Stuff Christian Culture Likes

Stuff Christian Culture Likes


#12 Waiting until your wedding day to kiss

posted by Stephanie Drury

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Who does this? Well, a lot of Christians do. If you google it you’ll find blogs and message boards filled with accounts of people who are waiting for their wedding day to kiss someone, anyone, for the first time.

This idea is popular almost exclusively in Christian culture and orthodox Muslim communities, but in Christianity you usually get to pick your spouse yourself and see your fiancee’s face without a veil before the wedding day. The reasons the Christians cite for waiting till their wedding day often include:

-they don’t want to be overwhelmed by temptation before they are legally married so they’re not going to get the ball rolling beforehand.

-they have been “sexually impure” in the past and don’t want to be tempted to repeat history. (Without fail, these couples also make a point of letting everyone know they are careful not to put themselves in tempting situations and spend their time together with their friends or in public.)

-they want the kiss to “mean something.”

-they say being able not to kiss before marriage will mean you have a strong relationship and therefore it will last.

The irony of this unusual decision lies in the fact that it somehow takes on an idolatrous quality. The focus is on how they are not kissing and therefore how “pure” they are. Their not-kissing becomes a sort of idol. The couple is commended vigorously by the Christian community. “I personally could never do it. I admire you for doing this.” “Kudos on your commitment to purity!” “Whoo, that’s gonna be some wedding night!” (Is it ever.) The not-kissing decision also is never kept secret. If the decision not to kiss was kept private then it could possibly be construed by the general populus as special and romantic (albeit weird), but when your extended relatives and neighbors down the street know you are not kissing until the altar, it takes on a voyueristic quality. When attending a wedding where the bride and groom haven’t kissed, it is all anyone talks about while waiting for the ceremony to start. You’re nervous for them. You’re embarrassed that their grandparents are watching. You think about the wedding night and how they’re going to go from zero to sex in one go, then you wince at the images flooding your brain. You may suffer dizziness, nausea, and even lack of faith. Why would God encourage people to not kiss until their wedding day? Do I want to serve a God that wants us to be that pure and holy? Then if you are lucky, you will realize that the not-kissing decision has nothing to do with God and most likely has everything to do with them. The years the couple has spent listening to Josh MacDowell “Why Wait?” sermons in youth group struck terror of physical intimacy deep within their hearts and by the time they met each other they hadn’t kissed anyone at all because they’d been too afraid. This can lead to this extremist notion of putting the whole thing off. WAY off.

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If you are a Christian male and your girlfriend wants to wait to kiss until you’re married, your hands are tied. Any misgivings about her decision can too easily be interpreted as being disrespectful of her “commitment to purity” and any protesting on your part could make you look like a filthy horndog who isn’t really interested in marriage. The bride often has little to no sex drive as she has been raised to think sex is irrelevant and sort of dirty, so they compromise by not kissing till the altar and ride the endorphins of glowing commendation on their purity from their family and friends. Then once they’re married the husband is ready to go but the wife is terrified. He spends the honeymoon furiously bench pressing in the hotel gym while she cries in a corner of their honeymoon suite and calls her mom.

Glory be to God!



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mushroommeadows

posted August 13, 2008 at 10:05 pm


I totally agree with you on this one. One can err on the side of being too prideful and haughty by making this the most important aspect of the relationship.



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Simone

posted August 14, 2008 at 12:14 am


Do you know people who have experienced their honeymoons as concluded in this post? Truly tragic, if so.It does all beg the question, if you are going to wait for sex, why not kissing. Since I don’t believe in waiting for sex, the sane and insane place to draw the lines are blurry to me.



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hrm1818

posted August 14, 2008 at 2:28 pm


Do you remember the “steps to premarital sex” that started with “Pinkies Touch” ??? I don’t remember how many steps there actually were, but I remember the first one was, the couple is walking together and their pinkies touch, and they don’t pull their hands away, which leads to ‘Holding Hands’ (Oh DEAR GOD NO!!), which leads to arms around the shoulders, etc, etc… Was that part of the “Why Wait” youth conference or another one I went to? I don’t know.Crazy sh** man.



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stephy

posted August 14, 2008 at 2:35 pm


I do remember steps! But they were James Dobson’s steps. He drew a line below the 3rd step, which was face-to-face. He said going beyond that wasn’t good. Another step that was super intimate was the hand to head, he said. One of the steps was called “touching below the waist.” Ha ha! I’m in the audience in the James Dobson ‘Life on the Edge’ video, I was at Summit in 1991 and they used us as the audience for the video. There’s a closeup of me for like 4 seconds. I’ve got to find that video somewhere.Do you remember when your dad said “Hannah, you look like you were poured into those jeans”?



