Sleeping in the same bed... chastely?

Hi, so I have two questions. My boyfriend and I have been dating for 8 months, we are 21 and 22. I spend the night at his school apartment almost every night because he lives quite a bit away from my house. We have both agreed to wait till marriage to have sex, and have held onto that from the beginning. However, his bed is big and I always sleep in it with him. We have never had sex. Is this really a sin? and why? If we truly aren’t doing anything, why is it wrong?

that is the most important question, but I have one more. Everyone says that sleeping in the same bed basically means ‘don’t pass go, don’t collect $200 dollars- you are going to end up having sex.’ As if there is no going around that fact. And even though I have always thought we had great chemistry, and I am definitely attracted to him and love being close to him, it really doesn’t seem all THAT difficult to take sex off the table and simply NOT do it. Does that say something bad about our relationship, or our chemistry? It doesn’t feel that way, just feels like we have good self control, but the more I hear that it is just TOOOO difficult to sleep together and not go further, the more i fear that my ability NOT to do it means there might be something wrong with our relationship. I love him very much, and this part isn’t something that I worry about often, and it isn’t as though people saying that this is weird will cause me to break up with him. it is just something I thought about and wanted to hear some others thoughts (hopefully telling me I’m silly! lol)

SOOO to sum up

  1. is it wrong to sleep with my boyfriend in the same bed when we aren’t having sex?
  2. is the fact that I am able to sleep with him and NOT feel incredibly challenged in my decision to not have sex a bad sign for our chemistry/ sexual compatibility?


It’s like cleaning a gun without removing the ammunition first. It is like storing your gasoline with your explosives. It is even more like leaving your faithful hound alone in the kitchen with the roast chicken. You may do it for 20 years without a problem, but you are asking for trouble. Once trouble comes, it cannot be undone.

No, it is not a red flag that you can sleep in the same bed without having sex. It does not mean you do not have chemistry. It means you haven’t had sex…yet. Still, it is not a good idea. Once you’ve become one flesh, it is nature to want to remain that way.

It is far easier to say “no” to a pleasure you have not had yet. You’ll find a hundred people who can eat just one potato chip before you find one that can have sex relations just once with someone they continue to love and want to spend their lives with. This is why we avoid near occasions of sin. It is just common sense.

Unless you face the spectre of severe hypothermia that cannot be avoided in another way, don’t sleep in bed with a man unless it is your marriage bed.

Oh, and I need to raise this little bit of experience that people I have personally known have had. Sexual relations you do not plan on having have this way of occurring during the time of the month when the woman is most easily aroused. That would be during the same time of the month when she is most likely to conceive. Do you get the picture? The first time can easily make you parents. It is not a far-fetched possibility.


Would you like it if your future husband, whoever he may be, is sleeping in the same bed as another lady right now? Even if “chastely”?

Would you encourage your future daughter to sleep in the same bed as another man? Even if “chastely”?

Take a good, hard look at those questions. You sound intelligent, rational and reasonable. You know the answer is no.

I also couldn’t get to grips with this at first. I mean, its so naturalised for me where I am, and when I was away from the Church I was doing it with my girlfriend (including sex though unfortunately). I am still kinda hoping that if I ever date again, I wont fall into this habit. But I would classify it as a sin, and if it isn’t - which it probably is by putting yourself into temptation - then it is not good dating behaviour.

You see, some things are just meant to be for marriage. Sharing a bed is symbolic both physically and emotionally. I mean, would you open a joint bank account with your boyfriend right now? To extend it a bit further, would you open this joint bank account but put no money in it to justify it? Know what I mean?

Learn to be a girlfriend. If this is the man you will marry, which he might or might not be, then look forward to the day you are a wife.

We should also think of charity toward others. Your friends who know you stay at his place regularly would likely assume, despite your insistence, that you are a hypocrite and a liar. Likely, they would keep silent so as to not embarrass you.

How do you think they will react if faced with a similar situation? Would they also choose chastity? Only God knows. You would be in no position to correct them, however.

Due to the distance between your homes, perhaps you should say “goodnight” a little sooner in person and by phone later on.

