Abstinence

Abstinence means choosing not to have oral, anal, or vaginal sex, or genital to genital contact. It’s the safest choice for teens. It’s the best choice to stay healthy.

It’s safe and worry-free.

Some people choose to be abstinent through their teen years, while others choose to be abstinent until marriage or a long-term, committed relationship.

Make a decision

What is best for you?

  • Set limits and know your boundaries.
  • Remind yourself why abstinence is a good decision.

Share your decision

  • Tell your family about your choice.
  • Tell your close friends.
  • Write it down somewhere – like in your journal.

Know what to expect

  • You will still have sexual feelings even if you choose to abstain.
  • It won’t always be easy, but it is worth it.
  • Sometimes you’ll need to remind yourself of the benefits of abstinence.

Make smart choices

  • Do activities with groups of friends.
  • Avoid spending time alone with just one person.
  • Avoid alcohol and drugs.

Ask for support

  • Choose friends who feel the same way you do.
  • If you’re dating, make sure he or she feels the same way you do.
  • Don’t be afraid to share your feelings with a parent or other adult who you trust.