Shortcuts: “I Kept My Baby and It’s All His Fault”

It’s time again for Shortcuts. For every question, I’ll give my advice in just a few sentences, because sometimes the answer to a person’s question is so obvious and the need to hear it so great, being as clear and frank as possible is simply the best way to go.

My boyfriend and I have been on and off for seven years. During a recent “off” period, I heard he was cheating so I did things to get him back. I got out of a man’s car to make him mad and I also slept with his friend. Despite my efforts, he still remained back-n-forth with me and this other women. He conceived twins with her and was still back-n-forth with me. I got pregnant as well and he left me when I was five months pregnant, saying he hated me for sleeping with his friend. At first he said it was up to me whether to keep the baby and now he says he doesn’t want it. I am 37 with two older children already. It sickens me that had he been honest earlier I wouldn’t of kept it. — Up a Creek

You don’t have to keep your baby. You can give it up for adoption and give it a chance to be raised in a loving and stable home with parents who truly want it.

I have been married for 5 1/2 years and have been cheated on so many times. There hasn’t been a faithful year yet. But I finally thought I was over all his crap until we started planning our 5 year anniversary cruise. I asked him for his account info and he told me to go to his personal email address to look it up. He forgot that he had his “hidden & secret” email account synced to it and I came across messages between him and a girl off craigslist wanting to know if she was drug and disease free and saying this had to be a discreet thing. I looked at the phone records and he did call the phone number a few times. Of course, he denied it until I showed him the proof and he then claimed she was the only one and he felt so guilty that he didn’t go through with it.

While he was taking a nap I decided to look in his phone and HE LIED AGAIN! There were so many others. He wrote about wanting a black woman and asking about locations to meet. Some of the females he had daily conversations with. The worst one to me was a medic he had a deep relationship with. He mentioned needing her hugs and kisses and missed their friendship and asked what was her favorite intimate moment. He even mentioned me in an email. He told her he was so sorry he hadn’t written her in a while but I was being bipolar so he had to give me his passwords to his accounts so she could only write him on the new email address. It lasted for months.

He says he is changing and will never do it again but I don’t believe he will ever tell the truth. He wants us to go to counseling again but why bother after he lied to the first one? He says that we can get over this and be strong but all I keep thinking is “Why is now any different??” Has a relationship survived a spouse being this disgusting? — Disgusted

There’s a difference between surviving and thriving, between existing and growing. If you want to thrive and grow and embrace a happy life, you need to love yourself enough to get out of this dead-end marriage. Take all the proof of infidelity you’ve saved, and go see a divorce attorney right away.

I’ve been seeing this guy for over a year now and we’re stuck in the friend zone. I’ve been completely upfront from the beginning about my feelings for him. He claims that he has feelings for me to but he’s not ready for a relationship so he sees and has sex with other women. He says I shouldn’t get mad because we’re not in a committed relationship but if I were to go out on a date he would totally flip out. When I try to distance myself from him he seems really hurt but not enough to commit. I love this guy and I don’t want to walk away from him after putting in so much time and effort, but I don’t want to play the fool either. What do I do, Wendy!?!? — Tired of Playing the Fool

Start dating other people. Maybe you’ll meet someone else you like better and/or maybe your FWB will see that he’s in danger of losing you and decide to commit. Better yet, distance yourself from the FWB, let him get hurt, and love yourself enough to say, “So what! Better he gets hurt than continuing to hurt me.”


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If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy@dearwendy.com.


  1. omg. My head is going to explode.

    LW1- Give the baby up for adoption if you don’t want to raise it. Have your tubes tied while you’re at it. Also, grow the fuck up. You have 2 kids (at the moment) who need a mother, not a woman who acts like an immature, irresponsible, boy crazy teenager.
    LW2- MOA. This man doesn’t want to be in a committed relationship with you.
    LW3- This guy doesn’t want to be your boyfriend. MOA.

