Lack of Sexual Abstinence Among Young Catholics


I know I’m just being petty, but I can’t stop being annoyed when young Catholics freely admit that they’re no longer a virgin. Obviously if you’ve already made a mistake what’s done is done, but I find that many young Catholics don’t even think of having premarital sex as a mistake. It just drives me crazy knowing that these people attend Mass in the morning only to go home that night and sleep with someone they’re not engaged to without feeling guilty at the slightest. I guess they don’t really think of premarital sex as being “sinful” anymore, it’s just something that people do.

So are they right? Has premarital sex somehow become all right as long as you’re in a committed relationship? Why is it hard so hard for the younger generations to abstain from any kind of sexual activities? Why can’t I relax and stop letting this bother me so much?


It’s harder now because people get married much later. Where I live the average age of marriage is 30.

Premarital sex is still wrong according to Catholic teaching. As for why it bothers you, well are you young yourself? Maybe you are resentful of them since you yourself are making sacrifices and abstaining?


I totally agree with you, it confuses me so much too!!! But, I think a lot of it has to do with the generation, and everyone thinks that it is just so normal and everyone is doing it so that means it is OK. But, what’s weird, is that if these Catholics were raised in a way to believe in abstinence, I don’t get how that just diminishes no matter what year it is!


Well I’m 24 a male and still a virgin and I intend to keep my virginity and give it as a gift to my wife or to God when I die.

I think it has become very much accepted by the culture. Which is one reason.

We also have to be very careful that we don’t get upset with people who have fallen in sexual areas. I have spoken tom many young people who are trapped in sin, I’ve never met one single person that needs anger or people being upset with them, they need gentleness (the fruit of the Spirit, Gal 5) and love.

Deep down I suspect the reason our culture is so obessed with sex is because people are looking for love and have never had it. I see many young people who are not loved, be it their parents were always too busy working, they didn’t ahve time to read them stories at night and other similar acts of love. Many people feel they are not loved by their friends/people their age. Sadly many of them don’t feel like they are loved by God and the Church, because Christians haven’t shown them the extrodinary love of Christ.

It’s in things like, really valuing each and every person for who they are, praising them for what they are good at. Listening to them.

Someone once said to me “you accept me for who I am.” I think this person had gone through their entire life without feeling accepted by anyone. How would you feel in that situation, wouldn’t you too get desperate for love and try anything to get it?


It’s been pretty much normalized in these newer generations via media. I however like the idea of staying pure until marriage. After the “I do’s” are said, that’s probably when I won’t be able to hold it any longer. :smiley:


Premarital sex is never right. Even the misinformed young Catholic adults know that. Why? Because everyone has a conscience. It’s just a matter of whether your desires are stronger than that little voice inside you that is urging you to say no.

As Michael1985 said, it is accepted by the culture. There is peer pressure. And these people of course, should be treated with kindness, and not contempt. But it is not easy to do so if they have a in-your-face attitude about it.

It is nice to hear that a twentysomething guy is choosing to live chastely and kept his virginity. That is a rare commodity nowadays.


I also see this a lot… I know and have known many people who attend church regularly, yet have regular pre-marital sexual relations whether they are in a relationship or not. It is disappointing.

I am a guy in my late 20s and I have abstained successfully so far and will continue to do so, but its frustrating to know there are almost no women around my age that have done the same.

I also agree that abstaining becomes so much harder because people get married so much later in life nowadays. If everyone got married around 20ish as they did generations ago, many people would wait, but it is quite difficult to wait until you are almost 30 in many regions…especially the East Coast where marriage ages are very high.

I suppose I just try to lead by example and maybe others will follow or reconsider their choices if they know other people are also making sacrifices, etc.


I think it’s part of the cafeteria Catholic culture . . .

“I’m Catholic, but I disagree about x, y and z teachings.”


Bad catechesis. You can go a year without hearing a priest mention from the pulpit in many parishes that premarital sex is a sin.

