Living as brother and sister


What does it really mean to live as brother and sister within a marriage while waiting to have it validated? Is it simply a matter of abstaining from marital relations or is there more to it?


I don’t know the answer to your brother/sister question. But I did want to say welcome home! I remember well that journey myself, and I have not been disappointed upon returning.

Glad to have you back!


Welcome home! :clapping:

Well most parents do not let their daughters sleep with their sons. I would encourage the same. You might want to get an upgrade on the couch. :yup:

Be patient and forgiving. This will not be easy.

May God :blessyou:


If you have good self control I see no reason to sleep on the couch unless it causes temptation. I think anything that is acceptable for courting would be fine.

Unless you are waiting on an annulment, in that case separate sleeping areas would be appropriate and affection would be limited to a brother-sister type relationship. Since technically one of you is still married to someone else until the church says otherwise.


Thanks for your replies, and the welcome back.

I work steady graveyard shift, so the only time the couch might need to be considered is the weekend. :slight_smile: No annulments to wait for, this is the only marriage for both of us.


Well, when my husband and I were waiting to have our marriage convalidated we still slept in the same bed, and just kinda kept things to a level where we wouldn’t be tempted. It wasn’t easy, but we managed. Neither of us would have been able to sleep on the couch. We had to go to work the next day and the our couch is not very comfy for sleeping. :slight_smile: We weren’t told we had to live as brother and sister, but similar to a dating couple that (obviously) doesn’t have relations.


[quote=rayne89]If you have good self control I see no reason to sleep on the couch unless it causes temptation.

How does one sleep with a “girlfriend” without temptation?

The past way not to sin is to avoid the near occassions of sin. For me this would mean seperate beds if I was in this circumstance.

“lead not into temptation”


[quote=johnq]How does one sleep with a “girlfriend” without temptation?

I was wondering the same thing…



[quote=turboEDvo]I was wondering the same thing…


Uh…maybe you’d have to be married to understand. I have friends who have no trouble sleeping next to their spouses without any time temptation.:wink:



I’m awaiting the convalidation of my marriage. It’s a first attempt at marriage for both my husband and I.

It took some trial and error to figure out how we ought to be living during this time period (which for private reasons has been ten months long and is expected to continue for another 2 or 3 months). He had to sleep in a different room at first, but now that we have gotten used to the idea of the situation and mastered more self-control neither one of us finds it problematic (read: near occasion of sin) to sleep in the same bed.

As Celia said, we behave as a chaste dating couple should, the only difference being that we live together (it would frankly cause more scandal and problems if we were to live separately).

Here is my understanding of what it means to live as brother and sister. You don’t have to feign disinterest in your spouse during this time or act like a literal brother or sister. “As brother and sister” is just a euphamistic way of saying “abstaining from sexual activities.” Each spouse should cherish the other during this difficult time and take whatever measures necessary to avoid placing his beloved in a near occasion of sin. If one spouse does not understand or esteem chastity, the other spouse must do her best to guide him. The specifics of this will vary from couple to couple.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit