The Real World Damage of the Purity Culture

I frequently get emails regarding the things I have written about the purity culture (that world of purity balls, courtship, and emphasis on emotional and physical virginity). Sometimes these emails are heartbreaking. There’s this, for example, from a woman who grew up as the oldest daughter in another large Quiverfull family, and got married young through a parent-guided courtship (for an example of how courtship is generally practiced, read this story):

Things are pretty rough. My husband is being honest with me about some courtship-mindset assumptions that have been undermining our relationship for a long time (I “fell in love” with him, but he didn’t, and he married me “because it was the right thing to do” and was told that “the falling in love isn’t important/will happen later when you’re married” and now he’s constantly depressed because “it’s just as hollow as ever”). Honesty is good, but it’s hard and we’re weighing our options with counseling and considering a separation.

This actually isn’t the first time I’ve heard this from someone married through a courtship or even simply married young under the influence of the ideas of the “purity culture.” And with every additional woman I hear from who is struggling in a broken or troubled marriage, a marriage she entered through a process that promised a perfect result devoid of regular pitfalls or problems, the angrier I become.

It is worth pointing out that these sorts of problems are not simply a bug. Courtships are generally relatively short and are focused on marriage. It’s common that the couple doesn’t really get to know each other until after marriage. In fact, the couple is taught that this is just fine – better, even, because it maintains the maximum amount of emotional purity and makes sure that if something goes wrong and the courtship is broken off the damage will be minimized (remember that in some circles even one failed courtship can render a person damaged goods). There’s also the fact that these marriages are generally early, before people have a time to really figure out who they are. That they are early is actually by design.

Here is this slightly longer email from someone raised with a heavy dose of what I call “the purity culture”:

I know you are likely very busy, but I just wanted to thank you for your post on Sexual Compatibility from May of this year. My husband and I were both raised to believe that God was not ok with sex before marriage. I was either taught or perhaps just interpreted from what was given to me, that sexual pleasure would always come to those who waited. So there was no reason to try things out ahead of time…and to participate in any activities that had anything to do with sex (aside from kissing, which was never spoken out against) would make me a slut. As such, I never masturbated until age 18, when my college roomate was shocked to find I had never done so. I didn’t have an orgasm (self created) for at least 5 years after that. And to this day (I’m in my 30s), I’ve never had an orgasm brought about by someone else.

I’m certain there are a number of factors going into, as will always be the case. But I do think that the vast majority is that I am just completely not sexually compatible with my husband. I love him dearly, but I’ve never been turned on by him. Perhaps this should have been a red flag before we got married, but of course, I was taught to believe that God would bless your sex life if you just waited. Once it was clear (on our honeymoon) that things were not going well, part of me thought maybe I was being punished for being a little too friendly with other guys before my husband (although I was still technically a virgin). It took me a while to work through that guilt trip. But here I am, 5 years into a marriage with a husband who is growing very resentful, a beautiful child, and no desire to ever have sex with my husband again. I am so pissed off that this was what it has come to. Great…I’m not a slut, but I have in a sense doomed my family to a great deal of unhappiness instead. Am I to believe that this is really what God wanted/wants for me…for my husband…for my son?

Part of me wonders if I would really have ever been sexually compatible with anyone. … I guess I just really hate the idea of never knowing. Would I have liked sex, had I been given the freedom to try it out with the other 2-3 men I really loved in my life? Had my parents, rather than giving me a purity ring, just tried to explain that they felt that sex was best left until you were a bit older and with people you loved and trusted…not just some guy you met in a bar (not that it doesn’t work for some people, but I was raised conservative Christian so obviously my parents weren’t going to go there). Would my husband and I have gotten married had we known this ahead of time? Based on some conversations we’ve had, I’m guessing not. Had counselors and friends been open to the idea that sexual incompatibility exists, might we have gotten some advice on the subject that wasn’t just along the lines of it being my fault because I wouldn’t just have sex with him even when it hurt me and I didn’t like it? Maybe we wouldn’t have had a child…a beautiful child who I will never regret for a second of my existence….who now adds another layer of complexity to a relationship that was complex enough to begin with. It just really, really sucks, because there is no easy answer…there isn’t really even a good answer that I can see.