Does he have a couch you could use or he could use instead? Or how about bringing one of those blow up mattresses or a sleeping bag. To be honest I couldn’t sleep in the same bed and not want to transgress where I shouldn’t but that’s just me. If you can that’s great self control but I think you’re taking a chance with your conscience. Also is your boyfriend really that as easy with it all as you seem to be…or is he maybe just being the tough guy and not showing you weakness? You have to think about his soul too.

If you enjoy kissing him then I wouldn’t worry about chemistry. keeping in mind that we live in a sex crazy world that thinks sex is the end all of everything and it really isn’t. If you’re focused on what you should be than living without it isn’t that horrible…it’s when you get fixated on it that it becomes a problem.

Good luck.

Via first hand experience I can report it’s possible…and very common in the college environment.

This is wrong on many levels. For one, you are putting yourself and your friend into an “Occasion to sin” this is indeed a Sin!

Also by what I have read in your OP that your friends are privy to these sleeping arrangments. This indeed creates a scandal which is also a sin or may lead others to sin like you or worse. Do not underestimate your power of influence of people you know and some you don’t know.

When your future daughter tells you that you need not worry. “We are only sleeping together chastely and have no intention of having sex until marriage”

As to your question about normal feelings in your relationship. I would have to say yes with the caveat that everyone has different temptations. This include your male friend. What you feel as easy might indeed be very difficult for him.


One of my college buddies has a big bed too. I went to visit him where he lives a couple of states away earlier this summer to hang out for a long weekend.

If it’s okay for you and your friend to share his bed, shouldn’t I have slept with my buddy?

I ASSURE you we would never have sex.

Another thing to consider…

Sometimes women can more easily avoid temptations of a sexual nature. Think about your boyfriend (and potentially your future husband). It could be leading *him *to sin.

I think another thing to consider is what chastity means. Do you mean that you’re just avoiding as they say “going all the way”? I think its important to remember that marital intimacy is more than “all the way.” Not only is it very easy to eventually fail to say no, but its also easy to succeed at this through developing mental habits to supress and reject the way God designed human sexuality. We need overall to respect the fullness of the gift of our sexuality. Driving down with the petal to the metal with the emegerency break on and your left foot on the other break isn’t the wisest thing in the world to do even if you do succeed at avoiding running the red light. It is important to remember that as intimacy builds in the relationship, you will have to rely on the break and may even have to slam down on the break really hard, but you shouldn’t be having to rely so heavily on the break, as if you get credit the more times you resist intense temptation. You should be avoiding that temptation as much as you reasonably can.

Then as other people explained, there is the concern of causing scandal.

What does seem to be unsaid is the importance of emotional modestly. Saving sex for marriage is a part of that emotional modesty. Chastity just isn’t all about frowning on sex before marriage. In a way, it is reserving marital intimacy found in more forms than just sex. Its that intimacy found in waking up next to each other, that intimacy found in the sharing of chores, in being a part of each other’s bedtime rituals. Its really reserving married life for married life. Its really a part of being able to say after you’ve been married that truly your life has drastically changed in more than just “Oh now I get to have sex.”

I’m not saying you can’t enjoy each other’s company or share fond memories or to share anything special together. Its not just “ok let’s stay in cold water and then when we get married we’ll jump into the hot tub.” Its rather enjoying the relationship where its at, and giving honest expression to where it is at.

As several other posters have pointed out, even if you don’t ever have sex, it is wrong–even beyond the scandal that you are giving to others.

I assume you understand that not having sex, as with refraining from all sin, is about maintaining your purity: of heart, of soul, of body. Purity is not just a “line” of physical involvement to be preserved; rather, it is a habit and an attitude that affects all of your behavior and your thoughts. In that way, purity is inextricably linked with modesty, that trait of veiling what should be sacred.

The Catechism is particularly instructive here:

Purity requires modesty, an integral part of temperance. Modesty protects the intimate center of the person. It means refusing to unveil what should remain hidden. It is ordered to chastity to whose sensitivity it bears witness. It guides how one looks at others and behaves toward them in conformity with the dignity of persons and their solidarity.

Although this is speaking primarily of modesty in dress, I think it applies to this situation as well. Modesty is about protecting your inmost self, and recognizing that what you do with your body affects your soul–and so, in being comfortable being more unveiled to your boyfriend, bodily, you are in fact sharing with him what should rightly be hidden.


