2011 PL Essay  Contestant  
17 years old
12th grade
Oliver B. 
1st Prize in HS(11-12) Category

            Turn on the TV, listen to the radio, surf the internet, walk down a high school hallway, watch a movie, no matter what you do or how hard you try it is nearly impossible to escape the many sexually oriented messages and images we are exposed to everyday. These messages and images glorify pre-marital sex and show it in a positive light. This leaves many people asking what are if any the benefits of keeping sexual purity before marriage?   
            There are many benefits of keeping sexual purity before marriage. One of the main benefits of keeping sexual purity before marriage is having a stronger relationship between you and your spouse when you are married. You will have a stronger foundation of trust between you and your partner and you will not have the burden of carrying memories of the sexual experiences that you had between you and previous people. You will also increase your chances of having a successful and permanent marriage. A study conducted by researchers at Brigham Young University found that couples who practiced abstinence before marriage experienced longer marriages.
            Another reason why one should remain sexually pure before marriage is because of the benefits it has on your physical, psychological, and social health. Abstaining from sex before marriage will greatly reduce your risks of getting a sexually transmitted disease (STD). It will also reduce the chances of you having an unplanned pregnancy. Students who abstain from sex prior to marriage are also believed to perform better academically. Sex outside marriage or before marriage can lead to relationship problems resulting in depression, guilt, loneliness, disappointment, emotional turmoil, family breakup, domestic abuse and social disruptions.
When one remains sexually pure before marriage they will also be helping to promote a better, healthier society. Abstaining from sex before marriage means fewer unwanted pregnancies, lesser homeless children and more college graduates which means more people with a higher income.
            When you remain sexually pure before marriage you will also have a stronger and more closer relationship between God and your family. Your family will trust you more when you choose to remain sexually pure before marriage and you will be closer to God because you will be following his teachings (“Run away from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body. 1 Corinthians 6:18 - New Living Translation”). Having a strong relationship with God and your family is important because it will help you to stay away from other temptations and will be of benefit when you are going through hard times and need someone who you can talk to and have a strong healthy relationship with. 
            When you have pre-marital sex you are giving your love away and that which is most sacred to someone who does not truly love you and has no intention of spending the rest of their life with you. When you practice sex outside of marriage or before marriage you are giving away a part of your heart and soul that you will never be able to get back. You are giving away that which is most sacred, and is only intended to be shared between husband and wife. In doing this you will not be capable of loving your spouse to the extent that you would have been able to love them if they had been your first.  
            For me the benefits of keeping my sexual purity before marriage are many. When remaining abstinent and sexually pure I can spend more time on my academics, friends and family, and developing a stronger relationship with God. I personally know of many students who have not remained abstinent and have seen them suffer greatly because of it. They grew apart from long time friends, had more family problems and did poorly in school. Some people even turned to drugs or alcohol in order to cope with the void left in their lives when the person they loved or had sex with left them to be with someone else. I personally think that the benefits of remaining sexually pure before marriage greatly outweigh the perceived benefits of not. 
            As you can see there are many benefits of keeping sexually purity before marriage. These benefits include but are not limited to a stronger relationship between you and your spouse, better relationship between friends and family, healthier psychological, emotional and physical health, capability of loving your spouse with all your heart and most importantly a closer relationship between you and God.

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