‘I’ve been celibate for 3 years, here are 5 things I’ve learnt about love, sex and intimacy so far’

Shot of an unidentifiable young woman revealing a written message reading "kiss here" on her neck
Shot of an unidentifiable young woman revealing a written message reading "kiss here" on her neck

Singer Ciara opened up about deciding to be celibate before tying the knot with her football star husband Russell Wilson. According to Ciara, Russell suggested they wait until they get married before they could have sex. Ciara and Russell are not the only ones who vouch for celibacy as a way of improving certain aspects of one’s life. 

For 31-year-old Nomfundo Chirwa, being celibate completely changed her life for the better. Not only did she rediscover herself, she was able to strengthen her spirituality. 

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In 2017 she made a decision to be celibate and three years later she's still sticking to her choice. 

“The year before I took this decision there was a guy who lived in my complex and he was courting me for a year, but I wasn’t interested. One day, I was feeling lonely and I decided to call him. We became intimate and after that encounter, he never spoke to me again,” she says.  

Nomfundo was hurt and disappointed in herself. “I started reflecting on my life,” she says.

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That same year, she attended a wedding in Uganda where she reconnected with an old friend. 

“After the trip, a friend of mine, Fiona, gave me a book titled The power of I am’ by Joel Osteen. After reading the book I started praying and I just cried and had a vivid recollection of the things that I’d done in my past, which I felt ashamed to even tell my friends about,” she says.  

“My life completely changed after that after I decided to take time off sex. I wanted to strengthen my spiritual muscle. For me, this meant restraining from sex, but I still went out on dates,” she says. 

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For that entire year, Nomfundo also abstained from eating meat and drinking alcohol – but she has reverted to eating meat and having the occasional drink. 

Here are four things she’s learnt since becoming celibate:

1 - Nomfundo now values someone who genuinely cares about what she thinks, who truly cares about her without wanting to have sex with her.

2 - It’s important to fully love yourself and not seek validation from other people.

3 - It is easier to be more connected with a higher power when you are celibate – you have more time to focus on what matters. 

4 - Just hugging or holding hands with a partner or potential partner is more meaningful.

5 - Living a sex-free life is not as hard as one would think and there are other ways to satisfy your sexual desires without having sex with a partner.

“I would recommend celibacy, as it allows you to enjoy your body and yourself. You realise that it’s okay to be by yourself and truly have a fulfiled life,” Nomfundo says. 

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