Purity = An Awkward Wedding Night + Joy

Posted in Marriage Monday with 30 comments

Our purity rings given to us by our parents. They were on our fingers until our wedding day when they were put on the ring pillow during our ceremony.

Purity.

If you’ve grown up in the church at all, you’ve probably had this word shoved down your throat starting somewhere around the 5th grade and up until your wedding day (if it has occurred yet). It’s a beautiful word. When I think of it in context I think of synonyms like “clean, white, and unblemished”, but when it’s the topic of every youth event at church I do admit that it can get a little old.

With the purity talk comes a lot of “No’s!” and “Don’t do’s!” and “I wish I hadn’t’s!”. It is many times spoken from someone who made this “ultimate” mistake and is begging you not to do the same. And while I agree with all that, I also believe in grace and having real conversations. I believe in sharing the information but not needing to scare the desire for sex out of those who are single, but to instead set them up for the awesome blessing that it is in marriage.

And that’s what I want to do today. I come to you as someone who actually made it until their wedding day as a virgin, and who was blessed enough to marry a man that was a virgin as well. I come to you not with the “Oh, I wish!” or “Please don’t do what I…” but from a place of “I’m glad I did.” Let me tell you why.

 

Why I’m glad I waited

The wedding night was awkward and awesome.

I will have to write out our whole hysterical wedding night story sometime (minus some details, of course), but let’s just say there were a few trip ups that involved a prank from Matt’s groomsmen, a million and one bobby pins in my hair, and ordering bananas from room service because my feet were cramping so bad from my wedding shoes. We laughed then and we laugh now and I probably wouldn’t change it if I could. Ok wait, those foot cramps really did hurt… anyway. Our wedding night was not a passionate, hang from the ceiling, full pleasure event. In fact, it was physically probably some of the worst sex we’ve had. But it was beautiful. It was intimate. It was the most connected I have ever felt with anyone. It was a gift. It was a prize. We made it, and it was worth it.

No comparisons.

I have mentioned before that our sex life did not start out that great. Intimacy wise, it was amazing. Physically? It just wasn’t working like it should and it took some medical intervention to fix that. But guess what? We didn’t know the difference. We had nothing to compare it to and because of that, it was ok. It was frustrating at times, of course. But it was our own experience and we did not know any different so it made it OK.

What’s also great is that we have nothing to compare each other to. I am the only woman that Matt has been with and he is the only man I have been with. When it comes to how things look, how we go about certain things, and how we enjoy sex, there is no comparison involved. I never have to worry about Matt thinking I’m weird because his last girlfriend never did ____ and he never has to worry about me thinking his body is sub-par because my last boyfriend was better looking in the ____ category. It’s just us and it’s pretty great.

No risks.

Because we have never been with anyone else, we do not have to worry about any type of sexually transmitted diseases or emotional tie ups. I’ve found this especially nice when going through pregnancy. They literally test you for anything and everything that you can pass on to the baby, and many of those things have to do with STD’s. I am so thankful that these are not nail biter tests for me. I happily let them take my blood without worry because I know my son is completely safe from being exposed to anything of the sort.

And speaking of pregnancy? Never a thought before we were married. I can only imagine the anger and heartbreak we would experience from others (i.e. our parents… AH! Scary thought!) if this had occurred, but there was no way that it could have. We had the blessing of choosing (with God’s help, of course), when we wanted to start a family and it is a lot easier now than it ever would have been before we were married. We had many tell us the example that we were to them and/or their children (we give the glory to God for that) because of our relationship, and I know that getting pregnant would have hurt that example and witness a great deal.

As for emotions, we did not come into our marriage with a piece of our heart left with another man or woman. We do not have to deal with any hurts from the past sexually and there is a great freedom that comes with that. Please know that I do understand that some women AND men have had sexual hurts in their past that ARE NOT their fault. I am in no way speaking of that now. You are still pure in God’s eyes and if anyone has ever been sexual with you in any way that was against your will, I pray you are receiving or have received help. I am only talking about willing, sexual acts in this post. The risk you take with your heart is a huge one when having sex, and knowing that it is with someone who has committed to you forever brings a great sense of peace.

Joy.

