They're in the Middle of an Adoption and He Cheated

Ms. Vicki

Dear Ms. Vicki,

I am 23 years old, my husband is 24 and we have been married for almost five years. He is an E-5 in the Navy. We have one daughter who is three months old, and we are the foster parents to my husband's two-year-old cousin.

We are in the process of adopting his cousin, and the adoption is almost final. We had a hard time getting pregnant before we had the children, and he made it seem like all he wanted in life was to have a family.

While we were trying to get pregnant, he cheated on me with one of the women on the ship and she got pregnant. I forgave him, and a few weeks after I discovered that he had cheated, I found out that I was pregnant with our baby. The other woman said she didn't know who the dad was, and after she had her baby, she said she didn't want either of the men she had been with to take a DNA test.

Recently, my husband had to go to San Antonio for training. Long story short, once he got there, he started acting funny, not calling and not checking in or checking up on us. I didn't notice it at first because I was busy taking care of the babies alone at our home in Hawaii. Then, just a few days before the kids and I were going to fly to Texas to visit home and see him, he called and told me that he's unhappy and wants a divorce.

I've since learned that my husband cheated on me again and now I am serious about getting divorced from him. He does not want to continue with the adoption. I do not want to send this little girl back to the States because I love her and all she knows is us.

I want to know if I stand a chance in court at getting spousal support, alimony, child support and his BAH. I don't think it's fair that he can just walk away from us and just move on with his life and leave me to take care of these kids alone. I know people do it every day, but this was so unexpected.

Sincerely, Devastated

Dear Devastated,

I'm not going to come down on you about this because you deserve better -- you and your children deserve better. However, I disagree that this was unexpected. You've known that your husband has been cheating on you for a while.

Many people are married and never have children. They have a great families, too. Bringing children into a relationship can sometimes make everything more complicated.

Now, as you know, your children didn't ask to be here. You are right, both of your children only know you and your husband. It will be devastating for them to lose both parents. Someone needs to grow up fast and it sounds like it will have to be you.

Your husband is very immature, he should have never gotten married or had children. He's not ready for the commitment.

You need legal advice. You should go to the legal office on base. Most legal offices have walk-in hours. Ask them for help regarding legal separation, spousal support and child support. You should definitely do this before you PCS to a new duty station or relocate. They can help you.

I think you will also need other counseling and support. The Fleet and Family Services office can connect you to a counselor or therapist who can give you guidance, resources and support. Your husband cannot leave you or your children without support. Let me know what happens and thanks so much for writing to me.

Sincerely, Ms. Vicki

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