Dear Dr. Bill,
I’m a single mom with a 4-year-old boy. My son has never known his biological father, and so he’s never experienced a male role model in his life.
About 18 months ago, I met a young man at church and we’ve developed strong feelings for one another. The only problem is that this man is rather immature about raising a family. I don’t see him as being a good father-figure for my son. So how do I decide between my own emotional needs for security and love, and what my son needs?
When we become parents, one of our top priorities is caring for our children. The Lord has given us the awesome responsibility to nurture and protect our kids. That means that their needs always come before our own desires.
Your desire for love and security is legitimate, but because you made the decision to bring a child into the world, the well-being of your son is even more important. Also, if your boyfriend is as immature as you say, chances are he won’t make a good marriage partner.
I’d encourage you to consider if he really has the character qualities that God says are important--qualities like patience, kindness, gentleness, and self-control. These characteristics are vital to any successful relationship, particularly marriage.
Ask yourself why you’re attracted this man—he may have charm, a sense of humor, or good looks, but if you marry him and he doesn’t grow up, where will you be 5 years from now? Your son is already at a disadvantage because he is fatherless—I’d encourage you to consider how marrying this guy could negatively impact his life even more.
I pray that you’ll really take the time to determine if this relationship is really God’s best for you and your son.
Thanks for writing Brandy.
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