    1. I have read many letters on Dear Wendy, but today’s letters almost made me punch my computer. LW1, please stop procreating. It is one thing to make stupid choices that affect only yourself, but it is very different to drag your children through your shitty, unstable relationship. You made stupid choices, so do your unborn child a favor and really think things through. If you are going to be able to love that child and give him a loving and stable home, keep it, if not, give him a chance at a happy, healthy life.
      I’m depressed now

      1. Today’s letters made me want to punch my computer, too. Maybe there should be a class for all high school girls called “Don’t be an idiot: and other dating rules”.

    2. FancyPants says:

      Did the “I’m 37” part of that letter totally blindside you as well? Totally didn’t see that coming.

      1. Yes, completely! When I was reading it (especially the parts explaining all the manipulative drama with the boyfriend), I thought the LW was early 20’s at most. Finding out that she was 37 was shocking! I am continually amazed at people, and not necessarily in a good way.

    3. LW#1 is the reason why I think you should be able to sterilize people.

      1. we should totally bring back sterilization and apply it pretty liberally for a little while…

  2. LW 1- Grow up. You have 2 children already, what kind of role model is that for them to have their mom get pregnant / get even with a guy because he ‘made you mad’. If someone makes you that mad, you leave him, and never look back. Take a look at your life, and start to change it into the life you really want. It is a shame you haven’t figured that out for your first two children. If you don’t think you can change, then give up the baby for adoption like Wendy said, and give the kid a fighting chance for loving, and responsible parents.

    LW 2 – Yeah, 5 years is too long in this. Get out now, he is not going to change.

    LW 3- WWS. Try to find someone better — it probably isn’t as hard as you think. This guy seems like this guy you are seeing now is only taking advantage of you and messing with your head.

  3. Oof. Is it crappy of me to say that these letters make me feel better about myself?
    For all three of these women, as Wendy has said so many times before, love yourself more.

    1. I always look forward to shortcuts for just that reason – my life seems a little less crazy and I seem a little more like a grown up.

      1. Ditto!

      2. Avatar photo findingtheearth says:

        I rarely feel like a grown up, but boy oh boy….today’s shortcuts…

  4. kerrycontrary says:

    LW1–WBS, get your tubes tied after this birth or get an IUD. The world does not more babies being created by the likes of you. Also, something tells me that a single mother of 2 who isn’t smart enough to use a condom most likely can’t afford this third child. So I’m really happy that I’ll be helping to support you and your unintended children through taxes taken out of my paycheck.

    LW2-I’m sorry you are in a shitty marriage. It’s time to move on. There’s something seriously wrong with your husband and his moral compass. While there were probably signs of this behavior before your marriage, what’s done is done. Do you really want to spend the rest of your life dealing with this?

    LW3-This man doesn’t want to be your boyfriend. He will never be your boyfriend. In fact, you will probably be blindsided when he starts actually dating someone else.

    1. I’d actually contribute funds so this woman could get her tubes tied. Seriously. There should be some sort of charity out there that provides sterilization for people who should really not be having any more children.

      1. kerrycontrary says:

        Very good point.

      2. Oh my god, this is the best thing I’ve read this week!!!!

      3. Except how do you know your money is actually going towards their sterilization and not drugs, booze or anything else? That’s what I’d want to know!

      4. Maybe, with a little persuasion, they would branch out.

  5. Can I just say I love how Wendy didn’t even touch the insane issues with LW1s “relationships”?

    Good move, lol

  6. How disappointing a 37 year old woman acts this way and is so cavalier about bringing a child into the world. This man isn’t going to be any kind of father to your child and you clearly are not sufficiently focused on your children to be a good mother. And that is something I don’t say flippantly. Adoption.
    The other two relationship don’t really exist. The marriage isn’t real to him LW2 – so leave. What do you really have to stay for? And that relationship isn’t real at all LW3. He doesn’t want you. He wants you trailing after him like a puppy dog while he dates the women he really wants. Walk away and when he comes running after you – and he will – walk faster. He has shown you what he is capable of. You should want more for yourself.

  7. Older and (hopefully) wiser says:

    LW#2– “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me”.

