I am thirty-eight and have never married, but I have three children with two different women: with the first woman, a fifteen-year-old daughter, and with the current woman, two children who are six and eight years old. I get along better with the first woman than with the second. Deep down inside I’m afraid I know that the second woman is not good for me. I stay with her because of the children. But I fear for them for the bad example their mom could be to them…. My life is at a standstill with her, but I can’t abandon my younger children the way I did my older daughter.

I read the Bible, and I can’t find any solution there for my case. Should I leave the current woman and marry the previous one? Should I marry the current one? Or should I remain alone [without marrying either one of them]?

Dear Friend,

We are pleased to hear that you have been searching for answers in the Bible. We believe that the Bible is like God’s letter to us, a letter that contains a variety of different types of messages from Him.

For example, there are historical accounts of what happened to the earliest humans. When we read their stories, we can learn lessons that will help keep us from making the same mistakes that they made. Some stories give us heroes to look up to, and other stories highlight villains with evil motives and destructive actions.

There are also poems, songs, and prayers that were written to help us understand that the early humans had some of the same thoughts and feelings that we do. In fact, some of the recorded prayers reveal that even the followers of God would get angry at Him and question His ways. And there are teachings that were recorded to help us know what kind of people we should be. These teachings, along with all the other types of messages, make up God’s letter to us.

In His letter God makes it very clear that we are to reserve physical intimacy for the marriage relationship. Your situation proves that you did not follow God’s standard, but now you want to know how you can correct your mistakes.

Fortunately, God loves you and is always ready to forgive anyone who is truly sorry. Your first step should be to pray and ask for His forgiveness.

If you had children with only one woman, it would be easy to know that you should marry that woman, determine to love her, and do your best to make a supportive and peaceful home for the children. However, because you have two different sets of children and you are married to neither woman, only God can show you what to do. Once you have asked for forgiveness and have begun to follow Him, you can pray and expect Him to lead you.

No matter if or when you marry, it is critically important to maintain close and supportive relationships with all your children. Because you are not married, your children should be your first responsibility. Show them the right example by reserving romantic intimacy only for your wife, if you marry, or by remaining celibate, if you choose not to marry.

We wish you the best, given your present circumstances,