There are 19 questions in this category.
A friend of mine is in love with someone who is using her, brainwashing her and disrespecting her family; but she will not listen to anyone nor will she leave him no matter what. What should I do?
About a year ago, I started talking more with a friend of mine. I met him a few years ago with his family when they came to our city on vacation, and his sister has been one of my best friends for several years. Through our conversations, I have learned a lot about him and I truly feel blessed to have him as part of my life. He is very strong in faith and has helped me grow stronger spiritually. We have become very close friends over the past year. I told my brother how I felt about him. At first, my brother was supportive and asked me simple questions about his career and his family. He told me to keep it as a friendship and not to set any expectations (for a serious commitment). I told him that I really wanted to tell Mom and Dad because I did not want to hide it from them. My brother told me not to tell them because he didn’t feel that they were ready to hear something like that from me, but told me to talk to my father of confession about it. I went to Abouna and explained to him the situation, and he told me that I should tell Mom and Dad. I told my parents that I had become good friends with this young man and that I felt very comfortable with him. “We expected you to marry a doctor.” Before my brother met his fiancée, Mom and Dad were encouraging him to try to get to know one of my friends (with the intention of marriage) who is also currently in medical school. So it was as if it was ok for my brother, who is a pharmacist, to marry a doctor, but not ok for me to get to know someone, who is a pharmacist, with the possibility of marriage in the future. After living on my own for a year, I feel that I have grown more independent. Certainly, I will always need my family, but I don’t think they have realized how much I have grown. I am still treated like a child. Rarely am I ever able to make decisions on my own. When I do make my own decisions, they don’t seem to live up to my family’s expectations. There is always something I have done wrong, or something I could have done better. I have asked them to give me advice about things, but to let me make the final decision and deal with the consequences so that I may learn from my experiences. I understand that they have much more experience than I do, but I find myself doing things simply because they told me to, not because I know why I need to do them (or not do them). I have been talking with Abouna about this issue for a long time. I have also talked to Abouna of my church and a counselor about this in the past. I spoke with the counselor about 3 or 4 years ago. He also spoke with my family, as well as with my parents by themselves. He warned me of many things that would happen to me having been raised in such a protective household. Everything he told me would happen, has happened in these few years. As for this situation with this young man, I told my parents that I had been talking to him daily and that we read the Bible together daily. They strongly objected to both of these things and told me I needed to stop. I have been actively praying and discussing this situation with Abouna, and he keeps telling me that if it is God’s will, it will work out in the end. He has been also talking with his father of confession. Both fathers of confession are supporting us but I do not know how to approach my parents anymore. Even my doctor has expressed concern with my well being because of how my parents treat me, seeing as I am approaching the age of 24. She knows the family very well and is also Mom’s doctor. She keeps telling me there are serious consequences of being raised this way. I am asking for Your Grace’s advice in this situation. Am I wrong for continuing to pursue this relationship? I know I need my parent’s blessings but how do I know if this relationship is not what God wants for me? Mom keeps telling me that this relationship is wrong and isn’t from God, but how am I supposed to know that it’s not from God? I would also like to ask for advice regarding dealing with my family. I really want to be able to talk to them like they are my friends, and I know that’s what they want, too; however, when I do try to talk to them I just seem to get yelled at all the time which is the original reason why I didn’t talk to them when I was younger. Also, is my doctor correct from a medical standpoint?
For the past 6 months I have been in a long distance relationship with a Coptic Orthodox young man. He is 25 I am 23. He is very active in his church and very involved in the deaconate services. When we first started courting, he explained to me that when he was in high school, he lost his virginity. I explained that this is not something that bothered me because it was a mistake in his past and as long as it is not in his present lifestyle and does not affect our relationship, and then we can move past it. He reassured me that it was just in his past and it was a long time ago and that it is not something to worry about. Later down the road in our relationship, he started to joke around sexually with me. At first, I would scold him for it. He would stop for a little, then it would start again. I thought maybe I'm being too uptight, so I just laughed it off and then got used to hearing this sexual way of talking from him. He came to visit me every month since we started dating and more recently inappropriate touching began. The first time I felt so guilty, I called my father of confession and I told him everything. I was ready to end the relationship. My father of confession advised me to speak with him and warn him that if it ever happens again that would be a deal breaker and the end of the relationship. He also gave me spiritual exercises. I told him about what my father of confession said and how I felt and we both agreed that we would stop. We did stop for a few weeks then we began again our same routine. I went out and visited him and we spent the night together in a hotel. Although we did not have intercourse, we came very close to it and did other ungodly things. Again, I felt so, so guilty. The next day, we both agreed we would stop and we even prayed together and asked God to forgive us, but we still sinned the same night and the following day. After I left, we stopped talking in a bad way with each other. I think he is more cautious just because it's Holy Week and the end of lent. I cannot explain to you the overwhelming weight and burden. I have never been this type of girl. This is not who I am, but I fell so hard and with someone who I thought would be a partner with me on my way to Christ. I told him that I need time to think and pray and not to speak to him during Holy Week. Although I really do love him, I feel like we've sinned too much together and I don't know if there is hope for this relationship or if I should continue. I literally feel like I'm separated from Christ and it’s the worst feeling in the world. At the same time, I love the person with whom I committed a sin with and now is the cause of the way I'm feeling. I don’t want to put the blame on him. We are both weak, and we both fell. Are there steps we can take to fix this and get right with God and with each other? Is there is any hope for this relationship? I'm sorry, but I'm just too embarrassed and ashamed to talk to my father of confession and didn't have anywhere else to turn.
