Sex before marriage

(33 Posts)
PenguinBear Thu 11-Apr-13 13:55:22

One of my friends is almost 30 and never had sex ( nothing wrong with that before anyone thinks I am bring unkind). She has said that as part of her religious views, she is waiting till marriage. ( She is christian).

Is that a belief of all Christians or just some denominations? Would the church not want me there if I joined as DP and I have children and are not married blush

Lots of Christians would feel sex before marriage is wrong. Along with a whole bunch of other stuff that some people will agree with and some won't.

I am sure any local church would be delighted to have you and your family.

Not having sex before marriage may be something that Christians feel is a good idea but they would still be very happy to have you along because no one is perfect and if you are not a Christian then you may well not be wanting to stick to rules etc which Christians believe in.

A very good friend of mine lived with her partner for years, actually she wanted to get married and he did not. My hubby and I looked after their kids and were good friends with them. We never really talked about their choice to live together, and when they got married we were very involved in their wedding.

Just because some Christians do not agree with sex before marriage does not mean they dislike people who live together.

Also there will be all kinds of Christian views and you will undoubtedly get a huge number of different views on here.

It will really depend what type of church you go to.

Are thinking of going to church or just asking the question?

It's a very good and clear example of the misogyny and cruelty of superstition, OP. While some people who persist in believing in gods have managed to create imaginary friends for themselves which are kind, sensible and loving, others have taken their own prurience and sexual dysfunction and projected onto a sky-fairy in order to bully other people.

There is quite a lot of bullying people into having sex in the world in general.

Wanting sex to be something special within marriage is not everyone's view or even every Christian's view but it has some good benefits if the person you committ to is loving and kind and you can enjoy your sex life in the safety of that relationship. I am not sure why that should be seen as sexual dysfunction SGB?

LizzyDay Thu 11-Apr-13 15:48:15

The churches would be pretty empty if they turned away anyone who had ever had sex before marriage.

I would imagine that these days they have to be a bit more pragmatic - though I wouldn't personally put myself in the situation of being judged. I'm sure there that for every liberal Christian there's a judgy-pants Christian just waiting to hoick their bosom wink

sydlexic Thu 11-Apr-13 15:52:50

I don't think modern churches have such an issue with it. My DSIS had a baby before marriage and the church refused to perform her marriage.

30 years later my DN married in the same church with her 4 year old there.

I am a member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormon), we are expected to live a chaste lifestyle before marriage (both men and women) and both myself and my husband did and many of our friends. I also know people who have grown up in the church and have then left to have sex before marriage and some of those return and chose again to live a chaste life and some don't. There are many single parents in our congregations (men and women) and they should feel as welcome in church as my husband, my children and I am.

No one is turned away from attending our church whatever lifestyle they have chosen to live. However should you wish to convert/join the church you are expected and asked to keep the standards of the church so if you were currently unmarried with a partner it would be expected that you would get married. Of course if you didn't share our beliefs you wouldn't want to join and therefore your lifestyle is your own choice.

If anyone was to be unwelcome to you that would not be following the example Jesus Christ set, in my opinion.

madhairday Thu 11-Apr-13 18:11:21

So because I chose to wait for marriage, believing it to be God's ideal plan, that makes me sexually dysfunctional? grin - ask dh if I am. Really, sgb, I do not judge others for their ways of doing things, there is no need to judge those who you think are wrong. Nowt to do with misogyny and cruelty, more to do with freedom in being who we are meant to be. smile <imo, of course> wink

OP, the church would be delighted to see you. God is much more interested in loving people than condemning. Many Christians see monogamous relationships as a great thing, a positive - whether married, in civil partnership, living together or whatever - it's the commitment aspect, which reflects Christ's love for and commitment to the church. smile

LizzyDay Thu 11-Apr-13 19:58:50

Each to their own, of course.

As long as those who DO choose to have sex before marriage aren't generally looked down on and made to feel like bad human beings - as happened even in this country not so long ago.

And still are in many places - with women and young girls being abused or worse for even talking to an 'unapproved' bloke.

madhairday Thu 11-Apr-13 20:57:13

In total agreement, Lizzy. The abuse in the name of it has been and still is in some places utterly sickening sad

LizzyDay Thu 11-Apr-13 22:47:51

Is it just 'in the name of it' though, really?

Forbidding sex before marriage is historically about ownership of females, full stop.

Of course men aren't supposed to do it, but on the whole it is the female who is vilified while a blind eye is turned to a boy sowing his oats.

Generally speaking in our church the men at make a higher commitment to the church at a younger age (18/19) and therefore for them if they have sex before marriage there is a bigger consequence. I've never known anyone to be vilified for this though in recent history. The Bible gives the example of Jesus defending a woman found guilty of adultery (also against the law if chastity) John 8:1-11, telling the men that only those without sin could condemn her.

specialsubject Fri 12-Apr-13 10:23:31

the next 'Defender of the Faith' had a long relationship with his second wife while still married to the first. (Not that I blame him)

the next-but-one lived with his girlfriend before marrying her.

The church of England doesn't seem to be complaining.

Times have probably changed. Don't worry.

