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Marriage/21 year old daughter with married man

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I'm concerned about my 21-year-old daughter who has learning difficulties as well as autism. She was diagnosed with autism at age 2.

She's in college studying hairdressing. She's got a new boyfriend, who's 28, and I've only recently found out he's been married for 2 weeks (at the time anyway) - and the man also has a young baby who's 3 years old, as well. This has shocked and upset me. Apparently the man had a big wedding locally which was in the paper about 2 years ago - it was a fairly lavish do that gained some local press! My daughter has had some problems through her school years - bullying etc. but also many good times as well.

My wife is upset too, she has tried everything to make her see sense, but nothing's worked.

I know my daughter won't ever lead a full independent life only a semi-independent one, that's a sad fact of life, and try not to be overprotective, but not disinterested.

She's in college and this man's working in a local Subway branch as a manager - from what my friend [a trusted family friend who's retired with grown-up kids] told me, he'd seen them kissing when the man was on his break at the back of a local Subway branch in a car park.

From what I've heard, my daughter was the one who initiated it, not him, instead of the usual scenario of married-man-seduces-woman. She didn't even know he was married, and he never told her [according to my daughter].

She did all the running not him [so I've been told].

I can't really describe the man as a pervert since both individuals are at the legal age of consent, but it's worrying me a lot, and i've taken to overeating to cope. I don't know why she's doing it, but she has few girlfriends, let alone friends, so that could be why but Im not sure.

This is a tough problem for me. I want to ensure my daughter lives a full and happy life and is an adult, but also avoid her getting into serious trouble - something she's avoided most of her life.

Apparently this man has actually left his wife for her now, and said he only married her "to fulfil a family business obligation that his dad had with another businessman" (that's what my daughter told me that he'd said to her, and that he didn't really want to marry her, but his dad forced him to and he had to put on a front of happiness so played at being a dutiful husband and dad when really he liked my daughter !)
This man has left his wife and kid - how sick is that, abandoning your own kid?

I love my daughter and want her to be happy, but this situation is stressing me out a fair bit. Now our daughter's talking of moving in with him in 2 years time, but can we really stop her?

Isn't this odd, a married man actually leaves his wife for his lover? Most of the time they say they'll leave but don't, but is this just something you see on The Real Housewives etc.

Where do we go from here next? Is their relationship wrong, will it last? What if it does, or if she decides to have kids with him, what about the son the man already has [who he's had no contact with since], sorry, for all the questions, but I need help!!

Answer
Hi Rebecca-

She's of legal age and is an adult so unfortunately you can't do anything about who your daughter dates, etc. Unless you prove to a court of law that she can not make decisions on her own, and that you feel she needs a court appointed guardian to help her in life.  So unless you think she needs help doing that she will have to make some tough decisions on her own. I know as a parent it's hard to sit by and watch this go on. I have a daughter who has Autism and other mental health issues and she's has to be in an assisted living place full time and constantly supervised. It's hard as a part to witness our children to have to struggle with issues like this.  Out of my four children three of them have mental and emotional issues two of them very significant issues.  That can be very challenging as a parent.  I can really relate to you to a certain extent.

Yes, it is odd for him to leave his wife and child for her, that typically doesn't happen.  All you can do is to give her your advice as a parent. Children usually don't take their parents advice at that age anyway.  Chances are this relationship will not last anyway. The only thing you should really be concerned about is if he knows she has Autism and he's preying on her and using her to his advantage, and there are ppl out there that do that sort of thing. I would be leery of his exact intentions.  

How good will it do for you to sit down and talk to her again about this? Will she listen and take what you have to say at heart? It might be worth another try at least. I hope this helps you some.

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