I was a cradle cafeteria Catholic who found true, dogmatic Catholic beliefs through Karl Keating while preparing for Confirmation at 16. My relationship with God and the Virgin Mary has been strengthened tenfold, and I thank Him everyday for bringing me back to Him, despite my lax upbringing.
I’m now a 19 year old undergraduate student. I started dating my best guy friend seriously a little over six months ago, and we are in love. We discuss marriage and our future seriously, and he respects my beliefs profoundly. While he has had sex with a previous girlfriend, he understands, admires, and prefers to help protect my virginity. For this, I am so grateful.
After much thought, prayer and reflection, I concluded that intimate acts short of oral sex (which was explicitly forbidden in Confirmation class) were okay. My judgment really came down to if getting close to a sin (aka sex) was permissible if we were strong enough to avoid crossing that threshold.
Well, about a week ago our strength was challenged. Overcome with lust, I suppose, we had actual, sustained genital contact. While my virginity was never threatened, the act defied previous precautions like always keeping underwear on. I was so frightened and upset I had something of an anxiety attack afterwards. My boyfriend held me close and we agreed to abstain from any intimacy for a while. He’s a self-described Christian but doesn’t practice any beliefs or affiliate with a denomination. I doubted if he even prayed. That night though, he struggled to say something for several minutes. Then, in a quiet voice, he asked if we could pray together. The emotion in the room after everything loosed tears from my eyes.
He says we don’t have to be intimate in that way, but I gave myself to him as an expression of trust and through a desire to be closer. A hope to mimic the marriage we can’t achieve until graduation I suppose.
I’ve been praying so much after this. I haunt this forum and the Catholic answers site semi-regularly, and I know you to be holy people with real life experiences. It’s so hard to read advice from the pureloveclub that suggests no kissing while laying down, knowing it comes from someone who sinned so much in the past. I need to know to what level others have succeeded in our Catholic quest for chastity. I need to know what the boundaries are in frank terms. I need to know what will make God happy.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this long post, and I look forward to your responses. I apologize if my descriptions were too graphic in nature, but I can’t shy around what actually occurred. I hope you will not shy around what is and is not permissible, either.