How To Discuss Abstinence With Your Boyfriend

You have been dating someone for a few weeks or months and decided to give the relationship a try. But in order to proceed with the relationship, you need to have ‘the talk’ and are asking yourself “How to discuss abstinence with your boyfriend”.

The simple thought of that conversation intimidates you. You start to imagine all the different left turns that that conversation can take and freeze.

Will he understand? Will he be on board? Will he be annoyed? Will he be angry? Will he break up with me? And these are just a few of the crazy scenarios I can think of.

Ideally, both of you are devoted Christians and have decided to be celibate before meeting each other, which makes him ‘The One’ of course. But what if that’s not the case?

Even in the Christian circle, you will meet men as well as women that have not yet been convicted about their sexual activity and refuse to give it over to God.

Yes, YOU might be able to control your sexual desires, but in order to have a healthy relationship, your partner needs to be on the same page as you.

That’s why today I’m sharing with you how to discuss abstinence with your boyfriend.

5 Tips how to discuss abstinence with your boyfriend

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The below Bible Verses have been quoted from the Life Application Study Bible (NIV).

1. Check your heart

Usually, I keep the most challenging point until the very end. So that you may read the whole post before getting uncomfortable. But this time I decided to hit with it first.

Before you discuss abstinence with your boyfriend, it is very important that you check your heart first. Ask yourself why you want to abstain from sex.

If it is because you want to manipulate him into marrying you faster. Then my friend you are definitely not ready to get married and should not even be in a relationship with him.

Instead trust God, that he will soften his heart, if the two are meant to be together.  

The main reason why celibacy should be your goal in a relationship is to honor God with your relationship and ensure that you put him first.

By practicing abstinence in a God-honoring way, both of you will be able to focus on the relationship. You will be able to increase intimacy outside of the physical connection.

And most importantly when you detect deal breakers in your relationship, you won’t prolong the break-up process, because you are having sex.

2. Acknowledge his struggle

While for women abstaining from sex is pretty much an option and no big deal. Men’s desire for sex runs wayyyy deeper.

According to a friend of mine not being able to ejaculate for a long period of time is almost like not allowing yourself to pee. Which sounds horrible to me.

Trust me I am not trying to find excuses for men to give in to their fleshly desires. But I also don’t want to undermine the specific challenge men have. That we women might not be able to understand or even comprehend.

Therefore, when you are getting ready to discuss abstinence with your boyfriend. Make sure to acknowledge the challenge he is facing.

Try to sympathize with it, without lowering your standards. Help him by doing some research on the topic. Find Christian men online or offline to point him towards.

This will help you create a safe place for him. Which will enable him to share with you when he is struggling. So that you can pray for him and ask God for supernatural strength.


How To Discuss Abstinence With Your Boyfriend

3. Understand the facts

While I am very well aware that the Bible says to abstain from sex until marriage (1 Corinthians 7:2) and that should be reason enough for you not to do it. I’m also all about practical Christianity.

Meaning I spend a lot of time researching and understanding why God intended sex to be exclusive to marriage and how abstinence in a relationship is actually a benefit.

As mentioned above, abstaining from sex leads to greater intimacy in your relationship. Contrarily to common believe, sleeping with someone only gets you close to them on a superficial, physical level.

Real intimacy comes from getting to know each other on a deeper level. And entrusting each other with parts of yourselves that you prefer to keep hidden.

When your boyfriend confides his dreams, aspirations, and fears to you, that’s when you know you’re really being intimate with each other.

Secondly, one of the most important benefits a Christian gains from waiting until marriage is actually a fruit of the spirit –self-control.

Developing self-control is not an easy task, especially in a time where we are taught that we can have whatever our hearts, bodies, and minds desire without committing to anything.

But as a Christian, we know that we can’t just go around indulging in sin. Therefore, being able to control such a ‘natural’ part of the human body, will teach you self-control. Not just in your love life but also in other areas of your life.

The next one is my favorite (you already know that when I say that, it means I suffered from it in the past lol).

Being able to discern God’s plan for the relationship without being manipulated by your own flesh and heart. But rather clearly see that he’s not the one for you

Us women, we tend to cling to the relationship if sex is involved. Because we are ashamed to have given ourselves to yet another man.

Men tend to cling to the relationship when sex is involved because they like the convenience and familiarity of it.

Leading both of them to prolong the break-up process even if God is clearly pointing out huge red flags in the relationship. Don’t intensify your soul tie by adding sex into the mix.

