Dear Pastor
August 6, 2004
Former tutor tells me he loves me

Dear Pastor,

Thank you for all the good work you usually do.
Pastor, I need your advice on a situation I am faced with.
There is this man that once tutored me when I was in school. I respect him a lot and owe him much for my success.{{more}}
I am now out of school and work, and recently he told me that he was attracted to me. He told me that he felt that way even while I was in school but out of principle he did not tell me.
I recently turned 20, and now he believes it was time to let me know how he feels.
Pastor, I do like him, he is only about ten years older than me, and I am ok with it.
The thing is I am afraid of what my family may think and say. I do not want them to think that I was involved with him all the time.
I do not want him to be accused of betraying their trust or any thing like that.
How should I handle it?

Need Advice

Dear Need Advice,

I understand your concerns but you might be putting a bit too much worry into the situation. I don’t know what kind of relationship you and your parents have but unless you have given them reason to doubt your honesty before or they are out of this world suspicious then there is no reason why they should not believe you.
Your situation is an interesting one because it is always very difficult to change the nature of a relationship. Based on what you said the young man handled his feelings quite well and maintained solid integrity. That does not mean that you should start a relationship blindly but at least I think he has gained some points for that.
Time and wisdom on your part, along with the counsel of your parents and loved ones will determine the prospect of a future. I do not believe that the age factor is an issue at all.
It reminds me of someone who taught me in Sunday school while I was fifteen years old. She was about twenty at the time. About six years later she admitted that as I got older and entered the ministry she did start to see me differently but dared not say any thing, after all “I taught you in Sunday school” she told me. I found it very funny at the time. On a slightly different note though I do believe that we must have proper training for young teachers who are being placed into schools, sometimes teaching children only three or so years younger than them. They are sometimes confronted with various romantic tensions and it isn’t strange to hear of relationships or compromising situations at the least. They must be properly guided on the rules of integrity as a teacher.
As for you I think you should tell your parents how you feel, DON’T LET THEM FIND OUT…. YOU TELL THEM. Trust your relationship with them, and in the end if this relationship is to be pursued it will be. Do it the right way, secrecy will do no good. If this young man respects your family then let him be a man, face the million and one questions and doubts, which is what a man will do.