His mouth became so dry that he was unable to speak when the doctor conveyed the news. How could someone tell him that his sons weren't his when they were his entire world?
The doctor's results, however, barely brushed the surface. He had been parenting another man's kids. And why did she allow him to live in deception for so long?
The Life Of His Dreams
Richard Mason had everything he ever wanted in life. He became a billionaire in the UK because of the highly popular pricing comparison website MoneySupermarket.com.
He did not only have a successful business but was in love as well. He was lucky enough to meet his soulmate. She was perfect, or that’s what he believed.
After marrying Kate, Richard and Kate began planning a family that would eventually include three children. Nonetheless, every family has skeletons in the closet, and Richard and Kate's weren't any different.
Richard's world would be upended by what appeared to be a picture-perfect family life.
As the years went by, Richard and Kate developed marital problems. The pair grew distant, and it became painfully obvious that they weren’t good for each other anymore.
They explained the impending divorce to their sons Will and the twins, Ed and Joel, in 2008 by sitting them down.
Richard didn’t regret marrying Kate. They shared some special moments together, and she was the reason why he had three beautiful sons.
To tear him away from his responsibilities as a father would have taken wild horses. Either that or the doctor delivering some devastating news.
The couple separated quite amicably. However, as soon as the lawyers got involved, the situation deteriorated.
The couple fought in court about money especially, and eventually, Kate received $5 million of Richard’s estate. The court also ruled that Richard was responsible for paying for the boys’ private school education. But there was more.
His Main Concern
"Kate hounded me for years," Richard recalled. "She wanted me to pay more.” However, the welfare of his children was his top priority.
He never wanted his children to go without, so he put up with it. However, there was something Kate had been hiding from him that would fundamentally alter his perception of the situation.
A Life-Changing Visit
The tension between him and Kate eventually subsided. Even though the divorce still hurt a little, the conflict was resolved.
Richard, at least, believed that. Up until the day he booked a routine checkup with his doctor, over ten years after the divorce, which would ultimately change his life.
Opening Old Wounds
He had no idea what he would learn when he entered the doctor's office that day, and it completely shocked him.
What the doctor said came as a complete surprise to him, considering he had believed the conflict between himself and Kate had long been resolved.
Richard anticipated hearing advice to control his cholesterol and possibly cut back on booze. But the doctor's examinations had produced a much graver diagnosis.
Richard was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. But before the father-of-three could process the already agonizing information, the doctor gave him another shocking piece of information that would have him in tears.
Receiving the news that he would have to live with a debilitating disease had knocked Richard for a loop. For a few minutes, all he could do was stare at the floor, trying to come to terms with the news.
Cystic Fibrosis causes regular lung infections and gets worse over time, reducing the patient's capacity to breathe. How was he going to tell his new wife? But that wasn’t all.
Richard's sister had succumbed to the genetic disease several years earlier, so the worried father's mind quickly flashed to the danger his children could be in of inheriting the condition.
But the next piece of news the doctor had to reveal would set his mind at ease about that - before opening up another can of worms.
Much to Richard's relief, the doctor assured him there was no way he could have passed the disease on to his sons.
But the reason why that was the case would be more devastating to Richard than the diagnosis itself. Understanding this would be hard for him to swallow, the doctor took a deep breath before explaining why genetic transference of the disease simply couldn't have happened.
Ray Of Hope
Having cystic fibrosis meant that Richard was infertile. When the doctor mentioned that particular detail to him, Richard’s head started spinning. How could that be possible?
This would be very difficult news for anyone to hear, but for the father of three, he couldn't quite understand how this could be. He had three children, for crying out loud!
Richard suddenly realized that this could be a misdiagnosis. How could he have a disease that meant he would never have been able to have children if he'd fathered three sons?
But the doctor dashed his fleeting hope with a sympathetic shake of the head. Then, he suggested something that instantly froze Richard’s blood inside his veins.