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Anonymous

posted August 15, 2008 at 10:28 am


Oh Lord, I actually read that “I kissed dating goodbye” book in college. I hadn’t ever had a boyfriend and to be honest I was hoping that if I did what the book said it would somehow magically produce a person to get hitched to. Was I ever so young?Anyway, I think you make a really good point about how it can turn into an idol for people. When I was in college a friend of mine knew a couple who were waiting to kiss until their wedding day. I didn’t even personally know these people (although I knew who they were) but I knew that about them. I asked if that wouldn’t perhaps make the wedding night something of a shock, and my friend said that they were going to take things slowly after the wedding. Why did everyone need to know that?! Becca



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angela aka mrs. maverick

posted September 2, 2008 at 7:47 pm


1. it is good for a man not to touch a woman (1 Cor. 7: 1)kissing is touching. 2. i got married to fulfill Scripture (1 Cor. 7:9)



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Simone

posted September 4, 2008 at 11:00 am


So it’s better to marry the first person you’re horny for so you can “do it”, rather than kiss a few people while finding someone with whom you can actually have a deep and meaningful relationship? Makes sense!



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stephy

posted September 4, 2008 at 11:08 am


Yeah, I actually think that happens a lot.



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angela aka mrs. maverick

posted September 4, 2008 at 1:40 pm


1. i see my attempt at being humorous fell flat. 2. i don’t agree you should marry the first person that turns you on 3. committed Christians usually do marry quickly to avoid fornicating. 4. kissing oft time leads to stumbling for lots of Christians. 5. looking forward to stephy’s post on stumbling issues.



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Simone

posted September 5, 2008 at 2:10 am


But 1 Cor. 7:9 says better to marry than to be lustful, or something like that! I was just going off the quote you supplied!What is worse? Premature marriage to the wrong person to avoid unmarried fornication or marrying a bad person hastily because you are horny and then bringing children into a terrible family situation? It’s a very common an unfortunate occurrence, one which I think can be avoided with a little kissing at the very least.



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angela aka mrs. maverick

posted September 5, 2008 at 5:24 pm


actually you’re asking the same thing (minus the children) just worded differently. how do you know you’re marrying the wrong person?- it’s not like they have a sign on their head stating “i’m the wrong person, it’s best that you don’t marry me”. i already said, jumping into a quickie marriage to keep from fornicating isn’t wise, however, the individuals doing this usually don’t think the person they’re getting hitched to is wrong for them.on the other hand, a person puckering up with everybody they’ve got the hots for before settling for one set of lips doesn’t guarantee they’ve made the right choice either.could still end up with a straight up jerk. and then the children come…



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Anonymous

posted October 25, 2008 at 9:19 pm


Wow, I never thought of this before. I am a girl and I was thinking about doing this. I can see what you mean. I probably wont do it that anymore. Spending too much time worrying about nothing.



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Anonymous

posted January 6, 2009 at 8:22 pm


Why should it be anyones’ business when someone kisses? It shouldn’t be a big deal either way.



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Anonymous

posted March 27, 2009 at 7:57 am


First of all, I’d like to point out that any physical touch is an expression of where your heart is. There more you give, the more of your heart is being represented. In all honesty, if a guy has no respect for my heart and thinks he can just walk in and take it without any commitment to keeping it, he is not worth my time of day. Same goes for the girl. The whole point of waiting is respect for eachother. It has nothing to do with any susitions that “if we do this our marriage will last longer”. It has to do with the knowledge that one day, that person WILL be married to SOMEBODY. Would it be okay for a man’s wife to kiss someone else? Absolutely not! Why? Because that part of her heart belongs to her husband and no one else. We wait for the vows to kiss out of RESPECT for eachother, and for the other’s ossible spouse and, I hate to break it to you, but that very well might NOT be you. Aother reason to wait is for the commitment. If you don’t take your “till death do us part” vows seriously, then you go right ahead and kiss everyone you want to. You’ll probably just devorse whoever you say them to anyway. But if you really mean what you say, and commit to never devorsing your spouce… THAT’S commitment, and waiting to kiss a person until you make that commitment is just PART of it. It says, I have never given this part of me to anyone else and I never will. In all honesty, if a couple has kept a commitment for that long, my confidence that they can keep one for the rest of their lies is strengthened. Lastly, It is totally up to the couple how much they want to give to eachother before marriage. Reading posts like this make them feel like this decision is stupid and that is NOT what they need. Offering advice and a simple suggestion is fine, but do you realize how much pressure they’re under from just their own emotions to keep this conviction? They need support, not ridicule. *chuckles* Okay, I’m going to get off my soap box now. I just didn’t want anyone to read all these things and not think there was another side to the matter. Forgive me if I have offended anyone, but in all honesty, alot of what was said offended ME, so I guess we’re not strangers to the freedom of speach here. Just so you know, I’m 20 years old, never kissed a soul. I’m engaged to be married to a man of God in June. Out of resect for eachother (not an idol or pride or anything else) it will be our very first kiss, and I don’t think I’ll have ANY problem going from 0 to 100 that night either. I love the man. Never loved anyone else. And I know exactly what it means to be married to him. No worries there, trust me.