4. Don’t decide for the both of you

Decisions made in a relationship should be mutual agreements between two people.

I once read that ‘a woman can just decide to go celibate because it’s her body’. While I agree that you should do what you feel is right for you and your body.

Understand that ‘a man can just decide to exit the relationship because it’s his life’.

Make sure to discuss abstinence with your boyfriend as early as possible. This will give him a chance to follow suit or end the relationship.

Sharing your conviction and faith with him will allow him to understand you better. And present itself as an opportunity for God to work on his heart as well.

However, understand and prepare yourself for the possibility that he doesn’t want to be with you anymore. Don’t try to change his mind, beg him to stay or guilt-trip him through manipulation.

Instead, respect his decision and thank God for an amicable break-up.

5. Don’t wait until you are in Love

The hardest part about having the ‘no sex’ talk, is that you don’t want to hurt yourself and/or your partner.

That’s why waiting until you are in love to discuss abstinence with your boyfriend is too late. You risk to seriously hurt him with an ultimatum like that.

And ladies, I know some of you think that waiting for feelings to run deep before having this conversation is a smart idea. Because then you can ‘trap’ him easier. But trust me when I tell you that is NOT the move.

As a Christian woman, your goal should be to deal with the topic with integrity and kindness. Just as you hope to receive from him in return.

Same goes for your feelings. Don’t break your own heart, by making it harder than it should be. Instead, be brave enough to bring it up at the beginning of your dating season, courtship or relationship.

The earlier you discuss abstinence with your boyfriend, the more logical and rational the conversation will be.

5 Tips how to discuss abstinence in a relationship

Remember to include God when you discuss abstinence with your boyfriend, by praying before the conversation. Ask him to soften your boyfriend’s heart and to strengthen you to stand firm on your beliefs.

Have you ever had to discuss abstinence with your boyfriend? Share BELOW!

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30 Comments on When And How To Discuss Abstinence With Your Boyfriend

  1. I did very earlier than he break up with me. I thank God for that because I was praying asking God to if it is not the one, to make him run away from me. After our conversation I never heard from him, I guess that God had given me the answer.

  2. We started dating for a while, things became very shaky, I initiated a break-up. But because he kept coming back and was always there no matter how much I ignored him, I felt God had a plan for us both. We got back together and at some point, we got to talk about celibacy. I wanted to remain celibate until marriage but he pointed out and was being honest about him not being able to carry through because of his sexual urges, how it might not be easy for him as he has had sex many times before and how it was so easy for him to get it anywhere else if he had such urges. He also talked about how it was easy for me to make such decision because I haven’t had the experience of sexual satisfaction and I agreed but I still stood my grounds. He asked if I didn’t think it was possible for him to change me and I agreed. It was at that point I knew things wouldn’t work out because I didn’t want to be changed. My values are my values. So I suggested we we ended the relationship and be friends who don’t feel obligated to one another because that was the healthhy way to go about it. He wasn’t happy about ending the relationship but I didn’t see us holding the same values so I had to stand my ground.

  3. Wow I’m so proud of you for standing your ground. I personally know that it can be scary and emotional having to say no, when you are afraid the other person won’t stay. But God himself has a plan and will bless your decision.

  4. Thanks for the blog post. Im currently doing some research on purity cultures and evangelicals and found this. It’s an interesting read on male female relationships and the assumption that has been around since the start of the purity movement (think late 1800’s, we are all a product of our culture) that women don’t want to have sex as much as men. There’s also a large racist element about its roots as well if that matters. Thanks for the insight.

  5. I met him and we had our first proper date in a restaurant in my city. Our second date was in his city but I also went to his house before going out for the date. We got comfortable and because the attraction was mutual we got to kissing and he got carried away. I tried my best to kill the mood/ vibe sensitively without rejecting him.

    When it seemed that our hormones had calmed down, I told him I wanted to continue practising celibacy. He was confused and taken aback. I think we said very little about it and for the rest of our time together.

    On our next date we talked about it and he said he had thought about it and thought what we had together was worth too much and he couldn’t throw it away because of celibacy. I was so floored, I could have cried if I wasnt so hard headed. We continue strivig for this and he is super supportive, its encouragig and waems my heart ?

  6. Hey Candice,

    Your research all spunds very interesting. Do you mind sharing your research regarding the product of our culture and the racist element please?

    Thabk you!

