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by Abigail Van Buren

Pregnant Bride-To-Be Faces Choice Between Two Brothers

DEAR ABBY: When I was younger, I was engaged to a man I'll call "Jake." I was deeply in love with him, only to have my heart broken when he cheated on me, so I broke it off. A short time later, I developed feelings for his brother, "Jed." One thing led to another, and Jed and I are engaged to be married in two months.

When Jake found out I was dating Jed, he grew distant. I figured it was because he was in shock. Recently, he contacted me and invited me to dinner. Thinking it had to do with the wedding plans, I accepted. When we were getting ready to leave, Jake told me he still loved me and had made a terrible mistake. I had had a few drinks, and we ended up having a one-night stand.

I just found out I am pregnant, and I'm not sure if Jake is the father or Jed is. Honestly, I still love Jake, but he can't keep a job, and I don't think he could support me and a baby. What should I do? Should I keep my mouth shut and marry Jed, who has a good job and is faithful? -- BIG MESS IN THE SOUTH

DEAR BIG MESS: You would be doing a terrible disservice to Jed if you marry him while you "honestly" still love his brother. If you do, you will be in for a lifetime of guilt and frustration, and the chances are great that you and Jake won't be able to stay away from each other. While marriage under these circumstances may seem like an attractive solution for you economically, it doesn't take a crystal ball to predict it will be another disaster.

Instead of trying to take the easy way out, straighten your spine, fess up and do the right thing. A paternity test will determine which brother is the father of your child and the one who should support it.

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