Back in the day, you used to want to hurry the marriage through so you could, among other things, jump in the sack and bump uglies for the first time.
For some couples, albeit a smaller population of them nowadays, this is still the case and that's very sweet.
While I'm in Team Try-Before-You-Buy, I respect Team Celibate and whatever it is that they're trying to achieve: religious belief, anticipation, "testing" the other person and so on. Each to their own, and all that. (Surveys do seem to back up the fact that the longer you wait, the stronger the marriage...)
But there's a third team, one that doesn't get as much recognition but whose support is gaining and who I am rather intrigued by.
Let's call them Team Hold Out. Also known as "secondary virginity".
I've noticed a trend with some couples, many of whom have had long-term relationships that involved sex, suddenly deciding to go sex-free in the lead-up to the wedding.
Now I'm not talking about spending the night before the wedding apart (and that, I think, is a rather sweet tradition) but those who decide that for a set period - say two weeks, a month, even six months or their entire engagement! - forgo fornication.
Why? You may ask. I don't know. Taking a tip from 40 Days and 40 Nights maybe? (Link potentially NSFW, depending on where you work, of course.)
I sure as hell don't plan on doing that and I think I've done my dash considering we're in a long, looong distance relationship and sex-on-tap isn't an option. Ahem.
However, I AM interested to hear from people who have done or are considering doing this belated celibacy thing.
Theories I've heard include that it gives you, as a couple, a chance to connect on a "deeper" level, or without the "distraction" of physical intercourse.
And I kind of get that - for couples who are blinded by the bonking. But jeez, if you haven't "connected" yet, what makes you think marrying this person is a good idea?
Other people say that it increases the anticipation for wedding night sex (which, by the way, I think deserves a whole other blog post, and I'll get to that) but seriously, I see a few flaws in that also.
First, those weeks up to your wedding are probably going to be stressful. I'm not sure if altering your normal routine (and by that I include having sexy time with your love) is seen to be the smartest move. It is one thing if you're both "saving yourselves" full stop till after the wedding as you've never done it together; neither of you will know what you're missing.
But if you had a healthy sex life leading up to the self-imposed ban, and then you go to drought mode, something's got to give. Surely? Or do you just get used to it?
Second, all the reports I've read have been about how torturous that time is for both of those involved. How the bickering and fighting increased and how it hasn't actually helped them achieve their goal of becoming closer by refusing to, er... get close.
And third, I really, really don't like the thought of girls doing it "for the LOLZ". I mean, I don't believe sex should ever be used as a tool to get what you want - so by saying you won't until they put a ring on it is... icky. It's supposed to be a consensual, awesome, loving thing, not a reward for good behaviour or "obeying". Unless you're into that, and umm, that's clearly spelt out and agreed to by both parties.
Did you or do you plan to abstain ahead of your wedding? How did it work out? Did you achieve your goal? How long could you last "going without"?
You can also email Greer here and share your wedding woes, feedback or questions.
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