depends on what his definition of sex is. If it just excludes reproductive sex, that's one thing.

Otherwise, DTMFA.
If he's drinking and doing everything but, he'll be fucking you in no time. So stick around if you think he's worth it.

The more pressing question is if you want to be responsible for being his first, and all that is likely to go with that given his (eroding) religious convictions about sex.
Way too early to DTMFA.

I, too, think the no-sex-before-marriage thing is completely silly and unrealistic. I flat out would not marry someone I had not had sex with. I think it is critical to find out if you are sexually compatible before getting married, not after.

Having said that, there is no reason you have to find out if you are sexually compatible right this minute. I would not pressure or rush the guy. No hurry. Take your time. Have fun. But I would let him know that eventually you're gonna wanna have a full sexual relationship, and that is a precondition for marriage.
He sounds strange. Inconsistent in too many important ways.
It's as if he lacks self awareness. And why would you be talking marriage after knowing him such a short time? Again, inconsistent. Something isn't right. He may already be married and intercourse may be his out of bounds point.
FUCK, you don't sound like the type to rush into marriage just for the sex. But he might be; if you get an earlier-than expected marriage proposal, no matter how much you like him, take it with a BIG grain of salt.

In fact, I really wouldn't marry this guy before sex, for exactly that reason. Not that penetrative sex is so crucial, but rather that his motivations should not be unduly weighted by it.
It seems silly that one would do other kinds of sexual acts but not "sex" itself, if you are waiting till marriage, then fine it all needs to be off the table.

That being said, nothing wrong with waiting if you want. If your partner isn't fine with it, then it may be time to move on.
I think it is easy to forget that we don't all spring forth from adolescence with a fully-formed and self-consistent set of sexual ethics. This guy is clearly struggling with aspects of his faith (particularly as regards sex) and his behavior reflects that. If he seems inconsistent or silly, it's because he's in what is likely a transition away from a tightly-wound religious framework.

I feel for him, because I've been there. And if FUCK is into him enough to be there for him and be patient with him as he figures this stuff out, he's a lucky guy for it.
@4 He's in college. He comes (likely) comes from a strict religious upbringing , and now he's striking out on his own for the first time. Inconsistency is not strange, it's expected.
At some point on the way to naked-in-bed, what you were doing became sex. A bigger red flag for me would be the religion. He may in fact be on his way to minimizing its importance in his life, in which case, no worries.

Or maybe, at some point, he'll decide to get serious about it., and he'll resent and blame you for luring him down the path of sin. In the meantime, he may consider you fair game to fool around with because you're already a defiled unbeliever. It might be interesting to find out if he'd do the same things with a Muslim girl.

(Not to say that this is pattern exclusive to Muslims. I'm also a former Christian, and I imagine any sex-negative religion might have the same baggage.)
I completely agree with Dan's advice, and I agree with pox to watch out for red flags about this guy deciding you're the slut he can mess around with while he's waiting for a virginal dream girl to appear in his life, etc. Never seen that happen with Muslim people, but I sure as shit have witnessed Christians treating their partners that way.

So, keep your eyes open for any religious baggage, and let's hope that "no sex before marriage" actually means he's gonna learn how to eat your pussy like a champ. Vag is halal, right?
I think that Dan's advice is good. Just stick with it and see where it goes. He might be in the process of shedding some major limits and associated guilt. A few (or a few dozen) mutual orgasms might be just the thing that take PIV from marriage only to perfectly acceptable. Also realize that you can have a lot of awesome sex without PIV if that is his limit. It sounds like oral, handjobs and other stuff is all in right now. That's not a bad menu of options to start with for a new partner.
It sounds like this guy you like a lot is well on his way toward being a recovering Muslim (as opposed to a practicing one), or at least a liberal Muslim. Maybe he'd be down for fucking you with a strap-on, FUCK, if you want to be getting fucked by something phallic and attached to him but his penis isn't an option (and even raising the question might make him realize what a constructed, arbitrary distinction allowing a rubber/plastic penis but not a rubber-/plastic-wrapped penis is). Sex can be a powerful force against dogmatic religion (particularly those obsessed with proscribing sex); I have one friend who was raised as a Pentecostal fundamentalist and kept it up until she met and started dating my other friend (who is possibly a more-militant atheist than I).

