Ask Amy: An extended-ago infidelity results in a weird twist

Dear Amy, I got married in 1990. My wife and I have a daughter together.

In 1999 I found out that my wife was cheating, so I ended the marriage. We were together 10 years. Our daughter was 5 years old when we separated.

Now, all these years later, my daughter called and said she wanted to “meet her brother.”

I was shocked and said, “What?!”

“Yes,” she said, “Mom told me you have a son with a wife.”

Um, 100 percent not true.

I started thinking about it and I’m pretty sure my ex told our daughter that to make me look like the bad person that caused our divorce.

I want to ask my ex why she did this and tell her that she needs to speak to our daughter and tell her the truth or I will.

My relationship with my daughter was great, and then things started to change.

It occurs to me that this is probably the reason for this.

What should I do? Should I try to fix this or should I try to forget about it?

– Wondering dad

Dear Father, Your ex-wife’s infidelity led to the end of your marriage.

It is obvious that you shielded your young daughter from the truth during her childhood, perhaps to protect and preserve your privacy and your relationship with her mother.

She’s grown up now. At this point, the truth behind your breakup has taken on some bizarre turns.

DO NOT say to your ex, “Either you tell the truth or I will.”

You shouldn’t trust your ex with any version of this story. Your lie is profound and hurtful; don’t tempt them to further embellish these long-gone events or put their own spin on them.

You should tell your daughter the truth. Don’t complain about decades-old injuries. Just tell her the truth and answer any questions she might have.

Dear Amy: A few years ago I was suddenly ghosted by a friend.

I asked what was going on but got no answer.

I have a hunch as to why based on a slanderous untruth she was told about me.

This still bothers me, both because of the lie and the way I was dumped so abruptly.

Should I just accept it and move on, or should I try to find out for sure why I was ghosted by contacting my now ex-boyfriend?

– Spooky and confused

Dear Ghosted: You’ve already asked your ex-girlfriend why she suddenly withdrew. don’t ask again

You tried to accept that too and couldn’t.

I vote for the truth.

This person already haunts you. Bottom line, she’ll likely keep going no matter what.

You have a chance, so make it good.

Write exactly what your suspicion is. You have the right and duty to correct the records regarding this “defamatory untruth.”

You could also say that the way she handled it hurt you at the time and continues to bother you.

This will help you move on. And you should keep going.

Dear Amy: A reader asked why people examine their DNA and then contact biological family members — implying that people who do this are unaware that the family they grew up with is their “real family.”

I am adopted and I believe my parents are the ones who raised me. Your family is my family.

I did DNA tests to find out more about myself.

I contacted people on both biological sides and was welcomed with open arms.

This is not the case for many.

What this contact has given me is the ability to fill out medical forms correctly. I no longer have to write “adopted” in my family history.

I now know that I need to get tested due to my birth father’s cancer history.

I got siblings I didn’t know about.

My brother (also adopted but with different biological parents) now knows his family medical history, including extensive cardiac history. Although he was faced with a different outcome in terms of reuniting with biological family members, he has no regrets.

Not all adopted children seek relationships with our biological families, but we want to fill in the gaps and understand ourselves better.

– Adopted in Louisiana

Dear adoptees: In terms of filling in those gaps, the DNA test was a gift. It is every person’s right to know their biological history.

(You can email Amy Dickinson at or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @askingamy or Facebook.)

©2022 Amy Dickinson. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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