One of my children is really turned off dating “Catholic boys” because they’re all players. She said (and I quote), the ones that claim they’re “waiting” for marriage all turn out to be gay, and the ones that don’t wait are jerks. So she’s being scandalized away from what I’ve spent a lifetime teaching her and looking at guys from a similar religion (but no Pope…) :frowning:


Uh, I’m not exactly “making sacrifices.” I’m from Southeast Asia, I’m more conservative than my own westernized parents, and I don’t exactly have any sex drive. I do resent in particular how twenty-somethings Southeast Asians no longer share the view that we all had 10 years ago, and how every time I complain I’ve been told to “grow up” as if growing up is synonymous with abandoning old values and adopting new ones. But that’s another rant.


For most people the fact that you are man waiting for marriage is proof enough that you are a fairy or some sort of freak. There is a lot of pressure on young people and men especially to lose the stigma of virginity. Before I got married I would have never admitted to anyone that I was a virgin waiting for marriage just so I could avoid all their BS.


From the flip side of someone who is 30 and did not wait, i would say that if anyone ask me I was a virgin I would simply tell them no and that is that. It is not that I am proud of not being a virgin but at the same time, I cannot walk around feeling like second hand goods becuase I am. I admit I made my mistakes for many varying reasons including peer pressure, wanting to be in a relationship, etc and I have repented and been living a chaste lifestyle. Having said that though,I am not going to walk around having to repeatedly look repentant for somebody else. I went to confession, received the blood of Christ on my sins through the sacrament and that is that. His brand new mercy comes every dawning and I try my best not to sin again. if I were to walk around as you suggest and have the need to look sorry every time somebody asks me and to feel guilt pangs again, I would be flying in the face of God’s infinite ocean of mercy that makes me new each time I go to confession. It took me a long time to realize this and not treat myself as second best becuase I fell.

Many people who who have saved themselves want somebody who has done the same and I have no problem with that. But don’t always judge what you see. Sometimes the underlying reasons are some that you won’t believe. Instead show people that love of Christ and that they can still become pure through Him. Because listening to your tone and that of many other virgins, it feels like you are neglecting the most important thing… Not to be frustrated that the person is not a virgin but to witness to them the infinite love and truth of Christ. You are not nay better or any worse for being a virgin, you just have been blessed by God’s grace not to fall into THAT sin.

(And by the way, I consider somebody who is a virgin, is somebody who has NEVER had any sexual contact that violates Church teaching, so if y’all tongue-kissed, went to second base, masturbated, had oral sex, anal sex etc as I found that many people who claim to be virgins do…NEWS FLASH…you are not a virgin…you are just someone that has not experienced penetration)


Yes, it seems that there are some people - even here on CAF - who act like they’ve never met a virgin before.

Unfortunately, to a certain extent, we have only ourselves to blame. Look at what happens when someone who is a virgin says he or she wants similar - those are some of the most mean-spirited threads here on CAF. Some also post to the effect that if someone is a virgin then they must either be a murder, liar, thief, etc. There was even one post where someone advised a never-married single mother to make herself more attractive by stating she had “proven fertility”.

Meanwhile, the “obedient children” who can’t find spouses have “single vocation” shoved down their throats or are given brush-offs as “you were never meant to be married” or “you need to be satisfied alone” or “it’s not your time yet” and add God’s name to the manipulative brush-offs.

Well, there is certain truth in that. Remember the story of the prodigal son. Remember how the older brother boycotted the celebration for the younger son, saying “I never even got a kid goat to celebrate with my friends”. Do you think maybe if he had gotten that “kid goat” he may have been more receptive to o his returning brother?

The bottom line is that the “obedient son” (and daughter!) is never appreciated (or appreciated enough), and until that changes for the better people are going to be tempted to say to themselves “it doesn’t pay to obey the rules”.



Norseman, I totally respect someboy who has remained a virigin in our sex saturated cutlure and I admire them. I don’t even mind if a virgin wants to be with another virgin that is their choice and may God bless them for making it. What I do not believe in is the judgmental tone that those who are virgins can sometimes adopt towards those of us on the other side of that divide. I would be the first now to acknowledge that I did not at one time live my life according to the Church’s teachings. But when people who are virgins or who have live chastely adopt a judgmental tone towards the rest of us, it doesn’t make it any easier to transition to living a chaste life style or to live in the freedom of God’s grace after being forgiven. Until I not only confessed but totally accepted God’s forgiveness and refused to judge myself and feel second best anymore, it made it easier in someways to go back and sin again. It felt like I would never been seen as pure…when in fact, Christ’s blood makes me so. True, my physical virginity will never grow back but until I accepted myself post-confession as being JUST as pure as somebody who has NEVER been touched in the eyes of God I couldn’t fully embrace chaste living.

