What's the deal with pre-marital sex?


I am an avid Catholic. However, I am also an 18 year old boy. To be blunt, I do try to stray away from masturbation and having sex with my girlfriend, but I’m really not clear on exactly why the catholic church tells us to abstain from sex before marriage. I’ve heard parents, friends, priests, and professionals talk about it, but they all seem to be very vague on the subject. Please, can you guys spell it out for me?


Here’s what God says in the Bible:
"Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers…

(1Cor 6:9)

So fornication is having premarital sex - a HUGE :tsktsk: That goes for you and your girlfriend. Don’t you care about her enough to WANT her to inherit the kingdom of God?

Plus if you’re having sex, she could totally get pregnant - are the two of you ready to spend the next 18 years caring for a child? Unless of course you’re using birth control - which is another :tsktsk:

Here it is spelled out for you: Is a few minutes of pleasure really worth risking an eternity in heaven AND getting pregnant?


Your body is the temple of the holy spirit, and should treated with great dignity. When you engage in pre-marital sex you defiling God’s temple.

Also, when you have pre-marital sex, you are lying with your body. You are saying I am giving all of me, but you are really not. This can have devastating psychological and emotional effects on you and your girlfriend.



Your are asking us to explain the entire Theology of the Body. I suggest you go look into whatever you can get your hands on by Christopher West.

Actually there is also a great talk on this web sight. Check our the talks on here: catholic.com/seminars/evert.asp


Yep, read Theology of the Body for Beginners by Christopher West. My husband and I had sex before we were married and I even got pregnant. When we picked up this book it IMMEDIATLY made clear to us why sex before marriage was wrong. We had never understood if before. This book is not hard to read and it is not to thick either.


I just reread my post and I wanted to tell you that I’m sorry for using all the :tsktsk: . It’s the Mom in me… I can’t help myself.

Seriously, there is so much compelling information out there about why premarital sex is wrong. Take the other poster’s suggestions and get the book. You owe it to yourself, your current girlfriend and both of your future spouses.


You should check out the pure love club on this website. pureloveclub.com/ It’s directed for people your age.

Essentially, sex is designed for procreation and the unification of a married couple. Those two cannot be separated.

I am a 24 year old virgin (25 next month), so it is possible! When I told my soon-to-be husband I was a virgin he respected me a lot more. He feels very blessed that he will be my one and only. Unfortuantely, I will not be his first, and it’s hard for me to accept that we will not be sharing our first time together. But, that cannot be helped, he is forgiven and must move on.

I have heard so many people say they regret losing their virginities to boyfriends/girlfriends or even just random hook-ups. One thing you won’t hear are people saying they regretted waiting until their wedding night.

I will NEVER regret waiting.


Premarital sex runs rampant at my high school. I think it’s just a bad idea overall because in high school you just really aren’t ready and the risks are too great. I have friends who think nothing of having an abortion if a pregnancy occured, but I’d feel so guilty if I had one and it’s not something I want to risk. My parents would be so disappointed in me. I’ve also never met somebody I cared about enough…I’ve never had an actual boyfriend…most guys at my school are jerks. One guy worships me but he’s too afraid to talk to me so he stalks other girls lol. But so many of my friends have lost their virginity not with longtime boyfriends, which, though IMO not the right choice, is undetsandable, but rather by random hookups. I can’t IMAGINE that. I mean getting pregnant by a guy you’re not even with? How do you face them in school after a random hook up like that? This is kind of OT but I think it definately is taken way too lightly in high school. Idk if I’ll wait till marriage but I think people take way too many risks with premarital sex at such young ages.


A great book to read is “The Good News About Sex and Marriage” by Christopher West. But as a short blurb - when two people engage in intercourse, their bodies are making a promise to each other that says “I’m going to be here with you forever, and I’m giving you everything that I am and have out of love for you.” This promise is made in spirit and emotion, but also physically between the two people. There are actually hormones that are released during intercourse whose purpose is to physically bind two people together.

Now, when you engage in intercourse outside of marriage, even between engaged peoples, your bodies are telling each other these promises, but your minds are not. In essence premarital sex is lying with the very essence of your bodies, and I think deep down we know that in our hearts. I hope that helps you as a quick answer, but I highly recommend you read the book I mentioned earlier, as well as the other sources that people have provided. God bless!


The books that have been recommended are great, but for someone your age I highly suggest If You Really Loved Me by Jason Evert. I gave the book to my brother and sister for Christmas a few years ago and the book strengthened their commitments to remaining chaste until marriage. My sister said the book got her through her first year of college given all the temptations that exist. My husband is a teacher at a Catholic high school and keeps the book on his shelf. Many students have been deeply affected by what Jason says about love and sex. Get the book and you will have a fuller understanding of your questions. Good luck and God bless you.


As someone posted, the primary reason to abstain from pre-marital sex is because God Himself said so.

What are His reasons?

We know many: emotional entanglement, opening yourself to bonding with someone in an inappropriate way when you are not going to (necessarily) spend a lifetime with them, pregnancy out of wedlock (which is difficult for the parents and bad for the children, financially and socially), the spread of diseases.

No doubt, there are some we don’t know.

With my younger children, there are times they don’t understand my reasons. Why can’t they run after dad when he’s going to work? Why can’t they play in the road? Why can’t they eat donuts all day? At certain ages, they just don’t have any concept of how the world works, of cars, or tooth decay or nutrition, or injury or death. They are completely incapable of understanding some of my rules. As they grow, they may understand them partially. Nonetheless, they need to follow them.

It is the same with us and God and His rules. Whether we understand them completely, partially, or not at all, He knows how things work, and He made these rules for a reason.


