For the past four months my girlfriend has been unfaithful. We’ve been together for seventeen years and have three children. She wants to leave us, and we are very hurt by this. We don’t know what else to do about it. All I want is to repair the relationship with her so that we can be a happy family again like we were before.

Dear Friend,

From what you say, your girlfriend wants to abandon the children and leave them with you. That could be because the man in her new relationship doesn’t want to have to deal with children, or because you are the primary caregiver for the children and she believes it would be best for them to stay with you. Either way, we advise you to consult with an attorney to make sure that the welfare of the children is considered to be the most important factor in any future arrangements.

We believe that the best thing for children is to grow up in a home with a mother and a father who are legally committed to one another by marriage. We have no way of knowing why the two of you never made that commitment, nor ever got married, so we assume that you probably had the first child before you were ready. You then likely decided to live together for the child’s sake, and that eventually led to having the other two children. If so, you became a family without ever being fully committed to one another, and she may now want to start over and do things in the right order.

Needless to say, however, it isn’t possible to go back or start over. She has three children who need her and should be her priority, even if she is not committed to you. But since we strongly believe that God intends intimate sexual relationships to be confined to a man and woman who are married to one another, even though we can’t approve of her being with another man, neither can we approve of her living with you unless and until you get married.

We recommend that you begin acting like a man in love. Instead of arguing and accusing, you need to be wooing and winning, as you would if she were someone new. Treat her with love and understanding so that she will be reminded of what made her love you in the past. And care for her and appreciate her so that she will fall in love with you again. Then, when the sparks have turned into a flame, ask her to marry you.

You need the wisdom and strength that God wants to give you. He offers help to all those who follow Him and who try to live according to His plan for their lives. We recommend that you ask Him to forgive your sins and come into your life. That is the only effective way to start over.

We wish you well,