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Anonymous

posted March 30, 2009 at 3:56 pm


I agree that couples shouldn’t go around telling (boasting to) everyone that they haven’t kissed. I went to a wedding where they had waited for their first kiss and the Pastor ‘kindly’ announced to everyone before the kiss that it was their first. As if you’re not nervous enough already without everyone waiting to see your first kiss! I think people do do it for the wrong reasons, but you should respect the people who do for the right reasons.I made the decision not to kiss from watching the experience of my sisters. They both went out with guys they didn’t even really like and yet were content to pash the heck out of each other. Long story short they both broke it off with their boyfriends and left the guys in a total mess which still effects their lives many years later.Now I’m not saying that happens to everyone, but I’d rather not ruin someone’s life by rushing into kissing. Yes it’s REALLY hard not to kiss especially when you’re engaged, but I’d rather not awaken love before its time.The hardest thing to start off with is telling the other person of your decision. I was so worried about telling my man, but he actually brought it up which made it so much easier.Yes there are some people who know about our decision but it goes deeper than that. Boundaries are the hardest but best things to have in a relationship and you need people to keep you accountable. They may not agree with what you’re doing but they’ll keep you to your commitment. How can we lead by example if know one knows what we are doing?But lead by example, by doing (or not as the case may be) not by telling everyone. Because it’s also like you’re saying to people we’re doing it this way and you should too. Not everyone can do it the same as you. It’s up to you as a couple. We can’t expect people to take our advice if we haven’t walked the path. It is working for us, but with under a month to go ’til our wedding it feels like you’re so close and yet still sooooooooo far away. Yes, it’s a little scary, but so is anyone’s first time. We’ve talked about it enough to know there wont be any issues with the wedding night, but that it wont be perfect either. But that’s the joys of marriage – practice makes perfect.My advice to anyone reading this would be, have respect for each others bodies. If they don’t end up being the person you marry, at least you know you’ve kept them safe for their future spouse.



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Anonymous

posted April 20, 2009 at 7:04 pm


“Do I want to serve a God that wants us to be that pure and holy?”YES!! because what else is holiness? one splash of red in a bucket of white paint makes it all pink…



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Doxy

posted May 12, 2009 at 12:42 pm


This is NOT Christianity. It’s gnosticism, pure and simple.I grew up in a church that taught us “Sex is dirty and sinful—so save it for marriage.” Like every other demographic in the country, about half of us are divorced now.So best of luck to you, Anon. I hope you beat the stats—but it will be in spite of not having kissed your mate, not because of it.



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a.barefoot

posted June 18, 2009 at 12:28 pm


This.was.hilarious.Especially because I KNOW of a couple that that last sentence happened to.



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ben parsons

posted June 27, 2009 at 9:06 am


i kissed joshua harris.



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stephy

posted June 29, 2009 at 10:08 pm


I kissed someone named Joshua Harris, but who hasn't? It's a common name. Or I guess people who wait till the altar don't kiss Joshua Harrises.



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AmeliePoulain

posted July 1, 2009 at 12:02 pm


So, the evangelical obsession with preventing pre-marital sex has now extending to pre-marital kissing? And holding hands? That's just sad….what you have is an entire generation who doesn't know how to express affection without some automatic connection to sex!As anybody whose ever been pecked on the cheek by siblings, parents, grandparents, friends, etc. knows, kisses don't automatically lead to sex. They can be entirely innocent and loving.Along with the similarly creepy purity ring-phenomenon—I'm sorry, but your Daddy should not be thinking about you *like that*—this makes me feel such pity for couples like those you describe, who are being sexualized by the institution that treats sex as a sin.



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Anonymous

posted July 25, 2009 at 10:25 pm


I have an interesting opinion about this. My boyfriend and I both have sexually impure backgrounds and newly transformed relationships with Jesus Christ. Although we have both kissed and been impure with other people we have committed to staying pure and refraining from kissing until the alter. It was a surprisingly mutual and peaceful decision. We both have read "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" and SEVERAL other Christian Dating books and what we've decided about them is…Don't make them your Bible!We have gained knowledge from several books but we aren't blindly following the words of these authors. A lot of knowledge in that and other books is definitely God given but we ultimately answer to God and follow His word. So you can really gain a lot from books like that, but I would advise anyone to refrain from following it completely.Kissing has not become an issue for us and I'm so grateful for that! I feel like if you fully dedicate your relationship to God that He can take away potential issues. We are in such a great place and I am so excited to see where God leads us!I would encourage anyone to examine their hearts and ask God to reveal to them where their boundaries need to be put and to never falter from them. My boyfriend and I hold hands and hug and give each other kisses on the cheeks and hands, and that is how we show affection and the extent of our intimacy. Any more is too much for us. But at the same time that might be too much for another couple, it all comes down to where you begin to lust and to stay clear of that place. I can tell you this…I can't wait to kiss him on our wedding day! I'm looking foreword to the value that that kiss will have, representing our purity before God, commitment to each other, and life together!



