Four Lies the Church Taught Me About Sex

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The evangelical church has a lot of work to do correcting the distorted ways we talk about sex

“As someone who waited until I was married to have sex, I was assured that I would be guaranteed an easy and rewarding sex life. When reality turned out to be different, I was disappointed and disillusioned. Only through gradual conversations with other married friends did I realize I wasn’t alone.”

 

I’ve heard people say that growing up as an evangelical meant they never talked about sex. This wasn’t my experience. I grew up in the thick of evangelical purity culture and we talked about sex A LOT. We just spent all of that time talking about how and why NOT to have it.

As someone who waited until I was married to have sex, I was assured that I would be guaranteed an easy and rewarding sex life. When reality turned out to be different, I was disappointed and disillusioned. Only through gradual conversations with other married friends did I realize I wasn’t alone.

I started to wonder if maybe the expectations themselves were wrong. Maybe what I’d been told or inferred about post-marital sex simply wasn’t true.

Here are four of the biggest lies about sex I believed before marriage

1. Any and all physical contact is like a gateway drug to sex.

Once in high school I attended a big Christian youth conference. One night, one of the chaperones addressed the girls: “Girls, we have noticed some very inappropriate touching going on…”

The inappropriate touching she meant turned out to be two high school couples in the youth group holding hands. This woman was deadly serious. “I know it may not seem like a big deal to you,” she said. “But hand-holding leads to OTHER THINGS!”

I heard similar things from parents, teachers, church leaders and books. In my church it was not unusual for people to pledge not only to save sex until marriage, but even to save their first kiss for their wedding day. “Don’t start the engine if you aren’t ready to drive the car,” and other similar metaphors warned me that any physical contact was a slippery slope straight into the jaws of fornication.

Despite what Hollywood says, clothes do not take themselves off and bodies do not magically and effortlessly fit together.

On this side of things, I can honestly say that there are SO many conscious decisions you have to make between kissing and having sex. Despite what Hollywood says, clothes do not take themselves off and bodies do not magically and effortlessly fit together.

If you are committed to waiting until you’re married to have sex, there are many valid reasons to set boundaries on your physical relationship, but the fear of accidentally having sex shouldn’t be one of them.

2. If you wait until you are married to have sex, God will reward you with mind-blowing sex and a magical wedding night.

Before my wedding night, I had been told that honeymoon sex isn’t usually the best sex. I had heard that good sex takes work. I knew that it would probably be uncomfortable at first. But what nobody ever, EVER told me was that it was possible that it just might not work at all at first. On my wedding night, my mind and heart were there, but my body was locked up tighter than Maid Marian’s chastity belt.

I entered marriage with the firm conviction that God rewards those who wait, only to find myself confounded by the mechanics. I felt like an utter failure, both as a wife and a woman. And while we did (eventually) get things working, this was hard, frustrating, embarrassing and a huge blow to our confidences.

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Categories: Sex

4 Comments on “Four Lies the Church Taught Me About Sex”

  1. August 8, 2014 at 8:39 am #

    Reblogged this on Giai01's Blog and commented:
    xem

  2. August 8, 2014 at 9:16 am #

    I suppose we must congratulate her for realising the church lied to her. What she does not seem to understand is that the whole religion is a lie, designed to control people through fear.

  3. August 8, 2014 at 11:19 am #

    Abrahamic religions’ sinister obsession with controlling people’s sex lives is a really, really bad joke.
    Why don’t they focus on flushing out all those awful paedophiles infesting their ranks, rather than making decent people feel awful about getting on with with each other.
    A plague on all their houses 😦

  4. dirk_gently
    August 9, 2014 at 2:11 pm #

    Only the first two here. The ‘read more’ link leads to the Relevant Magazine which appears to be a christian website; where by clicking ‘read more’ again you can read the other two.

    Basically though, she is bestowing a truism which is indeed ‘relevant’ but not centrally ‘christian’ at its core; good sex takes practice, and patience. And anyone who tells you otherwise is hiding something.

    The source of the misinformation could be the church (as in this case) or it could be your school friends, your parents, or maybe even a self assumption based on accessible media.

    What the message should be is ‘everyone has the right to great sex, but never assume you are going to get it’, particularly if you have never had sex before.

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