keep you in the district. That was the custom of many rural folks when their girl children got pregnant by relatives, or when they are very young.

However, your parents should not have given you bad advice. They should not have encouraged you to lie about your pregnancy. What they should have done was to help you to go through therapy in an effort to help you deal with the past. I understand that you have put the incident behind you, so to speak. However, I believe that you should tell your husband the truth. He is going to be very upset. He may even call you a liar. But by telling him, you would set your conscience free.

You should also ask your parents to help you deal with this matter. If they are alive, and I hope they are, your husband can go to see them with you and have a family conference on the matter.


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