How I Got Over My Very Public Mistakes

Last week, I was amazed at all the people who read my posts and left comments. (This post about expecting a call from the President got almost 2,800 comments and was shared 131,000 times on this site alone… And, no, my phone didn’t ring.)

Most of the comments were wonderful and supportive. (I’ve addressed some of the not-so-nice comments here.)  But there’s one constant criticism I didn’t talk about:  some of you insist on calling me a hypocrite. After all, I became a mother before I walked down the aisle – how can I talk about waiting until marriage for sex?

I find it strange that the culture rightfully applauds former drug addicts who warn children of the dangers of drug use. They are happy to listen to former alcoholics talk about how they finally are living a clean life. But when it comes to me talking about waiting until marriage for sex, it’s almost like people want me to slink away in shame… unable to show my face in public again because of my past mistakes.

I want this blog to be a place where we can all be honest, so let me start. I’ve struggled with feelings of guilt and shame. I know (judging from my inbox) many of you have too. A Christian counselor named Ed Welch helpfully writes about what to do after you’ve made a huge mistake:

It feels so right – so spiritual – to live with regrets. It means you feel bad for the wrong things you have done or think you have done, and that sounds like a good thing. If you forget those wrongs, you are acting like they were no big deal.

We live with regrets because we think we should. We think it’s the right thing to do—that it is our duty before God. But…
The Kingdom of Heaven is regret-free. The truth is that the triune God liberates us from past regrets. His will is being done. Bank on it. Neither your human limitations nor your sins hinder the good plans of your sovereign Father.
Let’s go one important step further. It is God’s will that you jettison past regrets.

So what does that mean?


Stop living under a cloud of guilt, stop wondering what life could have been like had you made better decisions, and stop beating yourself up over that thing you’ve done.

Read the rest of his post here, and get over the regret you’ve been carrying for far too long.

I have.


  • Angela

    This is an awesome article. God bless the Palins.

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  • Kathi

    I was an unwed mother 36 years ago. I learned that it is not so much the Christians who are so quick to judge, but the non-Christians. The Christians understand forgiveness. I also disagree with the term “mistake” but prefer “poor choices” . I made poor choices, but God allowed me to make my own choices (just as He does all humans) and I had to accept the consequences of those choices. Fortunately, He is a loving God and blessed me with a beautiful baby boy. I am so proud of you, Bristol, that you are so much wiser than I was at your very young age. I gave in to public opinion and “hid my candle under a bushel”. I raised my son but very seldom and selectively shared my story or God’s forgiveness. You have a very special mission in this life and I pray that you will continue to serve Your Lord as you seem to presently be doing. It is so very much worth it. He will continue to bless you and your beautiful baby boy.

  • Sheila

    I guess I just don’t understand how you can change your mind (now – waiting for marriage) but you in a more recent blog post, criticize Obama for changing his mind. It seems a little backwards. Good for you – to turn over a new leaf – and be allowed to learn from your past. But, then you need to give the same respect to others who perhaps learn, grow and change. I wish every person had all the opportunities and respect that you have been given. Its just too bad that is not the case – because we live in a time where equality isn’t offered.

  • Cindy

    Thank you for taking a stand on premarital sex. There are not many people now-a-days that would agree with you, but you are right. I really enjoy your writing and I’m proud of you for being so brave. Keep up the good work. Oh, and BTW, your son is adorable.

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  • Margie Kruse

    It’s a good message for us all. Learning from the past and sharing our experiences to help others IS A GOOD THING. Bristol Palin, YOU ARE A GOOD THING!!!

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