About a year ago I was in a relationship with a girl and had plans to marry her, but it all fell apart. I was so hurt that till this very day I’m afraid to fall in love again, which is why I’m still single.

The thing is that now I’m only attracted to young girls from twelve to sixteen years old. I know I shouldn’t fall in love with girls that are so young, but I’m in love with one who is thirteen, while I am thirty-three, and yet I love her even now that I feel like she doesn’t love me.

Dear Friend,

We are very glad that you decided to ask us about this. As you say, you shouldn’t fall in love with teenage girls, so you are already aware that your desires are not in line with what you know is morally right.

It is almost certain that your unfortunate romantic experience and the resulting anxiety have caused you to become emotionally weak. In your weakened condition, you have come to think that a low-risk way to have a romantic relationship, without the danger of being hurt again, is to turn your attention to young girls. They are naive and vulnerable, so they seem easier and “safer” to pursue. Their brains are not fully developed, so they frequently make unwise decisions. Your emotions have led you to see these qualities as desirable. Your thoughts are irrational, and irrational thoughts could lead to irrational actions. But in this case those actions would be in conflict with what you know is right.

Your emotions are playing tricks on you. They are threatening to dominate your logic and your conscience. We should never, ever, ever let our emotions take the lead in decision-making! They simply cannot be trusted. Emotions cause people to make horrible decisions every day. Anger, bitterness, fear, and loneliness can very quickly lead to ruined lives when those emotions take control of decision-making.

You need to seek professional help to save yourself from the tyranny of your emotions. To say that you are in love with a thirteen-year-old is to admit that you are in danger of making some really disastrous choices. People who think that they are in love can do really stupid things. Please get help before it is too late.

With the right kind of help, you can overcome your fear of women your age and explore the true meaning of love. You will find that love is much more than physical attraction and infatuation, and you will discover that trust, understanding, friendship, shared goals, and compatible values are the qualities that matter in a relationship between equals.

It won’t be easy, but you have a Heavenly Father who wants to help you. He loved you so much that he was willing to sacrifice His only Son so that you could be part of His family. Ask Him to forgive your sins so that you can begin the most important relationship of your life. With God’s guidance and daily support, you can work toward what you really want: companionship and happiness.

We wish you the best,