I need some advice on a situation that just recently happened to me. I went to visit my boyfriend on Sunday night. At first we were getting along, laughing and joking. Then I saw a picture of him and his ex-friend, about five of them. I walked toward them and took the pictures. He became angry once I took these pictures and wouldn't give them back. I put them on the bed and when he tried to get them, I stood in front of him. He became so angry that he pushed me into a wall. After he saw that he hurt my arm, he began to apologize for it and continued to say he was sorry over and over again. He told me he would never put his hands on me again. I don't know if this is a warning sign of future violence or is it something that I shouldn't be concerned of.


You should be concerned but in more than just whether your boyfriend has a tendency toward violence.

I want you to first look at how you behaved. You took his personal possessions, his memories of the past, and though you didn't say so I suspect you threatened to destroy them (or at least left him with the impression that he no longer have them). Do you think that was in any way the proper way Christian should have behaved or the way a girl should have behaved toward her boyfriend? "There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword, but the tongue of the wise promotes health" (Proverbs 12:18). What I want you to think long and hard about is whether you really love this young man when you treat him and what is most precious to him so poorly. "Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy ..." (I Corinthians 13:4).

This is not to excuse his behavior. I just need you to understand that you aren't innocent in the matter.

I don't know how old your boyfriend is, but one of the things you need to realize is that young men, especially in their teenage years do not realize how strong they are. God made them to develop strong muscles quickly, yet it takes a while for the brain to stop thinking in terms of childhood strength and readjust to adult strength. This especially happens when a young man is distracted. The brain easily slips into thinking it terms of childhood and I can see him using far more strength than the situation called for.

I'm assuming that this is the first and only example of aggression that you've seen. If that is true, then you need to pay attention. Does he act aggressive toward others, especially those who are weaker than himself? Does he tend to bully? Does he tend to "solve" problems by muscle? If you see a pattern, then you need to break off. He'll be trouble as a husband.

But if this is an isolated incident. If he generally has good control over his temper. If he normally solves problems through reason and persuasion. If he treats you gently, then you need to put it down that you pushed a young man who is still learning self-control too far.