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janet

posted July 29, 2009 at 7:32 am


Well these comments really underscore your point about anonymous posters defending their religion.I laughed out loud a few times, Anonymous Ones, so thanks for sharing.Love your blog!



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Ruth

posted August 9, 2009 at 11:44 am


I have read many of your blog entries and I believe that you are right about a lot of things –not everything –but a lot of things. Christian culture is messed up. It's true. There are many hypocrites. The problem is, the way that you are putting Christianity in a box as you are and bashing ALL of it that you can find to bash, you are completely condemning Christianity altogether. There will always be "wheat with the tares" as Jesus Himself said. You are being just as narrow-minded about these things as the Christian culture that you are condemning. You cannot see into people's hearts and judge them. Only God alone can judge the hearts of these people. You do not know really why they are doing these things or making the decisions that they make. I agree that Christian culture can be very sickening. But some people truly want to seek God. He reveals to us His character in His Word and He is pure. He honors commitment and fidelity in marriage. He hates divorce. He created sex to be a pure union between one man and one woman in the context of marriage. This is all in His word (and yes, I make my pronouns capitalized when I speak of Him because He is worthy of all honor and praise). Out of faith many of us want to follow the character of our Heavenly Father. And YES, some of us do actually believe He IS and that He is rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Jesus condemned bitterness. He said that if we refuse to have graciousness in our dealings with ALL men, then He Himself will not have graciousness for us when we stand before His judgment seat. Only Christ can save us. No works of our own. But to hold on to bitterness keeps us from the mercy of Christ. With all respect.



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stephy

posted August 9, 2009 at 2:49 pm


Hi Ruth,I appreciate your concern. The point of this blog is that there is something about clinging to a culture's ideas of how to be a "good Christian" that cuts out so much of the beauty and mystery in knowing God. It's like squishing something into a box to make it fit and make it palatable instead of being in an open field that isn't packaged and predictable but there is so much room for beauty and joy. I hope others can see that, and many have told me they have because of this blog. I want to show the disparity between the culture and the actual person of Christ. Thanks for your interest and your prayers.



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Andrew

posted August 9, 2009 at 3:33 pm


Do you condemn waiting until marriage for the first kiss, or the pride in telling everyone, or both? Let's make sure we are all on the same page here. Yes, it is hypocritical to do something in the name of God in order to garner the praise or attention of men. It is also pride to confine God to our definition of who and what He should be. So, with that out of the way, who is going to condemn anyone for waiting until they are married for their first kiss? Is it morally wrong? Some of you may argue it isn't the wisest decision (though that can be debated), but is it actually wrong? And who here can peer into the heart of the couple and know why they really made the decision? If you have that ability, let me know, because I could sure use your skills. So, this isn't about waiting to kiss at all, it's about the pride of hypocrisy, or the way we confine God. Let's talk about that, or at least bring up these various "stuff christian culture likes" in such a way that it is clear we are discussing not the actual thing itself, but the way we can wield the thing to confine God or mask our hypocrisy. Otherwise it becomes too easy for people to come in here condemning the act instead of the real problem. It should be clear to all of us that these things, things like waiting to kiss, calling your spouse your best friend, etc, aren't wrong in and of themselves, and can actually be done both from a pure heart, in which case they can be GOOD, or from a hypocritical heart, in which case they become evil. When we jeer others for this decision, though, there is no good to be found in it… we have become judgmental and worse than the people we condemn. This blog could get a lot more "bandwidth" toward the cause against hypocrisy and God-confining if it would stay focused on the real issue. As it is, you have people confused about what you are really condemning.



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Ruth

posted August 9, 2009 at 4:32 pm


Stephy, I appreciate your response. The thing is, that if you want to show people who Christ actually is, show them what His character is like. No, we do not have to follow the American Christian culture's idea of Christianity, but we do need to show the Spirit of Jesus. True Christianity is about reflecting the nature of God shown to us through the person of Christ. What was He like? The Bible reveals it all to us: Gracious, kind, loving, forgiving, long-suffering, Holy, Pure, etc., etc. But let me ask you –was he a mocker? a scoffer? OR was HE mocked and scoffed? You know the answer, preacher kid. ;) All I'm saying, is that if you REALLY want to show people what God is like through the person of Jesus Christ, end your scoffing, mocking session toward Christian American culture. You are not leading people to a true relationship with Christ, which can only be done through showing them the Spirit of Christ which is graciousness, love and forgiveness for all men, even those who are horribly off the deep end. Again, with all respect,Ruth



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stephy

posted August 9, 2009 at 7:12 pm


Ruth, you don't read much Flannery O'Connor, do you?



