I found my wife's biological father. Should I tell her?
TRAVELLER - Feb 7 2017 at 18:58
My wife and I have been together for over 10 years, and have been married for 5. We're expecting our first child this summer. We are deeply in love and our affection for each other grows more and more each day. Her biological father left her and her mother when she was a toddler, and had never made any efforts to reach out to her over the years, even though her mother's contact information and home address hasn't changed in 35 years. I was fortunate to have grown up with my two biological parents. She also had a very loving step father, who gave her away to me at our wedding. He unfortunately passed away recently and it has left a huge hole in my wife's heart.
About two weeks ago, by happenstance, while checking through my credit history in anticipation of applying for a loan, I came across public information about myself (name, address, phone number, social media etc). I then noticed a link to "possible family members." I clicked on my wife's name, and it showed her respective information, including her mother's as well. I clicked on her mother, and all the information presented on her was was accurate. While shocked at the veracity of the information, I moved to shut down the computer when I noticed a link with her biological father's name (which I knew from her birth certificate when we filed for our marriage license). Suspicious, I clicked on it, and it showed his current address. I was skeptical, so I went back to my name, and clicked on the links for my brothers and parents. All their current information was accurate as well.
As a result, I'm very certain that his info is true. In light of the fact that we are expecting our first child, we only have 50% of my wife's parental history. We had given up on finding any information about hereditary risk factors from her father's side of the family. In the past, my wife has stated that she has no interest in meeting him, because of the way he left. I can't blame her, and I support her. We decided that we'd never go searching for him. But I have now come across this information, and I don't know how/if to keep this from her. We don't kept secrets from each other, and my mouth is burning to tell her. She did say that the only reason she would ever be interested in meeting him would be to find out any hereditary health information, and possibly to see where she received half her features. Beyond that, she wants nothing to do with him, but that was before there was a chance of locating him.
Should I tell my wife that I've possibly found her birth father?
I'd tell her. Traveller, you have nothing to be ashamed of. You stumbled on the information, you didn't go looking for it. Explain exactly what happened, you were being diligent and responsible in checking your credit prior to applying for a loan. Show your wife what you found. It's your wife's decision on whether to take action or not. Looking at an Internet link is not the same as making phone calls and having a meeting. Let her decide what to do, she'll probably thank you.
Thank you so much for your insight, guys. It is a really tough decision, because it's hard to keep something like this from her. I'll think long and hard about it but I really appreciate your input on this. I'm leaning towards telling her, but I don't want to do any harm to her psyche by unnecessarily dredging up these thorny issues.
I was also thinking, what if I talk to her mother first, and then ask her if I should tell my wife? That's a tough one too, though, because she's also the one who got left. This is a really tough decision. I also don't want to make the wrong decision, for example if I don't tell her and she somehow finds out that I had this information and didn't tell her, and then it being too late for her to do anything about it.