Sex Before Marriage?

I was once asked why I “bothered” waiting until I was married before having sex.  My reply?  “To prove my future fidelity” was met with a blank stare.

What did I mean by that?  I explained.. if I can come to the marital bed having had no other lovers, then it proves to myself and to my husband that even when sorely tempted, I can resist.  I can prove that I can, and will be totally sexually faithful once we are married.  I can resist temptations and say ‘No Ta’ to the opportunities to indulge.

Even years before I met the gallant chap who was to take my hand (and the rest of me) in marriage I was honouring him and building up my own sense of self-control in the area of sexuality.  It was more than just ‘saving myself’ for him, it was about despite close calls and moments where no one else was watching or would ever know.. I was able to find the will to back off when I had to and decline.  Sometimes it felt like trying to peel chewing gum off a shoe.. but I am so glad I ‘bothered’.

9 years of happy marriage later, we are stronger than ever.  Temptation just doesn’t even get a look in because it’s a non-issue.  No one else on this planet holds as much magic and sparkle and fizz as he does – no one else even begins to attract me in that way.  Even my most charming, wonderful male friends are just beloved ‘brothers from another mother’ in my eyes and heart.

Why am I posting this? Because a young, single friend of mine is struggling right now with this internal debate and our society is doing nothing to give her the mental stamina to resist, to wait, to hold on for the best.   In her heart and soul she wants to say No (to herself as well as him) but in the moment it is so extremely difficult.

My lovely friend –  stand strong and don’t give in or give it up!   Prove to yourself that you can resist.

In practical terms; you need to leave this guy alone, get busy with something else, get out of the bakery before you persuade yourself one little taste of a cream bun won’t hurt.  It’s not calorie free – there are consequences.

Imagine you are already married right now, imagine your lovely man CAN see you .. and now, walk away, turn on the light, peel yourself off and fix your eyes on the future.  Patience has its own reward.

5 responses to “Sex Before Marriage?

  1. An interesting post. I hope your friend stays strong. Speaking from a guy’s point of view, I was tempted before marriage but I am glad that I waited. I am glad that the first time with my wife was our first time, her first time & my first time.

    There are enough challenges in a marriage without the shadow of previous sexual relationships/encounters weighing on your spouse’s mind. Questions such as “Am I better than that other person?” only cause tensions & doubts to creep in to the relationship, at a time when only joy & pleasure should be there.

  2. Thanks for your comment Jerry. Always good to see things from a guy’s perspective too!
    I’ve read studies where claims are made that waiting until married to have sex makes marriages stronger and less prone to breakup due to unfaithfulness – so I’m interested in whether past encounters are any indication of future fidelity?
    What this world needs so desperately are strong marriages – the impact on our children and therefore our society’s future is huge.. it’s a topic worthy of further exploration for sure.

  3. I don’t think it’s the waiting itself that makes marriages stronger any more than going to WeightWatchers makes you lose weight. It’s a correlation, not a cause.

    In my view, there’s a third factor which link waiting and having a long-lasting marriage: commitment. If you are committed to your partner and have a fulfilling relationship with them, I don’t think past encounters make any difference.

    And on the other hand, ff you aren’t committed to your partner and don’t have a fulfilling relationship, then temptations are likely to fill that vacuum regardless of what your prior history is. And the spectre of previous relationships are probably the least of your problems.

    To take a converse example – there is no shortage of stories about people who were virgins before they got married, and whose flawed and frustrated expectations of marriage led to those relationships breaking down in spectacular fashion!

    I didn’t wait to have sex before I got married. Quite the contrary, although my wife and I waited before we got married. It’s just that when we got married, she was a virgin and I wasn’t. I won’t go into the ins and outs (sorry) of what effect that had on us (how do you compare what difference it might have made, anyway).

    But I will say this. Talking about what you did, or didn’t do, way back when, and how you feel about it now, is an essential part of getting to know your (prospective) spouse. There is so much to be learned. In some circles, I think too much time and effort is wasted on creating stigmas around pre-marital sex, and on making judgements – life and love are too rich to fall into neat little boxes.

    Thanks for the post and comments.

  4. Thanks for taking time to comment Sayonara.
    I agree it’s not right to judge anyone for their past sex life -we all make our own decisions about whether we want to wait or not.
    What I feel is lacking is support and encouragement for girls (and guys) who DO want to wait but have that moment of ‘why bother?’, just like I was asked.
    I think it takes enormous commitment to be faithful to someone you haven’t even met yet so yes, I agree wholly that perhaps it’s commitment that matters most.

  5. Thanks for allowing me to share this with my youth group… I will be bringing it to them tomorrow, during the 4th of a series of 6 sessions on sex & relationships… it has been an eye opening time for us as leaders, as well as for our wonderful youth. I have such a passion for the subject, and for encouraging frank & open discussion about sexuality in the church. And it’s no co-incidence that I stumbled upon your blog, with it’s refreshing slant on the subject.
    Many thanks
    x

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