Sorry to rant and vent on you. I just, in my extreme frustration, decided to google the subject tonight and ran across your blog and I wanted to tell you thank you for opening my eyes to the fact that this is a real issue. That it is deeper than just me and my stubbornness and that it isn’t a matter of my getting all my “head” issues worked out as so many have told me over the past 5 years. Until tonight, I honestly though that we might be the only couple suffering from this…we’re certainly the only ones that I know personally. It is good to know that one is not alone, even if no help can be given. And it is good to realize what an influence the purity culture has had on things (I had my purity ring given to me too and ironically enough, lost it right before my husband and I got married. Still can’t find it.). It at least will give me some control over what I teach my son.

In case there was any question of why I blog on these issues, and especially why I blog against the purity culture, this is why. If you don’t love someone, you shouldn’t marry them. If you aren’t sexually attracted to someone, you shouldn’t marry them. And yet, the messages of the purity culture leave one completely open to these traps.

I literally grew up surrounded by arguments for purity and courtship that left me with the impression that any woman was compatible with any man, both in terms of marriage and in terms of sex. After all, courtship was all about weeding out those suitors who didn’t have the proper theological or political beliefs. Other things weren’t generally on the checklist. And the messages that surrounded sexual purity were that if you just stay “pure” until marriage, your sex life will be out of this world. Sexual compatibility? I honestly thought that was a myth made up by liberals in order to justify their desire to have unrestricted premarital sex.

The beliefs and ideas of the purity culture are not abstract or hypothetical. They have real world consequences and result in real world pain. And my heart breaks for those who fall victim to them.


For my critiques of the purity culture, see: 

The Purity Culture and Sexual Dysfunction

The Purity Culture and Sexual Incompatibility

How the Purity Culture Made Me Afraid of Men

The Purity Culture and Sex as a “Duty”

The “Problem” of Lust

The Purity Culture and “Lust”

Frozen Promises: Or, Life Is Not a Journey

The Perfect Relationship Secret: Virginity?

Courtship, Dating, and Regret

Evangelical Christianity's Patriarchal Alternative to Fifty Shades of Grey
What Courtship Was for Me
The Cold, Unforgiving World of Geoffrey Botkin
Bob Jones University Rejects Key Recommendations of the GRACE Report
About Libby Anne

Libby Anne grew up in a large evangelical homeschool family highly involved in the Christian Right. College turned her world upside down, and she is today an atheist, a feminist, and a progressive. She blogs about leaving religion, her experience with the Christian Patriarchy and Quiverfull movements, the detrimental effects of the "purity culture," the contradictions of conservative politics, and the importance of feminism.

  • Lana

    There is other reasons sex is not appealing to many people who grew up in the purity movement (sex being shamed down for years and years, or being told its your duty, or being told it keeps your husband from sin, and all that crap), but I do agree that the purity movement did me more harm that good. I’ve had many friends marry, or almost marry, men who despised them, all because they couldn’t break off an engagement, because that’s equally to divorce, because that would tear their hearts that would never hear. All these are lies that later on hurt them more than ever breaking up an engagement.

    Its also hurt because fathers, who are practically arranging these things, don’t know their daughters more than they know themselves.

    Don’t take relationships so seriously.

  • Katherine

    Libby, can you link to the post she is referring to, if you know which one it is?

    • AnyBeth

      Can’t remember if links work in comments (or if I’ll do it right), but I expect the writer of the second quote was referring to The Purity Culture and Sexual Incompatibility from May 6. Still mightn’t be a bad idea for Libby Anne to link in the blog post, but a decent guess fairly early in the comments can’t hurt, I guess.

      • Libby Anne

        Yep, you got the one. I just added the link. Thanks!

    • Libby Anne


  • Rebecca

    My upbringing in the purity culture left me virtually asexual. I was such a good little daughter and so when my mother told me I should not so much as fantasize about kissing boys I obeyed. I had no idea girls could masturbate until I went to a Christian college and some of the girls confided to me that they “struggled” with it. My vagina existed only in theory to me and I no desire to go anywhere near it. I DID think making out with boys sounded nice – and it WAS nice my senior year when I finally started dating- but that was as far as it went in my head.

    • Rosie

      My experience was similar. Complicated by the fact that I crushed on girls as often as boys, and I didn’t trust any feelings I actually DID have, so it was really difficult for me to know if I was attracted to someone or if they were just attracted to me. I’m still working through that, and I’m 40.

