Your Ex Married the Other Woman and Now She Wants Your Child

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MistressI’m sure I’ve confessed this before, but I’ll admit it again: I’m addicted to crime shows. Aside from reruns of King of Queens, Seinfeld, and The Golden Girls — and my other indulgences, Lie to Me and now The Walking Dead, which I’m somehow brave enough to make it through — my TV doesn’t stray far from the channels that pump out Deadly Women, Forensic Files, and 48 Hours Mystery. I love sitting through the process of investigating the crime. When it’s condensed into an hour-long airtime, anyway.

But my favorite is Snapped. As the narrative voiceover is explaining the back story behind the final showdown that usually ends up in a murdered husband, I’m thinking about how I would’ve handled the situation. In one case, a woman was furious because her man had left her and married his mistress. Bad. But the homewreckin’ hussy wanted their children to call her “mom.” Worse. 

Now that’s the kind of scenario I try to put myself in and all signs point to somebody going down, though I don’t have the cajones to snuff somebody all the way out in real life. I dare say there will never be a Janelle Harris episode of Snapped (at least I hope — from my fingers to God’s ears, just in case). But that doesn’t mean I don’t empathize with the offended mother’s outrage and anger and even understand that moment when she just, well, snaps.

It’s one thing to betray the sanctity of a marriage by stepping out on your spouse. That’s a violation of the entire household, not only the relationship, because the family has been built on the vows that those two people have taken to be faithful and honest and monogamous. So diluting those promises by stepping out with another person and redirecting your affections to them is already foul.

There are as many reasons to cheat as there are folks to cheat with, but most of the time it just boils down to the fact that the marriage or partnership no longer works and both parties need to move on. Cheating, in my book, is not only a waste of everybody’s time, since it indicates that somebody in the mix ain’t happy. It’s almost impossible to bounce all the way back from and still operate normally.

Trust is a fragile thing and rather than trying to move forward with that little voice of skepticism screaming, “Yeah right. You’re going to play ball with the guys/get a haircut/go to a meeting in Chicago with no access to a phone,” it might be best to cut losses and go back to being single. 

But to bring the kids face-to-face with the person that you cheated with takes nerve. And it takes even more audacity to want those children to give your harlot-turned-housewife a title. (And it’s even more crazy for her to expect one.) I can’t even wrap my mind around that kind of disrespect but I do know that it happens, and not just in the land of reality crime television.

Sometimes the poor kids don’t know any better and go along with getting to know the former mistress. Sometimes they root for the home team, pledge their allegiance to their mama, and give the new chick on the block the blues in the process. Either way, that’s got to be an extra sharp dagger through a woman’s heart to know that her ex is herding her kids into the same space as the woman who played a starring role in breaking up her relationship.  
 
We all know how the woman on Snapped handled it. She offed the dude and that kind of made it an end-of-story situation.

Is it wrong for an ex to introduce their kids to the used-to-be mistress (or, in some cases, the mister)?

Image via Ken30684/Flickr

cheating, commitment, divorce, exes, marriage

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TC00 TC00

Didn't you say he married her? Then how would he have been able to keep the kids away from her? I would assume if he did marry her then she and he would be living under the same roof and when he has visitation he would bring the kids to the house he shares with his now wife.

fraoch fraoch

I don't think its wrong, but it is a situation that needs to be handled with tact and understanding. Especially if you marry the person whom you left your spouse for. In other words, don't do what my ex sister in law did and f*ck your best friend's husband (and husband's best friend as well) for 5 years, dump your husband and put all the blame on him and the best friend who's husband you were bonking...then expect your kids (one of which is not my brothers but who he raised as his own) to call his kids your brothers and him Dad.


Am I bitter? Yes, I'd like to snap all over her ass!

Kritika Kritika

I think being mature adults in front of the children means we have to play nice. But being totally honest here, I would agree with the article!

Kiki1212 Kiki1212

OVER MY DEAD BODY.  If my husband cheated and then married the woman, I would never allow MY children to call the homewrecker "Mom".  Mom is reserved for the woman that will always have their best interest in mind, who will love them above everything else, NOT for one that breaks up their family.  Now if we divorced and he met someone later and remarried and she really loved my kids, thats a different story.  But no homewrecker will ever have that title with my kids.


 

nonmember avatar blh

I wouldn't kill somebody either id be pretty passive aggressive. Like telling my child she's reason we got divorced and whatnot and seeing how well they'd like her then. Kids generally take their parents side against step parents anyways. Although if anyone tried to get my kid to call them mom especiacially the whore he cheated with id probably beat the shit out of her.

nonmember avatar Rose

My mother was engaged in an affair with her best friend's husband..who was also the father of my classmates. Not only did he leave his wife for my mom, he left his family. My mother is like the evil stepmother. She had him limit communication with them and even cut off their health insurance. When my mother was snubbed an invitation to the youngest daughter's wedding, she threw a fit until her husband refused to go. He wouldn't go to his OWN daughter's wedding because my mother wasn't invited! The list goes on and on, but the worst part?



My mom personally delivers the ex-wife's alimony checks to her every month, written on pink checks and signed by none other than my mom. This just disgusts me.



She getsad because I won't acknowledge him as my stepdad. Well as far as I'm concerned, that title needs to be earned, and so far, he's not getting it!

nonmember avatar Rose

My mother was engaged in an affair with her best friend's husband..who was also the father of my classmates. Not only did he leave his wife for my mom, he left his family. My mother is like the evil stepmother. She had him limit communication with them and even cut off their health insurance. When my mother was snubbed an invitation to the youngest daughter's wedding, she threw a fit until her husband refused to go. He wouldn't go to his OWN daughter's wedding because my mother wasn't invited! The list goes on and on, but the worst part?



My mom personally delivers the ex-wife's alimony checks to her every month, written on pink checks and signed by none other than my mom. This just disgusts me.



She getsad because I won't acknowledge him as my stepdad. Well as far as I'm concerned, that title needs to be earned, and so far, he's not getting it!

nonmember avatar Scott Davis

When you marry or you're just shacking up, you think you know someone but you're wrong. You can be with them 24 hours a day and you do not know them, life is too short, if you are unhappy or they have to travel to greener pastures then let them so you can start over. It takes time but yes you can be happy life is too short.

Kritika Kritika

Uh Scott, if a man is unhappy and wants greener pastures, he should divorce his wife before he starts something elsewhere. It's idealistic but don't be suprised when you have a crazy, bitter ex wife to deal with.

Snark... Snarkymom

Janelle-If you haven't already discovered it, then the ID channel is for you.  24 non-stop hours of true crime stories.  I love King of Queens too. 


Although i wouldn't have killed him, no step-parent (or as Leanne Rhimes says "bonus parent" YUCK) should require a child to call them anything other than what the child is comfortable with.  Of my 4 step-children, only one calls me "mom" and she does so only on occasion.

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