I commend your site, it really gives people a lot of spiritual help. Thanks!
This just happened three days ago. A friend of mine asked to meet me at school to hand me a souvenir from a place he went with his family. We did meet, and after thanking him for his gift he walked me just out of school. We did have a little chat, and when we reached outside of the school, we bid each other goodbye.
Later on he sent me a text message about his true intention: that he would really have liked to walk with me longer, perhaps until I reached the train I ride home. But then I remembered what my Mom and Dad said that I mustn't walk with guys until I finished my studies.†So then I told him no, but that it's okay if we talk. He asked again if he can walk with me next time.
I didn't know what to say then, but because I remembered what my parents said, I have to deny the offer. Later on I kept wondering if I did the right thing. I even asked my Mom about it, and she answered, "Of course you did the right thing. Why do you want to apologize to him for rejecting his offer? If that's the case then he might think that you are wanting him."
I said no more after that. But somehow in the back of my mind, I still wonder if I am hurting a person's feelings. Perhaps I am just confused about what to do if something comes up.
Now I turn here for spiritual help.† I am in my last year in college. My parents are telling me not to go out with boys until I graduate or when I have a job.
Is it best for me what my parents are asking me to do? I mean, I know I should obey my parents, but somehow I feel sorry for the guy. This isn't the first time actually, but the other cases are almost the same, only with different guys. Did I do the right thing denying guys going out with me for the sake of obedience to my parents?
From your writing style I know you are from another country, but you didn't mention which one. In this particular instance it is important because I don't know what cultural significance is placed on a boy walking a girl home. It is clear that it means more than the simple action that takes place.
There are several things I would like you to consider. If there is a boy whom you think you might be interested in getting to know better after you finish college, there is no harm stating the truth. "I like you and I would enjoy having your company, but I promised my parents I would not walk with a man until I finish my education. I keep my word and honor my parent's request. But if you would like to talk a while after school, I would enjoy it." The last you can replace with whatever is an acceptable alternative. This way the boy isn't thinking that he is the reason you don't want to walk with him. If he is an honorable boy, he will see you within the boundaries you establish. If he is a dishonorable boy, he will be constantly pushing you to break your word. This will tell you a lot about his nature and help you decide if you want to continue seeing him.
Second, you express concern that you might have hurt another person's feelings. We should be concerned about others, "Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others" (Philippians 2:3-4). However, there is an assumption made that what the other person is asking of you is proper. If you were rude in turning down his request, then an apology is owed for the rudeness, not the turning down. You don't owe people something simply because they request it. When someone asks you for something, then they are also leaving the decision in your hands. Your mother is right in this, you should not feel the need to apologize for your choice.
Besides, if walking with a boy means you are interested in him, then walking with a boy because you feel sorry for him is a poor reason for being interested in a boy. Walking with someone whom you have no interest, but you do so because you hate to say "no," is deceitful. It gives a boy hope when there really isn't any hope.
While you are in your parents' home and they are supporting you, you owe them honor and obedience so long as what they ask of you is not wrong. There is nothing wrong with their request that you put off interest in boys until you finish your education. However, you can also use this to your benefit. If a boy is interested in you and you think there might be a possibility, tell him about your agreement with your parents. But ask him to talk to your father and see if he would be willing to make an exception in his case. Also talk to your parents and tell them that you are interested in getting to know this boy better and possibly date him after you are done with college, but you would like to have their opinions about the boy first.
If this is a dishonorable boy who is only looking for an easy girl, he won't bother with the extra effort. If he is an honorable boy who is seriously interested in you, then he will make the effort. Again, whether he wants to break the rules or wants to work within the rules will tell you a lot about his character.
Thanks for the reply. I'm so sorry I forgot to mention what country am I from. I am from the Philippines.†
Perhaps the reason why there is something more than a simple action of taking a girl home is that most people view it that the two people are already in a relationship, which is not always the case, of course. †
Oh no, what I am doing then is deceit because I am feeling sorry for him than rather telling him the truth. I didn't see it that way. My parents taught me to make†a good†excuse so that I can "escape" being with a guy. If not they said I must directly tell him the truth, which I think is better.
Well in the end the guy told me that I might be irritated by him because of his presence, such as talking with me most of the time over the phone. (This is not†a literal translation, but he said that he likes nagging or teasing†other people. It is not a hobby, but he told me he is like that even to his friends. Could it be cultural that people here like to nag? I hope I am making sense.) I then told him not to think such things and that I am happy to have a new friend. He replied the same thing, but he was thinking of being more than friends. Fortunately he realized that we don't know†much about each other so he was looking forward to us becoming better friends.†
So if I am to please God and my parents, I need to be truthful and honest? Is the opposite of deceit, truth? Is truth and honesty the same?
Truth is what is always right. "Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth" (John 17:17). It is fixed and does not change. Honesty is expressing the truth. Deceit is hiding the truth or telling a falsehood. So truth and falsehood are opposites and honesty and deceitfulness are opposites.
While giving an excuse for not walking with a boy is not wrong in itself, it is wrong when you use a lie for the excuse. You should always be honest. You should also be kind to other people. There are some people who will use truth as a club and excuse their behavior by saying "I was only telling him the truth!" There are kind and unkind ways the same truth could be told.
The boy's statement that he wants to be more than friends tells me that he is eager to rush things. Your parent's advice is good because it slows things down to a proper pace. I am somewhat familiar with the Filipino culture. I have a sister-in-law from the northern part of the Philippines.
Nagging is probably not the proper word that you want. Nagging means saying the same thing repeatedly until it gets annoying. Are you saying he likes to talk a lot, to the point of making a pest of himself? No that is not a cultural thing, it is a typical human characteristic across all cultures.
I still recommend putting this boy to the test. Ask him to met and talk with your parents first. If they approve, then you will consider walking with him. If not, he must wait until you finish school so you can keep your word. How he reacts will tell you a lot about the type of person he is. I assume that you are both in your early twenties anyway and in your society you typically don't marry until your late twenties unless your parents approve. Therefore, there is no rush in developing this relationship.