The Christian Perspective on Intimacy

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-03-2003
The Christian Perspective on Intimacy
22
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 11:56am

A friend of mine has introduced me to a few books regarding dating, marriage, intimacy, etc. I have always been a fan of such books and found several valuable, but this is my first exposure to Christian self-help books. I absolutely value my friend’s opinion and joined the church myself a little over a year ago, but historically had a difficult time resolving the Church’s “no premarital sex” stance with the values I have about sexual compatibility. In a nutshell, I feel it is ESSENTIAL to get as real a picture as possible of what is in store for the sex life with a potential spouse, and the best way to do this is…well, first-hand experience. I was in a ML relationship for many years and vowed to never again experience that sort of deep, long-lasting pain and alienation.

Two I’ve read recently are “Sex and the Soul of a Woman,” and “Undressed.” She deeply loved these books and while I could appreciate some points, I am always at odds with the reasoning expressed in chapters on intimacy. As expected, the advice is to wait for sex after marriage. The wide spectrum of possible libidos (or even orientations) is not addressed, or the possibility of ML occurring once the reception is over.

Sometimes I just can’t shake the sense that the authors are prudes or LL themselves. One dismissed any oral sex act in 1-2 sentences.

I think I feel compelled to post this because I want to know if there are participants on this board who still believe in a “no premarital sex” stance, despite having read some of the stories here. Is there anyone who DID wait until marriage, and has the experience changed your opinions, worked out as expected, caused issues or regret, etc?

Also curious if others have read the books mentioned above, and your opinion of them.

Thoughts?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-03-2009
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 12:36pm
...I'm a practicing Catholic and, unfortunately a worldly sinner all rolled into one...I have had sex outside of marriage...and, I have lustful thoughts...all the good stuff that's bad for me...
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-31-2010
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 2:53pm

I don't even think that not waiting until marriage will prevent all ML situations. DH and I were together a good five years before my libido took a vacation without me.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-01-2008
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 2:56pm

I am not a Christian, so I should probably stay out of this thread, but I felt compelled to comment. I hope that is okay :)

You said: "...sometimes having sex before we've fully gotten to know our partners as people."

To me, having sex is one of the major ways I get to know my partner as a person.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-31-2010
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 3:12pm

I'll grant that thought wasn't written as clearly as I'd like.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-16-2004
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 3:13pm
Though I am not a practicing Catholic, we did get married by the Catholic church. During our (required) premarital counseling, the topic of co-habitating and premarital sex came up. The priest told us very directly that he didn't believe in the idea of having to live together to see if we were sexually compatible because, according to him, it was just a matter of the parts fitting together. Laughable...
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2006
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 3:18pm

and THAT, ladies and gentlemen is why someone who has willing chosen chastity as a lifestyle should never EVER counsel anyone on anything that has any component of sex whatsoever.

I am just amazed that Catholics haven't figured this one out.

roo and snowy siggie
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-16-2004
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 4:39pm

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I think many Catholics have, though definitely not enough. I certainly did...and well before that incident. That's why I am not a practicing Catholic!

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2006
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 4:58pm

When I married my ex-husband, his mother pitched a royal fit because we weren't getting married by a priest. She was Catholic, I am not, DH didn't care about religion at all, but was a total momma's boy and spineless besides. I had my wedding all planned out and paid for to be in a beautiful gazebo in a local rose garden, and found out that in our diocese a priest could only perform marriages in a church.

Well, needless to say, it was an unholy mess, but finally what we did was have TWO weddings (on the night before the rose garden wedding, we had a very very small, very very informal service in ex MIL's church.)

Before we could do this thing we had to undergo a month and a half of once weekly "marriage classes" with a priest. I was like WTF!!??!!! Seriously?? This guy who is never going to be married and isn't even having a relationship or sex or anything is going to tell us how to be married???!!!

It didn't work. Go figure.

roo and snowy siggie
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-03-2009
Mon, 08-16-2010 - 5:08pm
...as I said, I practice my Catholicism, but I am not a dogma Catholic...most people aren't dogmatic practitioners of their religion...I think everyone picks and chooses (with exceptions of course...)...but, I'm still worldly...and a sinner...
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-02-2004
Tue, 08-17-2010 - 12:15pm

I consider myself a Christian. I was raised Protestant but married a Catholic. Not having sex before marriage has been the toughest of the sins to avoid. I agree with another post that said if you have pre-marital sex it will not necessarily help you know what is in store for your marriage. To give you an idea, in my marriage now, my wife and I have sex once a week on average sometimes less. It took me a while to get my wife to have sex while we were dating. She finally succumbed after about a few months. I usually wouldn't even wait around that long for a woman but we were having a good time. While dating and having sex, we explored each other's bodies and had good sex. Oral and manual stimulation were part of our fun and we had a good variety of sex. Now it's pretty mundane because we do the same things but unfortunately for me she now doesn't like to give oral and doesn't want me to give her oral and only wants me to get on top.

In my first marriage, my wife had a sex drive and wanted sex as much as me and had no problem giving and receiving oral. We were married 17 years until she died.

Religiously speaking, you shouldn't have sex before marriage but I really wonder how many people abide by that.

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