The Boys' Growing Up in the Lord

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Question

Hi there! I saw your web site and I like it. There is a lot of stuff that I found informative. I'm a Christian, I've been close to God for a good while, I'm 15 years old, and was wondering something.

My girlfriend and I had sex. She's on birth control and we used protection, but the thing is her period's late. She says she usually gets it every 25-26 days, but now it's been over 40 days. This was a one time thing, I know what I did wrong, and we agreed not to anymore. I have avoided doing things that'll make it hard to resist, such as sleepovers.

I really really don't want her to be pregnant. I prayed that she isn't. She took two tests and they both came back negative. Should this be my answer that she's not? I just don't understand why she's so 'late' when she says never in her life she's been this late.


Answer

I know you're trying to avoid a lecture by saying you know you did wrong, but I'm going to give you one anyway because there is an inconsistency in your note.

Jesus said, "If you love Me, keep My commandments" (John 14:15). You claim to be a Christian and close to God, but you also describe yourself purposely sinning. You have a girlfriend who is on birth control, that means she is preplanning the possibility of having sex and she doesn't want children if it does happen. A young woman who doesn't plan on having sex typically doesn't bother with birth control because of the expense and inconvenience. You also mentioned you used protection and by that I assume you used a condom. Again, that indicates pre-planning. Then there is the hint that you had been pushing the envelope for a while since you said you stopped doing sleepovers -- that implies you had been doing them.

Do you see how you are claiming one thing, but your actions tell me something else entirely? "You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them" (Matthew 7:16-20). What Jesus says is though you can't read a person's mind, you can tell by the way they behave what sort of person they are on the inside.

I sincerely hope that you have repented of your sins. I'm hoping this isn't a case of being sorry that you might have been caught, but a true godly sorrow from knowing you disappointed the Lord God. "For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death. For observe this very thing, that you sorrowed in a godly manner: What diligence it produced in you, what clearing of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what vehement desire, what zeal, what vindication! In all things you proved yourselves to be clear in this matter" (II Corinthians 7:10-11).

You didn't mention the age of your girlfriend, but it isn't unusual for a young woman's periods to be irregular. The use of birth control pills will make it more steady, but if she is using birth control implants or shots, then it is still within the realm of possibility for her to miss a cycle once in a while. Generally, a pregnancy test is reliable after the next period is missed. Given two negatives after 40 days, she isn't likely to be pregnant. Probably in the next 10 to 15 she'll have her next period which will be heavier than usual. There is only a 1% chance that a woman with a negative pregnancy test a week when her period should have happened is pregnant. Therefore, you cannot completely rule it out, but pregnancy isn't likely the cause of her missed period.

Now let's talk about reality. If you don't want your girlfriend pregnant, then you have to quit playing with sex. "Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his clothes not be burned? Can one walk on hot coals, and his feet not be seared? So is he who goes in to his neighbor's wife; whoever touches her shall not be innocent" (Proverbs 6:27-29). The natural result of sex is children -- not every time, but that what it is designed to produce. Even the fooling round before actually putting your penis into her can lead to pregnancy. So stop being Satan's toy. Keep your pants on and treat your girlfriend with respect and give honor to Christ when you wear the name Christian. "But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints" (Ephesians 5:3).

I know. I've been getting these lectures too.

And I repent everyday, during the day, whenever I think about it. She claims her period has never been this late. It usually comes on average of 25 days, but she took another test on Friday and it still said negative.

I'm glad that you've changed your mind and your behavior concerning your sin. So let's handle some practical issues. The source of fears is the unknown and since you don't know what is happening at the moment, you are in a panic. Either your girlfriend is pregnant or she isn't. Panicking over it won't change what is.

Since the tests are coming back negative, the probability is that she isn't. As I said before, it isn't unusual for a girl to miss a period once in a while. If it gets to 56 days (two missed periods in a row), I want you to encourage her to call her gynecologist. She should tell them that she missed her period twice, that there is a remote chance she might have gotten pregnant, but that she has had three negative test results. They might tell her to wait one more month or they might have her come it anyway. It is a cause of concern when a woman misses her period three times in a row, it usually indicates something is wrong, not necessarily pregnancy.

I know it is hard on you at the moment, but this is something you have to wait to resolve itself. Then when the direction is clear you can focus on what you need to do next.

Today is day 66 that she's gone without her period. Almost a week ago, she figured she had finally gotten it because there was blood leaking from her, but the next day there was nothing. Then about two days later the same thing happened. She got two more tests, a blood test that came back negative and then, two days ago, she took a home pregnancy test that said negative. So that makes it five negative tests. 

Each day i've been praying that she isn't pregnant, and repenting. I feel that I've gotten my answer, she isn't pregnant, despite the situation going on right now with her period.

I take it that if she had a blood test then she saw her doctor. If not, it is important for her to go. It is not that I'm unsympathetic to your lack of certainty, but at the moment the more important thing is her health. There are numerous causes of a lack of a menstrual cycle, from dieting too much, to working out too much, to a serious disease. Strangely, even the stress of concern that she might be pregnant can knock her cycle off. She will need a doctor to help sort it out.

I wish I could say with absolute certainty that your girlfriend isn't pregnant, but no one can at the moment. A doctor could say for certain, though after a few tests. The problem is that all the tests you've used so far don't say they are 100% accurate. They get very close, but there is always the unusual case that becomes the exception to the rule. However, given all of that I think you are correct in assuming that she isn't pregnant and that her problem lies elsewhere.

I know your are sorry over what you have done. I'm glad in a way because it shows that you have accepted responsibility. Now I have a question for you: How are you going to demonstrate your change? What are you going to differently from here on out? "Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner, that you might suffer loss from us in nothing. For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death. For observe this very thing, that you sorrowed in a godly manner: What diligence it produced in you, what clearing of yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what vehement desire, what zeal, what vindication! In all things you proved yourselves to be clear in this matter" (II Corinthians 7:9-11).