In this counseling answer:
I advise you to marry this current girl whom you are serious about and get involved in something. Pick up an activity, a higher degree and look for a job. Get busy.
Wa ‘Aleikom Salam,
We often remember that Allah is Al Raheem (The Most Merciful). With this belief, we dwell into committing never-ending sins. Allah did not create mankind for this purpose. Brother, life is certainly not about having affairs, regretting, and committing the same sin again. You are 23, mature and young enough to assess things. When you know having a physical relationship without nikkah (lawful connection) is haram, it is a sin to commit it. Verily, Allah is All-Forgiving. But at the same time, He will punish for the wrong doing. It is time to make things fine. What has been done cannot be reversed. I advise you to marry this current girl whom you are serious about and get involved in something. Pick up an activity, a higher degree and look for a job. Get busy.
Marriage will certainly satisfy your physical needs in a permissible manner. But before you take a step, you must re-consider the whole situation. Are you ready for marriage? How certain are you that you will not end your marriage for another girl? Brother, marriage is not similar to the previous relationships you had. Therefore, you cannot easily exit because you had a small problem.
When it comes to telling this new girl about your past, think again. If you tell her, will she be ready to marry you? If you don’t, what if she finds it out from someone else? Seek forgiveness from Allah. Then pray istikharah whether to tell this girl about your past or not. If you feel that is the right thing to do, talk to this girl and mention that you had relationships in the past, but assure her that you have sincerely repented to Allah and you truly love her. Show her your sincerity and make her realize that it is all serious. If you continue with this for some time, even you will get a chance to scrutinize the situation and then take a final decision, because this time you are talking about marriage.
Seek forgiveness from the Lord and replace your bad deeds with good ones. I advise you to involve yourself in regular prayers and formulate small, achievable daily acts of kindness. For instance, maybe you can feed a poor for a week, or maybe you can volunteer for an orphanage. These acts will definitely help you grow and look at the realities of life. In this way, you will come closer to the blessings of Allah and experience will teach you how life is not about playing around with women, but respecting them and performing virtuous acts. Trust Allah because He will help you in your drive to change and become a better person, in sha’ Allah.
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