Q: Lately all of my friends have been having sex. I made a vow to wait until marriage, but how do I keep my vow when I’m around them and peer pressure is at its highest?
A: I’m so glad you’ve made a vow to wait until marriage to have sex. It’s a great decision to follow God’s will for your life! When we believe that God wants what’s best for us, we can trust in His commandments (Exodus 20:14).
When you have sex outside of marriage you are hurting yourself, your partner, and your future spouse. The opposite is true when you save sex within marriage, as God intended it, you love and honor God, your spouse, yourself and others.
Before Brian and I gave ourselves freely and totally to each other, we knew that a few other things needed to happen first. He decorated my apartment with rose petals and candles, and he got down on one knee and proposed. Then we made plans for our wedding day and, more importantly, we prepared for our marriage. I walked down the aisle in a beautiful white dress and veil, and Brian cried as he saw me walking toward him. We promised to love one another, until death separates us, in front of God, our families, and our friends.
When a husband and wife make love they are renewing their wedding vows (CCC 2360). They are reaffirming their commitment to be true to each other in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. Each swears to love and honor their spouse all the days of their life. They are called to give themselves freely, totally, faithfully, and fruitfully to their spouse, just as Jesus Christ gave Himself to His Bride, the Church.
Having sex with someone before you’re married is a lie — a lie spoken with your body. Instead of giving of yourself unconditionally, you are taking from them with conditions. The conditions could be: I may leave you after tonight, I may have sex with others, I may love someone else, I may get you pregnant, I may give you a sexually transmitted disease, and so on. Even if both people love each other, each person deserves to know that the other person has made a vow before God and the Church that their partner will remain faithful.
Your friends’ sexual relationships are going to end in one of two ways. They are either going to break up or get married. If they break up (the vast majority will) – they will suffer severe heartbreak. God didn’t intend for us to have sex with someone and then be separated. Pain, anxiety, and depression often result from sexual activity outside of marriage. Even if your friends end up marrying the person they’re currently having sex with, they will miss out on the excitement and newness that the beginning of marriage brings to relationships. They will have missed their chance to discipline their sexual urges for the good of the other. Additionally, couples who have premarital sex have a higher chance of divorce than those who save sex for marriage.
Your decision to save sex for marriage is one of the best decisions you can make for yourself and your future spouse. Here are some ideas to help you stay strong in your commitment:
- Remember why you have made your vow to save sex for marriage. Write your commitment down and look back to it when you feel tempted or pressured by friends to be sexually active.
- Find other friends who share your morals and beliefs. The truth is that nearly two-thirds of high school students in America are not currently sexually active.
- Be an example of peace and hope to others as you live out your vow. Although your friends having sex may seem happy for a time, that time will end and they may be encouraged by your example.
- Live your life to the full! Go out with friends, call family members, pray, read a new book, cook, bake, go to the movies, journal, work hard on getting good grades, join a new Bible study or try a youth group event, etc.
- Look to a happily married Christian couple as your role model. Instead of listening to your unmarried friends’ sex stories, try asking a married couple about how chastity has played a role in their relationship.
- Remember how valuable you are. Nothing that you’ve done and nothing that’s been done to you can ever diminish your worth. Know that you are worth waiting for.
God wants to reward your faithfulness. Continue to seek His will for your life and follow His commands. You don’t have to wait for love to find you; He already has. Draw closer to the One who truly knows and loves you as you are.
Do you have a question about dating and relationships you’d like to ask Brian and Courtney Kissinger? Email them at [email protected] and your question could be the next blog post!