By way of introduction....

Welcome to the blog of the celibate.

Perhaps you are wondering who I am and what my blog is about. I'm a grad student living in New York City. As a practicing member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (the Mormons), I have chosen to live the law of chastity, all members are expected to do so. This means that I will not have sex until I'm married, nor engage in sexual relations of any kind. Not easy! I'm in my late 20s and my hormones are NOT happy about abstinence. It gets harder every year. Celibate dating is a challenge all its own and has lead to many strange and uncomfortable situations. I have learned, however, to be grateful for this law. I can see now how it has protected me. A man's character is instantly revealed when you tell him you are celibate. The worst ones turn around and run. Unless they think they can break you, sigh...

For all kinds of reasons, I've had a high turn-over of men. Most of my relationships were absurd. I shouldn't have dated most of them. Now I have a lot of stories about my dates, relationships, crushes, and failed pursuits. My failed romances have entertained many o'friend o' mine. Hence, Celibate in the City was born.

Another motivation behind this blog is the alienation of single mormons from church culture. Many of us feel left behind because so much of the church is centered on families. If you don't have a nuclear family, that makes you a freak. When I meet someone new at church and they find out I'm "A Single", then I have to endure their puzzled looks which then transform into pity. Inside they wonder, 'Why aren't you married, what's wrong with you?'

Because we are without a partner to share our burdens, we face challenges that the marrieds do not. It's hard to be a faithful member when you don't have someone with whom you can: pray, wake you up Sunday morning and go to church, sit in the pews, have family home evening, read scriptures...and those things couples do. It's not all about the celibacy, my angst has more to do with the realization that people were not meant to be alone. And my new fear that this state may be permanent. I'm trying to deal with that fact. I always assumed I'd get married and maybe have kids. That's what I wanted, eventually. Perhaps I have waited too long. . .

Three years ago, I had a shocking epiphany. My mother was driving us somewhere when she began talking about an older cousin of mine. This cousin was in her very early 30s. My mother said she sure felt sorry for my cousin being that age and still single. A sudden wave of horror passed through me. In a few years my mother and aunts would talk about me in the same way. I got sick. I said, "Please don't feel sorry for me when I'm 30 and single. I'm going to be doing lots of things and living my life and enjoying myself." She sat silently for a moment. Then said trepidly, "Do you think you're going to be single when you're 30?" "Probably. Don't hold your breath for my marriage." That ended the conversation. She sounded scared for me, like I told her I was going to catch a disease. What a long strange disease it's been.

Enjoy my blog. Leave comments. Send me an email. Or, just read and laugh. You are not alone.

And yes, I am a real virgin.

Come back for more TRUE stories of the strange, sad and pathetic exploits of me not having sex in the city.


Anonymous said...

dear Celibate, Plenty od Mo women ,like myself, have no one to share their burdens with, no one to pray with and are sexually frustrated ( alot of us!) You see us every Sunday, sitting with our families in church, upstanding Elder or High Priest by our side, smile on our face, the perfect family. the grass is always greener... I know it's hard out there in single Mo land but don't believe the peopaganda too much

Anonymous said...

I hear you. That's incredibly sad. I grew up in a perfect mo family like that with parents living at opposite ends of the house for 10 years, until the joyful day when they finally got divorced. When I was young I used to pray they would divorce so we wouldn't have to endure their hideous marriage. But they waited until I was 18. That is a big part of why I am still single. I'll be damned if I'm not going to have a good marriage. Otherwise, isn't it just miserable bondage? 

Message from JL

Anonymous said...

Think about how bad it must be for a single guy, who is over 30, and therefore in a Family Ward. Also think about the guy, who has had his life and academic and career plans disrupted by serious health issues. So, said guy shows up in Church, the only single man in attendance ( outside of the street bum types that naive Elders and Sisters bring in, thinking they may be potential converts), who isnt a lawyer or doctor , and think how t hat person is made to feel. The condescending and t he fake "pity" is really getting to me, i must say!!!! 

Message from ronin

Anonymous said...

Your honesty is refreshing. 

Message from Anonymous

Anonymous said...

Hilarious. As a 30 year old, successful attractive woman raised in the church - I appreciate your blog. I have frequently told my mom that it just seems like the church doesn't care about singles.