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skylana

posted August 9, 2009 at 7:19 pm


ruth, is it hard for you to separate jesus from christian culture? i always think that jesus would probably hate it … i mean wasn't HE the one who turned over the tables in the temple out of anger… why? cause THAT was mocking. just like the sickness we have called 'christian culture'. making fun of this fake thing we have created in this country, a superficial culture that thrives off of things that don't matter in life, things that are trivial in comparison to the suffering and pain so many humans are enduring, trivial in comparison to what jesus lived his life for, i think its the healthiest thing we can do to it. look straight at it and say "you are not real, you are laughable and not love." we could argue all day long at what jesus is like but when i read the bible i dont see him sitting around tripping out about people who kiss before they get married, or trying to sell mouse pads with bible verses on them, i see him focusing on real issues in life.



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David

posted August 9, 2009 at 8:56 pm


Ruth:You can't build a new building until you tear the old one down. The tearing down is as vital to the building process as anything else.Christian culture gets in the way of communicating god's character. It must be dealt with.



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ShariMacD

posted August 9, 2009 at 9:35 pm


Ruth (and other dissenters): I don't experience this blog as a mockery, at all. Evangelicals set up Christian culture as a religion in and of itself, and this blog (an excellent example of satire, not mockery, I think) points out the absurdity of that — encouraging people not to take that culture too seriously. Jesus became very angry with the moneychangers at the temple, who were making a profit in the name of religion. Many aspects of Christian culture cited in this blog fall under the same category, though I experience Stephy as being creatively challenging, not angry. If I thought that the Jesus of contemporary Christian culture was the true Jesus, I'd give up on Christianity altogether. This blog is a wonderful, funny, and thought-provoking reminder that culture (Christian or not) is simply culture, that God and Jesus are bigger than (and could never be accurately represented by) such culture. And that when one perceives very real absurdity in Christian culture, one healthy response is not to be disappointed in God or Jesus, but simply to THINK — and, quite often, to laugh. Thank you, Stephy, for your intelligent, badly needed, very funny, and highly challenging observations.



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Steph in Denver

posted August 9, 2009 at 9:41 pm


Stephy & Ruth,This is beautiful: "It's like squishing something into a box to make it fit and make it palatable instead of being in an open field that isn't packaged and predictable but there is so much room for beauty and joy." LOVE! You know we're all trying figure out our faith/spiritual journey/religion and not everyone is going to be on the same page. I have to remind myself with people who are like you, Ruth and some of the other anonymous people. I get what Ruth is saying to Stephy, mostly because people tell me all of the time it's not what I'm saying it's how I'm saying it. But there's also a whole group who are easily offended plus they are offended by pretty much anything because they are right and everyone else is wrong. And I know a lot of Christians come to this blog thinking Stephy is telling everyone else that they are wrong. But I’m not sure she is. Also, it seems like Ruth thinks some things are funny except how you say certain things for example purity. I appreciate Ruth’s reverence for God. I do. However, not every Christian would agree about Ruth’s thoughts "purity" nor Stephy’s. And, not everyone has the same purity convictions as Ruth does or mine. That’s something I had to learn when I moved from the Bible Belt to Denver. But the reality is purity is subjective/gray in the Bible, but for Christian culture it's very black and white. Things are much easier if it’s black and white. So how far can I go? I remember being in Crusade for years and totally going along with the "waiting ‘til I get married to kiss thing." I went along with it b/c I thought that's what you were supposed to do as a Christian. It wasn't my personal "conviction" either. It was my friend's conviction, not mine, but I made it mine too. Didn't kiss anyone for 5 effing years! Don't worry I made up for it. I see where they are coming from though, but it's a private issue and shouldn't be on display for everyone to know. It’s kinda like purity-bragging when reality it isn’t defined for us. We think it is, but it’s not. When I made my faith my own I realized most of that what I went along with wasn't my convictions really. Kissing is fun! Stephy, keep doing this blog. It's hilarious and you are brilliant! Not everyone is going to like it or what you say or how you say it. But I like how you're reminding all of us that Christian culture is funny and we need to figure out why we do certain things. For example, I laugh at the Stuff White People Like b/c it's true, all of it. I'm so white. I don’t take it personally when they say stuff like how white people like to shop at Whole Foods and eat hummus. Yep, I do! So, is it culture telling me to worship God this way or is how I want to worship God? We all have our personal convictions and see things differently but hopefully we know we do. For instance, I remember at the DNC last summer talking to an angry protester who kept yelling "9/11 is an inside job!" I asked him why he believed that because I really wanted to know. And the guy couldn't give me a single reason why he was protesting. It was sad. Know why you’re protesting, dude. And, I think mutual understanding is important to see where we are all coming from. A friend, pastor's wife, once said when a group of us gals were talking about politics over dinner and disagreeing said something along the lines "Isn't it great that all of us can come from different perspectives on politics and not just see things through the same lens." We need the Ruth’s and the anonymous folks too as we all figure out our faith. The Ruth’s remind of certain things and folks like Stephy help others to progress a little and to think about faith differently. The yen and the yang, I suppose. Anyway, Stephy what you're doing is part of the Christian dialogue, albeit online, for this current faith change we are experiencing.-Steph in Denver



