Remember the dating rules blogs? Remember specifically the one that said not to have sex with these fools you were dating? (If you are new here, it is this one: http://wp.me/p2GXV8-58 ). Well things are about to get crazy so grab a glass of wine and let’s get down to business.
In that blog I suggested not having sex with people you were casually dating, the concept was that by removing the element of sexuality and all that sex brings into relationships, one might be able to make better decisions on the mates they bring into their lives. Imagine taking that bit of advice one step further… Imagine winding back the claws of time and making things even simpler. Imagine dating, or being in a long-term relationship (short of marriage), without sex at all. I mean, dating and falling in love with your partner with a pre-Clinton era notion of what sex is. Still reading? Ok, don’t give up… I am going somewhere with this!
For many, dating without sex seems mutually exclusive. I speak for many women that grew up thinking that purity until marriage was a rule meant for people with other lives. For a great number of women and men innocence is lost years before the act of consensual sex is put on the table and thus, the battle seems lost before it is ever fought. For some, sexual exploration in youth led to the mystical land of sexy time before they ever knew the full gravity of the act they were performing. For others still, once the physical flood gates had been opened, there seemed to be dams built, blocking other forms of communication. I know men and women that have been sexual with people they barely cared about because it was the expected thing to do after a certain number of dates. For some it is a form of mastery of their own body, some use it to illicit a response from their parter, for some it is a biological weapon, and there are those still that have what we would all see as healthy, sexual relationships with their parter for none of the above mentioned reasons. Each person’s journey through sexuality is unique, I am by no means suggesting that this is a scientific formula to success and happiness (although, if you do end up successful and happy, I will send you my address and you can mail a check anytime!)
Q and I made the decision early in our relationship that we were going to treat each other and our bond differently than any other we had experienced prior. A part of that decision was to respect and honor each other by not having sex until we are married. Sharing that decision with people we know has brought an array of responses. From most we heard a resounding “Good for you!” but there were a fair share of raised eyebrows. I can fully understand why! After making this choice, I went to find some sort of tangible support to back us up, a book would have been nice, and frankly there was NOTHING to be found for people who had already had sex and then were choosing to abstain. Talk about feeling like a leper! My heart was heavy, I spent a couple of days struggling with my past and the feelings of inadequacy for a love that I was receiving, a love that was brave enough to set me apart, to honor me first and be passionate later.
There has really been something to the last two and a half months, something has been a brewin’! There is something so sweet about our love that I can’t really put a finger on. It is such an exhilirating feeling to know that there is a goal we are both working on, and that we sometimes struggle for a bigger purpose. I was reading a blog this morning that used the quote, “Those who restrain desire, do so because theirs is weak enough to be restrained. ” – William Blake. I would argue that statement could not be more untrue. Sometimes it is the unspeakable discipline it takes for two people to overcome a challenge that builds a stronger desire for each other. I wouldn’t have had any clue before this experience how much respect you gain for a man that is willing to put aside everything our bodies tells us is natural for the sake of our future, to ensure the best possible outcome for our lives. How much more honestly you can see someone without sex goggles on! My hope for you, my lovelies, is for you to protect your heart. See your partner for who they are before you give them your tender loving. Challenge yourself and challenge the person you spend your days with to be different, to grow respect before passion. The way we have done it in the past proved to be faulty, set a special love aside.
We are about half way through Andy Stanley’s series on The New Rules of Love Sex and Dating. As we watched this video this week I squeezed Q’s arm and thanked God for the gift of a man sitting next to me. There is no greater gift I could have asked for, my heart melts every day:) http://northpoint.org/messages/the-new-rules-for-love-sex-and-dating/#