I am not very active anymore realizing that trying to marry mormon for the past years has kept me single. Plus, there is no one for me to socialize with at Church. So I go to other Christian churches where at least I will meet single people my age with my values. Most of the single Mormon women my age are women that all they did/do is hope to get married which is fine - but it's depressing and we're not likely to have much in common.

The looks of pity comment is great. So true - no one cares if you are a super successful woman with lots of friends.

I frequently wonder how many professional people are alienated from the church b/c of the "marry by 22 or you're over the hill" culture.

Would be interesting if the church did a poll or cared to find out. I simply think b/c they are all in Utah and not seeing the trend of people marrying older, they are oblivious that there might even be a trend/problem. 

Message from Anonymous

Anonymous said...

Amen! Fortunately living in Los Angeles helps the situation, meaning most people my age aren't even thinking of marriage. Not having sex sucks but aside from that I love being single. I see my parents crappy marriage and my 21 year old sister's messed up relationship and it makes me glad to be on my own. I go to a family ward because I feel like I get more out if spiritually. I love hangin' with all the widows, single moms and women whose husbands aren't members. Come to think of it I've never had anyone in my ward ask where my husband is-total perk of Hollywood Ward life, anything is possible and accepted. I really think my experience is unique to my region because believe me I've dealt with those pity looks and concerned grandparent comments too. I think the church will catch on, sometimes it just takes time, it's important to have strong, happy, spiritual, single people present, proving that it isn't the end of the world to not have mr. high priest on your arm. 

Message from nicknacker

Anonymous said...

I understand where you are coming from, though I just got engaged. This comes after years of bad relationships, etc. I live in Brooklyn, though I grew up in Utah. I did live in Manhattan for awhile. It was nice to move to Brooklyn. The ward I moved into is so small and struggling so much that they did not mind that I was not married. They were just glad that I was willing to come to church.  

Message from Maren

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

I found you on Google and your stories are very interesting and entertaining. Thanks for the honesty and, as you've said, I can tell cynicism runs deep in your bones. It makes things funny and almost too real. 

Message from Rob

Anonymous said...

I think I stuck with my last (bad) relationship for so long because I was terrified of being 26 and single in the church. Now I'm 28 and single, and it is so much better than being with him. It's hard though in this church 

Message from Kellyim

Anonymous said...

If I were a guy (which i am) I wouldn't date you because you would write about our relationship on your blog. That's creepy. Lose the blog. Go to counselling. 

Message from Anonymous

Anonymous said...

yea try being 30, single,mormon, in Iraq with soldiers whos main thought process revolve around sex, that really sucks, but basically just as much as your guys situations, I have been talking to Girls online, something I once considered a very nerdish thing to do, but I have met the coolest, ( not to mention super hot ) girl who I have alot in common with, which I find amazing, since I am into independent music, ( not law or medicine ) and travelling.

I'll continure later, my time on the internet just ended. 

Message from Emoney

Anonymous said...

good grief, there are other mormons like me out there - and i thought i was the only single mormon girl whose ovaries were begging to fulfill the measure of their creation....
this single crap does suck, doesn't it? i mean, i just ended a crap relationship with a crap guy (i like the word crap, apparently) and yet i almost think i'd rather be in that than face the next god-knows-how-long alone.
and the church really doesn't help does it? those so-called singles wards spend more time shoving marraige down my throat than the family wards....wouldn't a gaurantee be nice? yeah, yeah, there's that whole eternal salvation thing, but wouldn't it be great to know that if you just stick it out for another week, month, year (shudder), that it would all pay off?
sometimes, i think that i am god's own personal joke to giggle at when he's bored...that is how sad and yet disturbingly funny my love life has been.
they say challenges build character...i have enough character for some split personalities at this point...can i just find someone to appreciate my character, please? 

Message from heather

Anonymous said...

Wow. I just found your blog and I'm bookmarking it. I've been celibate for 3 years this month (yay!...I guess), also because of religion (not Mormon though).

I look forward to reading more of your blog. Who knew there were other celibate people in the world *my* age? 

Message from Kaeiyleeigh

Anonymous said...

