SEX IS AWESOME!
(Unless you are...)
Sex is great! It’s more wonderful than words can describe.
Sex can be one of the most beautiful things you’ll ever share with another
person. But sex before marriage has emotional consequences that can bring
lifelong pain. Some of these dangers are camouflaged. Many are like quicksand,
hard to see until it’s too late. Sex isn’t awesome with any of these nine
emotional disasters. Why not save sex for your honeymoon with the love
of your life?
1 - WORRYING YOU’RE PREGNANT
Worrying about conceiving a baby before marriage
is a major emotional stress. “It’s a relief to be a virgin,” says Nicole,
2 - INFECTED WITH VD (VENEREAL DISEASE) OR AIDS
Two VDs – human papilloma virus (the main cause
of cervical cancer) and chlamydia (the leading cause of infertility) –
are carried by at least one of every three teenage girls who have sex.
VD and AIDS don’t always show symptoms, so many people don’t even know
they have them.
3 - REGRETTING YOUR PAST
Many people experience deep remorse after having
sex before marriage. There is often the feeling of being used. A feeling
that you’ve given up something precious, and all for nothing. Premarital
sex often produces regret and remorse which lasts for years. Here’s the
testimony of a psychiatrist, now in her 30s:
“From 17 to 18, I was very promiscuous. That sick,
used feeling of having given a precious part of myself – my soul – to so
many and for nothing, still aches. I never imagined I’d pay so dearly and
for so long.”
And one young husband says, “I would do anything,
ANYTHING, to forget the sexual experiences I had before I met my wife.
. . the pictures of the past and the other women go through my head, and
it’s killing any intimacy. The truth is, I’ve been married to this wonderful
woman for eight years and I have never been ‘alone’ in the bedroom with
4 - FEELING YOU’RE GUILTY
There’s also guilt, which is a form of regret that
tells you you’ve done something morally wrong. It’s not some unhealthy
feeling your parents or your religion gave you. It’s a normal response,
a sign that your conscience is working. Deon says, “It’s not something
you want on your conscience, that you’ve caused a girl to have deep emotional
problems.” Jim says, “The thing I regret most of all about high school
is the time I single-handedly destroyed a girl.” Ruben, 16, says he stopped
having sex when he felt guilty about the pain he was causing: “You see
them crying and confused. They say they love you, and you know you don’t
5 - LOSING YOUR SELF-RESPECT
Be honest! Don’t you believe in your heart that
it’s best to wait for marriage? So why violate your instincts? That lowers
self-respect. Catching a VD will also lower your self-respect. So will
giving a VD to someone. Promiscuity (having partner after partner) also
destroys your self-respect. So does conceiving a baby outside of marriage
and then paying to have him or her aborted. People are not things. Uncommitted
sex treats them as if they are. It hurts them, and wrecks their self-respect
– as well as your own.
6 - CORRUPTING YOUR CHARACTER
If you treat others as sex objects and you exploit
them for pleasure, you’ll corrupt your character and degrade your own sexuality.
Good character includes honesty, fairness, decency, caring, self-control,
etc. If you start messing with sex before marriage, your self-control will
suffer, and sex can almost take over your whole life. Sexual addictions
are out of control today.
Promiscuity, rape, incest, adultery, pornography use (magazines, videos,
Internet), masturbation, molestation, sexual harassment and prostitution
are rampant. Committing these acts poisons good character.
7 - LOSING TRUST AND FEARING COMMITMENT
When sexual relationships end, there’s often a broken
heart. This deep pain makes it hard to trust again. Once a person’s heart
is broken, they fear another broken commitment in the future. Many, once
they’ve been burned, just give up hope. People who have been used sexually
are likely to have low self-respect and they often seek any kind of attention,
even if it’s in other demeaning sexual relationships.
8 - DEPRESSED AND THINKING OF SUICIDE
Sex can make you feel like you’re experiencing true
love. That makes a breakup very painful, which can lead to deep depression,
hopelessness, and even suicide. And breaking up is only one cause of sex-related
depression. The consequences of losing your virginity, getting AIDS, getting
a VD, conceiving a baby outside of marriage, killing that baby, hurting
your reputation, ruining someone else’s reputation, and disappointing those
who trusted you can all lead to depression, and worse.
(Family counselor Clayton Barbeau's study of suicidal teens found that
in almost every case, sexual issues were a major cause of their anxiety,
despair and self-hatred. Suicide counselors can help you at 1-800-999-9999.)
9 - RUINING A GOOD RELATIONSHIP
Sex before marriage can also turn a good relationship
bad. It can easily take over your relationship and stop other very
important dimensions of the relationship from developing – leaving a one-track
relationship with no solid foundation.
Why take risks that can cause you
grief the rest of your life? Your future marriage will be much happier
if you don’t have to worry about – or recover from – the negative emotional
consequences of sex before marriage. Without sex, your relationship can
still be great fun as you grow together, develop your own identities, chart
your exciting future, hone your skills, pursue your interests, make more
friends and nurture your spirit. Waiting will help each of you develop
discipline and great respect for each other. It also makes for an awesome
Adapted from Sex, Love & You by Tom Lickona, Ph.D.
If you’ve already had sex, read the tips about “Secondary Virginity” and “Starting