Almost two years ago I started having sex with my boyfriend. Now I am pregnant, and even though before this happened my boyfriend spoke with my mom about us getting married, now he comes up with any excuse he can to avoid the subject.

My family keeps asking me for a wedding date, and I don’t have any idea how to answer them.

I am despondent. I would like to leave him, but I love him and I believe he loves me, in spite of his attitude. But I feel that he is disrespecting me and doesn’t value me enough to assert himself and marry me. I don’t bring up the subject of marriage so we won’t end up arguing. What should I do?

Dear Friend,

Your heart tells you one thing, while your brain tells you something different. Which one should you trust? This is the question that confuses many people, so much so that they ultimately choose the wrong option. Then they write to us asking how to get out of the impossible situation that they themselves have created.

Fortunately, however, you are asking your question before the situation has become impossible. That is a very good first step toward planning for a better future. Of course, we know you believe you are already in a situation that has no positive possibilities for the future. Nonetheless, you still actually have some good options.

Your boyfriend said he loved you and even talked about marriage, but has obviously now changed his mind. Get away from him as fast as you can! To marry him now, or stay with him without being married, is the worst thing you could do. It would set you up for a future where he would leave you at home with a baby while he went out with his friends, and ultimately he would have a relationship with another woman. Then he would have other children with her, and you would be left in a truly impossible situation. He would justify his behavior telling people that you had “trapped” him into marrying you.

To have a happy future, you need a man who wants desperately to marry you. This man will not just talk about loving you; he will do something about it. He will cherish you and the child you are about to have. You will not need to make excuses to your family about this man. Nor will you have to defend him to yourself and to your friends.

The first step is hard enough: to completely break up with your boyfriend. But the next step is even harder. Are you prepared to take care of your baby alone? Do you have a job that will support both of you? Do you have a good option for childcare? If the answers to these questions is no, then we suggest you make the most loving choice that a mother in your circumstances can make, and put your baby up for adoption. There are thousands of childless couples who are praying every day for a baby. They can give your child all the things you might not be able to give, most importantly, a mommy and daddy who love each other and who both desperately want a baby.

The Bible teaches us not to have sexual relations before we are in a committed marriage relationship. God didn’t make up this rule because He is some kind of cosmic killjoy. On the contrary, He made this rule to save women like you and babies like yours from a bleak future with no husband and father in their lives. Regardless of whatever other choices you make, promise yourself to never have sex again until it is with a man who is your loving husband. You will avoid unfathomable misery for yourself in the future if you manage to keep that one promise.

We wish you well,

Linda and Charles