Dear Amy: I am a father of four sons who were divorced from their alcoholic mother 17 years ago when the boys were very young. All my sons are now in their 20s.
Shortly after my divorce, I learned from a good friend of my ex that he had begun a long streak of infidelity within the first year of our marriage.
I was aware during our marriage that she was “spending time” with male coworkers, including one male in particular, during a time that coincided with the conception of one of my sons.
This special son is not like his brothers. His physical features are very similar to that of the male co-worker I suspect his mother had a relationship with.
I have questioned for years whether I am her biological father.
For both his and mine’s sake, and for many other reasons, I have considered discussing this with him or getting a DNA test.
I can’t discuss this with my sons’ mother, because I’ll never get the truth.
Is it wrong to discuss this with my son and/or get a DNA test done to confirm or deny my biological relationship with him?
what is your advice?
– Heartsick in the Heartland
Dear Heartsick: It’s not necessary to try to discuss this issue with your son, but if you do, you should prepare yourself for a wide range of reactions from him—from possible relief to disapproval. .
You must closely examine all of your motives to determine his DNA.
This type of DNA revelation can be extremely unsettling, not only for an individual, but for the entire family system—including his relationship with his mother and his three brothers.
I’ve always advocated for a person’s right to know the truth about their DNA, but for your son, having this question foisted upon him by a parent – versus his choice to do his own testing – is too difficult for him. It is possible (And – if you make that allegation and the two of you prove to be biologically related, so what?)
I suggest you get your DNA test done. See where that effort takes you. If your adult sons have already had their own DNA testing, your family connection (or lack of connection) may be traced through the testing database.
Dear Amy: My boyfriend just proposed to me. I happily accepted and then four hours later I learned that my grandmother had passed away.
It was unexpected and painful.
I’m having a hard time feeling the joy I think I should be feeling right now.
Because of an upcoming funeral, my fiancee and I will be able to meet family members I haven’t seen in a while, and I don’t know if this is the time to tell them about our engagement, although I think some You can notice about me ring.
I feel guilty when I feel any joy about my engagement because I am still grieving the loss of my grandmother. And I worry about sharing the news.
My question is, should I hold off telling my family about the engagement until everyone has had time to mourn the loss of my grandmother?
Will sharing the matchmaking overshadow the celebration of life we should be focusing on?
And if I wait, should I hide my ring so it doesn’t get noticed?
– sorrow and joy
Dear Grief and Joy: I am so sorry you are facing this very difficult loss.
I think you should tell your immediate family about your engagement now (if you haven’t already).
Don’t make any public announcements during or after your grandmother’s memorial, but don’t hide your ring either.
If people ask about your ring, you should confirm your engagement and allow them to congratulate you. This good news reminds everyone that good things keep happening, even during tough times.
In the weeks following the funeral, you can announce your news to a wide circle and on social media.
I hope it provides some comfort in understanding that your grandmother wanted you to experience joy and excitement.
Dear Amy: I take great offense to your sympathetic response to a 72-year-old husband who hasn’t had sex with his wife for 20 years, “looking for love.”
I am a man of his age, also in a very long marriage. Intimacy involves more than just sex, and if he’s been in this sexless marriage for so long, that’s on him, in my opinion.
– happy husband
Dear Khush: Okay. Thank you.
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