My daughter confessed to her boyfriend something that happened two years ago. He has tortured her for a week with hateful emails and telling her she gets what she deserves and their relationship has been a lie. He said she needs to own up to it even though she has begged his forgiveness. He is dragging her on by saying that he has to think about it and for her to return a promise ring he gave her. The confession was a kiss….nothing else. What can she say to him to make him forgive her and move on?
Well, I hope by “move on” you mean for him to move on out of her life, at least for now.
I don’t know the ages involved, but if we are talking about anywhere close to marrying age, then this young man is no where close to ready for marriage if he is responding this way over this issue. (if we’re not talking about marrying age, why are they involved in such a serious, exclusive relationship at too young an age?)
Your daughter cannot say anything to make him forgive her. Forgiveness is a personal, individual choice. If your daughter admitted her wrong, asked for forgiveness and received torment in return, then she is lucky he has responded this way….
Why? Because this young man’s true nature and character has been exposed. Does that mean he will ALWAYS be this way? No, it may simply be immaturity but if his response has been this negative and immature, then for your daughter’s sake, she should put some time and distance between them before she becomes even more emotionally invested.
Luke 6.45 45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.
Or as I like to say “if you squeeze a lemon, you get lemon juice“.
It doesn’t matter how nice you act when things are going your way. You find out what is in someone’s heart whenever pressure, discomfort, inconvenience or heartache is applied to them.
If she was dating this current young man two years ago when “the kiss” happened then I would venture a guess that this is not the first time his childishness has appeared (in two years you’ve never seen signs of this deep immaturity?). If he treats her this way after two years of dating, then that is all the more reason to move on from the relationship.
If she was NOT dating this current boy at the time of “the kiss”, then it’s simply none of his business to begin with. Either way, his behavior is a sign of REAL problems with the relationship and with his maturity level.
My advice? She should simply say “I’m sorry” and “goodbye”. As a parent, you can use this a learning opportunity for both you. She needs to learn about these types of indicators concerning the character of boy she might end up marrying; and you learn to see things like this as a time to instill spiritual lessons and maturity in her, rather than simply how to put a band-aid on a dating relationship.
Now, to what I REALLY want to say about this question…. this type of situation exposes why the modern routine of “dating” is so absurdly destructive (in general). You have young men and women investing themselves in relationships as if they were married, often including sex.
They go through this series, “emotional investment, heartache and breakup”, draining their emotional capacity, making them suspicious, self-protective and cynical, robbing themselves of what should be rightfully saved for a relationship WITH ONE PERSON, for a lifetime via marriage.
This is where the idea of courting SHOULD come into play. When a young adult is ready to consider marriage, they are “courted” through a series of “light” get-to-know-you relationships that never progress to physicality or deep emotional investment. As well, the parents help the young and inexperienced to determine if the suitor has the desired qualities of being a life-long, faithful mate. Only when a suitor has been identified as “marrying material” by all involved, should a careful and guarded relationship begin.
I don’t have time to here to go through the whole “courtship” thing, but if you’re interested there are many Christian sites where you will find more about it.
The amount of heartache and emotional damage that could be avoided is beyond estimation. The current routine of “dating” typically has one goal: how fast can the physical relationship be escalated by the boy, and how quickly can they “fall in love” for the girl.
Parents, know this, and learn it well: BOYS PLAY AROUND AT LOVE TO GET SEX, AND GIRLS PLAY AROUND AT SEX TO GET LOVE.
Every parent thinks their kid is the exception to this rule… and yours may well be BUT DON’T ASSUME IT OR TAKE IT FOR GRANTED. To ignore this truth is to do so at your own peril.
Adolescents are VERY sexual and physical today; Christian youth groups are TYPICALLY not much different. I visit many churches and the youth groups are very comparable to the world in their dress and the amount of physical affection they display to each other. Don’t be naive… this is not simple affection and caring for each other. This immodesty in dress, and overt physical contact (full body hugs, arms around each other, playful kissing etc) is an indication of inflamed sexuality under the surface that is fueled and stirred up by an out of control sexual culture.
Christian kids and families are not immune to it. They are BOMBARDED constantly with the message that “sex is okay, your parents are trying to keep you from having fun”.
These long term and cyclical “dating” relationships are fraught with danger and pitfalls. I know that for most, it will be virtually impossible to convince your young adult children NOT to date, but at least you can go about advising and teaching your kids proactively, instead of wading aimlessly through this never-ending parade of pretend marriages that kids indulge in today.
Now, for those of you who simply think it’s easy for me to say this because my kids never dated, or had problems, guess again. Even though I did everything I could do to convince my kids of the dangers of “dating”, my grown children have all chosen this route with their share of heartache to prove my point.
So I speak from experience, but as a realist knowing that most kids are going to do it anyway. You can still plant the seeds, teach them and be on spiritual alert for them.