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!