  7. This recently just happen to me, which is why I’m here, trying to cope with the fact, that someone I really liked and saw a future with pulled a ghost move on me. I would love to wait to marriage, that has been my dream my whole life, but now my goal is a deep, committed relationship. Sex is a very spiritual experience for me, and I can just can’t have that experience with anyone and development a real solid relationship before sex is how explained it. We were having a lot of intimate encounters and they were starting to get pretty intense, and I honestly take the blame for that, cause that probably played with his sexual emotions. Actually, I was playing with myself and starting to feel bad about what was going on, I prayed that if this this relationship is going to cause me to compromise my values and he wasn’t the right for this journey, take his interest away, then a week later he stood me up! I’m sad, but I got what asked for and better that it happen now, than after we had sex!!

    Thanks for this article…it really helped.

  8. Hey,thanks for this blog post.
    So i met the sweetest Christian man about two months ago and we connected perfectly,we started dating 2 weeks back after we had gone on several dates and the night he asked me to be his girl,i accepted but considering God comes first,i brought up the celibacy topic and he said we will do everything God’s way.The next morning he asked us to kneel and he prayed to God for us and asked God to be our guide through this..i cried all through the prayer coz it seemed unreal..I thank God so much for him and we are doing okay…I feel it that he might be the one.??

  9. What if you already have had sex and your boyfriend, and you live with each other, but now you are working on improving your relationship with God and walk the path of righteousness how do you have this talk.

  10. Hey Yoli, you do the same as mentioned in this post. With the difference that you repent and work out a way to talk about it before. There is no guarantee that he will be down for it, especially because you live together. But it’s up to you to decide if you want to follow Christ wholeheartedly or not.

  11. I really thank God for this post. I’m a male and i live with my girlfriend. We work in same company, we do everything almost together but not to the glory of God. She’d tell me about quitting “sex” of a thing and i’d agree, later on, give in.. Like it just happened. So i decided to search for purity and i found this blog. And I’m ready to do whatever it takes to keep to it. Thanks so much.

  12. As a man, I want to clarify something. I hope this will be as helpful for men as for women. This statement is false: “not being able to ejaculate for a long period of time is almost like not allowing yourself to pee.”

    If a man feels this way, it means that he either is crossing his boundaries, has a lust problem, or is addicted to sex. In those cases, the man continually experiences sexual tension building up.

    If he is teasing his body through things like cuddling or kissing, he needs to acknowledge his weakness and give up what he must to be pure before God. If he experiences sexual tension from merely being around a woman, that is definitely a lust issue.

    You may hear men have issues regarding what the women wear or how they act. I think it is respectful for women (and men) to be modest. But, a man is capable of resisting lust even when confronted with a nude seductress. It may take him a while to detox and renew his mind in God to reach that point, but it is possible. Are men predisposed to be incapable of resisting sin? To say so places a lot of power upon women, and it simply is not true.

    If you are a man or are a woman dating a man who feels like he NEEDS sexual release, I encourage you to dig deeper into the root cause and to seek God. You can overcome it, but, if it is more than a simple boundary problem, it will take time to renew the mind.

    Anyway, I loved the article. With how sexualized and perverted modern culture is, there is a strong need for Christians to teach the proper role of sex and how to go about issues around it. Thank you.

  13. Hi,
    I recently met a young lady with whom I fell in love with.

    I am a Christian, and one thing I hold really dear is sexual celibacy before marriage. My girlfriend seems to hold same virtues if I will hold her by her words, and most times I feel that I should.

    However, I am scared. She seems to complain so much about her feminity (breast pain, sexual urge and really wants me to know for reasons I don’t get) that I feel she is really lying to me about her sexual purity. Many times she says she wants me to cuddle her, hold her close or kiss her, and I’m afraid that all these can lead to sexual temptations. She also agrees that she’s vulnerable.

    I really wonder that if she says she’s been celibate then why does she have all these sexual desires and express them to me. If I don’t maintain discipline myself, I think she tempts me sort off.

    What do you think I should do? I’m really afraid of making really wrong choices that will affect me for the rest of my life.

    Thanks in anticipation.

  14. But maybe she just needs you to hug her sometimes, kiss her hand, caress her face, show her affection.
    I don’t think celibacy it’s about being completely cold with each other. It’s about feeling intimate through gestures, communication, support, protection, respect, openness, gentleness.