Hello. Not to worry cause you sure didn't miss anything by not having sexual relations with guys. I was never going to get married after being married and divorced when I was 22 years old. What a bunch of drinking, drugging idiots there are in the world and abusive too! Why bother. I met my husband when I started to care about me - I worked out refused to drink and smoke, went to church, went to school, travelled, and did what I liked to do. We are married with 5 boys and going on 17 years now. You'll find someone who appreciates you nevermind what others say. What do they know? 

Message from Joycie Mascio

Anonymous said...

Hey YOur blog is interesting and would like to stick around .. 26 yr old virgin .:) 

Message from Jai

Anonymous said...

My website is kinda silly but I am a child at heart. I usually don't respond to blogs - but when I saw Mormon, I paused and was interested. It's OK to be older and still a virgin - it's something to be commended for and celebrated. It means that you are being obedient to the Lord. 

Posted by David

Anonymous said...

You GO girl! I am not a mormon, but as a chronically single (and celibate) 32 year old woman living a very full life, I can completely identify with your adventures. It isn't always easy, but in the end, you are your own person, you are forging your own path in life, and ultimately, are a much more interesting, strong, and unique person than you would be had you gotten married years ago. I get hit on and/or asked out by men every single day, and yet I haven't had a committed relationship in four years. After years of dating disasters, I've decided just enjoy the ride instead of focusing on the end-goal, and like you, can now joke about my latest bad dates. Don't give in until (and unless) you find that great guy that would be worth giving up all of that wonderful independence, freedom, and professional and personal achievement... 

Posted by Isabelle

Anonymous said...

What a relief! I thought I was the only mormon woman out there who resented celibacy! I feel guilty that I want to have sex! It's crazy. I am a single mother of two. I have been celibate for 3 1/2 years and I've about had it. It's frustrating to hear about eternal families and temple marriages sometimes. I had a temple marriage and my husband had an affair and walked out on our family. Here's the difference between you and me now. If you want to go out and have some fun....you just go. I am single plus two. I hear about how all young women should get married in the temple like it's a guarantee of a lasting relationship. Well, now I"m single, with a broken heart, and two children to support. Don't get me wrong...I adore my children and I wouldn't have it any other way. But darling, there are worse things than just plain single.

Left by Alecia

Anonymous said...

this i cannot believe. are you real?

Left by erix

Anonymous said...

I married at age 37 to virgin of 33. So it can be done. We have two little girls and (I hope I can speak for my wife) we couldn't be happier.

And we're not the only ones. Over the last two years we've had about half-dozen friends, all in their 30s and 40s get marrried for the first time.

You're right about the Church emphasizing marriage and families to the detriment of singles. But having survived long singlehood myself, I can't offer any solid advice. Truth is, my wife reactivated me; I was inactive for about 5 years. So all the church pressure you feel now didn't really weigh on me during that time.

It's a cliche, but nonetheless true for my wife and I, "when the time is right, the time is right."

Stay true. Pray hard. And don't rush it. You don't want to wait all this time for Mr. Half-Right.  

Left by ripsorting

Anonymous said...

You mention in your last poll results that "very few men have had a problem with it". Suffice it to say that if a man expresses he has a problem with it, then he's killing any chance that it will ever happen. Chances are that it is an issue, but they're willing to give the relationship a try.

On another note, sex changes things in a relationship; in both, or either, very positive and/or negative ways. Waiting until marriage is risky. And, dating at your age without any knowledge of how it effects or maybe even enhances a relationship keeps you inexperienced. However, at this point, if you were to throw the sex thing into the game, you'd have no idea how to handle it. Certainly don't rush it -- but don't be so concerned over whether the guy's mr. right or not. A connection is a connection, go with it, it will be great.  

Left by don't be naive

Anonymous said...

I am 18/m/usa/virgin. Not Mormon, but not a "pimp" either.
I love your blog! I can really get a sense of your personality and spunk from it; its great. Im sure you will find an awesome husband real soon! You seem like a high caliber person, so remember, it might take a while to find a similarly high class guy. Im sure it will pay off.
Im bookmarking this so I can read more in teh future!
Cheers, and keep up the great work!

Left by me

Anonymous said...

