I recently came across a post on Reddit where u/promemermove1 asked "Children who were conceived by cheating, when did you find out, and what was your reaction?"
The replies were incredibly honest. Here's what they had to say:
1. "I found out when I was a pre-teen, and I wasn’t surprised. I never met my father, but he knocked my mom up and then went back to his wife and other kids. The most upsetting part is that I have brothers and/or sisters that I will never know."
2. "My parents were both unhappily married to other people when they found out they were going to have me. I was the reason the affairs came out, and they both left their significant others to be together. They got married and were together for 25 years until they died. It's crappy growing up feeling like you're the reason why a family broke up. The resentment from my older half-brothers (from my dad's first marriage) was awful and really messed with my perception of self-worth; however, it's nice knowing they found love through it all."
3. "I figured it out quite young since my dad would call from far away, and I was confused as to why he couldn’t be at home. I thought it was due to military demands for a long time, but then realized no, it was that he already had a family. Long story short: My mom was the other woman. The military ordered my dad elsewhere right after I was born, and he remained married to his very troubled wife until she died when I was a teen. My parents then reunited, got married, and remain married."
4. "I found out as a pre-teen. I wasn't really surprised. My dad was married, but my mom claims to not have known. His wife was pregnant at the same time as my mom. I've met that side of the family. They are nice, but we just have nothing in common. I have two sisters and a brother. They are all blue-collar, down-to-earth people. I'm a huge book nerd and sci-fi fan. They are northern rednecks; I'm a southern liberal. My dad apparently sucked as a dad, so I didn't miss out."
5. "My dad was married to another woman when he impregnated my mom. My mom was married to another man when she got pregnant by my dad. They left their partners and married each other while my mom was pregnant with me. I have five siblings. Some from my dad's first marriage and some from my mom's. I did not know the technicalities of my conception until their imminent divorce when I was 9, during the custody battle. I didn’t really know what was happening; I just knew they were getting a divorce because my dad was accused of cheating."
6. "I was born when my dad was married to his now ex-wife. I always knew. My dad divorced her (he had two daughters with her) and started living with my mom. Shortly after my sister was born, he left my mom for another woman and had a son with her. I remember him flirting with shop assistants and with my teachers. He told me so many stories about his hookups and women he loved that I just don't care. It is how it is."
7. "I was born while my mother was still married to a man who was not my biological father. In fact, I had his surname for the first year or so of my life, until my parents had it legally changed. My parents told me she and my bio father were already separated and filing for divorce, but I suspect they're a bit, let's say, charitably flexible with the chronology. I don't really give a crap, though. I grew up in a loving home. It's really all that matters."
8. "That happened to my mom. She somehow found out her biological mom’s contact info and tried to fit into her new 'family.' The only problem was no one knew about the affair, my mom, or the details surrounding it. I felt bad for my mom as she spent a lot of money visiting and talking to them. The other children saw her as a threat to their inheritance. Finally, no one responded to her attempts at further contact."
9. "My dad is totally my dad, but I recently found out that the man who raised him wasn't his biological father. Apparently, this was pretty common during WWII. My dad had suspicions for his whole life, so he was actually interested in looking into it even though it's been nearly 80 years. His dad, who raised him, came from a long line of guys who look a lot alike, but my dad never really fit that description. His brother totally does, and his brother's son. It's a pretty strong trait, I guess. We found out that he has two younger siblings."
"We sent one a DNA test which confirmed it, but they decided to end any contact right then. I guess they didn't want to believe that their beloved dad knocked up some random lady and never attempted to raise the baby, but we weren't even sure if the biological father knew. My grandma worked on a military base and was seeing multiple men, so the theory is that she didn't know whose baby it was and married the 'wrong dad.' It worked out for them, and they were together until he died."
10. "I once had a girlfriend who was the product of a drunken hookup after one of the BBQs with the neighbors. This caused the original families to break up. The neighbor ended up marrying the pregnant mom, so my eventual girlfriend grew up in a household feeling like the living embodiment of the regrets of the parents and resentments from all the siblings on both sides. She was in her 40s when I started dating her. Not only were these issues still affecting her, she was aware they were affecting her. She still has attachment issues stemming from her childhood."
11. "My mom is the result of this occurrence. My grandmother already had two sons and very much wanted a girl, but my grandfather was not interested in another child. My grandmother stepped out of the marriage with her boss back in the late '50s, and the result was my mom nine months later. I'm not really sure when my mom found out; however, a few other family members treated her differently because of the scandal. I think at one point she met with her biological dad, just to ask if there were any medical issues in his family. Other than that, she did not seek any comfort or relationship."
12. "I have a friend who recently found out her father wasn't her bio dad. He died, and the mom finally felt comfortable enough to reveal the truth to the rest of the family. When she was 20, she had a drunken one-night stand with a guy at the beach on spring break. She didn't even know his name and never saw him again. She realized she was pregnant a few weeks later. She got into a quick relationship with a guy and then allowed him to think he'd gotten her pregnant. They married and had two more kids after her. The family took it surprisingly well, honestly, and my friend has zero desire to know who her bio dad is because to her the man that raised her was her father to the fullest extent."
13. And lastly, "My mom cheated on her first husband with my bio dad, resulting in my older sister. My mom and her first husband are blond with blue eyes, and my sister came out olive skin with brown eyes. But for some reason, no one caught on. They split four or so years later. My mom shacked up with our dad, made the rest of us, then finally told the truth. Which absolutely no one was surprised by. My sister looks exactly like our dad. Everyone was told except the non-biological grandparents as she was their only ‘grandchild,’ and it would have destroyed them. The lie was kept up until they passed away when my sister was in her late 20s."
Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.