Even though the Church says no to fornication, not all Christians believe it is actually wrong. You may hear such defense as, “There is nothing wrong with sleeping with someone you really love.” But the man who says this to his girlfriends would say the opposite to his daughters and sisters. If nothing is actually wrong with fornication, the man would not object to his loved ones engaging in it. Fornication cannot be good for a man and bad for his sisters and daughters. The man knows from his own experience that fornication is wrong and destructive.
Women also know that fornication is wrong but some may want to defend it saying, “After all, I am not sleeping with a lot of men!” This statement is irrelevant. The person who has stolen from one person cannot claim that he is innocent of wrongdoing because he did not steal from many people. To steal from a lot of people is definitely worse than stealing from one person. But stealing is stealing. An act is wrong not because of the number of times it is carried out but because of its intrinsic nature. Repeating a wrong act makes it worse.
The temptation to have premarital sex is probably as old as marriage itself. St. Augustine still struggling with his desires, cried out to God, “Give me chastity… but not yet!” The popular culture we have today promotes sexual “liberation” yet many people are deeply unsatisfied by relationships that offer sex without lifelong love and commitment. There is no joy in the so-called sexual freedom. How does freedom to use or be used, to separate sex from commitment, make one truly free? You are free when you have no need of jellies, pills, shots, latex; free when you do not have HIV, STDs, and when you do not have to say, “Darling, it is just a cold sore.”
Cohabitation has become common. Sex in this situation becomes a commodity in which the female is the supplier and the male the consumer. This is not how to build a foundation for marriage. Many couples learn this lesson too late: most of marriage is not having sex. Hence, it is important to build true intimacy before marriage and this involves not having sex. Once premarital sex comes in, the relationship revolves around the physical. Effective communication is hindered and this is what is needed to resolve many problems in marriage. When steps to intimacy are skipped and sex comes in, a false bond is created and the necessary effort to deepen the relationship will be lacking. The key to love is chastity. It is through chastity that we can learn to love another as God loves us and through it, you make a sincere gift of yourself to your partner.
You cannot talk about loving someone without knowing him. Knowing someone takes effort, time, and a clear mind. Premarital sex is not conducive for couples who really want to know each other. If you say, “But I really love her,” then you should not be afraid to proclaim it publicly and to commit yourself to her which is marriage. Which do you think is truly an indication of love: sleeping with him or committing your life to him?
Discernment is very important in a relationship but sex does not help one discern. A woman complained about her boyfriend’s attraction to chubby women in particular. She said her boyfriend was cheating with a chubby neighbour of theirs after which she said, “I don’t know what to do.” This woman was not able to discern. Her boyfriend’s weakness is really not something she would want to live with. Besides that, she ought to have seen that she deserves better. She ought to walk away from that relationship but the false bond she was having with her boyfriend prevented her. In addition, her relationship has reduced her to a sexual object, hence, she appears to be less of a person.
It is either you control your passions and find peace or you allow your passions to control you and you lack peace.