Dear Ann Landers: Two years ago, I met a sensitive, handsome man, a single parent with two teenage children. I was divorced and raising two children of my own, and we had a lot in common. We married several months later.
I knew that “Tom” had had a vasectomy many years earlier, and I asked him about a reversal. He was not receptive. Since we both had children and our finances were limited, I didn’t give it much thought, although another child would have been fine with me. I am still deeply in love with my husband, and our lives have been wonderful. Our children have adjusted beautifully, and he is a superb father.
A few weeks ago, I went to see my ob-gyn because my period was overdue, and he did a pregnancy test. To my surprise, it was positive. My husband was delighted and told the good news to his family and friends.
Everything seemed great until last night, when he told me he had seen our family physician to find out if he was producing sperm and was told the tests concluded that there is no way he could have fathered this child. He was not mean or accusatory, just very matter-of-fact.
Ann, I have never looked at another man since I met my husband, and I’m shattered that he thinks I had an affair. I am hurt and scared that my life is falling apart. I am baffled by his behavior and don’t know what to do. Is it possible that the pregnancy test was wrong? Can you help me? - Heartbroken in Shreveport, La.
Dear Shreveport: Tests are not always 100 percent conclusive. It is possible that your pregnancy test was not accurate. Also, his sperm test results may be flawed. By all means, take your test again, and bring your husband with you. Insist that your husband be tested again, too. Laboratory technicians are not infallible.
After the child is born, a DNA test can be performed on the baby to determine paternity. These tests are almost 100 percent accurate. This will settle the question for all time.
Dear Ann Landers: A while back, you printed a letter from a woman in Sarasota, Fla., who said one of your columns had alerted her to the symptoms of diabetes. She took her 13-year-old son to the doctor, and sure enough, he was diagnosed with the disease.
You then listed the symptoms again, saying to watch for excessive thirst and urination, and tingling and numbness in the hands and feet. The column said that while diabetes is especially likely to occur in overweight, underactive people between 45 and 65, it also can occur in younger, healthier people.
Thanks to that column, I realized that my 13-year-old daughter had some of those symptoms. I made an appointment that very day, and my daughter was diagnosed as diabetic.
I just want to say thank you, Ann. I don’t know how long the diabetes would have gone undetected had I not seen your column. As a result of discovering our daughter’s illness early, she has had no organ damage, and although she will be insulin-dependent, she will be able to live a perfectly normal life. Our whole family thanks you from the bottom of our hearts. - Oregon Mom
Dear Oregon: Thanks for letting me know I helped. That’s what I’m here for. Letters such as yours warm my heart and reassure me that all the effort and energy that goes into writing this column is worth it.
Gem of the Day: No amount of advance planning will ever replace dumb luck. But dumb luck will take you only so far - and then you’d better have something else going for you.