I guess it depends on your own personal interpretation of marriage. If marriage is a commitment by two people to become a unit (for want of a better word), and that commitment has to be made before their God, then "marriage" can happen at any time and has no need of formalities. The "marriage" is formed by the genuine love and commitment of the couple.

If marriage is merely a legal contract, based on historical ideas of "ownership", enacted by a minister of whatever-religion, then why should legal status affect whether it is okay or not to have sex.

There is a saying that "A wedding is for a day, a marriage is for life." If, for a moment, we can ignore the high number of divorces - I'm sure most people who enter a marriage contract intend to stay with their partner for life. My own view of marriage is that it is the first description. Marriage is a spiritual commitment between two (or more!) people. They make their own promises to each other before each other and their God/non-God.

I don't think it is just about religion - I have met people who wanted to wait for the right person/marriage before having sex, regardless of their religion.

sieglinde Fri 12-Apr-13 11:42:07

And as so often, solidgoldbrass takes away the Atheist Bingo prize, by using the words 'imaginary friends' 'prurience and sexual dysfunction' [of priests] 'projected', and 'a sky-fairy' in a single sentence. grin

Anyone care to use the words remaining? How about 'brainwashed' and 'teachings of science'? Surely someone should mention Galileo, Aids, abortion and contraception soon? grin

Ok, ho-hos aside....OP, the answer is yes. However, the prohibition on fornication as opposed to adultery/infidelity is relatively poorly supported in the Gospels - Jesus doesn't seem anything like as interested in the topic as some clergy and most atheists are.

FWIW, my own 'brainwashing' never stopped me doing a single thing I wanted to do, though it did give me an empowered way of telling anyone who asked for anything I didn't want to fuck off. I've been RC all my life, and I take seriously the idea that the best sex is part of a loving relationship - but it hasn't always worked out that way for me.

Mad: I have no problem with people making sexual choices that suit them, but religions' obsession with controlling women and sexual behaviour is problematic. It is, for instance, totally unsurprising that the Catholic Church as an instution is crawling with abusers: the instituation is built on sexual dysfunction and misogyny. All these superstitions defending rape in marriage, forbidding contraception, blaming women for being raped etc... one of the main reasons for despising religion (apart from the basic truth that it's all a load of rubbish anyway).

sieglinde Fri 12-Apr-13 14:58:34

Solidgold said..."It is, for instance, totally unsurprising that the Catholic Church as an instution is crawling with abusers: the instituation is built on sexual dysfunction and misogyny."

Oh. I hadn't realised the BBC was crawling with abusers because it composed celibacy on its staff! And Manchester Music school too - who knew?

There is in fact no link between celibacy and child abuse. None whatever.

LittleIllusionMachine Fri 12-Apr-13 15:24:50

I haven't been back to church since the priest told me that I was no longer allowed to take communion as an unmarried mother.

And yet, they do mass in prison. Rapists and murderers are allowed communion but I am refused because I've had sex outside of marriage?

Tbh I was seriously questioning my faith anyway, this was a tipping point for me. I am now agnostic.

LizzyDay Fri 12-Apr-13 15:28:53

People didn't become abusers BECAUSE they worked for the BBC though. It's just that until more recently, women and children had even less status in society than they do now so it was easier for abusers to get away with their crimes in any circumstance.

A lot of religions are inherently oppressive, and if they are allowed to dictate how society should think and behave, then that oppressive influence will be stronger and more pervasive.

sieglinde your post (in context) is saying that the BBC was/is crawling with abusers. It isn't and never has been.

sieglinde Fri 12-Apr-13 16:46:51

There do seem to have been MANY abusers at the Beeb. Not just Saville.

And the implication that THEIR very hip 60s and post sexual revolution environment had nothing to do with their acts, while RC pedophile crimes are caused by the church is entirely without evidential support. You're making assumptions based on your own biases. There are millions of celibate clerics and a tiny minority are pedophiles. Roughly the same proportion as in other professions with access to children.

madhairday Fri 12-Apr-13 16:57:33

LittleIllusion sad That is truly shit. I do despair when I hear these stories, but then remember that the majority wouldn;t treat someone in this way. After all, look at Jesus - it's him I follow, not the church, thankfully grin

LizzyDay Fri 12-Apr-13 17:34:09

The male entitlement and misogyny that is pervasive in a lot of religions was also present in the 60s / 70s, of course, you only have to watch an episode of On The Buses to understand that.

Hopefully society is now moving away from it being okay to pinch women's bottoms in the workplace, and the paternalistic religious views which see women as essentially male / family property with no autonomy over their own bodies.

sieglinde Fri 12-Apr-13 17:55:33

I share your hope, LizzyDay. You're right about On The Buses smile

The Catholic Church has been abusing women and children for centuries. Not just by means of rape and sexual assault, but by denying women access to contraception and ordering them to lie back while their husbands raped them. The obsessive focussing on controlling sex is one of the things that drew so many abusers to join up: they thought their imaginary friend would help them keep their dicks in their pants, but that when that didn't work, they would be protected by the institution that considered women and children inferior to men.
The BBC began in a world that was already misogynistic, it didn't create a climate of considering women and children less important than Special Men with High Status.

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