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Kari

posted August 21, 2009 at 7:51 am


I think you have to kiss at least a little before you get married. I've ended up in the friend zone from lack of physical contact. My husband and I didn't waste any time when we started dating. We made out on the couch nonstop for the first 3 months we were together. Good times!



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Noelle

posted August 21, 2009 at 5:25 pm


It's not the 'making an idol out of purity' that bothers me, it's the fact that sex is so obsessed over that affection gets pulled into the pit with it, and gestures of affection get tainted by this spectre of unsanctioned sex. :( I hope people living neck-deep in this culture (Christians or not) manage to shrug off the hypocritical stuff and have decent lives.



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Anonymous

posted August 24, 2009 at 12:44 am


I've held to these convictions for years, and not once have been told that sex was dirty. I have been told that it is a beautiful, wonderful gift designed by God for married people. (Heb. 13:4) My relationship with my fiance is not based on performance – how well i kiss or how well i "please" him in that area – but on God's love and plan for each other. God has truly designed us for each other and by taking the time to love the person without something as wonderful as sex, has only brought us closer. I will never have to think, "oh, fred was better" or wonder if he liked the way suzy "loved" him better and am i measuring up? I know he loves me reguardless and that we can both enjoy each other. I dont want to share that or have ex problems. and wuite frankly, i dont want any other girl to have touched him either. Now, my fiance didnt have these convictions till a year before he met me, so he did kiss other girls and almost lost his purity. but i know Godhas made me for him and we can forget that and move on. will i be jealous that some other girl "shared" him? yes, but i can move on. He wishes he never had, and tells me he only wants me. but its not about "HEY LOOK



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marie

posted September 1, 2009 at 3:38 pm


oh yes, I remember reading "I kissed dating goodbye" in high school, and for about a year, I believed that saving your first kiss for your wedding was a very romantic idea. Back then, I swallowed anything Christian culture fed me… One problem that results from this extremely conservative idealogy is that so many Christian couples get married VERY early, because they just can't wait to get physical with each other. They don't see any problem with marrying young because they believe that God has destined them to be together so everything will work out fine. That's probably why Christian divorce rates are even with the rest of the world, despite their beliefs that it's forever.



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Anonymous

posted September 2, 2009 at 9:34 am


The debates are pretty cool. I like the different views that people are posting. The only thing getting to me is this. What is it like comming from both perspectives? I have heard a lot of stories how females have abstained from kissing until they are married, but what about guys? And what about a guy who knows he wont be married for another 5 years at least and is in a relationship where they can't kiss right now?



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Anonymous

posted September 2, 2009 at 9:35 am


oh and by right now I mean the guy and girl are in a relationship but they are not going to get married for at least another 5 years.



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Kayla

posted September 4, 2009 at 9:00 am


My cousin and her husband didn't even hold hands before they got married. He cheated on her with a girl in his youth group.



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Steven Kippel

posted September 4, 2009 at 2:29 pm


Holy crap! I also went to Summit.Idea: Christian Culture Likes saying "freaking."



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Mel T

posted September 10, 2009 at 2:21 am


English fails me in face of such absurdity. Fortunately I have a collection of nonsensical commenter verification words.Potoner! Derign hymmuree satessin, eclest buyespit. Eximble brapitut. Tandenut brapitut. Colledn tuffe redlyali, derign eclest lisanyl tandenut. Hymmuree, hymmuree buyespit!



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Monique

posted September 11, 2009 at 1:26 pm


I am SO glad my husband and I didn't wait to kiss for our wedding! For one thing we were engaged almost 3 years so he could finish college, and for another our first kiss was a disaster! We clanged teeth and it hurt, and we both laughed at how bad we were at kissing! A few days and some bruised, sore lips later, we were kissing pros! Also I just wanted to let you know, I love this blog! I'm an atheist and I suspect the Bible is a fairy tale, but my husband is a pastor's kid and I really hope for his sake there is a heaven because he would go there. I'm confident I would go there too, if god is real and cares more about living a good life than lip service. If he is what Christian Culture says than my husband's relatives are right and I will end up in hell for doubting him, while murderers and child-molesters get into heaven as long as they go to church every Sunday. Your blog is helping me get in touch with my husband's upbringing and some of the stuff he has to overcome to love me despite my godless ways! I don't see it as disrespectful to Christians at all, it's just teasing them a bit for the stuff that deserves teasing! The way I feel about the judgemental and conservative Jesus of mainstream Christian Culture is that if they're right about him, then he doesn't really deserve my worship.



