Celibacy and/or abstinence are powerful tools to help you get to know yourself. After some quick researching, or from personal experience, you can see that there are actually tons of different benefits of choosing to take a break from sex or intimacy.
Not everyone defines celibacy the same way, as some people include kissing and non-penetrative sex acts. The word is defined in the dictionary as “the state of abstaining from marriage and sexual relations.” Recently, different women shared their personal experiences with celibacy on Reddit, and the responses were generally in favor of celibacy and how it increased freedom, self-awareness, self-love, and sexual healing.
Redditors Shared Their Own Experiences
Someone asked the women of Reddit: “Women who are celibate: What’s your story, and what were the benefits of being celibate? Was it worth it?”
The post received many comments from different celibate women from all walks of life sharing their stories.
Only Enjoying Sex In A Loving Relationship
“As much as I love sex, I have realized I only enjoy it when I am in a loving relationship with someone. My last relationship was emotionally abusive, so I took myself out of the dating game for a few years to recover and love myself.
“Lately, I have been dating again, meeting some wonderful men, and making great friendships, but have not found one I am romantically interested in. I’m not worried, I know I’ll eventually meet someone and will make up for lost time, but in the meantime I live a fulfilling life with great family, friends, career opportunities, making my dreams come true. Masturbation is enough for me right now.” —justputonsomemusic
Being Able To Grow And Heal
“43 and it’s been 11 or 12 years. Haven’t been on a date in 10 years. A lot comes from how awful my last relationship was and the fear of being hurt again.
“In my personal life (emotional/professional) I felt I have gotten to grow and heal in ways I would not have had time/energy for had I had to invest in someone else.” —Coraline1599
“Half Of My Relationships Were Toxic”
“Half of my relationships were toxic and ALL of them I try soo hard to make it better even when they belittle me or scream at me. I take a lot of things on me thinking that one day it will become better. BUT NO it was worst, the only moment they try to make it better it’s when I started to pack my thing to get out of there (do not come back ever). And now I’m just afraid of starting a new relation.
“The benefit: no more drama, more time for you, no one pressuring you to make something you don’t want. I don’t plan to stay like this but it’s resourcing to take a break. So my peace of mind was worth it.” —MissionDatabase
No Interest In Sexual Contact
“I haven’t had sex in almost 2 years. I realized I wasn’t meant for relationships and had no interest in sexual contact so I stopped putting energy into it. Just being with myself is so calm and peaceful. Nobody needs me.
“I think that counts as celibate? I have no intention to find another partner again. It’s not for me. I love myself too much to share. I need all of my time.” —404wan
Wanting Something Real And Lasting And Being Willing To Wait For It
“Voluntarily celibate because I just don’t feel like dealing with catching yeast infections or HPV from slutty men.
“Sex is energetic and spiritual so whatever bulls*** is attached to that person will transfer to you and I’m not trying to deal with anyone else’s demons right now. 100% worth it. I want something real and lasting and I’ll wait for it.” —onewildlife
Exhausted From Trying To Be In A Relationship
“At 54 years old, I am just exhausted from trying to be in a relationship, maintain a relationship, recover from relationships. I am done. Hurts to say that because I love sex. I enjoy the closeness and the euphoria that comes from entwining yourself with someone.
“I have never been with anyone I didn’t have intense feelings for. So I’ve only had 8 partners. These boys/guys/men have left marks on my heart. Most of them don’t even know. Maybe I won’t miss it, maybe I’ll shrivel up and my vagina will fall off. Maybe.” —LJ1205E
Freedom Is A Big Benefit Of Celibacy
“I’m celibate by choice. I’m a virgin. I think it’s more about you’re a priority. If you want to spend more time on something you can adjust your schedule. Have a discussion with partners. For benefits, I would say freedom.
“I don’t have to worry about a partner moving away for a better job opportunity or have to worry if I have the opportunity. Also no worries about STD, STI or pregnancies. I’m doing it for religious reasons so to me it’s worth it.” —Coeurdefrancais
“I’ve Lost Interest In Men”
“I’ve been on celibate since 24 (I’m now 29). Broke up with my ex and lost any interest in men on top of having low libido. Honestly, I don’t see any profits of dating. For me, it’s a waste of money, mental health, and time to look like IG model for some guy, who want a substitute mommy.