    1. Fool me for 5 years and it’s time to get some counseling.

  8. Ugh. These made me sad.
    I’ve been #3. Walk away. This will be nothing but heartache, it’s not worth it.

    1. kerrycontrary says:

      I’ve definitely been number 3. I think most women have. It’s a lesson we have to learn.

      1. Guilty of #3, too, except I was 100% friend-zoned. It didn’t end well.

      2. Guilty as charged with having a number 3. Is it a right of passage or something that nobody tells you about?

      3. Also guilty of #3. Can’t believe how ridiculously I behaved over him.

      4. Same. Though this guy at least knew better than to get pissed if I went on a date.

    2. comeoneileen says:

      Same here. It’s embarrassing how I acted while I was involved with that shitty non-relationship. Sure enough, once I started to move on was when he was suddenly ready to truly commit. In spite of everything, not giving him another chance was still hard for me but deep down I knew I would never be able to trust that he was fully invested in the relationship after I had been disposable to him for so long.

  9. SasaLinna says:

    Regarding LW2 and LW3: I wish people understood the concept of “sunk costs” and started applying it in their lives. No matter how much you’ve invested into a relationship already, if there aren’t any more “returns” to be expected, then cut your losses and move on.

    LW1 just made me sad.

    1. I wanted to stop reading as soon as she said “I did something to get back at him.” Seriously? What adult does this outside of sitcom/trashy movie plots?

  10. I feel the need to break down LW’s situation.
    Isn’t an “off” period mean that you’re broken up? So even if he did, you were broken up. You did the same.
    I don’t understand how getting out of a car would make him mad. And why you would sleep with his friend if you ever thought of getting back together with him. I mean seriously? You do that to give him the ol’ fuck you, not get back together with him.
    And then he got someone else pregnant? While you both were fucking around with other people, while not in a relationship. Why would you want that added drama?
    And then, THEN, he tells YOU to decide if you want to keep the baby. That decision is completely on YOU. You decided not to terminate or choose adoption. You did that, own it.
    And I second what everyone else said, do something that stops you from having more kids. And grow up. Find more mature guys. Maybe even stay single for a while and raise your kids.

    1. Liquid Luck says:

      “WE WERE ON A BREAK! ”

      But seriously, your last sentence is exactly what she should do.

      1. LOVE the Friends reference. 🙂 That was my thought, too.

        I also stopped reading these letters when I read that he’d “cheated” while they were “off” — you can’t cheat if you’re not together!!!

      2. Liquid Luck says:

        It’s impossible NOT to bring up Friends whenever break conflicts are mentioned. It’s scientifically proven.

  11. Bittergaymark says:

    What an incredible trio of smart and resourceful women…

    1. I see what you did there

  12. LW1: This is just so fucked up, I can’t believe people are actually like this. So because he doesn’t want the baby, now you don’t? You were only keeping it because of him? You need to give this baby, and your other two kids up for adoption. I don’t even want to get into the rest your letter.
    LW2: WWS, you need to get out of there as soon as you can, he is never going to stop lying, and you don’t need to put yourself through feeling like crap for this guy anymore, 5 years is too long, and you deserve better.
    LW3: Who cares if he gets mad at you for seeing other people, he can’t have his cake and eat it too, so go out and have fun, and don’t even worry about this guy. I wouldn’t even be friends with him if that is how he treats you.

  13. Guy Friday says:

    Good Lord. I don’t think I’ve ever said this before, but I honestly think Wendy should maybe try to figure out where LW1 lives and send Child Protective Services out to check on her other two kids, because I’m VERY concerned about the kind of home life they have if this woman is doing this. I don’t buy the “someone can be unhinged like this about one thing and not others” rationale; it’s been my experience in dealing with Children In Need of Protection and Services cases that when there’s smoke, 99% of the time there’s fire.