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chris

posted September 28, 2009 at 12:52 am


im a guy in a relationship with a girl who is saving her first kiss til the alter and while i dont personally believe that to be necessary, i am going to respect her wishes and i completely understand where she is coming from. if a relationship before marriage needs the physical aspect of love to survive, it isnt good. sex was designed for marriage so it makes sense for a marriage to need sex, barring any physical issues that prevent it, but beforehand if physical intimacy is an integral part of a relationship, that just doesnt seem to be how its supposed to work. i also like the point another commenter made about having to worry about your spouse thinking oh so-n-so was better and now im stuck with this for the rest of my life. i know i dont want my wife to be thinking that…



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stephy

posted September 28, 2009 at 6:48 am


Hey Chris,nobody wants their wives, or their husbands, to be thinking that. Not kissing won't keep that from happening, just so you know.



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Rollo Tomassi

posted September 28, 2009 at 9:06 am


Denying basic human sexual impulses has been the single most useful tool in CC for centuries. Lets not forget that Jesus said "if you look upon a woman with lust in your heart you've committed adultery with her." By this statement alone 98% of the male population is condemned to hell (the other 2% are blind). You could easily make the case that Jesus is saying "don't even THINK it!", but I think it's meant to illustrate the larger principle of a need for salvation. Jesus is saying you are so hopelessly doomed that even thinking about sinning (not the act) is enough to damn you because God knows your heart. You're screwed. We are inherently imperfect beings (by design), but there is still salvation despite this.The more puritanical of CC might think that's advocating a license to sin, but it's not that we shouldn't strive against sin, rather we need to keep things in perspective. Waiting for a wedding night to even kiss borders on masochism, and I'd argue that it's indicative of a larger psychological problem as opposed to one of morality.By the "don't even think it model" above, a certain degree of sin is necessary to even want to become sexually intimate with another person. At some point you have to look at your future wife and say "Damn, I'd hit that!" You have to imagine what sex would be like with that person, you have to have some degree of sexual arousal prompted by that person. End of story, you thought it, you're screwed, go to Hell, go directly to Hell, do not pass go, do not collect $200. Doesn't matter if you never kissed, dry humped or got a hummer.



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stephy

posted September 28, 2009 at 9:30 am


I think you're right on, Rollo.



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Mel T

posted September 28, 2009 at 10:13 am


"Saving her first kiss til the alter."



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Rollo Tomassi

posted September 29, 2009 at 8:14 am

Tia Lynn

posted September 29, 2009 at 10:11 am


When I 17, I well-intentioned church lady gave me "I Kissed Dating Goodbye." I told her I hadn't even kissed dating hello, and wouldn't be needing it….yikes!



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Beth

posted October 28, 2009 at 11:05 am


I'm a missionary kid, so I can WHOLLY relate to pretty much everything you've been writing about in this blog. In high school, my parents fed me the whole purity thing, and I read books like "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" and "The Bride Wore White." I also received a purity necklace. All throughout high school, I was terrified of guys "taking advantage" of me, so I became a feminazi instead. I didn't date until I was 18 and wasn't kissed until I was 19. I felt dirty afterward. Several years down the road, I'm now in a relationship with the most wonderful man and he and I kiss all the time. I don't feel like a slut anymore–why did I ever?!–and I'm realizing just how skewed this perspective on dating, relationships, and sexuality is in the church.PS. I never had the sex talk growing up. How did I learn about the birds and the bees? My mom gave me age appropriate literature on it.Srsly.



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HM

posted May 18, 2010 at 3:40 pm


I don’t think that waiting = no sex drive. On the contrary, for me:) I do however agree that the polarization in the church, and the idolatry of it.



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JoeS

posted December 20, 2010 at 1:42 am


Check out http://www.idoidontmovie.com. Its about a Christian couple that waited until their wedding day to kiss and what happened to them. Really interesting documentary.



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Unnatural Lifestyle

posted February 22, 2011 at 5:40 pm


I thank god for the first girl my wife kissed. She says without her, she wouldn’t have had the self-understanding to realize she’s queer. Without her, I wouldn’t be in my awesome marriage.
Let’s all have a moment of silence for the great and life-forming people that we and our spouses have made out with.



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ghd australia

posted March 18, 2011 at 5:08 am

Meme

posted April 29, 2011 at 4:32 pm


Just a little “TESTIMONY” from someone who isn’t an idiot and for whom this worked.