“I have better times with games, books, shows and my hobbies than with men. I can spoil myself with good gadgets, travels to tropical islands, jewelry, and needs for my hobbies, it’s way more than the average man in my country can offer. And since a lot of men look below average and lacking empathy there is no reason to engage with them at all. So, I’m just glad that I have from little to no urge for sex and having kids.” —playwithcat
Simply Not Liking Intimacy
“I’m 25 and I just never wanted sex. I’m touch-averse autistic and that’s probably a big part of it. I also just really don’t like being naked and I don’t like intimacy since I’m not capable of making human relationships.
“I’d say it’s worth it, I guess. No downsides for me since I don’t want sex and there are the upsides of no STDs, pregnancy scares, clingy guys who can’t separate sex and a relationship, or sexual encounters turned violent.” —LadyCordeliaStuart
Sometimes Not Having Sex Is The Best Decision For Your Mental Health
“I’m celibate at the moment. I had/have been struggling with some body and mental issues and images so I decided not having sex is best right now. It started to feel more like a burden and something I was pushing myself to do instead of the normal fun in the moment passion.
“As soon as I decided it, I literally felt a huge weight lift off my shoulders. So until I’m mentally sound again and fix my body, I’m refraining from sex.” —alphawhiskey347
“I Have Been Doing Some Soul Searching”
“I’ve been technically celibate for a year now, not necessarily by choice, but not particularly minding it either. I had a boyfriend for quite some time. We were each other’s first partner but no matter how many times I did it, I never enjoyed it. I just did it to make him happy but it felt more like a chore, rather than a fun intimate moment with someone I loved.
“Eventually, the roadblock to be sexually intimate with him got worse and worse. It made me feel super guilty like I just couldn’t love him the way he loved me. Last January, I broke up with him. Haven’t had any bed partners since. But anyway, I have been doing some soul searching since, and though I’m still questioning, I think I’m on the asexual spectrum. I have also entertained the thought of being a lesbian, but I’m still not sure. Regardless, I’ve been indifferent to the fact that I haven’t had sex in a while.” —eggofreddo
When The Dating Pool Makes You Not Want To Hook Up With Anyone
“I’m not like intentionally celibate for moral or religious but the dating pool where I am it makes me not want to even hook up. Way too many times of hookups disrespecting boundaries. Either by not calling but literally ringing my doorbell at midnight (because I turn my phone off when I’m SLEEPING), annoying me to not use protection, wanting me to put in relationship-level time in exchange for their mediocre casual sex when they feel like it…
“And I neither have the time nor the patience for what is supposed to be a hookup to be a hostage negotiation. And I don’t want to be in a relationship rn and dudes can’t live right so…it’s fine. the tradeoff of not having drama is better than having to navigate the BS.” —flyingcatpotato
Celibacy Helps You Focus On You
“I find it very enjoyable actually, it helps me focus on things I want to do instead of who I want to do. and I’m finding ways to appreciate myself and [accepting] my flaws and learning to be comfortable and loving towards myself.
“I think for me being celibate helps getting to know someone and see if they are really compatible with you emotionality sex can make things a bit hazy, I think.” —Blacksparrow123
“No Longer Second-Guessing My Interactions”
“Not at the moment but went voluntarily celibate for about 8 months and LOVED it… I was no longer second-guessing my interactions with people or worrying about tactfully navigating situations. Like once the possibility of sex fell away I was able to more clearly see the dynamic between myself and others.
“It really helped me to start noticing patterns with pushy guys who just want sex vs guys who actually respect you. Definitely worth it, would do it again, would recommend.” —therewillbedrama
Celibacy Can Be Just What You Need
There are actually lots of benefits to abstaining from sex, depending on who you are and what your priorities are.
Not only do you have no risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), but going celibate allows you to take time to work through your negative feelings about sex or relationships. That being said, it’s not for everyone, and that’s okay.