There is such joy that comes with waiting. The actual waiting process is hard and I do NOT recommend an 11 month engagement or longer like we did (God’s grace is big, let me tell you…), but the prize is so good at the end. It’s like running a marathon. It gets harder and harder as you go, but once you cross that finish line, it’s all about the glory of what you did, er DIDN’T do. It’s all about celebrating and it’s all about rejoicing. So is waiting for marriage to be sexually intimate with your mate. Not only has it allowed me to see Matt in a way that I have never seen another man (both physically and in general) but it has allowed me to connect to someone (and only ONE someone) in a way that truly blows me away. It is a connection like none other that I could ever communicate unless you have experienced it yourself.

I could go on and on and give you reasons the Bible says not to as well as statistical reasons why it’s not a good idea to be intimate before marriage, but today I simply wanted to share with you from my experience. The road we chose of purity has truly been one of blessing and I have felt God’s presence through that choice from our 6 years of dating and beyond. And the great part is, the blessings we reap from it has continued for almost 6 years of marriage and I know they will never stop. We are in no way perfect. There were lines we crossed that we wish we could go back on and struggles we face sexually even today, but through God’s grace we have experienced abundant blessings through the good choices that we did make and redemption from the bad. God does not ask of us things in order to make life harder or not as fun, but to protect us and to bless us. We have found incredible blessings in following Him in this area of life. I wouldn’t change a thing!

For the other side of the story from someone who did not wait, I highly recommend reading THIS POST from Marriage Life Ministries. I so appreciate Alecia for being so open and for encouraging me to write on this topic myself.


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30 Comments

  1. Alecia

    I’ve read that the number one reason why young people don’t save sex for marriage is because no one ever gave them a good enough reason to. You just gave us at least four. Thanks for sharing your personal experience. Sharing our own stories is one of the best ways to connect with people and this is such an important topic to be connecting on!

    Reply
  2. Skylar

    This is a great post! My husband and I were married a little over five months ago, and we were both virgins on our wedding night. My husband and I are so very thankful that we waited. It was not easy at all, but it’s such a beautiful thing to know that we’re safe with each other. No one in the world knows each other like we do, and I wouldn’t trade that for anything. It’s such a blessing!

    Reply
    • erinmbaxter

      Sklar, thank you so much! I love hearing the testimony of people that have been through similar situations. It is possible and it is worth it!

      Reply
  3. Jaimie

    This is a wonderful post! I could practically have written it myself, except we only dated 6 months before we got engaged (but then we were engaged for 15 months…I don’t recommend that at all!). It’s so nice to hear this from others–how good it was to wait, and how much you know you’re blessed because of it. And no, we didn’t do things perfectly by any means, but we are so thankful for God’s grace and for his enabling us to do a lot of things right.

    Reply
  4. Greg

    Great post! God was honored in your waiting for each other, and it’s a great testimony for what He designed intimacy for! Thanks too for the encouragement to keep waiting when (or if) God chooses to reward with marriage.

    Reply
  5. Glaciela

    WOW…i love it it is soo touching. Waiting is hard but at the end both will celebrate each other. We should learn to wait so that we get what is best for us..

    I love it

    Reply
  6. Lauren

    I fully FULLY agree that waiting is awesome. I recently got married to the greatest man in the world and we waited three and a half years for our wedding night. I have to say though, I was expecting awkward fumbling, and, sure, it didn’t go as smoothly as it does now, but neither one of us ever felt awkward. Knowing that our union was blessed by God and that we were doing exactly what we were supposed to be doing left no room for awkwardness and only room for awe at how greatly we’d been blessed.

    I say this because in the weeks leading up to my wedding, I was increasingly nervous and stressed worrying about the sex. There were several times when I wished we had just done it so that I wouldn’t have to be stressed about things not working right or things being awkward on the wedding night. I have a bit of a phobia of awkwardness and feeling like it was an inevitable part of the wedding night of two virgins, I was excited and dreading it at the same time.

    So my point is, it’s awesome. I am so so so glad we waited and coming into marriage pure is the biggest blessing I could ever ask for. For people still waiting for their wedding night, just know that it’s great and you don’t have to be afraid of the awkward. :)

    Reply
    • erinmbaxter

      Hi Lauren!
      Thanks for reading and commenting! You are definitely right. A wedding night does not have to be awkward. And I should probably try to emphasize again that the intimacy was absolutely amazing with no awkwardness involved. What was awkward about ours were the events that occurred and just the physical act of “figuring it out”. Neither of us felt any shame and it was truly beautiful. I definitely do not want others being nervous because of this post! If anything, I hope that other’s will look forward to both the beautiful moments and the awkward, because the awkward brings great laughs and releases the tension and high expectations of the night. Part of being married is learning to laugh at ourselves and I think God designed the wedding night to be a good place to start with that while also bringing lasting, beautiful memories as well.

