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  • Writer's pictureBeverly H.

That Slippery Slope

That Summer Night

The summer after high school graduation, I was on a date with a guy friend. I had on a cute tank top with snaps up the back and fitted black pants that could distract a construction crew. We’d met up at his house so that afterward I could drive straight to a sleepover. After the movie theatre, we sat on a bench outside of his house just watching the darkness of the night, trying to keep conversation going. You know how it is.

We were awkwardly feeling things out to see if there was more to that date. We started making out. Side-by-side, his arm had been around my shoulder for a while. While kissing, he slowly moved that hand around my neck to the clavicle and top ribs of my chest. He knew he was pushing a boundary and asked if I wanted him to stop. I said, “In a minute.”

What the?

In a minute?! So stupid and embarrassing. But I did need a minute to sort out what I felt and wanted.

Something happened that I never expected. A hot spark had been ignited. My first thought was no, that I didn’t want him to stop. Where did that come from? I was confused by my sudden desire. I hadn’t felt it before and didn’t know what it was. I knew I was yearning for more, but I also knew I didn’t want to cross that line. Without going further, we eventually quit making out, and I went to the sleepover. I’m so glad I stopped. I don’t know how that might have affected me down the road.

When I got to my friend's house, I had no clue that my tank top strap was twisted and the top snap on the back of my shirt undone. To this day, I have no idea how that happened. (Imagine how thrilled my friend felt when I showed up looking disheveled after being out with her ex- long-time high school boyfriend. Oops.)

The Slippery Slope

It’s all too easy to go just a little farther or let your hunger yearn just a little longer. There’s a huge gray area between holding hands and sex. It’s incredibly dangerous, like a steep mountain. You’re standing safely on top until you peek over the edge and stretch just a toe down to feel it out. One thing leads to another, and suddenly you’re not at all where you started.

This "slippery slope" topic came up so many times among my church friends in our 20s. And not because they had been successful. Many of those friends knew the danger of The Slippery Slope because they’d regretfully tumbled down it. One of them discusses it openly during our interview, A Man’s Path To Abstinence. The Anatomy Rule protects us from that fall. It protects good intentions and spares regret. Biblically, you don't have to follow the Anatomy Rule, but you do have to make some kind of plan to keep your feet firmly planted at some boundary before the biblically called-for abstinence of singlehood. Pray about what that is and hold fast to practical ways you can actually stand firm.

Greater Struggle

I wasn’t even really into that guy on the bench that night, but the pull to go further was still so powerful. I struggled with my boyfriends in dorm rooms and apartments (way more accommodating hot spots than that wooden bench). And those were just boyfriends. Imagine how tough it was to hold back when I was deeply, seriously in love! Head over heels, hot for each other, can’t get enough in love. I had a very serious long term relationship in college and another with my now husband later in my 20s. Some real boundaries had to be put in place for our own protection against that slope.

It was often torture for both parties, but after 10 years of dating and 10 years of marriage I don’t regret holding out one bit.


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