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Why I’m Taking A Vow Of Abstinence Until Further Notice

And this is after three years of mind-blowing sex.

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Doll on a bed holding a closed sign
Meiko Arquillos
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I once went five years without having sex. It wasn’t a conscious decision on my part; it just happened — or it just didn’t happen. I was a single mom, busy as can be, and I had zero interest in dating, men or sex. They weren’t on my radar.  But then, unexpectedly and at the speed of light, they came crashing right back onto said radar. A certain tall, dark and handsome entered the equation, and what can I say? It’s just like riding a bike. And I’ve been riding the same bike (on and off) ever since.

Sex is a weird and powerful thing. It puts a smile on my face for days and relaxes me from head to toe. It transforms me from anxious to calm, shy to outgoing, and self-conscious to confident. But that damn oxytocin is dangerous, friends. It’s like a drug; it makes me see love where it doesn’t exist and crave more even when I know it isn’t good for me. It connects me to him on such a deep level, but I am not sure it connects him to me. And when that high wears off, I am sometimes struck with guilt or regret.

I am a 45-year-old mother and have yet to figure out my own sexual values, but now is the time. The only way to do this, of course, is to fully abstain from sex and take a deep dive into my psyche, where I will uncross some very tangled wires. Here’s where I plan to start.

Sex and Religion

I am Catholic. I was taught that sex outside of marriage (or sex with birth control) is a sin. These thoughts still occupy my mind and cause guilt and shame. I am so back and forth on this — sometimes I am 100 percent in agreement and think, If I were walking with God, then giving up sex would be no big deal. It could lead me to a Godly man. Or help me focus more on God and less on self. But other times I think, My God, all of this guilt and shame I feel for being a woman who enjoys sex is just not right. I convince myself that sex should be enjoyed and that it should not impact my relationship with God. Back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. Constant chatter. I enjoy sex, and I feel guilty. When I let go of the guilt, I push God away. I don’t know exactly where I stand, but I do know it’s exhausting.

Sex and Commitment

I’ve been having the best sex of my life, for three years, with a great man whom I love dearly. He, however, doesn’t practice monogamy. We communicate openly, practice safe sex, and I am always aware of what is going on in his love life. He’s my best friend. But what the actual hell am I doing? I do practice monogamy. I want monogamy. I want to love and be loved. I want to be enough. I want security. I know this, but I keep going back for more great sex and the thrill and connection. I blame the oxytocin, but, really, it’s time to start blaming myself. This will require some serious introspection and accountability, and it won’t be easy, but I’m ready for the challenge. I think.   

Sex and Motherhood

Sex and motherhood just don’t mix. At least not when you‘re a single mom. It’s weird. I have teens who are falling for boys and hoping to get their first kiss (or some other first — eek!), and I’m sneaking around behind their backs, hoping they don’t find out what I’m really doing when they’re at their dad’s house. It’s kind of fun and thrilling and makes me feel young, but it’s also so backward! I am an adult, with a right to a private life, yet something in me screams loudly, Good moms don’t have sex! Yes, I know that’s a ridiculous and untrue statement. But somehow it’s engrained in my psyche, and I need to deprogram that nonsense. And if I have to sneak around to do something, I probably shouldn’t be doing it, right? The truth is, I don’t know. I don’t know the answers, and I don’t even really know how to get them. The only thing I do know is that abstinence is what’s best for me right now. It’s the first step toward clarity, and it feels good. I just hope it doesn’t take five years to get there.

Have you ever taken a vow of abstinence? Let us know in the comments below.

Follow Article Topics: Relationships