    Also, I hate, HATE the whole “you made me have a baby and it’s all your fault” BS. Seriously? You’re doing a major disservice to your gender, LW1, because YOU are the one the idiot politicians are going to point to in order to justify the invasion into a woman’s body and choices. Because, hey, if the man has enough say that he MADE you have the baby, then by that same logic the man can MAKE you get an abortion or else not be responsible for child support. You set women’s rights back 20 years (at least!) when you say shit like that.

    1. Yeah, really, how do you have time to parent two children if you’re so busy sleeping with multiple men and “getting out of men’s cars” all the time?

      1. Hey! Getting out of men’s cars is a full time job!!!

  14. WWS x 3. In general, all LWs need to aim higher. LW1, aim higher for your unborn child and for your relationships in the future. If you don’t want this child, please consider adoption. There is nothing worse for a child than having a parent who doesn’t want them (they WILL know).

    LW2, it’s time to end this marriage. Please learn to love yourself more than this.

    LW3, you are not in a relationship with this man, so MOA. He doesn’t want to date you and he certainly doesn’t love you. Actions speak louder than words.

  15. LW1: OMFG! You are just terrible. Since you clearly don’t want this baby you should be giving it up for adoption. What the hell did you think Wendy would advise you to do? Try with all your might to get back together with your prize of an ex? Get an illegal (and extremely dangerous) abortion at 7 months

    LW2 and LW3: And what the hell is wrong with you two!? What did you think you would be advised to do? Stay with your cheating husband – he’ll eventually stop cheating and then you will be happy because God forbid you have to be single and look for someone new! Gather more evidence of his cheating because it’s not 100% clear that he’s been doing it! Keep sleeping with that guy LW3 and learn some new sex tricks – eventually he’ll realize just how great you are – he’s only had one year-he just needs two years instead of one! How the hell do you two not stumble upon these answers on your own – it’s common sense! Good Lord

    1. That abortion comment was meant to be a question as in “get an illegal and extremelyy dangerous abortion at 7 months?”

  16. Holy fuck. The first letter is so disgusting & sad, but I have to say I honestly LOL’d at this part: “I got out of a man’s car to make him mad and I also slept with his friend. Despite my efforts, he still remained back-n-forth with me and this other women.”

    DESPITE MY EFFORTS hahaha. I slept with his friend. DESPITE these EFFORTS, he’s still with some other woman, why??

    Oh my god. (Also, I won’t even attempt to decipher what “got out of a man’s car” means.)

    1. I wish I had more response in me to give these letters, but I’m off work today & got shit to do! Ahh, too much crazy!

    2. Hahahaha… LW1 was starting to make me feel really irritated and pissy, and then I read this and laughed out loud. Thanks, Fabelle. I feel better now. 🙂

  17. Sue Jones says:

    Facepalm Friday once again!

    1. Yes! OMG, yes.

      Facepalm Friday ™ indeed.

      1. What what? New mug design?

  18. Am I reading this wrong? I swear she meant to write ‘I am 17 with two older children’ because, there is no way this woman is acting like a 37 year old.

    1. Liquid Luck says:

      Seriously, the her behavior is almost understandable for a teenager from an unhealthy home. For a fully grown woman with two existing children, it should be considered criminal.

  19. LW1: Don’t blame him for this. Why on earth would you think he wanted the baby? He clearly was not interested in a serious relationship with you, as shown by him being with another woman. Please put the baby up for adoption so that it can be raised to learn common sense.

    LW2: I stopped reading after you said he’s cheated every year. Why would you think he’d change?

    LW3: If he wanted to be with you, he’d be with you. But he’s not. He’s just trying to keep you around. Find someone who wants to date you instead.

  20. Avatar photo the_optimist says:

    “I got out of a man’s car to make him mad and I also slept with his friend.”

    I don’t meant to nitpick, but the sleeping with his friend part seemed to have been added as an afterthought… In what world is it worse to get out of a man’s car?

    1. FancyPants says:

      I was totally wondering that too.

      1. Only thing I can think of is maybe the car-man was the friend and she didn’t really sleep with him but the on-and-off boyfriend thinks she did…otherwise I got nothin’.

