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Does Premarital Sex Undermine Communication After Marriage?

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When we surveyed a 1,000 people who had had premarital sex with the partner they eventually married, we found that the degree of sexual involvement directly correlated with dissatisfaction in communication.

The more sexually involved the couple was prior to marriage, the more they now feel:

  • disregarded in their views and opinion by their spouse.
  • judged by their spouse.
  • controlled by the spouse.
  • interrupted when talking to their spouse.
  • dishonesty in the marriage.

Likewise, the more sexually involved they were before marriage, the less they feel:

  • their spouse makes time for them and cherishes them.
  • they can calmly discuss something in the marriage.
  • they can share anything with each other.
  • they share a deep sense of trust and understanding in the relationship.
  • they always encourage each other.
  • they guard themselves from bitterness and anger in the relationship.
  • they resolve their problems quickly.

Why would premarital sex correlate with the above?

I can only speculate, but I suspect that the seeds for future marital problems were planted during habitual premarital sex. For example, I can see why a husband or wife might feel controlled or compromised by the spouse because he or she controlled them sexually before they were married, and they felt compromised.

I can also see why dishonesty might be an issue. If they deceived themselves or others about their sexual activity from the “get go,” they introduced dishonesty into their marriage. Likewise, if they argued about whether or not to have sex, sex became attached to volatile conversations. Eventually, one or the other might feel judged or insecure about the value of his or her opinion. If they chose to give or withhold sex to appease the other or to assert independence, they compromised their personal integrity and the integrity of the relationship.

For Christian couples who know that premarital sex hurts God’s heart, the real struggle is with guilt. The pleasure of their sexual involvement is continually attacked by the realization that sexual appetites dominate their decisions.

Indeed, it overrides their desire to obey God. Over time, the habit of using sex to silence other important conversations eventually erodes their personal sense of peace, as well as peace in the relationship. Having opted for rationalizing their wrongdoing in favor of short-term solutions, the couple develops habits of burying pain rather than confronting it and resolving it.

Most importantly, couples engaged in premarital sex forfeit the opportunity to really communicate with each other on other levels. If private time revolves around sexual activity, then spending time cherishing the heart of each other falls by the wayside.

-Dr. E

Emerson Eggerichs, Ph.D.
Author, Speaker, Pastor

Questions to Consider

  1. What is your opinion on the above information? Do you agree or disagree that premarital sex undermines communication after marriage? Why?