      Reply
  7. MrsVK

    We also were virgins on our wedding night and its so sweet a memory (we are also glad that firsts are firsts and you won’t ever have a first again! and even in that its special that we both had those “firsts” together so we can chuckle about it even now) But as to awkward or uncomfortable ~ I wouldn’t use those words to describe it… fun and playful, shy like a kitten yet full of desire and the end resulting in sweet union ~ just being together and knowing that I am his first and he was mine…. It was MOST certainly worth the wait and keeping ourselves pure! IT just gets better and better. But we have some funny memories from that first night! :D

    Reply
    • erinmbaxter

      Thanks for reading, MrsVK! And let me emphasize again that our wedding night was wonderful and holds very sweet memories for us. I guess if I told the whole story it would help a little to show the awkwardness of OUR particular night, but let’s just say it involved us carrying a box through the entire hotel that read “SEX BOX” (courtesy of Matt’s groomsmen that was full of sports supplies… don’t ask) and a lecture from our room service attendent on why marriage is just “not so good…” the first two years as we sat there in our wedding attire. Our time together was amazing and I again cannot say enough how wonderful the intimate moment of it all was… it’s just a first, like you said, and first’s usually come with some awkward stories. ;) I’m encouraging this, I promise! Haha.

      Reply
      • Greg

        “and a lecture from our room service attendant on why marriage is just “not so good…””

        It was sad to see (all within the first 10 minutes) several references downplaying marriage for newlyweds in even an old black-and-white movie “Dressed to Kill” (detective movie from 1941). Makes me appreciate these uplifting testimonies all the more!

        Reply
  8. JBeams

    This is a BEAUTIFUL post! So true! Even though my fiance and I are dedicated to wait until our wedding night (July 13! – his birthday is the 14th, guess what my honey gets for his b-day? ;) hehe) and I am a big advocate for purity, you put together some statements that I had never thought of before. You’re so blessed with your words!
    Here’s something interesting to me: since getting engaged, there are multiple people I have met (mostly at work) who find out about our commitment, and they’re response is, “That’s really cool.” One girl in particular was telling a coworker how her bff is dating the guy that she gave her viginity to. She seemed fine and dandy about it, but when the other girl left and it was just me and her talking, she seemed to melt a little. She goes, “That is so neat. You know, sometimes I wish I would have waited, and I know that on my wedding night I really will.” Even she recognizes it. I am so excited for our honeymoon, all the building and anticipation and learning together, just me and him, because we are all either one of us has ever had. I’m so blessed to only have experiences with one wonderful man, every new one means so much more. :)
    Well, that was probably a little too much story, but thank you again for your post here. Beautiful!
    Jenny
    P.S. We have been dating for 4 1/2 years, engaged for 5 months, got 4 1/2 more to go. I agree with staying away from really long engagements: it’s hard!!! But not so hard that it isn’t worth it. :)

    Reply
    • erinmbaxter

      Thank you so much for sharing, J! Love that conversation you had. You have no idea the example that you have been and are being to others! It is surprising when conversations like that happen, isn’t it? The world tries to act like having sex freely is not an issue at all, but they don’t show the real heart of it. Your coworker definitely did. My heart breaks for her that she is discouraged and feeling empty. I hope that if you have other conversations with her along this line, that you will be able to encourage her and share of God’s great grace.

      Oh, and great day to choose for a wedding (and a birthday… though I know that wasn’t chosen, exactly ;) )! Our anniversary is July 14! It will be 6 years this year and I can’t tell you how amazing it is! Congratulations!

      Reply
  9. Sa

    My husband and I waited for our wedding night. We started dating when we were 17 and got married at 22. We were engaged for 6 months and we actually found it easier to wait once we got engaged because we had the mindset of “we’ve waited this long, we can wait X more months!” Our wedding night was awkward but not so much that we didn’t want to try to get it right :) I pretty much giggled the entire night out of sheer nerves, but it was absolutely worth the wait. Now, 8 years later, with 1 kid and 1 on the way, we’ve thoroughly enjoyed getting to know each other with absolute trust and safety.

    Reply
  10. elizabeth

    This is very encouraging, to realy wait, I lik it when you say God Loves us,He don’t want us to get hurts, n By His Grace I wil make it, and I don’t want to stay a long time in an engagement,I believe peopl must be thought more about the Danger of Premarital Sex n the results of waiting as you had shared with us, thanx

    Reply