DEAR ABBY: Our son recently came to us and confessed that three years ago he'd had an affair with a married woman who had two children. He ran into her recently, and she told him she now has three children, and that the most recent one - age 3 - is his daughter. She's still married to the man she cheated on, and our son says he's still in love with her.
We told our son that because she says that the child is his doesn't necessarily mean it is. We advised our son to get a paternity test.
Our son is now so angry with us for suggesting it that he won't speak to us. He said that if we can't support him and the woman he loves, we should stay out of his life. Was our suggestion unreasonable? The woman's husband is the only dad this little girl knows, and he thinks she's his child. Our son needs to know if this is his daughter.
- On the Outs in California
DEAR ON THE OUTS: Your suggestion to your son was not only reasonable, it was the same clearheaded advice he would have received from an attorney. What you do next is . . . nothing, except letting him know you're there for him if he needs you. This is your son's affair, literally, and he is going to have to deal with whatever consequences are the result.
DEAR ABBY: I have been with my partner, "Harold," for 11 years. After gay marriage passed here in Minnesota, Harold told me he didn't want to marry me because of my credit rating. I have also learned that Harold has been telling anyone he knows some of my private information. What can I say to him to get him to stop revealing things about me to people we don't know well? Should I end the relationship? I'd feel really sad.
- Frustrated in Minneapolis
DEAR FRUSTRATED: Although I'm sure he has many virtues, sensitivity and discretion do not appear to be among them. It would be interesting to know if Harold would marry you if your FICO score improved, or if he's using it as an excuse because he doesn't want a legal commitment. Couples counseling could help you decide what to do next. Just because people can marry doesn't necessarily mean they should.