I didn’t read “I kissed dating goodbye,” I read his other book, the one that came after, “Boy meets girl” which is about courting. My husband read it too when we started dating. We were both 19 and knew we were interested in marriage and thought our sex drives, if we revved ‘em up (i’m totally saying that to be facetious), could be distracting. So we didn’t kiss.

We had both had histories (also known as THE AGE OF 14) when we watched porn. Addictions, really, that had lasted years and which we were both recovering from. So we had seen and were aware of a whole buncha stuff that we knew would really pollute our relationship and the getting-to-know-each-other should-I-marry-this-person phase. We didn’t want sex to muddy the waters, and to keep a level head, as much as possible (we were still madly in love).

So on our wedding day we kissed. (It was a bit like a fairy tale. We haven’t stopped kissing since. In fact, my husband is better at PDA than many I know.) Very, very few people knew we weren’t kissing before. For us, for some reason, it wasn’t a big deal. And it wasn’t that we were sexually… dead. We hopped to sex on our first night. And have had sex frequently ever since. There were other issues, but that’s to be expected when one hasn’t had sex before and is kind of afraid it’ll hurt (“The doors were closed”).

Now, I’m a Christian. So you have to understand where I’m coming from. I believe God tells us to avoid sex outside of marriage, and I took that very seriously. And I also believed that he doesn’t make rules that are impossible to follow. Difficult, yes, but not impossible. And I believe that he blessed my husband and I for our commitment to honour Him in that stage of our life.

Our lives are far from perfect. But it was right and good for us to do in our relationship. There are many Godly men and women I know who DO kiss before marriage and it’s no biggy for them. I don’t just Christians, I just know what my husband and I needed to do.

I wanted to share an alternative view.

Broaden your perspective.

Show you you can’t put people in a box just because they do something you don’t understand.

amirite?



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stephy

posted April 29, 2011 at 5:48 pm


Hi,

the Beliefnet site isn’t the best place for conversation anymore since I’m no longer blogging for them but I’ll move your comment over to the post at stuffchristianculturelikes.com

It is at:
http://www.stuffchristianculturelikes.com/2008/08/12-saving-your-first-kiss-for-your.html

Thanks!

stephy



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Pingback: #130 The short engagement - Stuff Christian Culture Likes

Michelle

posted September 13, 2011 at 1:35 pm


I have to say, I see that you have good intentions…somewhat.. However, my boyfriend and I recently made the decision not to kiss again until we are married, and it was a mutual decision, he brought it up, but God had been laying it on our hearts for some time now. We have been dating for years, and we have kissed plenty of times, and we always find that it leads to temptation. Maybe not just a little kiss, but a little kiss leads to a few little kisses which leads to a few more, and its a snowball effect. (And the Bible says for there not to be a HINT of sexual immorality in us…so yes, God does desire for us to be that pure…) We are very much in love and have been taking some time to make sure that God is first in our lives, and if not how can we fix that and this is a conclusion that we came to.
You say that couples who make this decision tend to make it public and receive praise from everyone. Some couples may do that, but their decision is not glorifying God if they do. My boyfriend and I are not telling anyone. We agreed that I could talk to my sister about it because at the time it was something that I felt I needed to discuss with her, but other than that, nobody knows…and nobody has to know, it is nobody’s business but ours. I don’t even want to tell you this except that you seem like you need to be set straight a little bit on the subject. You seem like you are trying to paint these couples as freaks, and I do not appreciate that. Not kissing until marriage is going to be hard, but that’s not what it’s about, and couples who make it about how “pure” they are for doing so have it all wrong, but there are a lot of couples out there I’m sure who have made the same commitment and no one knows. I love my boyfriend, I want to be with him, I want to marry him. I don’t have to kiss him to know all of these things. Maybe instead of making blanket statements with unclear facts you should do more research next time.
Please know, I am not saying any of this in anger, I just don’t want people to read your article and go away thinking that the decision is not a good one.



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Ambrose

posted February 2, 2014 at 12:21 am


First of all kissing at or before marriage is a matter of opinion. It’s not black and white in the Bible. That being said, this article is in violation of Romans 14:13-23. You’re telling people to go against their conscience. Yes, some people do it for the wrong reasons but many people don’t! I’m telling this out of love for you and for my brothers and sisters in Christ. One of our top goals is holiness, not a great sex experience on our honeymoon!



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Kat

posted February 14, 2014 at 12:58 am


I disagree with the final statements in this article.(quoted below) I believe if the couple is waiting to honor God and each other and not to be holier or purer than others or be commended, God will bless them at the wedding, wedding night, honeymoon, and beyond. I believe they will be comfortable enough with each other and all will go well.

“Then once they’re married the husband is ready to go but the wife is terrified. He spends the honeymoon furiously bench pressing in the hotel gym while she cries in a corner of their honeymoon suite and calls her mom”



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