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one that endures this ridicule. I'm a 32-year old guy (next week) in the same situation. Since my mission, every bishop has tried to pawn me off on the Young Single Adults ward in town, especially when I was in college. I've always liked the intelligence and experience of the Family wards Now that I'm too old, they're encouraging me to attend the Single Adult activities. I love how they say I could possibly find somebody there, even when the youngest, most-energenic member is a 45-year old divorcee with 4 children. That isn't bad, but I don't want to marry somebody who is almost with a decade of being my mother's contemporary.

Heather and Nicknacker (along with the anonymous post directly above N.) hit the nail on the head. We're treated like lepers by other couples, especially by couples younger than us that have popped out two or three kids and spend entirely too much time at their parents's house.

My consolation is in my faith. I'm not perfect, but I've done everything that the Lord has asked of me: be active, serve in the Church, and preach the Gospel. I've finished my school for now (BA and half of an MA). I'm economically fixing my life. Like Joseph Smith, neither have I committed any major sins--only the indiscretions of one's youth on which we all privately improve. All we can do is have faith, continue valiantly in the Gospel, and pray that we will recognize when our time comes to meet the right person and go to the temple.

Left by Brandon

Anonymous said...

I feel your pain - thanks for giving me a shout out for that posting - I read it now and can't believe how low I was feeling...don't get me wrong - I am still so single, I vould be a negative number. I even moved out to Utah and have endured 6 months of nothing (not so much as a man staring inappropriately at my chest - is this place for real???) but the frustration and unhappiness at being single rise and fall - overall, I am pretty content with my current lot in life. The thing is, we all have so much to offer whether or not there is someone there beside us to make their offerings.
It would be really nice if the church would appreciate the singles for their own individual worth as opposed to seeing singles as random pieces that must find mates in order to have value.
Keep strong Celibate in the City - you have been an inspiration to lots of us - I have laughed and cried with you for over 6 months now. I know things are hard right now but you have no idea how much of an imapct you have had on those of us who can relate all too well to your experiences!! 

Left by Heather

Anonymous said...

Hi everyone, your ideas behind the dislike of being single, and the other assorted problems typed above are very real and valid concerns. However it would seem that alot of the world, and much of the Mormon religion has forgotten the exzact mechanical reason behind the institution of marriage, which is directly meant by God for the purpose of procreation. God most likely, (depending on your religious preference) did set forth marriage to be a life and after-life long commitment, but it's main role is the same. One of the most important things to think about when you are looking for, or are with singles you know, or even are dating with one, is that what's most important about the features of your potential MATE is not all the small petty details, but what type of offspring the two of you will produce, and what type of parent your potential mate will be. It might seem funny to be thinking biology class while with the other singles, but that's the core mechanism behind courtship and reproduction. Way too often I see both men and women, LDS and otherwise ignoring, neglecting, and forgetting the basic vital workings to this basic process of survival, which I might add was designed by no other then our creator himself. It is a good thing to wait for marriage, but the real question is are you going to die of old age and single with no kids, which equals to evolutionary failure from the extinction of your branch of your family tree, or are you going to do what it takes and find a mate you can at least tolerate and have some kids with them, and have your genes survive your own eventual death? Don't look at it all weird to think about it the way I wrote it because I didn't make those rules of our Universe, GOD did. Anyway I'm a 27 year old LDS single divorced male living in northern Utah who is a stuggling/soon to be successful author type. I use an extensive no nonsense creative thought process about things, but I still can be sensitive about the ways I go to do things. I myself am going to try to wait for marriage, but after 5 years of marriage to an evil non-LDS wife who refused to have kids, which just used me for a meal ticket and to pay for things, I can tell you that the main failure of mine in those married years wasn't the fact that I couldn't fix the wasted marriage after trying so hard to make it work, but the fact that I burned 5 good years to produce any children, and those years are gone forever. When I find the first acceptable already active or returning to the church LDS woman who can let nature take it's course and have children with me first, or marry me soon to start having kids right away, I'm going to make my life with her because that's the way God intended it to be. It isn't about the dating, money, lifestyle, or other worldly things. It's all about the love, family, and life both physical and spiritual. That's my 2 cents about it. I just happened to notice this site while surfing the dating sites. People need to remember more about the main reasons why they are doing things in their lives including me. I need to stop looking on the dating sites, all the women I met in my lifetime including my ex-wife I met in everyday places, maybee everyone looking for that special someone online needs to spend more time looking offline and living a more natural life.  

Left by Josh

Anonymous said...

