If there is any guilt I have carried for four years and feel so ashamed of, it is the fact that my four-year-old son, David, is my brother in-law, Mike’s son.
Hmmm, I can already guess some of your thoughts. “How can she betray her sister? How can she stoop so low to sleep with her sister’s husband? There is no reason under the sun why Mike should sleep with his sister in-law.” Well, nobody should judge me until you hear my story. At the end, tell me what you will do if you are in my shoes right now.
My elder sister Tessy has been married to Mike for eight years without a child. She is the perfect example of the “busy career woman” as she loves her job passionately. In the first three years of her marriage, Tessy always took contraceptive, according to her, she didn’t want to get pregnant and Mike was in agreement with her. “Tessy I am waiting to carry my grandchild soon,” mum said. “Well, I am not ready to be a mother yet so I will be on contraceptive for some time. I just got this job, I can’t get pregnant so soon. I have to give it some time. Thank God Mike understands and he supports me,” she told the family.
Tessy has been trying to get pregnant in the last five years but it has been futile. We have all been praying for her in the family, she is the ‘sunshine’ of my family. By the way, my name is Pamela and I am Tessy’s favourite sister. We are three girls and two boys in my family and I am the last girl.
Precisely four years ago, Tessy suggested that I spend some time with them since I was on leave and I agreed. In fact, I took time off work because I was feeling alone and sad because Samuel my boyfriend has been out of the country for almost three months. I decided that changing environment will do me a lot of good. So I travelled to Port Harcourt to spend my leave with my Tessy and her husband.
A week later, Tessy had to travel to Abuja on a three-day business trip. Two days later, Mike came home excited. He said he had been promoted so he came home with three bottles of wine. He suggested that we start the celebration and make it bigger when Tessy returns. “Pamela I was promoted today so I got these bottles of wine for us to celebrate with. Well, we can drink a bottle this evening. When Tessy returns tomorrow, we will have a bigger celebration by weekend. I have already given her the good news,” he said.
So while watching television, we decided to relax with one of the bottles of wine. “The wine taste really nice. But I think the alcohol content is much and you know I don’t take alcohol,” I stressed. I remembered we talked for a while about life generally, at least that was the last thing I remembered.
I was speechless to see myself stark-naked with Mike lying down beside me in my room when I opened my eyes. While I was still trying to figure out what had happened, Mike woke up and I quickly covered myself with the duvet. “Please what happened? How did we both end up here? I hope we were not intimate?” I enquired. Mike replied, “I think we had too much to drink. Pamela, please forgive and forget whatever happened between us. It was the effect of the wine. I’m sorry. Please let this remain between us.” This happened exactly two weeks to the end of my leave.
After Mike’s promotion party, I went back to Calabar. Weeks later, I realised that I was pregnant and it’s for my sister’s husband. I wanted the earth to swallow me because Tessy loves me a lot and I felt I had betrayed her trust even though it was not unintentional.
I couldn’t tell anyone I was pregnant talk less of being pregnant for my brother-in-law. I couldn’t even tell my fiancé because he’s been outside the country for almost three months.
While I was thinking of how to handle the situation before the pregnancy becomes obvious, my office transferred me to Imo State and this made me really happy.
I concealed my pregnancy from members of my family until I was six months pregnant. At six months, I phoned my family and informed them of my pregnancy. Later that day, my parents called back and requested that I come home with the man who impregnated me. I lied to them that the man responsible had denied the pregnancy however, I had decided that I was going to have my baby. When I gave birth to David, everyone was excited. He is the first grandchild of my parents so they love him so much.
David is four years old now and Mike does not know he has a son – an heir. Sometimes, I am tempted to tell my family and Mike the truth about David but the fear of parents and Tessy’s reaction stops me.
But I think it is time to spill the beans. One month ago, Mike was involved in a ghastly car accident which affected his spinal cord and as a result makes it impossible to impregnate his wife. Mike’s present condition is making him feel sad and depressed. “What a life? I have been married for eight years without a child but still I had hope that I will become a father someday. But with my present condition, all hope is lost,” he sobbed. Tessy tried to console him but he blamed her for being fatherless and she began to weep. I couldn’t bear to see them in that situation so I walked out of Mike’s hospital room and began to ponder if I should reveal the truth to Mike and lessen this grief.
The truth is that if Mike finds out that four-year-old David is his son, he will be happy but how will my sister, Tessy feel? What explanation will I also give to my family? Will they understand the circumstances that led to David’s birth? What do I do?