Question:

Hello,

I need some advice. You see, my girlfriend and I have been friends a while. We prayed together and made sure we were the ones for each other before we did anything. Our relationship is definitely God centered. It's so amazing! But we are in a long distance relationship. I live in a different state from her. It gets extremely hard sometimes, but we know God has a plan. We trust in Him and try to live out each day for God. We pray for wisdom and guidance and we really want to do things right.

Here is the deal: Lately, I have been thinking about her past. She has had a sexual past. She has never really told me all of it, just bits a pieces of it. As far as I know, she had a long relationship with her first boyfriend, which ended harshly because he verbally abused her and they drank and partied. She never really told me exactly that they had sex, but I could tell by the way she was avoiding it. Then she dated this guy for a few weeks, but he was clingy. Then she just told me the other day she lived with her third boyfriend for a while. After all that, she gave her life to Christ and completely transformed. Changed her language, doesn't drink, smoke, party, and she gave up dating.

She was on fire for God for about a year before she met me. It is now a year later and we are dating.

The thing is, she is working on being able to express herself and open up to telling me about her sexual past. I can tell she isn't ready. But I constantly think about it -- how she has done all this stuff. I keep envisioning her with these guys and terrible things. I cast it to God, but I keep thinking about it. My past wasn't not as bad, but I know a sin is a sin. I just don't know how to handle this. Do we talk about it? What if she isn't ready yet? I want to support her and love her no matter what.

Deep down, I don't care about her past. She is changed and has a pure heart now, and we didn't know better back before Christ. I just want to stop thinking about it! I love her and I know this is from God. It would be easier if I was there with her, but we are so far away.

Thank you for your time


Answer:

When I hear someone is involved in a long distant relationship, the first question that comes to mind is have you actually met and talked to this person directly -- in person. The Internet is a place where people can pretend far too easily. So I would like to know how well you know her beyond the things she has actually told you.

I'm glad she has changed. Of course the sins she was involved in means she has baggage to overcome. That will affect your relationship, even after you get married, if it comes to that point. In some ways the distance helps because it is forcing her to learn to relate to a guy without sex being involved. (I'm assuming you two are behaving yourselves.)

But it isn't good for you to know the details. It is enough to know that she has had bad relationships and that she has had sex before. The more you know about her past, the more you will either become disgusted with her choices or you'll find yourself competing with these memories. And since memories are not real people anymore, you will always feel like you are less of a man because your imagination will make these guys seem bigger than life.

We have met. We have spent time together and prayed. We sis that before we ever started dating. The thing is, I also have something else. In courtship, you really need time to spend with each other, obviously, before you get engaged. It's about finding out if you are truly compatible. Would it make sense for one or the other to move out to the other place so that you could fellowship and spend time together?

It isn't required. But you do need to spend time together, such as vacations and the like. Moving near helps, but it comes with its own risks: What happens if you don't get along? Then there is an impulse to try to make it continue longer than it should because of the investment. There is also the danger of sexual temptation because you are close and one of you won't be near family and friends.

What isn't allowed is moving in with the other person, or staying with them while visiting. Again, the risks due to temptation is too great.

So we can honestly do this without living in the same city? I imagine you would need more than a week or two at a time to really learn to be around this person. Idk

In this age of communication, it can be done. Mostly it is a matter of how honest you think the other person is being with you. But if you think you aren't getting the whole truth or are unsure you are willing to commit your life to her, then living near each other can settle the matter.