@4: Really? That's not that unusual, given how little sense religious convictions around sex make (though still 'strange' to me). It's certainly inconsistent, because the belief is predicated on inconsistent dogma (something he may be realizing, hence the drinking, love for Teh Gays and sluts, everything but penis-in-vagina intercourse), but inconsistency in belief is very common among humans.
I agree with Dan, but I predict that while if FUCK is patient, the virgin will eventually have sex with her, he will shortly thereafter dump her. He needs to have his "relationship in which I broke my no-sex rule" in order to remove the taboo; then he will want to start "clean" in a relationship in which he no longer has the taboo. Sort of like a rebound relationship, only in the wrong order. Maybe a "prebound."
One word: Saddlebacking
I agree with @13. He's going through a college phase; he'll likely return to being practicing a more conservative style of his beliefs soon enough, perhaps after losing his virginity with this woman. I would get out now, if I were her.
I went through this with a Christian boyfriend in high school. When he told me he thought he wanted to wait, I smiled and said "I will respect your values on this," knowing that it wouldn't last. A a few months later, we were having sex. Dan's right about this - if you like the guy, stick around for a bit. You don't have to convince him - what his body will communicate with him when he's rolling around naked with you is enough convincing.
Be careful, very careful, if you consider eventual marriage and children with this man. Do a little searching. There are true horror stories of such interfaith marriages where the husband eventually decides to take his children back to his homeland, and the mother never sees them again, or does so only at great cost and risk.
"Citizen" R - you don't even now if "this man" has a homeland different from Alabama. And these "horror stories" are just that - like "Scream" and "The Tell-Tale Heart" they're mostly invented and have, if any, only a thin basis in reality. I doubt this has happened at all in the US since Betty Mahmoody.

But that said - they've been dating for a bunch of weeks. Why should she even be _thinking_ of marriage and kids? FUCK clearly has her head screwed on right.
Get him drunk.
Start leaving a copy of Hitchens' "God is Not Great" lying around your room, bookmarked to the chapter on Islam. Also, please realize that if your agnosticism means you're not sure if god exists, or don't believe it's possible to know if god exists, then that means you don't actively believe that god exists, and that makes you an atheist as well as an agnostic.
@17: it might be hard for you to imagine, but there are Muslims whose homeland is actually the US. Some of them aren't even brown.

Wait and enjoy, FUCK. Most people don't marry the person they are dating at the end of college, anyhow. Enjoy lots of orgasms together and see what happens.
Or maybe he's nervous, and religion is a good excuse to not have to face it. In which case, FUCK being laid back and non-pressuring about things is also the best thing she could do.
@12 I know sex was one of the many major problems that caused my husband to abandon Pentecostalism, too. He was the pastor of a 200ish person church and says that, at some point, he counseled just about every man about sex problems in their marriages. Dr. Darrell Ray, author of "The God Virus" and a good friend of ours, is currently working on a book about sex and religion, and just completed a large survey about the subject with mostly former believers of many stripes. The preliminary results are showing a higher level of sexual dysfunction, guilt, and other problems associated with religions with stricter moral codes focusing on sex. Shameless self promotion: Living After Faith podcast, episodes #4 "Too Fucked Up to Fuck" and #14 "Sex and Religion Survey" if you're interested in hearing them.
All kinds of sexual activities except penis in pussy? Lucky girl. Beats wham, bam, thank you mam.
He is a guy! Just keep getting naked and he will end up fucking you! There is only so much religion can keep him from doing. Ask a few catholic priests about that.
@19: Bullseye! I vaguely recall such advice actually coming from Dan in the olden days. He seems so much more sober and responsible now, alas.
@ 20 That was well said, Outercow. Oh, and that was a good read, too. I keep mine snuggled between "Same-Sex Unions in Premodern Europe" and the bible my mom gave me on some birthday. It's bright yellow cover makes me smile.

I must continue grooving. I'm keen to nail "Long Grey Mare" today.

I know a LOT of Muslims. Dozens, in fact (I lived in a Muslim country for awhile). Not one of them has ever said a word about premarital sex being taboo, or that it's wrong to have sex with someone you're not married to. And they were having non-marital sex all the time, men and women. This leads me to believe that this guy's beliefs may be family-determined or some other-determined factor.
Another thing I forgot to add: Islam's adherents run the full gamut from remarkably secular to extremely devout. There is no one broad brush that can paint everyone the same.
Am I the only Muslim Savage Love reader, I wonder?

My take on the current letter is that the LW's boyfriend is going through a phase where he's trying to figure out what is acceptable for him within the boundaries of being Muslim. He's trying to push against the rules that don't make sense to him but at the same time he wants to stay within his identity structure. It'll take a while for him to build a coherent identity for himself-- his choices may never be coherent to the outside world but he may yet find something that works for him personally. I know that it took me years.