Just something to chew on as you talk about who is “obedient” and who isn’t.


This is a good post :thumbsup:

It’s sad yes when people, especially Catholics, go around behaving as if their lack of virginity is “awesome!” or “right on!” :rolleyes:

But not everyone who has lost their virginity is so quick to celebrate. Even for the ones who are bragging, some of them may be using that behavior to hide deeper issues such as the ones suggested above. It can be difficult, but we should never be so quick to judge.

And there is nothing wrong if a virgin would prefer to marry another virgin instead of marrying a non-virgin. God chooses our spouses anyway, so whatever is supposed to be will be. (as long as we lay our trust in God)


It’s not our job to judge our brothers and sisters. If they know its wrong, and keep doing it, it is no longer our problem.

Maybe you could try to start a young adults group at your Church? Then you could talk about the Church’s stance on sex openly and maybe help some to understand. Then at least you could know you tried. Many young folks really do not know the Church’s teachings about sex, and this could be a way for you to help them learn if they want to.

I can’t understand why you would let this bother you so much. I’m assuming you know all these people well enough that they are telling you personally about their sexual escapades? Just tell them you really don’t want to hear it. I wouldn’t want to hear it, not from the married or the unmarried. Its just in bad taste to brag about such personal issues. And if you don’t know them well enough for them to tell you about it, then the charitable thing is to always assume the best.

I actually do not agree with the Church on many sexual issues. Thats my right as a human being. I’m sorry if it bothers you, but I just don’t see how its anybody’s business but my own.


I’m at a fairly conservative catholic school (teacher wise that is) and students who have been going there since early childhood (now jrs or srs in high school) are totally informed just think the teachings are wrong. Some still call themselves Catholic but a list of things they don’t agree on are: gay marriage rules, abortion, eucharist, pre marital sex rules, necessity of weekly mass, euthanasia, birth control, not getting to heaven xcept for ppl like hitler. It seems to me most Catholics my age are less Catholic than many conservative non-catholics. All of my friends are virgins, but most think sex is ok in college. I hardly know any male catholics (maybe 2) that are planning on keeping virginity through high school. :frowning: Its really sad.


I was referring to countless other threads here on CAF and elsewhere where virgins are met with venom.

Additionally, I was pointing out that virgins often may get “jugmental” if they have not been shown appreciation or rewarded, which was inspired by one of flyingfish’s posts. Just like in the workforce, if you want to keep good people, you need to treat them right and reward them appropriately, otherwise you risk losing them.


At the Catholic high school I went to, in our religion and morality classes, we were taught that premarital sex is only wrong if we believe it is. We were taught to use safe sex when we have sex and that abortion is ok in some cases and should be left up to the individual.

I’ve often wondered what would happen if someone sued schools like that in a civil court. They advertise as being Catholic, but if you could prove in court that they are not teaching Catholic teaching, could they be found guilty of false advertisement or some such thing? If parents are spending big bucks sending their kids to a school expecting them to get a good, faithful Catholic education and they get the BS I got, certainly something should be able to be done.


I hope someone reads this and replies to me. HELP!

I am a virgin and no one around me is. I feel pressure to conform and loose it but even though the option to do so has presented itself before me on two occassions something inside me (God) has prevented it. I believe he was telling me this is not the man who will love you as much as you will love them and thereoicefore they are not worthy of this gesture. They do not deserve this special part of me, I understand this.

However I am like every normal teenager/young adult. I want to go out and be in a relationship and find love but it is so difficult as I am unable to find any support groups or people who like me want to wait for the one they love. Because of the lack of the support available i feel cut off. I am a fairly popular girl with many friends all performing the act and have never spoke out about my desire to wait. When they ask me why i didn’t have sex i answer “i wanted to but something stopped me.”

I am looking for someone out there who can understand i live in a modern and busy world and am struggle to deal with it all by myself. I am a Christian and am studing Religion however at this moment of time i feel sad when i attend church so instend find it easier to speak to God on my own. I just need someone i can talk to about this and this is my last resort. I am sorry this forum may not be for this but i need help guys.
Love, No Voice xo

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