  • Chryssie

    I grew up influenced by the “purity culture” but my husband didn’t really. Throughout our pre-marriage relationship, our physical contact really just went with where we were at in the relationship. I wasn’t really aware of masturbating until I had come across something about orgasms helping with menstrual cramps, and pain. I freaked out when I first masturbated because it was so invigorating and yet I felt incredibly guilty. by the time my hubby and I got married, we had had sex, and the only thing we hadn’t done was see each other completely naked. I dealt with a bit of guilt for a good while after we got married, but he didn’t. I don’t reel guilty now, but I’m still unsure about where I stand on sex before marriage. I don’t mind that we did have sex before marriage, and our sexy times are very very good…having sex before marriage didn’t ruin anything for us, if anything it made it better.

    • Petticoat Philosopher

      I’m glad things have worked out well in your marriage. If you don’t mind me asking, why then are you still unsure about where you stand re:sex before marriage?

      • Rosie

        I’m not answering for Chryssie, but for myself I thought for a long time that I was some kind of crazy exception to the rule. I’d done everything “wrong” and that had worked better for me than doing everything “right”, but that just meant something was off about me, not the teachings, right? I’m seeing ample evidence here and elsewhere in the blogosphere, though, that in fact it was the teachings were off. They work for so few, and so many do so much better without them, that they can’t be said to be good for anything at all.

      • Beth

        in my case, i’m unsure about it because i’m pretty sure the bible does still say it’s not right. however at this point in my life, i don’t associate much with the Bible. if in the future, however, i do go back to it, then i’m going to have to figure out how what it says and what my and many others’ experiences add up to it.

  • Julian

    I’m endlessly amused by the idea that sexual compatibility is “a myth made up by liberals in order to justify their desire to have unrestricted premarital sex”– because I’ve encountered that concept too. Another form that line of reasoning takes is that homosexuality is always a choice (the implication being that everyone is essentially bisexual and that those who choose heterosexuality are somehow heroic for avoiding all that obviously and preferably hot same-sex action). Because, seriously, if sexual compatibility and attraction were a negligible issue, if it were something that didn’t exist in a qualitative or quantifiable way or that people could simply ignore, why on earth would anyone care about having extra-marital sex in the first place? The conservative theological parsing of the matter doesn’t make sense any way you try to dissect it.

    Libby Anne, you’ve also brought the question of asexuality into the conversation surrounding this subject in the past, and I’d like to thank you for that. Asexuality is a real orientation (or lack thereof, depending on how it’s defined), and it deserves to be recognized and honored for what it is. But I grew up in a complementarian evangelical milieu, and I know a number of people (including to some extent myself) whose understanding of their sexuality was negatively influenced due to unreasonable teachings and expectations. Many of us ended up identifying as asexual for at least awhile (and the identification was useful and empowering for us), but some of us have come to realize that we were simply forced to closet ourselves for various reasons. Yes, some of us are queer, and paid a price for that in the church for years; but some are straight as well and paid a similar price. (As a queer person, I do wish that more people in the queer community had an adequate understanding of what sexual repression in conservative Christianity is like, and what people who grow up in the conservative Church and are willing to publicly identify as allies to the queer community face. Too often I see blanket statements that identification as an ally is eye-rollingly easy and that there are never any risks involved; those of us who are queer and who grew up as conservative Christians know that simply isn’t true, and can cite examples of friends who suffered on our behalf.)

    Many of us have lost time and parts of ourselves, and many of us have something to grieve. Some of us have had to come to terms with acknowledging our sexuality and desires for intimacy for the first time, especially when they are different from the norm. And all of us who have had to diverge from the expectations of our community deserve support and encouragement. Since we were given incorrect information to begin with, since we were actively discouraged from seeking better information, and since finding and acting upon the correct information has proven to be impossibly hard and has frequently separated us from the people we cared about, I submit that we deserve all the accolades we can get.

    This is, quite seriously, a tough row to hoe for many of us, no matter what our gender.

    • Julian

      (or sexuality; sorry, I hit Post too quickly!)

    • Rae

      Yes, this. I identify as asexual, but it’s actually the opposite – although I was never attracted to someone and just found the thought of sex off-putting and the thought of oral sex absolutely repulsive, but I just believed everyone who said that I’d grow out of it and I’d eventually find boys attractive, so I just assumed I was heterosexual well into college, and even then, after I’d stopped believing that I’d be sexually attracted to anyone, I still classified myself as “straight” because I wasn’t attracted to women so what else would I be?