Hilarious name for a blog, love it.


Left by Maxinne

Anonymous said...

i find your blog amazing though im christian your situation is the same as mine,
im 30 years old single looking for somebody and terrible for me is that all the women i think be the right soul mate are married women.
i dont see young single single woman wether they are married or they have boyfriend.
when i see a single woman is only when she is too old ex 80years.i dont know where to find out a woman available to me.my friends are married even my youger brother have kids.
sometime i ask miself god made so bad that nobady want me.would someone in this site tell me how to find a woman or when.
my email is agustinofelisberto@hotmail.com
may god bless you all

Left by felisberto

Anonymous said...

It really doesn't matter to me one way or another if you're a virgin. However, do you also intend never to be a mother? What are your plans if you, say, don't get married by age 35? 

Left by Rae

Anonymous said...

i love,love love your honesty. stay true sista child. 

Left by Sherpa

Anonymous said...

wow...you said everything i've been so frustrated about. i'm orthodox christian, and i have the same problem. trying not to feel like a freak for being single in an envrionment obsessivly focused on family.
i shall be reading you more often!! 

Left by annika

Anonymous said...

Paulo loves you, but apparently not as much as Jesus does.


Left by Paulo

Anonymous said...

Your blog made me laugh out loud to myself today...

"It's dead. I killed it. The corpse of my social life rots on the curb."

Would love it if you took a peak at our site and lets us know your thoghts.




Left by Ava

single mother said...

Hi. I'm desperately trying to get in touch with other 'single fathers'. Do you know of any sites, like this one 'single father' which might help me to do that? Many thanks.

Anonymous said...

Praying for you. Let the Lord lead you every step of the way and bring all your concerns to Him. He will provide all of your needs if you trust Him. I pray that you put God first as you wait for Him to satisfy your every need!
Be blessed,
A Christian who is trusting God as well in her celibacy!  

Left by Anonymous

Anonymous said...

Things sort of started getting weird for me when all my NON-Mormon friends started getting married. Oh well. Statistics say that at least *they*'ll be divorced soon. 

Left by outlier

Anonymous said...

I'd be sort of curious about more of your thoughts about dating non-LDS types.

As a non-drinking, non-swearing, 30+ year old virgin, I find Mormons to make good friends. And some of my late-20s single female Mormon friends have flirted with me, but I've always assumed that as I am a long-time avowed agnostic, a long-term relationship wouldn't work out. It is one thing if your partner has an interest in something that you don't share, it is another if that interest (such as religion) is central to their life. Is this wrong?

(I also feel like I am an outlier in that I'm not religious, I'm very liberal, and yet I have chosen to be live a very straight lifestyle, including celibacy. I don't feel like I need to wait for marriage, but I do feel like I need to wait for the right person...)

Fascinating blog, by the way. 

Left by Friend to Mormons

Anonymous said...

Hi. I’m a casting director at ABC News, currently casting for Season 2 of “HOOKING UP,” last summer’s hit documentary series about online romance, dating, sex and relationships set in and around New York City. We are looking for outgoing and articulate women and men, straight or gay, ages 20-40, living in or near (and primarily dating in) Manhattan, who are currently internet dating… or extremely eager to try it.

If you are interested, please email me at hookingupseason2@gmail.com for an application.

Claresa Mandola


Left by Claresa Mandola

SmartBlkWoman said...

I think that the lifestyle you have chosen is wonderful and admirable. Its a choice that I have recently made for myself.

I'm reading a really good book right now by a single, childless, Christian woman nearing 40 called "Did I Kiss Marriage Goodbye" by Carolyn McCulley. Another really good book is called "Sensual Celibacy" but I can't remember the authors name.  

Left by Jamila

Anonymous said...

I am sitting at work feeling much better about myself. Your thoughts hit to the core. I am currently 32 and single and LDS. The more I go to church the more I get frustrated, the more I get depressed the more I don't want to go to church. Being over thirty and single in a Utah ward is like being wallpaper. You make it look better but there really is no other use for you. I have been dating a man who hasn't been active since he was 16 and we have come to the point in our relationship that it is obvious that he is frustrated with the lines that are drawn. So do I blur the lines in hope that I don't have to be single again or do I hold to my guns and live out another 8 years without a steady boyfriend. I am asking...when do the blessings of chastity really come. I never thought that my testimony would ever waiver but I would rather sleep in then sit at church one more day surrounded by girls with husbands and babies who are 10 years younger than me. Am I jealous... Hell Yeah!!! 

