You’re a young woman who fornicated for the first time and are now convinced that you made the biggest mistake of your life. You did make a mistake, but the fact that you’re remorseful is a positive sign that you can overcome what you’ve done and move forward in a way that serves God more faithfully.

Virginity lost

The stories are usually the same. You met an attractive man who appeared charming, kind, and patient. He knew the right things to alleviate your concerns about going too far too fast. He seemed to put out signals that he wanted to be with you long-term though you never explicitly asked him for commitment. While petting and kissing, many times you said “No” or “Stop” and he obeyed, though sometimes reluctantly. He lavished praise on your beauty. He exclaimed how much you were turning him on. No man has ever kissed or caressed you like that before. You felt excited over wielding the power of your sexuality. You couldn’t believe that such a “natural” intimate act could be wrong. The moment took over, your will seemed to disappear. Next thing you knew, you’re in the middle of a sex act that felt far less enjoyable than the kisses and touches that preceded it. You wanted to escape, to be somewhere else, but too late now. His orgasm is complete. He lay beside you but he might as well be in the next town over. You try to convince yourself that maybe he is the one, yet within only a few days, he’s taking longer to reply to your text messages. He acts as if he doesn’t even care.

For your sake, I hope this is the biggest mistake you’ll make in your life, because there is much worse you can do. You let a fantasy of sexual passion supplant your faith, which was too weak to resist the advances of an attractive man who used stock lines and techniques, perhaps ones that I wrote about in my now-unpublished fornication books. The connection you felt with him was lust and not love, centered around physical appearance and emotion. You cared about him much less than you think, and he cared about you even less than that. He’s already moved on, lining up his next sex partner, hoping that new flesh will save him in the same way you looked to him to save you, but now you’re holding the bag of the virginity you lost that can never be given to your husband.

Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which you are. (1 Corinthians 3:16-17)

The first thing you must do is beg God for forgiveness. He created you as a Holy Temple, and you sinned by defiling it through a sex act outside of marriage. While fornication is normalized in the world, and most people participate in it, it’s no less grievous in the eyes of God. You turned away from Him through your actions, as if saying you don’t care for Him or His plan for your life, that you are going to make your own plan that you learned from the world. The grief you feel is a conscience that is in pain, but don’t despair: our sins are forgiven if we turn to our Savior Jesus Christ. Ask Him to keep you away from all acts of sex outside of marriage. If you’re in a church that has the sacrament of confession, confess before your priest so that he may absolve you of the sin.

Should you enter a relationship with the male fornicator?

Maybe your tempter is not a bad man after all, you think, and only needs a little urging and training so that a loving Christian pair bond can come forth. If he has gone cold on you after sex, you already have an answer that he is not suitable. He saw you as a vehicle for an orgasm and dose of pride, and if he was smooth in getting you into bed, he is not the type of man you should continue communicating with. Trying to ease into a relationship with him is the same as trying to tame Satan, because that is the evil force that he was in communion with based on what he did to you.

How about if the man was a Christian and feels as guilty as you do? If both of you were in a courtship that was headed towards marriage, it may be worth continuing the relationship with the understanding that you can’t have sex again before marriage. If you told the player that you want a relationship without sex, I am confident you would not hear from him again, and if you do, it would be for him to finagle another late-night rendezvous (he will surely insist on dates where you drink alcohol). If you decide to sin with the same man again, you’re using your free will to run away from God. In that case, may He have mercy on you. All harlots of today used to be virgins, and it only took a few mistakes from them to graduate to sex with multiple partners and then online prostitution.

A problem of faith

Since your faith was too weak to resist sexual temptation, you must examine yourself and find out why you rebuked God for a false sense of happiness. Do you maintain a daily prayer rule? Do you regularly read the Bible, particularly the New Testament? Do you attend church every Sunday with no exception? Do you participate in fellowship with other Christians instead of cosmopolitanites? Do you use Christian morality to guide your decisions instead of your emotions? Do you steer clear from dopamine-feeding social media apps and entertainments? A woman doesn’t go from being a devout Christian to having casual sex in one step, so do a self-examination of your daily routines and habits that made falling so easy.

The good news is that even with a partner count of one, you are doing better than most women. There will still be men who want to marry you. With the aid of Christ, you will overcome your mistake. Think of this as the beginning of your new life. Up to now, your faith may have been mostly theoretical or based on old habits from going to church as a child. You believed that there is a God somewhere who loves you and has strict rules for you, but maybe a little bit of “moderation” wouldn’t be so bad, that one instance of sex couldn’t possibly cause harm, and maybe it could be liberating or even empowering like the women’s websites claim. The guilt and pain you feel is what happens when you fall for Satan’s lies, for seeking liberation from God, who loves you as if you’re the only human being in the world. Your anguish is a microcosm of what promiscuous women feel every day, but who have deadened their conscience to such an extent that they insist on hoisting all their anger and bitterness upon men.

Keep your eyes on Christ. Resist temptation. Don’t allow a handsome man to smooth-talk you into committing fornication. Don’t allow a man to ply you with alcohol. Don’t sit alone with a man on beds or couches. Strengthen your faith and wait for God to send you a man who forgives your sins as you forgive his so that you come together in one flesh to worship God instead of worldly pleasures and idols, and if it ever gets too hard, simply cry out to God. He will help you every step of the way.

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