Reasons Why Young People Have Sex Before Marriage

Josh McDowell wrote a book entitled Why True Love Waits in which he details the reasons why young people cannot resist the temptation to have sex before marriage. Consider below some of the “reasons” why young people yield to this temptation:

The physical reasons for why young people have sex before marriage puts all the focus on the body. Their bodies are growing up and they are “hormonally and physically capable of having sex.” Another physical reason is they start dating early. There is a greater chance (71%) that the earlier young people date, the earlier they will have sex. What also increases sex before marriage is the myth of “safe sex” and that “protection” will reduce pregnancy or disease. A great number of young people will have sex because it “feels good.” As long as emotions dictate a relationship, people think the quicker those desires are fulfilled, the better they will feel as a person, not knowing the physical implications could result in pregnancy or disease.

The media has increased the possibility of premarital sex by virtue of several “beliefs” (untruths). “No one will get hurt.” “It’s alright. We’re engaged.” “I owe it to him/her.” “Having sex with me will prove your love.” “Sex proves that I’m an adult.”

Is this a bad thing? Most people in the media say, “No.” To support this position, some cite the well-documented health benefits of being sexually active. According to WebMD, sex relieves stress, boosts one’s immune system, burns calories, improves heart health, and can reduce the risk of certain cancers. It can even improve the quality of sleep. Add this to the mix, and you have people who have sexual relations before marriage for medical purposes. 

Besides all this, sex sells. The more you attempt to sell a product or service with sex, the greater the chance of selling sex rather than the product. Although television, movies, pornography, and music are the most often used media to promote sex, the irony is hardly anyone portrayed in music or on screen pays an ugly price for illicit sex. It is all good. In real life, people pay dearly.

Various emotional reasons contribute to sex before marriage. Children need love and attention. What is modeled in a family with separation, animosity, or divorce so often breaks a child’s heart. Children who need a father’s love, but cannot receive it because he is not there or does not want to show it, will result in a child seeking love in a relationship with a member of the opposite sex. Divorce has ruined the family, especially a child’s security and love. What is also lost is the clear instruction about sex. With no one to teach them about it, young people will reach out to educate themselves. What a mistake! Children need to find the answer to sex at home and in the Bible, not “on the street” or at a friend’s house or in a magazine or on the Internet.

There are relationship reasons which cause many young people to have sex before marriage. Love, security, affection, and companionship are what make up a relationship between a boy and girl. They feel their relationship is just as important as a relationship between an adult man and woman.

If a boy or girl who has sex before marriage is asked why they engage in this, the answer may be “We are in love!” They view love as something received rather than something given. The statement “If you love me, you’ll show me or prove it to me” is not the test of love. The test of love is 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Relationships fulfill a need for companionship. Young people want to be accepted and avoid loneliness. In order to prevent being alone, many young people believe they can only hold a relationship together with sex. Sex is not the key to eliminating loneliness. God designed marriage as the relationship for man and woman to meet the need for companionship and avoid loneliness. That is the only relationship where sex is holy, sacred, and fulfilling.

The psychological reasons are possibly the greatest contributor to premarital sex. “Why wait?” “Everyone’s doing it!” “You mean you’re still a virgin?!?” These are the pressure statements issued by young people toward their peers. A young person, “void of understanding,” is pushed or humiliated into thinking he or she needs to “join the crowd.” The pressure is to conform to the world or the likes of his or her boyfriend or girlfriend.

Who says you must hop on the wagon and ride with others? The frequency of something being done by others does not accurately indicate the value of it. If so, then the more people who have cancer, the more anxious people should be to have it.

Young people need to remember that “COOL” is not always defined as a popular, accepted, and welcomed activity engaged in by others. Realize who you are as defined by God in His Word, and not by how other people describe you (2 Corinthians 10:12). Understand the worth and dignity of a human being is not based on appearance, performance, or proof of sexual ability. As soon as you see yourself as special in the eyes of God, you will see the person of the opposite sex as special, too.

Young people - check your motives. The desires of your body are handled better with God. Look into the Scriptures. Have self-respect. Remember you are an example (1 Timothy 4:12).