      I still haven’t actually come out to anyone in church yet, though. Obviously, it’s not really necessary, and IMO the risks outweigh any positive benefits (although my church is fairly accepting and the New Testament has encouraging things to say about people who can remain single without getting distracted nor tempted by sexual things), but if a guy were to ask me to date him, while I’m not obligated to give him a reason to turn him down, I’m also open to the idea of trying an asexual heteroromantic (still no idea about my romantic orientation, but for now I’m not remotely ready to deal with any other possibility) relationship if everything’s out in the open at the start and we’re aware that this may not work out.

    • Doe

      Fascinating stuff. To your first paragraph, the way I’ve heard it is that homosexuality is an extension of the “liberal justification of premarital sex” because homosexual men are promiscuous. Essentially, women are always the gatekeepers of sex and not really interested in sex for fun, so the men who want wild premarital sex have to go gay. Lesbian women don’t really exist in this explanation, because women don’t want sex. Completely ridiculous, but that’s the moralizing I got in my little midwestern town.

      I had a partner for a time who thought he might be asexual. After he escaped to the big city, he contacted me and thanked me for being supportive and experimenting with him because he was a Kinsey 4 or 5 and completely unable to come to terms with it until he reached a more progressive environment.

  • Carys Birch

    Libby Anne – thanks. It is largely through your blog and others like it that I’ve started to be able to understand and express some of this for myself. I’ve been exploring a new relationship with someone who never was raised in any religion, let alone the sort of purity-obsessed religion I was raised in. It’s become, not an issue, exactly, but something that requires careful communication. He’s careful about sex — not because of moral or religious reasons, but mostly because he’s careful about EVERYTHING. But we’ve had to talk about it because his caution flips my guilt switch, and I’ve discovered that I can’t be with someone who makes me feel guilty or slutty or shamed for enjoying sex. He’s not shaming me, but we have to tread carefully, because I’m too scarred from the past to see his prudence as anything but judgment. I hate that I am this way, because it hurts me and it hurts my partners too.

  • Kacy

    I remember my pastor in college teaching us that it is better to marry early than to commit sexual sins. He liked to tell a story about how he married his wife 3 months after they started dating!!!

    I can’t help but think of the “white washed tombs” analogy. On the outside, these Christian marriages look so beautiful and perfect, but on the inside there are unseen issues relating to love and compatibility–a dead sex life.

    This letter is very sad, and I hope this woman and her husband can find a good sex counselor to help them work through these issues.

    • smrnda

      How many of these ‘marry early to avoid sexual sins’ marriages end in divorce, or just end up being bad marriages overall? Maybe if a person has very little in the way of an individual personality they kind of can be paired up with just about anyone and it would work, but that’s only because of drastically reduced expectations.

  • ScottInOH

    A note of optimism: This post, the letters, and this thread remind me that one truly awesome thing about the Internet is that it lets almost all of us see that we are not alone. Whoever you are, there’s someone else like you, and discovering that is incredibly important.

  • Rae

    I was actually explicitly taught that any man and any woman would be sexually compatible with each other if they only remained virgins until marriage – the specific reasoning was that I was given was that “sexual incompatibility” came from preferences that one partner or the other had developed during previous sexual encounters with other people, and that before having sex, people were essentially a blank slate with no sexual preferences or kinks, who’d just enjoy whatever kind of sex they were exposed to.

    That’s just sooo messed up.

    • Lydisa

      I’ve heard that same idea before too. I’ve also dated a guy with whom I could not have sex because he was large enough that it wouldn’t fit inside me. He told me that out of the women he had tried to sleep with, it was more common to not be able to have sex than it was to be able to. What would have happened to him and his future wife if he had stayed in the purity culture? Pregnancy is still possible just with contact, but it seems sad for a couple to give up so much pleasure, without even knowing the sacrifice they are making.

      • Rae

        That scenario you mention is actually almost exactly what sparked Alfred Kinsey’s work on human sexuality: He was raised in a devoutly Christian environment, married a woman who was a virgin, and on their wedding night, they found that they were physically incapable of having sex. Granted, he was interested in the subject of sexuality before, but that seemed to be the impetus that pushed him into focusing on it as his primary field of research.

