Grace thought hard as she sat in park this sunny afternoon. Her mind drifted to the visit to see her boyfriend, that visit might be the last one, this seem like the end of her relationship with Rob. She had had a fight with her boyfriend few hours ago. He had been away to boarding school for a while now, and on his return, he wanted to see her. She went to see him and it didn’t end well. He wanted sex with her and she had told him she was abstaining from sex for a while. He didn’t believe her and tried to seduce her. She pushed him away and stood up from the chair. That was when he realized that she was serious, that was when he got angry.
He didn’t beat her, he just voiced obscenities from his mouth. She felt bad but she was in no mood for sex at this time. Grace left the house battling tears in her eyes. She stopped at the park to get a grip of herself. Grace didn’t know what to do. It was certain that he would tell his friends who would tell their girlfriends too. She would be the topic of discussion among her peers in the neighbourhood by evening. She still loves him but she had turned him down.
Simply put, abstinence is the decision not to have sexual intercourse. However, this term mean different things to different people. Some people might view abstinence as refraining from any and all sexual activity. Others might engage in outercourse or avoiding vaginal or anal penetration. It is important to remember there isn’t a “right” way to define abstinence. Different people define abstinence differently, so your personal definition is unique to you. You can choose to practice abstinence whenever you want even if you’ve had sex before.
Abstinence and celibacy
While abstinence and celibacy are often used interchangeably, celibacy is usually viewed as a long-term decision. The decision to be abstinent is usually limited to a certain period of time. More often than not, when people say they are celibate, it is usually done for religious reasons.
What can you do with your partner while abstaining?
If you’re want to practice abstinence and you are romantically involved with a person, it doesn’t mean you would shy away from seeing the person. Also, there are other fun ways to be intimate with the person. However, make sure you have tell them about your decision to be abstinent and what it means for you. It’s important to be open and honest with your partner about what you’re comfortable with so you can respect each other’s boundaries.
Depending on your personal definition of abstinence, you may be able to participate in activities like:
- Dirty talk or texts
- Dry humping
- Mutual masturbation
- Manual stimulation
- Oral sex
- Anal sex
Who practices abstinence?
Everyone and anyone. Yes. Are you surprised? You might feel the pressure to have sex because you feel pressured by your peers. The truth is that not everyone has sex, even those in relationships. If you feel you want to stay away from some or all forms of sex, then go for it.
How do you set boundaries with your partner?
Communication is key. It is true that talking about sex or abstinence can feel awkward, but it doesn’t have to be. If you’re worried about how to start the conversation, try to approach it from a place of affection. Everyone wants to be happy. Your goal should be to not only tell your partner what you want, but to learn what they want, too. Try not to wait until things get physical or after you’re already uncomfortable to set boundaries with your partner.
But if you’re in the heat of the moment and want to reaffirm boundaries, don’t hesitate to communicate with your partner. Remember, consent is necessary and ongoing. You’re allowed to change your mind or preferences at any given time. You should never feel pressure or pressure your partner to do something one of you isn’t comfortable with.
Is pregnancy possible?
Abstinence is the only birth control method that’s 100 percent effective, but that only works if you’re actually abstinent 100 percent of the time. It only takes having unprotected vaginal sex once or sperm entering the vagina through another form of sexual activity for pregnancy to occur.
If you and your partner are ready for sex, be sure to talk about condoms and other forms of birth control. Even if you aren’t sure whether you want to have sex, taking a birth control pill or having condoms on hand will help you be prepared if you change your mind.
Are STIs possible?
Even if you’re practicing abstinence, STIs might be possible. Some STIs can be transmitted through bodily fluids. Others can transmit via skin-to-skin contact. This means you could be at risk anytime you have unprotected oral sex, anal sex, share sex toys, or engage in other physical activities where skin-to-skin contact can transfer bodily fluids. Using condoms and dental dams can help reduce your risk. It’s also important to get tested for STIs at the start of a new relationship before you’re sexually active with your partner or if you’re thinking about not using condoms.
What’s the point?
Different people have different reasons for abstinence. There’s no “right” answer. It’s important that you do what’s best for you, and if your partner is the one who wishes to be abstinent always respect set boundaries.
Here are some reasons why someone might choose abstinence:
- You want to explore other forms of intimacy.
- You or your partner aren’t interested in or ready for sex.
- You’ve already had sex, but decided you aren’t ready to have it again.
- You want to increase sexual pleasure outside of intercourse.
- You don’t feel comfortable having sex, have pain during intercourse, or are recovering from trauma.
- You don’t have access to other forms of birth control, such as birth control pills or condoms.
- The bottom line
- You’re allowed to choose abstinence at any given time and for any reason.
- You don’t have to have sex to be part of a loving and intimate relationship. The most important thing is that you’re doing what makes you comfortable.
No matter what your reasons are, abstinence can be fun and you should not be afraid to take that decision. In fact, you shouldn’t be afraid to tell your partner. You should get to shape your life especially sexual choices. Choosing abstinence is an important decision and yours to make.