I am thirty-five years old and single. I met a man who was recently separated from his wife. According to him, he was treated badly in the marriage… but the week that I met him, I overheard him asking another girl for her phone number. He asked me to forgive him, but not long afterward he gave a rose to another girl. I told him that I didn’t want to see him anymore, and to not call me again, but he did anyway and I ended up giving in again and forgiving him.

I reflected on my life in the light of the message you wrote about the dog that keeps returning to his vomit (Case 83)…. I feel confused, since my life is passing quickly and I haven’t gotten anywhere in my love life: always breakups and never true love.

Dear Friend,

Knowing what is right and doing what is right are two completely different things. You already know what is right because you broke up with the guy once, but then you were weak and he manipulated you into taking him back.

Since you asked for our advice, let’s consider the many reasons why this guy is wrong for you. First of all, he is married to someone else. Separated does not mean divorced. Separated does not mean single. Separated means married! It doesn’t matter what his story is of how his wife mistreated him. It doesn’t matter how much he says he cares for you. He is married! You should have dropped him like a hot potato the moment you found out that he was still married. Going out with a separated person is contributing to the breakup of his marriage, no matter how many times he tells you that the marriage is over.

The time that you have spent with this man has been wasted. Who knows if during this same time period you might have met a great guy who would have been perfect for you? But you’ll never know, and that time is gone forever.

This guy showed his disrespect for you when he asked for the one girl’s phone number and when he gave the rose to the other girl. Don’t you realize that if he cared enough for you, he would not have done those things, and that if those girls had acted interested in him, he probably would have left you completely? He is a cheater and a liar, and you deserve better than that.

Many women your age begin to think that they will never find Mr. Right, so they slowly begin to lower their standards to accept whatever male attention that comes their way. They desperately want to believe that the guy really loves them, so they forgive him over and over. But instead of changing, this type of guy usually cheats throughout his whole life, leaving the woman more miserable than she would have been alone.

There is Someone who is looking out for you and whom you can trust with your future. The Bible says that God has a plan for each of us, and wants to give us hope for our future.(1) Instead of looking back with regret, and forward with dread, turn all that over to God and let him guide you day by day. Find a way to share your love with needy children, the poor, the sick, or the elderly. When you focus on others, you will find fulfillment.

We wish you well,

1 Jer 29:11