God has bought a very special girl in my life. At the moment I am praying to find if she is the one that the Lord has chosen for me. One thing that is bothering me a little bit is that she is two years older then me. Is this enough reason to say that she is not from God?
I am 26 years old and I have a professional degree. I could not have been where I am today had it not been for my parents’ support and assistance. Two years ago, I met a lovely girl. Eventually I began to know her and we spent some nice time together in the youth groups. We also spent some time alone talking further. I learned of her past and that she was in a relationship with another guy who wasn't Egyptian but had been baptized in our church. My parents raised me to have very strict and high standards and my options have always been very narrow. The conditions have always been very strict. I went back home and notified my parents about her and that I intended to get to know her more. I also learned from her various specifics about her previous relationship and that there were physical aspects to that relationship. Whilst I expected, it grieved me as I had always wanted "that clean, untouched, unkissed, soul" that my parents raised me up to find. I cannot speak the same of myself. My parents learned of her past through a few pictures on the internet, of which they did not approve. I have never felt about any girl like I feel about this girl and I see no issue with her and why she is not compatible. I have taken time away from her as advised by bishops and priests and everyone they suggested and tried my best to satisfy them. I cannot go ahead without their blessing. That’s not me. But at the same time, I have always lived my life bowed down to everyone, always pleasing everyone, and never myself. I cannot marry someone I don’t love and I will not live my life forever according to my parents’ way of life. Since then, we have been "friends." For the past 6 months, I have hardly spoken with her. I cannot open my heart to any other girl. I still have feelings for her and I haven’t been so sure or certain about anyone or anything in my life. I don’t know what I will do or where I will go and what will happen. I know if we had the chance that she would be with me and that she still has feelings for me, but she has been shunning herself from me as she knows the whole issue affects me and she is trying to protect both of us. I have not known anyone like her. She makes me so genuinely happy and at peace like no other. I was relaxed. Since then, I have never been the same with my parents as I used to be.
I am a college student living at home and I don't know what to do. Every time I do anything my mom gets mad and I just feel like no one cares about me anymore. If I try to help her or anyone else, she gets mad and says "why did you do it this way?" If she sees me crying she gets very angry because she doesn't think I have anything to cry about. It just seems like nothing matters anymore, no matter what I do, the situation doesn't change. So I give up, but for how long? What can I do?
I am in my mid-twenties and have been with someone for almost 5 years. I am 100% sure that she is the person with whom I want to spend the rest of my life. We have lot in common, we love each other so much, and we pray for this relationship everyday. The problem is her mom doesn't want me, doesn't know me, and had never seen me. She only knew my first name. Her mom wants her to live in another state with her sisters and leave me. I can't live without her nor can without me. I finally went to visit her parents at their work—a family business. They said I am still young and not yet ready for marriage. I felt they liked me and just said later we will see, but first, just get your licenses. I already finished school in this particular trade and I am working toward licensure now. The next day she told me that her parents don't want me still because they think I am not for her and that my education is not enough. She said we shouldn’t talk any more because no matter how hard we fight for it, if her parents are not happy still, she can’t treat her parents like this. She said it's impossible right now that they will say yes, but I still have hope. I don't know if I should. I can't imagine my life without her—too many memories. The only hope I have right now is to get my licenses and work and try again. We really need each other, but I don't know what do. Last night was the last time we talked and I feel like I died alive.
I am nineteen years old and for the past nine months I have been in a relationship with a twenty three year old boy. This relationship started in the most beautiful pure way with pure motives. We told our confession fathers and parents. But as time went by we fell; and I am terrified. I now lie to my parents-who have always loved and provided for me. Worst of all I feel that I've betrayed my Lord in a way that is inexcusable. We fight more often. Torn with vivid memories from the past, I am now questioning my love to him. Seeing the sacrifices and the losses that lie ahead of me because of this relationship, I am not sure if I want to continue in this relationship.
I am seventeen years old and there is a girl my age in church that I really care for. She doesn't even know I have feelings for her. We are just friends and that is it. I know God has everything planned out; but should I DO something at all to help God's plan? I know that this might not even be the person that God has in mind for me; and I fully accept His Will. Please tell me what I'm supposed to do about this person, if anything at all.
I feel like I am ultra-conservative in many things. For instance, I am 100% against dancing, drinking, television, and worldly music. I know a girl who is good, serves in the church, serves people outside of the church, loves everyone, etc. But we both know there are small differences between us. She listens to the radio, songs that are not bad, but songs that are not necessarily Christian either. She is against dancing when it is sensual, but feels that it’s ok when it’s not provocative. She is against drinking when it is for the purpose of getting drunk, but she feels that it is ok, occasionally. In other words, she may be 90% against something while I am 100% against it. Is that important? I'm trying to debate how important that is to me. Please guide me.