I come from a moderately religious family. No one in my family drinks alcohol or eats pork-- I drink alcohol sometimes but never eat pork (out of habit, I think). I go to mosque sometimes, I give to charity, I pray often, I don't wear the hijab and I have sex with my fiance (who is not Muslim). Now would some extremists tell me I am not a Muslim? Probably... But I think I am and most people around me do too. Not every person of Islamic descent has to wear a beard or shake his fist at women. I am sure the LW's boyfriend will come up with a framework of rules that make sense to him and bring him some peace. It probably will be a hard ride for the LW because perhaps his rules won't entirely make sense to her. I don't know whether she should stick with him or not-- she should if she's willing to be open-minded and come along for the ride but if she expects him to give into all her expectations of what he should be she'd be better off with someone else for her own peace of mind.
No, seriously. You're Muslim? Kill yourself. It's the right thing to do. And it will save us the trouble of doing it for you, so everybody wins.
Is "fifty-two-eighty" supposed to be funny? I don't think that's funny in the least. Fuck off dude
@ 31: Thank you for sharing, tazzo. It is nice to have you with us.

Take care.

@ 32: That must be your worst buzz saw "joke" ever, Fifty_Two_Eighty. It failed, in my opinion. I think you're a better person than that comment makes you sound. Please be that man in the future.

Take care.
I had a friend who until just recently was very dedicated to no-sex-before-marriage. Then she got a boyfriend and decided that she wants to fuck his brains out, and that it's not worth denying yourself something that you really, really want. So I say, stick around, and he might just surprise you :D
@ 32, Maybe it sounds stupid but it works for me. I am trying to express, kind of badly, how many American Muslims work around their faith and culture while still trying to live an ordinary life here. I suspect it works that way for muslims in other countries but my only context I personally know of is within the USA. I am pretty educated but writing has never been one of my strong points which is why I've generally lurked on this board without commenting.

@ 35, Thanks. I've always enjoyed your comments on slog.
*** I meant to say the only context I can speak of is within the USA.
DAN'S ADVICE IS WRONG HERE. Do NOT, under any circumstances, marry this guy before having lots of sex with him first. Absolutely not! Particularly if he has religious hangups not just about premarital sex, but about masturbation. I learned this the hard way dating a virginal Catholic. Thirteen years of misery, a painful divorce, I'm still messed up six years later.

I know that oral counts as sex, blah blah blah, but it's DIFFERENT. Make it your personal goal to pop this guy's cherry, and if he doesn't put out after a set amount of time, get the hell out of Dodge. Whatever you do, don't get softhearted about his religious scruples!
If you stay with him, you're going to have to be VERY nice to him.

Even if he seems tolerant, a lot of people are willing to tolerate in others what they're afraid to tolerate in themselves. He's a Muslim in the process of breaking a lot of Muslim taboos, and if/when he does have penetrative sex, it could FREAK HIM THE FUCK OUT. It's an enormous stress doing something that you were raised to believe was wrong. If he's uncharitable, there's a chance he could blame you for making him "bad" -- if he's nice, he'll just have awful self-esteem issues. That's a lot of pressure on you. Someone's gotta break him in (he sounds like he's not going to be an observant Muslim or virgin forever) but that someone has got to be able to withstand some heavy-duty feelings. If you're not interested in playing therapist, that someone shouldn't be you.
Awesome responses, tazzo!
Ha, tazzo, I think having one's Slog cherry popped by 5280 should be an honoured rite of passage...When I first commented about a year ago on some completely harmless subject, 5280 made some flaming comment in response--I was shocked, I tell you! Oh my, people on this board were so mean!--but unlike you, with a measured response, I think I dug deep down to my Boston roots and called him a bunch of names...hmmm. Now, of course, I know he just does stuff like that to rile people up, and that try as he might, he can't cover up the fact that he's very open-minded. He really just wanted to give you a big ol bear hug, right 5280??
Marrenna, I'm sorry about your awful experiences, but I think they made you misread Dan.

Letting your boyfriend know that, as much you like him, as much as you can picture a future with him, you're unlikely to go without vaginal intercourse for the amount of time it would take to go from dating to engaged to married to honeymooned. Emphasize that premarital sex doesn't necessarily preclude marriage—barring the emergence of other deal breakers—but a long wait for postmarital sex definitely would.

