That one time I tried Celibacy...
Once upon a time, when I was young, hot, and twenty-something, I tried celibacy. Now let me be clear, my celibacy stint only lasted a cool 6 months... but it was oh so necessary! I was at a point in my life where I was single and dating lots of different guys. I was fresh off a tough breakup and was tired of rushing into a sexual relationship without knowing who I was really dating. I had developed a good habit of meeting guys, falling in love fast, becoming boyfriend and girlfriend and besides surface level stuff, not knowing a damn thing about them. Come on, you know you’ve dated someone for 6 months, 1 year, 2 years and at the end felt like “I don’t even know who you are!!!” So today I wanted to share my experience with celibacy and what I learned during the process.
CELIBACY IS POWERFUL
There was a kind of power, a kind of freedom that came with celibacy. I felt in control and I loved it! There's a total difference between going into a date with a “we’ll see where the night goes” mindset vs a “I’m definitely not having sex with you” mindset. Knowing that I could just enjoy the date and get to know the person made everything easier. No matter what you believe, for most women, once you become intimate with someone, you begin to wear rose-colored glasses. All the things that would’ve been obvious red flags, somehow are now just shrugged off. Especially when the peen is good! So I’ll admit I got a little high off of looking into a man’s eye’s and knowing that he desired me and thinking “nah, bruh, it’s not going to happen”.
I GREW CLOSER TO GOD
At the time I was working really hard on my spiritual relationship with God, and so this was an agreement between He and I. I didn't go into it with a designated end date per se. I prayed that God would give me the strength to hold off on getting naked with someone until the time was right. (Yes, I know premarital sex is a sin, but so are many other things. I’m a work in progress! Don’t judge me.) I also made it a practice of praying for God to remove people from my life who did not have a genuine interest in me and my growth. Over time, i truly believe that He did just that.
MEN (AND WOMEN) WILL TRY TO PROVE YOU WRONG
Through this process I was very clear about not doing it. It wasn't something I brought up during our first conversation or even during our first date. But when it was clear that we both liked one another and there was a spark- i.e. we’re making out, I was quick to be like “Yo, we can kiss all night long, but I’m not giving it up”. Some dudes thought they could persuade me to change my mind or that begging would work. They thought that I was probably just playing mind games or that they could wear me down. I wasn’t and they didn't. Eventually those who just wanted sex, faded away and those who wanted more stuck around.
After those months flew by, I narrowed my dating pool down to two amazing guys. The one who stole my heart was the guy who I’d initially gone on a couple dates with, but curved when my high school sweetheart came back into town for the summer (yup, silly move). Since we both shared a really great friend, we developed a friendship over time and I simply enjoyed his company. We went on to date for 3 and a half years and although it didn't end on the best terms I learned so much about myself and what I wanted in a committed relationship from that experience. Like:
I’ll never do a long distance relationship again in this lifetime.
9 times out of 10, when you break up, you will not be friends afterwards and that is okay.
Even amazing relationships don't end in marriage and that's a good thing, it wasn't meant to be.
At age 21-24 there was no way that I was ready for marriage, so I shouldn't have been treating this man like he was my husband anyway!
In short, I have no regrets.
Also read: Join the Women's Orgasms Matter Campaign
SEX IS IMPORTANT BUT NOT THAT IMPORTANT
In retrospect, I learned just how low on the totem pole sex really was for me. It all became clear when I was going through pre-marital counseling with my husband. We did an exercise where we each had to write down the top 10 things that we valued in life. Then we had to look at each other’s list and see if they were similar. Finally, we had to come to an agreement as a couple of our top 10 values together. We learned that God, family, financial stability, honesty, great communication, legacy building, giving back to our community, and fulfillment outside of home (careers) , were all more important than sex for the foundation of our marriage. It still makes top 10, but just to put things in perspective it is NOT number one or two! So if you’re so hell bent on finding out whether or not a man will be a good lay first, you may want to check yourself. There is literally so much more to life.
Now listen, this post is not to push you toward trying celibacy. However, it is to remind you that there’s power in abstaining from sex until you feel confident that you know and trust a person. Trust me, your hand and toys will give you comfort until that person comes along. More importantly, getting to know someone, without inserting sex into the situation can save you a ton of headaches and heartaches.
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