To masturbate or not to masturbate? Believe it or not, that is the question.

Sexual recovery is tough. It’s often not talked about, which is crazy when you think about it. Everything society does nowadays has sexual undertones, if not blatantly. So why shouldn’t recovery be discussed?

Okay, I know it’s been awhile since I’ve written, and coming back with this topic is a little risky, but I’ve had these conversations with friends and it’s been brought up a lot lately, so I felt that was a sign to talk about it.

I have been in a period of planned, intentional celibacy for about four months. I say planned and intentional because there is a difference. I’ve talked to people who are celibate because they haven’t found someone they connect with. I’ve talked with people who are celibate because of a vow they’ve made with God. Among various reasons, some are practicing celibacy as an act of recovery.

Backing up, let’s talk about what celibacy is. It’s technically defined as abstaining from marriage and sexual relations. Most people who practice celibacy, however, are only celibate until marriage. In some cases, these people were previously sexually active and decided to become celibate for any particular reason.

My reason was simple: I was tired of being insane.

We’ve all seen the quote, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”

Spiritually. I know better. That’s just all there is to that. You cannot be a believer and think otherwise. Our actions don’t always line up, but we know better.

Emotionally and physically. I was tired. Being in positions where I felt like that was all I was worth. No one was proposing to me or even committing to me, yet I was opening myself in so many ways and allowing that energy into my space. It wasn’t the fact that I didn’t enjoy it, I don’t blame them at all. However, that sick feeling of conviction began to outweigh the pleasure.

So while discussing this with close friends. We landed on the topic of masturbation. Is it right or wrong when you are celibate?

My answer was…it depends. Why are you celibate?

This may not be the right answer for the super saved saints, but I have a perspective that makes sense to me.

If I’m practicing celibacy only out of obedience to God, I know that the act is simply about denying my flesh that pleasure until marriage. Masturbation is pleasing the flesh. In this case, it’s wrong.

If I’m practicing celibacy because I want to be in a committed relationship where I feel valued, appreciated and loved, masturbation may be what keeps me from falling back into old habits and dead relationships.

My challenge for you is to really get to the root of the cause on why you feel celibacy may be the route for you? Have that conversation with yourself, decide why you are doing it (or why you aren’t) and set realistic expectations and boundaries.

What is your take on celibacy and masturbation? Please share!


21 thoughts on “Mastur-(de)bation

  1. treysma says:

    This is actually really good!! Love the transparency and you said so many insightful things. Honestly I think it’s exacky how you put it. Depends on the reasoning. I mean we can go as far as masturbation during marriage is that right? Im excited to share this so others can weigh in. Religiously that’s spot on. Love you boo! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. stefward321 says:

    Ok, let me start by saying I agree with the thought that before considering masturbation, determining the reason for celibacy is key. However, I don’t believe masturbation is okay in any situation. Having dealt with this issue personally for years, I understand what seems minimal and innocent can and will lead to other things. Ultimately, this is a type of control and when entered into its sending messages of severe independency. Sexual intercourse was never meant to be entered into single handedly (no pun intended). When making the decision to be celibate, you’re choosing to focus in on other matters of the heart and to be clear headed when dating. If masturbation becomes the result of a date or a fulfillment of a void, then it’s not allowing celibacy to truly guide your actions correctly. By one self-pleasing, it can get to a point that when a relationship is entered into and celibacy is taken off of the table that he/she cannot and will not be pleased by the other. In which that wouldn’t allow the relationship to grow intimately. As far as being married and masturbating, I believe that this is one of the highest forms of disrespect and unappreciation. Once again because it sends a message that the spouse isn’t needed to fulfill ALL his/her duties as a spouse. If I’m enough for you, we have a problem! I could continue, but I will leave it at this. Very loaded topic and I appreciate you for exposing this issue that many fear to discuss. It’s actually something I believe we all ponder or have pondered at some point in time…women just as much as men.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. christiancashelle says:

    Thanks for reading! This perspective is very eye opening! I definitely agree with the act during marriage as being a little disrespectful (if that’s the best word). Thanks for commenting!!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Queen Jazze says:

    Great read. As as single woman, I just refuse to share my body with any and everybody that tells me that i’m pretty; so masturbation helps me out every now and then. I have urges just like anybody else and rather than just hopping in the bed with randoms and having meaningless sex, i masturbate from time to time.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Montriece Cathcart says:

    Christian!! You know we have talked about this so I’m all for this!! I definitely think this is a topic that should be discussed more often especially in relationships and/if getting to know one another. This isn’t something to be ashamed of but to embrace and explore the depths of.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. tiffanytravelsblog says:

    Very interesting topic, that is not talked about enough especially in the church. Masturbation can be seen as wrong because if I masturbate I usually will be thinking about someone or something which turns into lustful thoughts. On the flip side, I understand our bodies have certain needs/reactions. Masturbation while married.. so many scenarios why people may be doing this while married, so I can’t really comment on that one.


    • christiancashelle says:

      I’ll be honest and say it was definitely a “gateway drug” for me. Like you said, it’s usually thinking of someone and i eventually began reaching out to that person because of the feelings created. Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. angloaristotelian says:

    Thank you for speaking out about this; it truly needs to be discussed but too many are silent. My view on this is that masturbation is not “morally wrong” in the sense we typically think. It is definitely risky because it encourages lust, so if you don’t get urges or they are weak enough that you can just ignore them, then don’t masturbate. However, most people get at least occasional urges, and masturbation is an instinctive release valve for that. The catch is that we have to learn to avoid lustful side-effects by training our thoughts and not using erotica, which is tough! But it can be done. I understand that many Christians feel it is wrong, but the only evidence I see for that is lust and addiction—which we can control. For those who are not married, abstinence from sex is denial already. Denial of ALL forms of relief strikes me as a man-made addition to the law, an addition that makes purity nearly impossible for those with strong desires. I trust in the grace of God, and in the means by which he delivers his grace. Who is to say that the human hand does not count as a means of grace? My blog has fuller arguments if you want to read them (look for “the unspeakeable” in the archive). I hope I have made a decent contribution!


    • christiancashelle says:

      Yes, I agree with the aspect of lust and addiction. You made some really good pints thank you so much for sharing! I’ll check your blog post out very soon! As you said, this is definitely a topic that I think needs to be discussed more, especially when it comes to leaning how to resist the temptation that turns into actually seeking someone to habe sex with while practicing celibacy. I know in the past, that was my mistake. It was a gateway drug so to speak, however back then I didn’t really understand exactly why I should be celibate.


      • angloaristotelian says:

        I understand that resisting the temptation to seek actual sex is very hard if you have a good opportunity. I would encourage you that when that temptation arises, what we are talking about is the perfect outlet for the physical urge, although the deeper emotional longing cannot be resolved that way. Based on what you have said, it sounds as if abstaining from masturbation would be unwise for you because you need the relief, but again the intentions of your heart need to be trained to stay away from excess and objectification. I could be wrong in my reading of your situation.

        Liked by 1 person

      • christiancashelle says:

        That was my situation the first time I tried to be celibate that only last 8 months. Now that I’ve actually decided why I’m celibate it’s easier to say no when the opportunity presents itself.

        Liked by 1 person

      • angloaristotelian says:

        Thanks be to God for giving you this clarity. If you have comments on my posts, please share. I would love some feedback.


      • angloaristotelian says:

        Also I think you are right about knowing why we need to be abstinent before marriage. It has to do with our own safety, not an obscure rule.

        Liked by 1 person

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