  21. Avatar photo findingtheearth says:

    LW1: I know at least one couple looking to adopt and that has a loving home. Find one close to you. Call an adoption agency. Even Safe Haven might be better. You will only resent the child and what the child represents. And no one makes you “keep” a baby. It’s 2013. Be responsible. Plus, at 37, you should not be worrying about trying to get revenge on an ex. Obviously, if he knocked someone else up while you were dating, he has little to no concern for you. Get your shit together, see a counselor, talk to an adoption agency, and make sure the two children you already have aren’t going to be harmed by your irresponsible behavior. Growing up is hard, but it can be done.

    LW2: WWS. Your husband is a serial cheater. Leave him before he accidentally solicits a minor on Craigslist and goes to jail.

    Am I the only person who is terrified of Craig’sList and refuses to use it?

    LW3: Move on. Find a boy who likes you. Or like yourself more and then an appropriate boy will follow.

    1. Friend of Beagles says:

      I’m with you on Craigslist. *fistbump*

      1. Avatar photo findingtheearth says:

        I cloth diaper, and I won’t even buy those off craiglist. I am just so skeeved out by it. It’s sketch.

    2. I have so much sympathy for counselors/therapists right now. How do they NOT facepalm when clients like LW1 walk in? Where do they even START to set these people straight?

      1. Avatar photo findingtheearth says:

        I have a friend who is a psychiatrist, and I do not know how she does it. I would just be spending the entire time shaking my head.

    3. Most of my home is furnished due to Craigslist! I love the deals I find on there!

  22. landygirl says:

    I hope that all three of these letters are fake because if they aren’t, I weep for humanity.

  23. LW #2–That’s not a real marriage, girl. He keeps continually disrespecting you and your vows because you’ve shown him that such behavior is allowed. Why on earth would he change when he doesn’t want to or have to? Divorce him and invest in yourself. Find things you like to do and people (of any gender) who enjoy your company. Clearly he has no investment in you, as a spouse or as a human being, so you’re going to have to build up your sense of worth on your own, which probably should’ve happened anyway.

  24. LW2, they can change but… they have to want to and they have to believe there is something truly wrong with them, and be willing to do what it takes. I’ve been there, and we’re better now, but it wasn’t ME driving that truck, it was all on him.

    It’s not all puppies and rainbows, however. If you do not have children with this man (and maybe even if you do) I suggest you seriously consider leaving. Even though my husband has been faithful for many years now, the scars are still there and still hurt sometimes. Leaving won’t totally erase those scars, for the record, but it may be easier to love and trust again with someone who doesn’t have the history your husband does. I am so, so, so sorry.

  25. Lemongrass says:

    LW 3: you are an ego boost. He will not date you, ever. You just make him feel good by doting on him. Lose the one sided friendship, it’s not going to do you any good.

  26. Every time someone cheats via craigslist, the story is “I didn’t go through with it.” If that were the case, wouldn’t people stop posting on craigslist?

  27. Also people need to realize the line should read “I didn’t go through with it, because you caught me before I made it that far” or “I didn’t go through with it this time” or “you have no way of proving it so I didn’t go through with it”

  28. “Despite my efforts, he still remained back-n-forth with me and this other women.”

    Man, I HATE when men don’t commit to me even after I sleep with their friends. Don’t you guys?

    1. Almost as much as I hate it when they leave won’t leave their other baby momma for me…

  29. “There’s a difference between surviving and thriving, between existing and growing. If you want to thrive and grow and embrace a happy life, you need to love yourself enough…”

    Wendy, I just love this advice you gave to LW2. I love the way you worded it, and I think it applies to all sorts of people.

  30. LW1: WWS…Adoption would be a great decision! You are 37, not 17…act your age. Focus on the children you have know, and give this child a chance with people who would want it.
    LW2: Honey, he has cheated on you throughout your entire marriage. 5 and 1/2 years of putting up with that type of crap? Dump him. This isn’t one terrible choice that he made, he’s developed a lifestyle.
    LW3: Oye. MOA.

  31. Facepalm times a million.

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