Abstinence remains a good lifestyle choice for many people. Couples’ reasons for abstaining from sex can vary. Some reasons include wanting to wait until married and strengthen the bond between them, and to avoid pregnancy and STD’s.
Some people may believe that bringing sex into a relationship will help two people to become closer. When sex is brought into a relationship, a deeper and more meaningful bond is not guaranteed. True intimacy does not come from sex, but instead arises from learning about your partner on a deeper level and developing an authentic friendship.
Committing to abstinence in a relationship often requires self-control.
Keep the Lines of Communication Open
Communication is one of the most important aspects of abstinence and will help to ensure that everyone feels heard and understood in the relationship. Be honest and open about your feelings for choosing abstinence. By discussing what is acceptable versus what is not and by establishing boundaries, you and your partner can make decisions together and avoid getting caught in the heat of the moment.
For couples who have been together for a while and may have already had a sexual relationship, introducing the idea of abstinence going forward can be a challenge. Whether you’re in a new or established relationship, being the first to bring up abstinence can be a little uncomfortable. So how do you start a discussion on abstinence?
First, it’s a good idea to practice what you’re going to say and when. Bringing up a sensitive subject should be approached carefully, so think about doing it at a time when both of you can give your full attention.
Many people hear the word “abstinence” and may think of a relationship without intimacy, but this does not have to be the case. Deciding to forgo sexual contact in no way diminishes intimacy and in many instances leads to stronger bonds between two people. People who choose to remain abstinent avoid a lot of the risks of bringing sex into a relationship, including a higher risk for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and unplanned pregnancy.
Ways to Practice Abstinence
Once you’ve discussed abstinence and agree to abstain from sex, it may be challenging to stay committed to abstinence. Some ways to remain committed to abstinence:
- Show that you care by listening to each other’s hopes and dreams as well as each other’s goals for the future.
- Be respectful of each other in all things.
- Engage in activities that allow you to spend time together, that allow you to get to know each other and do things that are fun. You can have a picnic lunch, play board games, go skating, take a walk or go dancing.
- Try to remember your reasons for wanting to have a relationship without sex.
A Final Note
Knowing that both of you agree on abstinence can help to eliminate any tension that may arise. It opens the opportunity for forming a true bond based on mutual respect between two people who genuinely care for each other and about each other.