  15. Oh goodness I’m having the same issue as Yoli. I am currently living with my boyfriend, going on 6 months now. I have been trying to study the word, keep myself busy with work. He is very affectionate and wants to have sex, but Everytime we are intimate Im convicted afterwards and ask for forgiveness.
    I am expressed this a little to him and he feels a slight guilt but not for long. I want us to grow spiritually, but I know he won’t go along. I honestly don’t know what to do.

  16. Hi Vic, I can understand that this is a hard decision because you have built a bond with your boyfriend. But please understand that it is not on him to facilitate your conviction. It’s on you. If you feel convicted to stop, then you have to make the decision to end the physical intimacy and be prepared for the consequences. I suggest you really pray about it and ask yourself why you are having a hard time obeying God’s word and the holy spirit inside of you. You might find out that your fear of being alone is greater than your desire to obey God.

    Love & Light

  17. Thanks for this post.
    I met a guy and we agreed to date each other. Within the first week of our relationship, I brought up the issue of celibacy. He agreed with me, however, he told me he isn’t a virgin anymore but he will support me. Today, he was asking if kissing is out of boundary in our relationship of which I told him yes… He seems to be annoyed by it and hasn’t replied my messages. What should I do?

  18. If kissing is out of your comfort zone, then stand your ground. There is nothing wrong with keeping your boundaries, as long as you are doing it for the right reasons and not because you want to meet someone else’s standard of a Christian couple.

  19. I am so grateful for this post. So many people say they want to wait but don’t. This could help them.

  20. Thanks for this post. My ex and I broke up three months ago after being together for 10 years (we started dating when we were 18). We broke up because it felt like life was pulling us in different directions and we couldn’t seem to figure out how to move forward in a way that would make us both happy. I was really heartbroken so I spent a lot of time in prayer and reflecting on the relationship in order to understand what went wrong and what lessons I needed to learn from it. I realised that one of the main issues was that God was not in the relationship. We were both christians but Our relationship did not reflect that. I made a decision that my next relationship would be different and I needed God to be at the heart of it, and so I wasn’t going to have sex until marriage. A few weeks ago my ex got in contact with me saying he would like us to work things out. I know I have to tell him about my decision but I’m worried that he won’t take it well. We had spoken about celibacy in the past and he wasn’t for it then which is what is making me nervous now.

  21. Hey Danielle, thanks for sharing. I totally get where you are coming from. However, as long as you are with your ex-boyfriend because you are worried/fear to lose him, the relationship will always be off-balance. You need to get to a point where your desire to have peace, honor God, and do what is right for you is more important to you.

    Love & Light

  22. she is my first girlfriend and she was the one who introduce me to sex I really realy love my girlfriend so much but Im having problem right now because she proposed that we should practice abstinence eventhough we already had sex, I really liked how our relationship was and Im afraid that abstinence might make affect it badly. But I want to respect her decision because i really love her but im having a hard time controlling myself when things get intimate between us, how should I stop myself from this urges? I really want to make our relationship work and im afraid if im not able to stop myself she will also give in to me and I wil feel like im the bad guy that lures her into disobeying her values. Huhuhuhu

  23. This article resonates with me so much. In the last couple of days I was finally able to hold my ground and open up to my boyfriend about celibacy. We have had sexual relations before, but prior to that I really wanted to save it for marriage, and he understood that at that time. However, I didn’t fully understand why I wanted to save it for marriage, and become open to the interpretations of sex as part of physiology.

    In the 5 years we have been together, while we did keep our sexual relationship, I was also working on deepening my faith. I exposed myself to scriptures and prayed. I also attended personal development and life seminars. And in my spiritual journey, the value of purity became clear to me.

    At the end of the day, my greatest mission in the world is to be good and do good, and glorify God. And with that, wanting the same for others, the desire for me and my loved wants to go to heaven, I also found that my mission is to do my part in helping others also achieve that.

    Because of this article, I get it now, how it might be less taxing for women and “easier” for women to be converted and stand their ground on this. But I also want to share how it took me some time to get here, to be confident that if my partner wanted to walk away, of course I’ll be sad, but I trust that God will help me be okay again.

    Thankfully, while my boyfriend admitted that he’s scared it won’t work out, he was also able to discuss his side in moving forward. He gave examples, such as journaling and praying when he does get sexual urges. I appreciate his honesty, but I am also honestly scared because of his frustration and fear that it won’t work out. I put my trust in God, but I wish I could do something about the sadness I feel when the thought that it won’t work out creeps in. I guess that’s the sacrifice in all this for me right now. I love my boyfriend so much, and I really hope and pray he is the one.