I'm pretty sure he's saying that she should let him know that no sex before marriage is a deal breaker in the long run, even if they stay together in the short term.
Thanks for the nice responses everyone!

I don't think he'll turn on the LW if he loses his virginity to her. *shrug* he may be confused and reevaluate his religion and priorities but he would have to be a mean or abusive person to take his frustration out on her.
tazzo is spot on.

another super-liberal, SLOG-enjoying muslim lady.
@44: "I don't think he'll turn on the LW if he loses his virginity to her... he would have to be a mean or abusive person to take his frustration out on her."

Sadly, there are a lot of mean and abusive people out there. Certainly, he may not turn against her, but he may. It isn't bad advice to let her know that - to at least get her thinking "Is he the kind of man who would do this?"

No, you're correct, I definitely don't think it is a bad thing for her to be aware that she may need to protect herself. However, I think there is a knee-jerk reaction amongst liberal/non-religious circles that every religious man, this stereotype is applied especially to muslim men, is somehow creepy and dangerous. That these men are always abusive and violent especially towards women. In my experience this is just not true-- I haven't encountered any violence in the religious circles I've struggled with, maybe some chauvinism and these people were always open to challenge. I also want to point out that internal struggle doesn't generally lead to outward violence. Maybe I was lucky and I definitely think the LW should be aware of all the possibilities and keep an eye towards her safety. I just don't think that we should jump to the conclusion, without evidence, that this guy, who is obviously going through a hard time, is dangerous just because he's struggling with religious scruples.
"I did not have sexual relations with that woman"....Uhhhh, is BILL CLINTON a secret Muslim like Obama???
I'm surprised Muslim boy has not suggested anal. Or was that implied in "everything but"? True believers usually do it in the butt…
As people are making up their mind about whether to have sex or not, it's common to shift responsibility elsewhere. My daughter tells her friends "My mom would KILL me!" when they offer alcohol or drugs to her. I suggested that she blame me until she's strong enough and old enough to take responsibility for saying "No thanks" and for doing things on her own timetable. She's already started to switch over. I've seen very religious (and only mildly religious) people do exactly the same thing. "I can't do this because it's a sin" can shift, with enough persuasive evidence (rolling around naked in bed, oral, deep kissing) to "why the heck not?" in a relatively short period of time. The parents, the school, the church, the mosque, whatever....these can be important and effective safety nets while the person takes the time necessary to make up his/her mind. So I'm all for waiting him out.
Maybe he can fuck you in the butt.

That's how the pre-marital Mormons do it.


Little known fact--God and Allah do not monitor buttholes. I know Moses certainly doesn't. Actually, he doesn't monitor any holes--Jewish girls are awesome!
The guy isn't the only one who might change his mind in this scenario. I've been married for seven years to a man who wanted to wait for penetration until his wedding night, and I couldn't be happier I stuck around. We dated for FIVE YEARS, yep, that's right, FIVE YEARS, with no penetration of any kind. I never thought that epic abstinence would be the right option for me, but he was, and, is, the right option overall. We have an active and mutually fulfilling sex life, even after kids, which I'm coming to understand is a rarity, and I have no regrets about respecting my partner's wishes for his own sexuality, even if I had to be flexible about my own expectations. GGG, right?

I think a lot of commenters are confusing their feelings for "religious" people in general with the reality of the guy in question. He's not a Mormon. He's not a jihadi. He doesn't seem to be a wingnut in any way, except that he has a particular sexual expectation, a "kink," if you will. Does it matter that his kink is the result of his thinking about morality? What makes it sillier to want to wait for marriage to actually engage in penetration than to have a particular fondness for being pegged only with the pink strap-on, rather than the black? Aren't these personal references? This is a place where there's a lot of acceptance for unusual sexual apetites, and I'd like to think that acceptance extends to the vanilla end of the spectrum as well, as long as the persons involved aren't condemning the choices of others, as this dude doesn't seem to be.

I'd echo Dan's advice to FUCK--just wait and see. If you like this dude, don't ditch him just because of his kink. If you feel at some point like your needs aren't being met, by all means, move on, but don't assume you won't like the situation before you've given it a good try. This far in, I'm kind of amazed more women don't want a man who can spend hours giving orgasm after orgasm without wanting anything in return. I think it's pretty sweet.

Please wait...

Comments are closed.

Commenting on this item is available only to members of the site. You can sign in here or create an account here.

Add a comment

By posting this comment, you are agreeing to our Terms of Use.