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My decision to remain abstinent

Jessica Eden | Interrobang | Opinion | September 12th, 2016

Editorial opinions or comments expressed in this online edition of Interrobang newspaper reflect the views of the writer and are not those of the Interrobang or the Fanshawe Student Union. The Interrobang is published weekly by the Fanshawe Student Union at 1001 Fanshawe College Blvd., P.O. Box 7005, London, Ontario, N5Y 5R6 and distributed through the Fanshawe College community. Letters to the editor are welcome. All letters are subject to editing and should be emailed. All letters must be accompanied by contact information. Letters can also be submitted online by clicking here.
Many people ask me how I do it, but I think the most important question is why. Why do I choose to abstain from sex?

I have come to understand that I am a part of the minority of people who choose to remain abstinent. While I am not ashamed of this, it is definitely hard to bring up in conversation.

I’m asked why I abstain from sex, but I doubt people are often asked why they choose to have sex.

Sex is accepted and even idolized in our culture. By promoting and displaying sex in things such as movies, music, books etc., it is often portrayed as a necessity in the lives of young people which is why it seems so abnormal to choose to go without it.

Growing up as a Christian I have learned that sex is something that is saved for marriage. I believe that sex has the power to bond two people closer together and is an experience that once taken place, cannot be taken back. For that reason, it is something I do not take lightly.

Even though I have been brought up in a Christian home, I realized that I still had to make an independent decision on whether I was going to choose abstinence just because my parents believed it or because I truly believed in it myself. I have made the personal decision to remain a virgin until I get married.

To answer the question “how do I resist the temptation?” I think the main reason why is because of the degree of importance that I have placed on it for myself. I am content with my decision and I do not feel like a part of my life is missing. It is something that will be fulfilled with the right person and at the right time (in my case, once I am married). I feel that a relationship does not require sex to be a good relationship and that other forms of physical gestures can be shown in the meantime, such as holding hands. Also, having my parents and a network of friends that support me in my decision is beneficial.

Many of you may wonder “why wait until marriage?” Firstly, because it is an aspect from my faith that I value. Secondly, I believe that the deeper connection you have with a person when you have sex is something I only want to share with one person. Sex is the most intimate act you can have with another human being and I want that to be in a relationship where there is the highest form of commitment. I believe that having sex brings two people closer together and helps them grow deeper in love for one another and having that in a marriage relationship will make it more special and meaningful.

I admit that I will still have those desires because I am human and it won’t always necessarily be easy, but I see it important that I control those desires so that they do not consume my thoughts and turn into actions.

I have noticed that there is often a negative connotation associated with abstaining from sex; people may think that I am either naïve or a prude. Just because I choose to abstain, does not mean there is anything wrong with me. It does not define me; it is just a personal choice that I make. While I have had many scoff at my decision I think that, like in all situations, even if you do not agree or fully understand the reasoning, it is still necessary to respect the person and their decision. In the same way, I do not think any less of someone who does not hold the same opinions as me in regards to sex. I do not look to force my values on other people, but if you ask me why I have made this decision I am always willing to explain.

Other reasons people have for abstaining is to avoid the risk of an unplanned pregnancy or the transmission of STIs. Others may also choose to abstain for religious or other personal reasons.

I hope that by reading this it will give some insight into why people might choose to abstain and help people understand an alternate point of view.
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