        Unfortunately, I don’t doubt that the majority of Christian couples in the QF section of purity culture would do that (in the more mainstream evangelical cultures, they’d more likely be encouraged to consult a doctor), but it’s interesting that it had that kind of result on at least one occasion!

  • Pauline

    I actually grew up believing in remaining a virgin until marriage, did that, and still believe in it–but I can’t fathom marrying someone you’re not sexually attracted to, that sounds awful. My husband and I made out a *lot* before we got married… the attraction was pretty clear!

    I suppose the difference is that I did NOT grow up in the purity culture, in fact while I was growing up it was just getting started, but we were overseas and had never heard of it… not that my parents would have been into that, anyway. It seems that the purity culture denies, not only sex outside marriage, but the goodness of any sexual impulse on any level outside marriage–and that’s wrong. I basically plan to teach my kids “making out is an important part of seriously dating someone, but do pace yourselves and agree beforehand where the lines are.” To me, there’s a balance. You can’t turn your sexuality on like a switch the day you get married. But also, for me, having a long slow build-up in which we didn’t consider ourselves ready for sex till we were ready for commitment was actually good for my sexuality. I needed that time to build trust, to “warm up”.

  • Jaimie

    Sad, sad stuff. Not that those outcomes are any surprise. For the second lady, if she is reading this, I would encourage her to tell her husband just what she wrote here. Forget about all that submissive doormat crap and really communicate with him. That is how we find solutions here in the real world. You may hear some things you don’t want to, and vice versa, but at least you will both be one the same page.
    And please, don’t read Christian sex books or go to a Christian counselor. Find good, reputable, secular sources to read and discuss. Sex is a source of great pleasure and having a good sex life is one of life’s most wonderful things.

    • HelenaTheGrey

      Thanks for the encouragement, Jaimie. I must admit, the idea of talking to my husband about all this scares the crap out of me. I want to, but at the same time, I am scared to death of what would come of it. I do agree that I think we need to get some counseling, but I’m just having a hard time brining it up. I know all that makes me sound very childish….maybe I am. I just am scared and that is the reality of it.

  • smrnda

    I once overheard a guy talk about how it was necessary for him to marry a virgin, since otherwise he’d feel that he got ‘cheated.’ Meaning that a woman is like a car or other possession – you want to be the sole exclusive owner. I almost wanted to turn around and say something, but I try to avoid arguments with strangers in public.

    So some of the purity culture might be influenced by that, which is really a pretty shallow way to view sex and woman since it makes the woman nothing but her sexual history, or gives that too much importance.

    I think it was good for me to have had lots of contact with and friends who were male growing up, and it was good for them to have close friendships with girls and women. If you don’t, you’re not going to be able to interact with the other sex as people and not just ‘whoa, I’m talking to a chick.’

    It seems to me that within the fundamentalist mindset,there’s no room for individual personalities. You are to be defined entirely by your ideological commitments, and nothing else is supposed to matter at all. The problem is that it’s tough to actually fit people into these narrow molds.

    The whole purity culture reminds me of what a friend of mine in college told me. Her father said that it would be a disaster for her to get pregnant, so he made sure she understood birth control since he said that if he told her ‘just say no to sex,’ ONE TIME could ruin the whole plan, but contraception could provide more security. She also said she was glad she was never told to save sex for marriage, since in that case, she might have married the wrong person when young.

    on the ‘wrong person’ – I know somebody is going to say that it’s all about commitment, but people are like jobs, some you are suited for and some you are not, and sometimes you take a job or get with a person and then you realize it’s not as great as it seemed.

    • Liberated Liberal

      “I once overheard a guy talk about how it was necessary for him to marry a virgin, since otherwise he’d feel that he got ‘cheated.’ Meaning that a woman is like a car or other possession – you want to be the sole exclusive owner.”

      That is actually the most common way men view the purity culture and women. When all is said and done, this is ultimately what it boils down to. I’ve heard it said over and over again. There are also plenty of men who are not very religious and certainly not anything near virgins themselves believe that they deserve to marry a virgin and to make sure he is the only one who has ever “had” her.

      • smrnda

        Guys like that should rephrase their statement “shallow man seeks unused vagina for purposes of total ownership.”