Modesty protects the mystery of persons and their love. It encourages patience and moderation in loving relationships; it requires that the conditions for the definitive giving and commitment of man and woman to one another be fulfilled. Modesty is decency…It keeps silence or reserve where there is evident risk of unhealthy curiosity. It is descreet.

Patience and moderation is preserved in this case by recognizing that sharing a bed is not given to you at this point in your relationship; that is preserved for marriage, because we recognize something holy about the marital bed–the bed a man and a woman share.

As for more practical considerations, why do you even have to sleep at his place at all? Even THAT is giving scandal, and offending your modesty. If it is too late for you to drive home, then you need to think about that in advance–either cut your dates short, or see each other fewer times a week. Try reading T.G. Morrow’s Christian Courtship in an Oversexed World--he gives these issues a full airing.

If you still do not understand, I want you to think about what would make a couple “married” in terms of behavior, for we who are Catholics: sex, mutual children, sleeping in the same bed, living in the same house, seeing each other every day, sharing most meals, talking every day, etc. Now take away those you would also do with an opposite sex friend that maybe you have classes with every day. What do you have left? Sex, mutual children, sleeping in the same bed. Those are aspects of that relationship that should be reserved for that relationship, because they are appropriate to that relationship and that relationship only.

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Plus, having sex isn’t the only sin against chastity that you might be tempted to do due to the situation. You don’t even need to remove your clothing to do some activities that are not appropriate for unmarried couples.

I was going to post but I read these two last posts and they said it better than what I was going to try to say.

…I agree that it is possible to sleep in the same bed chastely, but I am guessing that you, like me, will find it increasingly more difficult to not want to have sex. I think that it is probably better to not sleep in the same bed as your boyfriend except in dire circumstances [say you’re there and there’s a blizzard, or you become really sick, or something]. I have only spent one whole night with my boyfriend…and neither of us got any sleep because it just wasn’t right. And trust me, we find each other very attractive…though, eight months into dating we didn’t even kiss yet…so sleeping in the same bed would have been a not-happening and if we would have it wouldn’t have fazed us in the least…

It’s sad how most college people just assume we’re having sex because we’ve dated for three years. They are always [or at least typically] amazed that I go home after hanging out with Grant all day…and I definitely enjoy cuddling. And wouldn’t like much more than to sleep with him…in the literal sense of sleep…but there is a time and place. And sleep wouldn’t be happening if we were together because at least I would feel guilty about it…and wwe have both decided unless there is a very special circumstance it is better to just wait. There are floors available everywhere…

I’ll come on to say that my fiance and I have slept in the same bed at various times and are both virgins and will remain so for 12 more days.

Quite honestly, I say only you know your and your boyfriend’s relationship. If deep down you know it will not be a temptation, then you can decide what to do. But you need to be truthful with yourself.

For my fiance and I, it was not even a question as to whether or not we would have sex or anything, since we both are resolved in no sex before marriage.

So, no, I don’t think it’s a sin depending on the circumstance, and only you can truly know the circumstance.

Would I recommend all unmarried couples to sleep in the same bed? Of course not. I would also not recommend it to teenagers. But to those who know what is right and are resolved to do it, I think it can work out. It really just depends. :shrug:

From a 26 year old man’s perspective who knows exactly how to treat a Catholic princess(daughter of the King) I can assure you I would not show her the disrespect by causing scandal by having her sleep in my bed without being married first.

To borrow on of Easter Joy’s comparison’s “It’s like cleaning a gun without removing the ammunition first.” Sure, one might be able to do it without killing oneself, but it still does not change the fact that it is not wise and putting yourself in an unnecessary dangerous situation, regardless of how strong you feel (and the devil often makes sure people feel extra sin-proof). You might meet some that did not kill themselves, but did injure themselves (other sins against chastity like prolonged passionate kissing or doing other things to purposefully arouse each other despite the fact that they are not married). In short, I cannot imagine any reason for an unmarried couple to sleep together without being at least lack of purity (as in even if they do it without anybody else knowing and they don’t even touch each other at night). Another analogy I have heard is that of the rabid dog tied to a chain. If you don’t want to get bitten, don’t walk over there. Sure, you might think you are super quick and would outrun the dog, you might think you are sure of not wanting to get bitten, so you will be able to get away, like you have already done before, but if you truly want to avoid getting bitten, staying away from the dog is your best option. Are you human? Yup. Are you capable of sinning? Yup. Then that’s all you need to know to see that it is wisest to avoid occasions of sin.

