Dating and physical boundaries

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A few of you posted comments asking why we couldn’t just stop the physical side of our relationship instead of having to break up. ” where I shared that my heart got shattered when I broke things off with a guy I had been dating married-style.“No members of the opposite sex in your rooms, except from -pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and only after they’ve signed in. And sexual issues can totally undermine even the most well-intentioned, Christ-centered relationships. But sometimes physical boundaries in dating relationships can often toe the line of legalism. If, “No laying on the couch together, when its past midnight, when we’re alone in the house, when the lights are off, when Conan is over, when we’re under a blanket, when the barometric pressure is below 30, when I don’t have to work in the morning, when you’re not wearing a turtleneck” is one of your boundaries…then you probably have too many boundaries. Your boundaries include the phrase “only once a month.” If you have a clause that states ‘If we follow these rules faithfully for a month we get to reward ourselves by engaging in 30 minutes of premarital spooning once per month”…then your boundaries/motives for actually having boundaries probably need to be reevaluated. Your boundaries include the words “but only when we’re standing up.” Anything that you can do laying down, you can probably do standing up. Or my personal favorite, we can kiss, but not for ‘extended’ periods of time. While a guest is in the room, the door must be propped open a minimum of six inches.” Seriously, this was a rule. Here’s when you know your physical boundaries in dating relationships have gone too far. And now it’s going to look REALLY awkward when your roommate accidentally walks in on you. Good luck defining those adjectives when you’re in the moment.

Whether you’re casually hooking up or have been going out for a while now, setting boundaries is an important part of any relationship.

But first, there’s something I really, really need you to hear: This post is not meant to shame you if you’ve already make sinned—big or small—with a guy. I’m not talking about the kind of mild-mannered, easily-overcome addiction I have to a certain raspberry chocolate-chip gelato right now.

Trust me—I’ve been there, and I have nothing but love and compassion for you and your situation. I’m talking about a physical addiction that comes from things like drugs more often than ice cream.

Sadly, my immature and unhealthy desires predictably did much more harm than good. Maybe dating has been hard for you too, for these reasons or others. It’s enough to leave you like an eight-year-old, asking, “Mom, where do weddings come from?

” The vision of marriage we see in God’s word — the beautiful, radical display of God’s infinite, persevering love for sinners — makes it worth it to date, and date well.

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