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WHEN Emily Griffiths went into premature labour, her husband James was nowhere to be seen.
The mum, now 27, didn't manage to get hold of James until their son Ethan had been whisked off to intensive care – and then he dropped another bombshell.
Emily, from Ely, Cambridgeshire, was horrified to hear James had been sleeping with another woman as she gave birth to their son.
Speaking exclusively to Fabulous Digital, she tells her story…
I met James when I was 16 and working in my first job at McDonald's. He was my manager, 10 years my senior.
I was 16 and loved the work, but James was the main reason I couldn't wait to start each day.
Funny and charming, James was exactly my type and I knew I liked him as more than just a friend.
So when he asked me out, I was over the moon. Soon, we were inseparable and when James told me he loved me within a few weeks of us dating, I fell head over heels.
Six blissful years later, in March 2015, we tied the knot and I’d never been happier.
The ceremony was perfect and I couldn't wait to plan for the future with my new husband.
James was already an amazing stepdad to my eldest son and, keen to have a baby of his own, we excitedly planned to start a family together.
I’d told him to keep an eye on his phone but now, I was about to give birth prematurely and my baby’s dad was nowhere to be seen
Just a month after our wedding, I started to feel unwell. "I couldn't be," I thought, as I picked up a test from the chemist.
I was over the moon when the test
confirmed I was pregnant. It felt like everything was working out
"You're going to be a dad," I told James excitedly when I returned home. Ecstatic, he couldn’t stop smiling. "I can't wait," he grinned.
I thought we finally had everything we ever wanted, but then in August, when I was five months pregnant, James dropped a bombshell.
"I don’t know if I want this," he admitted sheepishly.
"What do you mean?" I begged, heartbroken after James confessed he was having second thoughts about the wedding, the baby… about me.
His confession came out of nowhere and newly married, with a baby on the way, I was distraught. We agreed to take some time apart and moved out to separate homes.
It was heartbreaking, but within a month, James did a U-turn and decided he wanted to return home and give our relationship a go.
"I miss you," he sobbed as he begged for me back. I loved James with all my heart, but I hesitated.
I felt torn. I was desperate to save our marriage, but I didn’t want to get hurt again.
Cradling my burgeoning bump, I decided the right thing to do was to reunite our family.
"I want to take things slowly though," I told James.
So we decided to remain living apart until the baby was born, while we got our relationship back on track.
It wasn’t easy but time and space was what we needed and slowly, things slotted back into place.
I’m so sorry… I was with another woman," he confessed. I was lying in my hospital bed – while James told me he was bedding another bird
When I waved James off on a trip to visit friends in Norwich in December 2015, I felt happy and optimistic for our future.
"Don’t forget to check your phone!" I reminded him. Our baby wasn’t due for another six weeks, but he knew he had to be on standby. "I won’t," he grinned, kissing me goodbye.
James had been so excited about his final boys’ trip before the baby was born and I was looking forward to putting my feet up.
But just days later, at 34 weeks pregnant, I started to feel unwell. "I think the baby’s coming," I told my mum over the phone, panicking something wasn’t right.
Terrified, I was rushed to hospital, where doctors insisted they needed to deliver my baby – now.
"James, I’m in labour! The baby’s coming!" I yelled to his answering machine as I was rushed onto the delivery ward.
I’d told him to keep an eye on his phone but now, I was about to give birth prematurely and my baby's dad was nowhere to be seen.
My mum desperately tried to ring James too, but his phone was off.Feeling devastated, I gave birth to our son Ethan alone.
Ethan was rushed to the NICU for treatment before I could even hold him and James still hadn't appeared.
It was a terrifying time. I needed my husband now more than ever.
I rang him again and, finally, James answered. "You're a daddy," I spat down the phone.
"I’m so sorry… I was with another woman," he confessed. The phone went limp in my hand.
I was lying in my hospital bed – while James told me he was bedding another bird.
I’d been going through a traumatic delivery, our son was fighting for his life. How could he?
"I’m heading over now," he whispered before hanging up.
My heart broke but, despite everything, I couldn’t deny James the chance to meet his son.
Yeah we were sort of dating but we weren’t officially together. We were trying to work things out, this is when she found out.
But yeah I do feel bad because I missed the birth of my son. No (Emily didn’t know about the other woman).
When we decided to give our relationship a go and get married it spoilt the friendship we had, and then us splitting kind of ruined all that, like we were best friends and then getting married kind of took that away.
When she found out what I’d done, she didn’t want to be friends. It’s only now we’re back on talking terms.
If we hadn’t have got married we wouldn’t have had our son so I don’t regret it. Yeah (I do regret how she found out about me cheating). I had the opportunity to tell her and I was going to tell her and she kind of found out before I got a chance to, because the labour came and everything.
I kinda regret the decision of what I did, because that girl isn’t in my life now and I kind of ruined things. Me and Emily could have worked things out and I’d see my son everyday instead of every other week.
When he finally arrived at the neonatal ward, his eyes filled with tears.
"I’m so sorry," he sobbed, stroking the downy tufts of hair on our baby boy’s head. "Please give me another chance."
James’ betrayal was almost too much to bear but Ethan needed his mummy and daddy more than ever, so reluctantly I agreed to take James back.
We visited Ethan in hospital every day and then finally, two weeks after he’d been born, we brought him home together.
We were united by mutual love for our little boy, but I struggled to get over James' affair.
I couldn’t just forgive and forget and although our relationship limped along for just over a year we finally split for good in February 2017.
Now, we’re civil for Ethan’s sake but I can never forgive James. Every mother remembers the agony of labour, but James made sure I’ll never forget mine.
We previously reported on a bloke who was exposed as a cheat by ‘happy families’ pic with another woman on Christmas Day – then he beat her up.
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