  • Kevin Alexander

    Someone told me that if someone says that he won’t marry you if you aren’t a virgin, the correct response is gratitude.
    As in ‘Thanks for sparing me wasting any more time on a selfish loser’

    • smrnda

      Great response :-)

  • Sue Blue

    There’s an extremely disturbing, creepy video on YouTube about the Purity culture. At about the 18:00 minute mark there’s a perfect example of the damage such an upbringing causes – a beautiful young woman who was completely shunned by her parents and church when she broke her purity vow:

    As far as I’m concerned, the whole purity thing is nothing more than utterly misogynistic child abuse.

    • lucrezaborgia

      OMG…what happened with her pregnancy? I’m watching it now and I hope they talk to her again

      • Carys Birch

        Oi, I watched this one through a link on Commandments of Men. It was hard to watch.

  • abra1

    This post has brought up a question I’ve been pondering — idly because it isn’t my problem nor have I been asked for input. It isn’t my story to tell, so I won’t go into details but what is the best thing for a recovering SP to do when they divorce after marrying young and inexperienced as part of the SP movement split and then disagree with they ex about how to approach the topic with the children from that marriage?

    One of couple that raised this question for me ended up rejecting the SP paradigm, identifying it as the source of a lot of the couple’s problems because it led to the couple getting married too young and too fast aside from encouraging a rather warped dynamic between the two of them. The other retreated further into the whole subculture (atoning for mistakes) not even allowing the ex into the house when picking up the kids because they are not married and there is no chaperon.

    What should the anti-SP parent do? Go-along-and-get-along because they willingly entered the relationship, including parenting in the context of SP and kids, especially after a divorce, need consistency? Speak out about the more egregious issues, because, well…? Or engaged in an active counter campaign (and risk a lot of conflict with the ex)?

    It all makes me very grateful for the sex ed I got once a week as part of religious ed from 6th grade on (taught by nuns). We were really encouraged us to think and even talk about it (in appropriate contexts). Ultimately, I would say the general message: that sexuality being a gift not to be abused, it something that encouraged a pretty healthy, if conservative, attitude toward sexuality. I don’t remember anything about purity at all… even though they certainly could have referred a lot to Mary or Maria Goretti or any of a number of other women saints who, regardless of what they actually did, have their virginal status (I have to wonder about a lot of these…) listed as one of their prime attributes.

    • Rosie

      Thankfully, I’ll never be in the position your friend is in (because I’ve taken steps to never have kids), but theoretically I’d mount an active counter-campaign along the lines of “your other parent disagrees with me, but here’s what I think and why”. Hopefully the kids will be old enough by the time this conversation becomes necessary to realize that Mom and Dad do a whole lot of things differently, and they’ll be able to be thoughtful about it rather than running straight to the other parent with “but he/she said _____!” It’ll be a lot more difficult, though, if they spend the majority of their time with the parent who’s convinced of being Absolutely Right.

  • Laura

    It doesn’t help that so many American men are circumcised, with all that means for both male and female sexuality.

  • Marcus

    I doubt the letter writer’s husband would have appreciated her “testing out” 3 other guys beforehand. Hey, it’s not too late to try! Her brilliant solution would lead to even worse problems.

    • HelenaTheGrey

      Say what? What “brilliant solution” are you even talking about?

    • Lucreza Borgia

      If he was going to judge her based on the freshness of her vagina, maybe he wasn’t the man to marry.

    • Anat

      It’s time some men get it into their heads that the virginity of their future partner is irrelevant.

  • Natalie

    I agree that many people who court and marry people whom they do not love and are not sexually attracted to do not have happy marriages. But this blog would never publish a story about people who courted, loved each other and had a happy marriage. Such stories do exist.

    I would like to add that to counter this story there are dozens of stories of women who have children with men who cheat on them. I am sure their decisions of testing sexual compatability left them much unhappier than the women who have been quoted here.

    • HelenaTheGrey

      I don’t think Libby Anne is denying that such stories do exist. But that isn’t really the point. The point is that a lot of people are hurt by the Purity Culture…potentially more people are hurt by it than helped. And a blog like this gives voice to the people out there who are hurting but think they are alone.

      Also, I fail to see your connection with the linked blog post and the stories above. Are you suggesting that this woman is hurting simply because she chose to have sex with her boyfriend and as repayment he cheated on her? That somehow, had she not had sex with him, she wouldn’t be hurt by him cheating on her? I really don’t see the correlation at all.