  24. I’ve been with my boyfriend for 7 months. We lost our virginities together, and I was the initiator. He told me multiple times beforehand that he would respect my boundaries in the relationship but I fell into the temptation first. We’ve been having sex regularly and I’ve always felt guilty about it. I’ve just rededicated my life to christ and I know that abstinence until marriage is in order. (Which, if I do end up marrying him, won’t be for at least four or five years.) He’s become very used to our sexual relationship and he values it. How should I bring up my feelings and decision to him? I don’t want it to seem like I don’t love him anymore, because I love him very deeply. I’m worried that cutting off our sexual relationship after being guilty of initiating it will cause him to think so.

  25. This article was so realistic and just what I needed. Thank you for sharing.

    I recently shared with my boyfriend of over 2 years that I needed to make this decision to honor God. I explained to him that he could benefit from this decision as well. I am in a place in my life where I desire to live for God and give my all. I don’t want to miss out on His promises for a moment of satisfaction. We experienced a terrible miscarriage last year and my walk with God has changed for the better, over these last months. I watched my mother’s boyfriend who loved her, walk away when celibacy was put on the table. He is aware of this story and said that he is not going to walk out on me because of sex. I have to really keep praying because his urges seem to be greater and more frequent after our conversation. Prior to our talk, we could be together and he would never try anything. He also has made a few sarcastic remarks about not getting sex but claims to not be upset. I am not begging him to stay nor do I feel the need to give in. I just wish he had a better understanding. I guess if it’s meant …his heart will be convicted and his mind renewed. Or maybe its time to part ways.

  26. I meet this guy just five months now,we started dating in early two months,he had been demanding for sex but I told him am a Christian and doesn’t want to fornicate.He understood at first and later on he had been worrying me of sex,but he is a Muslim and am a Christian,whenever I try to talk to him about abstainance until marriage,he gets angry.Please i need help here.

  27. I have this boyfriend that I met online, but he’s currently studying abroad and wants me to go there to him so that we can live there and go to school together. He’s been really trying his best to help me get on the school’s scholarship and has been spending a lot of money so that I can be there with him. The thing is that, I’m a Christian that’s been abstaining from sex for awhile now even though it wasn’t easy to have that self control, but it was achieved actually by constant prayers.
    Each time this guy calls me, he will always be talking about sex, sex, sex! But I most of the time keep quiet when he’s talking about it.

    The big issue I’m facing now is that, I don’t wanna miss my chances and opportunities of studying abroad because I’m not financially strong. So what I’ve planned on doing is that, when I get there and be with him, I’ll love to discuss celibacy with him and read God’s word and ask God to soften his heart if we’re actually meant to be. On the other hand, I’m so afraid that I might just make me to feel so discouraged about me and decides not to continue helping me. I’m so confused and worried right now. I need solutions I need pieces of advice on what to do please.

  28. My boyfriend and I met in 2018, we dated for 9 months, and I broke up with him because as someone practicing celibacy, I wasn’t really comfortable with all the sexual tensions although we didn’t have sex. For over a year after the break up, we were not in contact, this is someone I love so much but I wasn’t willing to compromise my values for him. Fast forward to mid 2020, we got talking again and 2021, we got back together. Now that we are back together, I decided to talk to him about my celibacy and sex in general and how we should dedicate our relationship to God, involve God this time around, and to God be the Glory he accepted, said we should give it a try, and you can imagine how surprised and relieved I am because this is someone that doesn’t go without having sex in months, talk more of a year. I have told God that if this relationship is his will, then he should continue to hold it and if it isn’t, we shouldn’t last up to six months, and I think I got my answer already because when I came across a surah in the Qur’an after that prayer, one particular verse stood out to me because it talks about how God sees and knows everything about us as humans and how we should wait for his signs,soon he will show it. I felt that God was speaking to me at that moment that he had indeed heard my prayers, all I just needed to do is to wait for his signs. And recently, most of the surahs I have been coming across speaks about immorality, formication, etc. So I guess God is still speaking to me. I am trying so hard to help my man build a more balanced and sufficient relationship with God, and I pray God will make it easy for me if it is will. Amen. Thank you for the write up Justine, it made me understand a lot of things I didn’t understand before. Thank you. And I’d like to be in contact with you privately too if you do not mind. Ciaó

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