Reasons for Abstinence

Testing A Sexual Relationship

What if an unmarried couple is sexually active and one of the partners (A) asks the other (B) to stop having sex?

How would being infatuated or being in love affect the other partner’s reaction?

If the other partner (B) insists on continuing to have sex, then this person is not really concerned about the partner’s (A) well-being.

Sex can be addictive. If you’re addicted to sex, you need to break this habit and learn a new one: this is sexual self-control. It’s definitely possible to do so, and there are great rewards.

~~ Love wants what is best for the other person.

~~ Love never puts anyone at unnecessary risk of pregnancy (outside marriage), disease, or heartache.

~~ Love is giving for the total good of another.

~~ Love – true love – always looks out for other people’s emotional, physical, intellectual, and moral well-being.

If you are involved in a sexual relationship and want to stop, you need to develop cessation skills.

Cessation skills set guidelines that help a person regain self-control by abstaining from a particular behavior, such as premarital sex, drug use, viewing pornography, or violence.

The following cessation skills can help you regain sexual self-control:

1. Give reasons for your decision. Examples:
• I want to feel more self-respect instead of feeling used.
• It’s straining my relationship with friends and family members.
• The health risks are too high.
• I never really know the sexual history of another person.

2. Reinforce the decision by your behavior.
• Avoid places and people that cause you to slip.
• Body language can give a strong NO message.
• Don’t flirt with the unhealthy behavior, thinking you’re strong enough to abstain from it.

3. Plan alternatives.
• Associate with friends who will support your healthy behaviors.
• Begin working out and exercising daily if possible.
• Discuss other ways of finding pleasure that area both healthy and positive.

4. Stick to your decision to change.
• Be assertive when you are pressured.
• Exercise self-control when you are pressured.
• Point out the problems of engaging in unhealthy behaviors.
• Keep in mind the responsibilities you have both as a student and as a son or daughter living at home.
• Respect yourself and demand respect from others.

By practicing these cessation skills and regaining sexual self-control, you put yourself back on the path to becoming a mature adult.

Mature adults respect themselves and others by exercising self-control and responsibility.

[excerpted from “Character and Dating”, Sex and Character, Cole and Duran, Pandas Publications, Haughton Publishing Company, Dallas, TX; ISBN 0-914513-50-8; Foundation for Thought and Ethics (Richardson, TX), 1998]