With pre-marital sex you cannot fully give of yourself to your partner, especially as I assume you would use contraceptives, and not be fully open to life.
Marriage is a sacrament, and just as you wouldn’t walk into church, break open the tabernacle, and munch on Holy Communion, so you shouldn’t violate yours or your girlfriend’s tabernacle without seeking God’s blessing in marriage first.


The way that I understood it was that sex is first and foremost for the purpose of procreation, not enjoyment, although it is obviously an enjoyable act.

Since premarital sex, especially between teenagers, is not for procreative purposes, it is not what God intended the act to fulfill.

But you should defintely read Christopher West’s Theology of the Body for Beginners. It is very easy to understand and will really bring the point home.

God bless,



Chastity is a Lifestyle Youth Page - tons of resources


in my own little beliefs…I think sex is gross, dangerous, and life changing. It leaves emotional scars. And like the teacher said in south park “Sex is about disease.” But thats just for me.


I would agree with all of the above posters :D. They have excellent explanations :). I would also recommend the books that they have suggested - I’ve read Jason Evert’s book as well as “The Good News about Sex and Marriage” by Christopher West. I give C. West’s book to all the couples I know. It gives very good explanations and the questions are from teens, I believe. Jason Evert’s book is great b/c it gives a lot of perspective coming from statistics and not just the “Catholic” point of view.

As a teen who was not terribly pure during high school, I want to tell you it’s not worth it. When you get wrapped up in the physical aspect of a relationship, the friendship part goes out the window. You lose respect for the other person and, as a girl, I felt used all the time. At the time, I didn’t realize it nearly as much, but I compromised and was left with pain that I had to deal with down the road. It’s empty and it doesn’t make you happy or fulfilled, esp. when you know you’re doing wrong. Had I spent that time doing things I was passionate about, instead of wasting all that time sneaking around and doing things I shouldn’t, I would have gotten SO much accomplished!

Unfortunately, this also led to chastity as an adult MUCH harder. It doesn’t get easier if you start early - and my husband was in the same position. When we met, we knew there was something special and he respected me and when he kissed me I knew it wasn’t because he wanted more. I never felt so beautiful in my life and he never felt so much like a man. Let me tell you, sex outside of marriage is NOTHING compared to sex inside marriage. When you have sex outside of marriage, even with a person you plan to spend the rest of your life with, it’s still a lie because you haven’t made that promise yet. And you focus only on the physical. Once inside marriage, it becomes a renewal of your vows and each time you say, “I give myself completely to you,” instead of the “I want gratification” that you say outside of it. It becomes self-less and beautiful and amazing, instead of the cheap version that falls to pieces right away. I had a friend tell me this once when I fell…she was/is married and she unfortunately gave her virginity up (to her husband) before their wedding night and she regretted it.

Plus, why would you want to run the risks of getting a girl pregnant (and then having to deal with that for the rest of your life), getting an STD that would make no decent woman want to get near you, or lead others to sin that could lead them down a horrible path as well? Your soul is at risk here, and it’s not worth it, believe me. It’s worth it to wait! :smiley:


Take a piece of red and a piece of green construction paper. Stick 'em together with Elmer’s glue. Wait an hour. Then tear them apart.

That’s premarital sex.

God never intended for that union to be split. And it really can’t. Your soul has little pieces of the other’s forever attached. And some of you is with her. That’s supposed to be a good thing that binds a man and wife.

But just like that construction paper, the next time you glue them together, the bond won’t be as strong.

God forgives. But sin still has consequences. Fornication isn’t ‘banned’ because it is too much fun. It is a sin because it harms our ability to form a fulfilling and self-giving marriage later on.


Please consider this:

My husband was my first and only. I was not his. He had several casual sexual relationships before we became a couple, and let me tell you - even after several years of marriage - it STILL hurts me!
By him - and those girls - giving in to their lust (and that’s all it was), they robbed from me what should have been rightfully mine as his WIFE. That shared first time experience. That bonding. That wonderment. That excitement. The “discovery” of sex and each as exclusive.

Instead, it was tainted from his perspective - and he didn’t even realize it. For quite some time.
He could not help but “compare.” That’s only human. But - it was grossly unfair and hurtful to me. (And he didn’t have to use “words” to compare - he had “knowledge” and “experience” while I was naive and innocent. And that knowledge and experience did NOT come from me. But was a painful reminder each time that the memory of SOMEONE ELSE was with us.)

You might not think of your future spouse - but I urge you to do so. You are not only hurting yourself, your soul and the girl you are using (yes - you ARE using her no matter how you “feel” about her) - you are hurting your future wife and your children.

Do you like to think of your own MOTHER having random casual sex before your father?

These are very important things to think about. God gives us commandments because he LOVES us - not to kill our 'fun.'
It’s for our own happiness and good. Believe me.


I was a virgin when I got married. Not for religious reasons, but for emotional reasons. I wanted to wait for someone I was in love with and and when I did fall love, I wanted to wait until I got married because I didn’t want the risk of “what if we break up”. Reason being, emotionally, I wouldn’t of handled it well. However, I will be completely honest, for me, marrying a virgin wasn’t my preference. My husband was completey respectable and didn’t pressure me at all. He wasn’t a virgin.


Here is an interesting fact. When a man and woman have sex they release a certain natural hormone that actually bonds them together. When the Scriptures say that a husband and wife will become it really does mean they will become one. Here is another interesting fact. When a woman has sex her body releases the exact same hormone that is released when she nurses her child. This hormone is released in order to devote that woman full to her child and to stay with and protect that child at all costs. This is one of the reasons a break up that has involved sex is so much more difficult then one that has not. The couple have truly been bonded together.

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