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You may not commit grave sin by doing it, but choosing to sleep together in the same bed before marriage is objectively wrong.

As other posters have pointed out, what you are describing needlessly puts you in a near occasion of sin, creates a scandal, and gives implicit permission to couples who will not do so well as you expect to do. All that, before you’ve allowed yourself a single impure thought in real time, let alone acted in an impure manner.

I’ll tell you that there are plenty of people who thought they would not be tempted deep down, on the surface, or anywhere else who found that they did not know their own passions as well as they thought they did. They were not just tempted. They fell. Prudence alone argues against choosing the arrangement you’re describing.

Is two weeks such a long time to exhibit your resolve to avoid sex before marriage, or do you have some need to keep the value you put on virginity some kind of a secret? Rather, I think this world could use more couples whose commitment to chastity is obvious.

Do not get me wrong; I’m not trying to make myself into some kind of a paragon. I’m saying, though, that of the sins of my life, this area has included some, and I was totally convinced I was on safe ground going in. The Church says, “Don’t go there.” The Church is right.

  1. One should not be doing this…
  2. Women are different then men. So not necessarily a bad sign.

But one should NOT be sleeping with him…and yes it can be sinful from more than one reason…near occasion of mortal sin, scandal, etc

And ask yourself on a side note …when your daughter comes to you years from now and wants her boyfriend to sleep over in her bed…are you going to be ok with it…:slight_smile:

Seriously it is a “no go”

I’m sorry, I don’t understand what I’ve quoted.

My fiance and I have been together for almost 6 years. Engaged for almost 1. Everyone around me knows I’m a virgin. I am not scared to say such. I have no qualms with telling people my faith and beliefs, especially with something so important as virginity. And doubly so when so many people view sex as no big deal in our society.

I am not naive. You do not know my past. In fact, God has saved me from many things that I could have ruined myself with. Safe to say that I did not always believe as I do now.

Anyways, take it how you will. I knew coming in that I would be probably the only one to say that I’ve done it and view it as okay. But as I said in my original post, I do not think that everyone should do it. Not everyone has the type of fiance I have, nor the same personality or faith. Am I being pompous? No, I sin daily and know this fact. However, doing inappropriate things with my fiance is not one of them. Everyone has different things they fall to. Some people are more prone to sexual sins, while others are more prone to sins such as lying or other things.

Now also keep in mind that I am not saying it is something that should be done at all times. However, like the OP, my fiance and I are long distance. And have been for 4 of our almost 6 years. So there come times when you end up sleeping next to each other. Take camping. My fiance and I love camping. And, yes, we do sleep on the same inflatable mattress.

Feel free to judge me if you want. I’m just saying, like a lot of things on the internet, you do not know me, nor my fiance or our situation. So, what you may not think is appropriate may not be for some people, but for others there is not the temptation.

Dh and I had a long distance relationship too, after the first two weeks I stayed where I was working the summer/studying during the year and he went 800+ miles away to where he lived/worked. Our whole dating/engagement consisted of traveling back and forth. There never came a time when we had to sleep next to each other.

Chastity (a lot more than just virginity) is something we have to work on.
From the catechism: “2339 Chastity includes an apprenticeship in self-mastery which is a training in human freedom…2342 Self-mastery is a* long and exacting work*. One can never consider it acquired once and for all. It presupposes renewed effort at all stages of life.” No one, not even the ones that stay virgins and chaste and do not act on temptations, is immune to temptations against chastity, so avoiding occasions of sin to avoid these temptations is the wise thing to do. Chastity is so much more than just virginity, a couple has to guard against other forms of sins against chastity even if they are very sure of their commitment to virginity.
And, as many have pointed out, the fact that a couple does not have sex before getting married (we were virgins when we got married too, :thumbsup:, that’s awesome) does not make sleeping together pre-marriage ok.

Now, not to derail too much, but I saw on your ticker that your wedding is coming up! How awesome!!! Congratulations!!!