I have a relative that just came from overseas, and is very nice. She always tries to help me and stuff, but I find myself feeling annoyed by her. With her being here, I don’t feel like I get enough time to myself and to do my daily prayers since I have to share my room with her and she is always around. I try not to show her that I’m really annoyed by not saying anything, but my facial expression sometimes says it all. What should I do, since I know she’s just trying to be nice and I don’t want to be rude?
I have been interested in a gentleman for a little over a year. He and I are very good friends. It seemed to me for a while that he was expressing interest as well. So, one day I felt compelled to tell him exactly how I was feeling towards him. He pretty much told me he did not feel the same way. Since then I have kept my distance from him just to give myself time to heal. He calls me once in a while and tells me he wants to keep in touch. The more I limit my interactions with him, the more effort he makes to talk to me. I don't know what to do.
I have strong feelings for a particular girl that I have known at work for months. However, I am only 18 years old. I know I'm not financially, educationally, or even physically ready to engage in a serious relationship with this girl, but I really like her and I find myself thinking about her a lot. There is also another problem. This girl has been with several other guys before and she may have done some sinful acts. I am a very religious person and I fear God, but for some reason I don't care what she did in the past. My feelings for this girl are strong, and I am having trouble dealing with them. Am I doing something wrong? What should I do?
I interact with a close group of friends on a day-to-day basis. One of them is a Coptic girl. I try my best to treat her with the most respect, concern, and care. Lately (the past few months), I began to develop strong emotional feelings towards her and at times I think that she could be a potential partner. What brings me down is that at times it doesn't seem like I please her as others. At times I tried to do as others in order to please her, but I feel that in doing so I am being a fake person in essence. What can I do?
I met a guy last year in August and we were just friends for a while up until he told me he had feelings for me and I do too. I am only 18, a freshman in college and he is 19, a sophomore/junior in college. We understand completely that we are both young for anything right now and that we both have school to finish before anything major can happen. I waste too much time talking to him; and as a result my grades went down. I also feel guilty for not having told my parents earlier than that. Is it wrong to have such a relationship even if I try to work hard at school and consult with my confession father?
I met a young lady at a church convention. We began to talk online and on the phone for about 4 months and we both wanted to get to know each other more. I talked to Abouna about it and he said to go to another convention and get to know her better from there. Instead, she and her parents wanted me to visit them in their home because her parents wanted to make sure I was serious. Abouna told me that visiting her parents is a big step and it would mean that the next visit or two would be for an engagement. He told me that unless I was planning on getting engaged soon, then it's wiser to not visit yet. I didn't feel like I knew her well enough to visit and I wasn't ready for an engagement at that time because I still had 2 years of school remaining. When I told her I want to get to know her better through another convention before I would go visit, she and her parents thought it would be best that we don't talk again; we stopped talking for 2 years.
Am I wrong for disagreeing with her on how much she's worried about what people think and how she wants us to go out of our way by going to different churches and not talking at conventions so that people don't think we're in a relationship?
Should I visit or should I ask her to go to another convention?
How do I know if I'm spiritually ready to be in a relationship given some of the thoughts of monasticism that I have?
Any other advice you have for me would be great.
I recently met someone very special, and I made it known to my family that I really have strong feelings for this gentleman. He is 19 years old and I am 20. I don't know if I should pursue someone I don't know if he has the same feelings for me. .I would greatly appreciate it if you could give me advice on what I should do and if it is appropriate to pursue this relation further, especially that my parents are encouraging me. I'm going to pray to ask for guidance from God.
I'm in a dilemma and I can't figure out what the right thing to do is from an ethical stand point. There's an old friend of mine to whom I gave the impression of interest in a long term relationship potentially leading to a marriage commitment. So for several months, we stayed in contact and met often. However, certain circumstances made it impossible for us to be in the same geographical location afterwards and I don't believe in long distance relationships. So I asked that we break up and not stay in touch because that would be too painful to do. The is the second time over a several year period that we tried to get to know each other better but circumstances came in between and did not allow for us to move further ahead. In addition, I also found the way that he sometimes treats others a bit tough and several years ago we verbally hurt each other. Ideally, I would have wanted us to go talk to a counselor together and see whether we can resolve our issues or not. I was hoping that circumstances would allow for us to spend enough time together in the same geographical location until we come to a final decision. However, unfortunately neither condition took place. From an ethical point of view, did I do him wrong? Is asking that we stay apart an injustice that I did to him? Would it be unethical for me to move on to another relationship before I get this one resolved even though the circumstances are out of my hand and even if I want to give it a chance it's beyond my capacity as I don't have much control over the circumstances? I did start getting attached to someone at my workplace. I don't know if that's ethical or unethical to do as most of my circumstances are out of my hand. I look back and feel guilty thinking I wasted his time and then left him alone and now I am moving on to another relationship. What is the right, just, ethical thing to do in such a situation?
Why is it wrong to have a relationship with someone from another religion? Is it the influence? Could Your Grace please explain.
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