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Confessions: I have never told him my uterus was removed

Readers Lounge By Simon and Boke
(Image: Shutterstock)

The topic:

I am 31 and have been married for four years. We have been 'trying to have a baby' for a long time. The truth is, I know that I cannot have a child. I don’t have a uterus since it was surgically removed for reasons I cannot explain in public. Now my husband is pushing for us to visit a fertility clinic so that we can be examined. I have known this all along and I am afraid that if he finds out the truth, he is going to leave me. I am confused and scared as I don’t want to be alone in this life. Please advise me.


What the readers say:

Lydia, I believe you have made a friend in him so do not wait for someone else to break the news to him. Prepare him and yourself psychologically for the outcome even if it means seeking professional help.

{Mercy Atemba}

Being dishonest with your husband is not good at all. It only creates a negative picture of you and shows there are many other things you hide from him. It is high time you told him the truth and looked for a positive alternative together.

{Linet Mutoko}

Marriage is based on truth and, as they say, it shall set you free. One thing you must accept is that when he needs a child, you will have no option but to accept a co-wife. He might not send you away but you must accept that this is a possibility. Go ahead and advise him to take a second wife and remind him that it’s not your making.

{Fredrick Njeru}

I sympathise with your situation. In such cases, it is better to tell your husband the truth instead of waiting for tests which will embarrass you. If things get to the worst, you could even allow him to marry another woman and get children with her. Life has to go on with or without a husband. You have to live your own life. You could also decide to stay on and adopt a child with your husband.

{Onyango Outha}

Generally, however dark your past is, some bitter truths are supposed to be told. Lies are always temporary and the truth will soon come out. It would have been better for you to tell him up front from your first few conversations. Now, he is never going to trust you. Tell him the truth now because, whether you like it or not, he will come to find out. Had you told him earlier, you would have looked at so many options together, including adoption. The issue is very sensitive as of now but you can still try and win his heart.

{Ouma Ragumo – Sifuyo}

Boke says:

Dear Lydia,

People get into marriage for many reasons. One major reason is to have children. The order of importance may vary from one person or couple to another. If having children is a top reason for either of you then we can certainly say that this is going to be a tough hurdle to overcome.

Keeping this sensitive information from your husband can be termed as dishonesty and it is going to be a costly oversight. Your husband is likely to feel betrayed and all manner of disappointing thoughts are going to cross his mind. Before you judge him for that, just try to put yourself in his position.

The dating period was the right time for you to have disclosed this but I am sure the fear of being rejected must have made you keep it secret.

Trying to dodge the check up will definitely make him suspicious, so that is not an option. I would strongly encourage you to face him and tell him the truth. I cannot guarantee that this will change the outcome but I am sure it is better than waiting for the medical investigations to reveal a truth you have known all along.

We can all hope and pray that he will understand the circumstances and forgive you. All is not lost, you could still experience the joy of parenthood by adopting children. Better still, you could explore the possibility of surrogacy. This, you can discuss in-depth with your doctor.

Hilda Boke Mahare has a background in Counselling Psychology reach her on [email protected]

"Trying to dodge the check up will definitely make him suspicious, so that is not an option" (Image: Shutterstock)

Simon says:

Lydia, people live with all manner of secrets, even in marriage. Some of these secrets may remain hidden with little risk of discovery but most of them eventually surface. This is because there are certain things that are generally out of our control so our ability to keep things concealed is greatly comprised. Yours is one of them and it is just a matter of time before it comes out in the open.

However, being that you know what is going on here and that you have kept it a secret through the years of your marriage, I would encourage you to put some thought as to how well you know your husband. How well will he handle the news?

People handle situations in diverse ways. If you think he is the kind of person who handles the truth well then you can open up and tell him the whole story. However, you ought to know that in our African set-up, issues that revolve around children are extremely sensitive and they make or break marriages.

The fact that you have known about this all along is likely to make things even more complicated. This is an important component of a relationship and many people would prefer to be aware of such situations in the early stages of a relationship then they can make “informed decisions”. He may feel cheated that you knew this all along and that you chose to keep it from him.

With this, I encourage you to talk to your doctor before the test and seek his assistance in disclosing this to your husband. I believe the reasons behind this situation may be rather sensitive and the doctor would be wise enough to know what information needs to be told and what is best left in the past. A competent doctor would know how to handle the matter in a way that would put everyone’s best interests into consideration.

Since this is a permanent situation, it is best that he gets to know the magnitude of the problem so you can both search for a feasible solution to this. In the present day, there are many options to having children and you will most certainly be advised on this. Lastly, I recommend therapy to assist both of you in dealing with the situation.

Simon Anyona is a relationship counsellor

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