Left by Amy

Anonymous said...

Don't you guys have MDate.com or something? If not, I bet you could make a fortune starting it. It would be similar to JDate, but for Mormons. I didn't realize you were pushed into medicine or law like were were. I'm a 26 y.o. guy, Jewish, grad student, Manhattan, not a virgin nor celibate, but your blog is funny and I need something to procrastinate studying. 

Left by Anon

Cave-Woman said...


Found your blog, and thought it was fun.

I feel your frustration about dating and singleness. It can be so difficult to sort out your feelings and thoughts about the entire single experience.

A few books that helped me, and that you might be interested in...

Boundaries in Dating, by Dr. Cloud and Dr. Townsend. Both are Christian Counselors. Good, solid, scriptural and compassionate dating advice.

Also---"How to get a date worth keeping" Also by Cloud and Townsend.


Left by Nicole

Katie P. said...

I'm almost thirty, and have been celibate in the city for a long time.

I think what we want is worth holding out for. If we compromise, then all we've gained is something we don't actually want. I've come close to getting married a few times (both to members and, although not quite as close, nonmembers), and I'm convinced that there is nothing worse than being unhappy in a relationship, especially when you've compromised yourself to be there.  

Left by Katie P

Becca said...

Ohhhh, I so know how you feel about still being single. I'm 35 and have yet to find him. But I also like to think of it as ME being the one not found yet. Somehow that makes me feel less pathetic. I'm not a Mormon, but I do feel that we "older" single gals - regardless of faith - should be there for each other. It can be quite difficult. Funny, my mother also made a comment about a cousin who got married who is the same age as me. She said, "I'm impressed he found a nice girl to marry. I thought he was too difficult to ever find someone to marry him."  I then said a few things that made her feel like a heal. She leaves the topic alone now.

I found your blog on accident, but I'm glad I did. Keep up the good work and I'll check back regularly. I'll probably even rss it :) 

Left by Becca

Mr. Encourager said...

I am not a particularly wise man, but I would like to encourage you and your readers with the couple of pearls of wisdom that have been granted to me by God. First, "holding out until I find the right partner" is a backwards way of looking at it. I think a healthier approach is to acknowledge God's love for each of us. As we seek to fulfill our purpose in Him and grow toward Him, He blesses us and brings us the (God-centered) desires of our hearts. The sexual aspect of the relationship is the natural culmination of God's blessing.

Second, and I never thought of this until it was way in the rear-view mirror, there is no greater relationship-builder than the trust that results from one virgin marrying another. The sanctity, sacredness, and intimacy of the relationship are greatly magnified by the knowledge that God has preserved both husband and wife exclusively for each other's pleasure.

BTW, I was a 27 year-old virgin when I got married (14 years ago). I spent most of my time from age 17 to age 25 desperately looking for the "it girl." When I finally sought God first, He brought me to my bride within a year. 

Left by Mr. Encourager

Anonymous said...

Hello. Hang in there, I know it can be hard, but it's worth it. I just got married at age 35. My wife is 25, and we were both virgins. Marriage is great, but it's not a cure-all either. A dear friend of mine got married, and divorced within a year. There are worst things than being single, like being married to the wrong guy. Concentrate in being a quality person, and go where quality people meet. Do things that keep hope alive, and don't waste your time with guys that you know won't work out.

Carlos & Mary in Arizona (LDS) 

Left by Carlos

Bookslinger said...

In case you haven't read it already, you might like this talk given by a 30-something single sister in Indianapolis at the Sat night (grownups') session of Stake Conference in 2006.

Kathleen said...

I was happy to find your blog. It made me feel a little less alone and a little less guilty about being a single, celibate late 20s lds girl with a normal sex drive

Lattney B. said...

Your blogs are a joy to read. Although no longer LDS, I can certainly relate to the pains, trials and tribulations, and the complete inability of others to understand where you are coming from. I remember all this as if it were the previous decade for me.

Sing your life!

michelle said...

I came across your blog today while blog stalking...thank you thank you for a great read