Dear anonymous 2008 times over:Is anything outside the penetrative act unholy?
Heck yes it is! Foreplay (even between legally married husband and wife)=of the devil. Please put a sheet of tin between your (fully clothed) torsos.
If this is what married Mormon life holds for me . . . I'm becoming Episcopalian.This topic has been hashed and re-hashed in many corners of the Mormon online community
, and I don't know that Board writers have any grand revelation to share with you.
(WARNING: if you are squeamish about such topics, and reading words like "masturbation" will make you supremely uncomfortable, please, don't follow those links. I would hope the rather straightforward nature of the question would have tipped you off by now that you might want to skip down to something tamer like tithing and lottery money. I don't need angry emails about how I am going against the Church and its prophets and the Lord's University and the American Way. I merely present these as places for further information, not endorsements. Thank you.)
As far as I can gather, the condemnatory letter in question, which took an anti-oral sex stance, was sent out in 1982, and quickly rescinded. As it is with evolution, racial discrimination, or the necessity of ankle-length dresses, I am unlikely to heed now-retracted counsel given before I was born. I somehow doubt that God has set aside a corner of Outer Darkness for Married Mutual Masturbators. Such a conception of deity is odd to me, to say the least, and at least as far as I can tell, a lot of these questions people have boiled down to not wanting to offend the Spirit.
By that definition, I think it's safe to say that orgies involving goats and tasers are out. I think that shutting yourself in a room with a porn magazine instead of paying attention to your spouse is selfish and definitely not strengthening to one's marriage.
Please, just ask these exact questions, with the same wording, if you want, of your spouse. My fountain of virginal sex advice has run dry. I am not Mr. anon2008, and I do not know he would react. I think the Church does a fine job of emphasizing the mystical oneness of "marital intimacy," and very
thoroughly underlines the fact that such things are a big no-no before, but I think the more stalwart among us can take this Puritanism into their marriages, and want a print-out (Times New Roman, double-spaced), of what they can and can't do. You're not going to get that here (at least in Windows, the Board appears in Palatino Linotype and is single-spaced, after all), and you're certainly not going to get that over the pulpit. I think that we could perhaps do better as a culture of acknowledging that sex is a great thing, under the right circumstances, and not something to be afraid of. It seems like building a wall with Triple Combinations down the middle of your bed could be quite the turn-off.
You'll be a lot better off talking about this with your spouse--I can see a situation arising where one party thinks such activities are fine, and the other feels betrayed and sad and wishes werf had been alerted beforehand.
Also, people have made some decent dough off of Mormons' sexual insecurities. And They Were Not Ashamed
only got one rating with less than four stars: could be worth checking out.
Good luck figuring all this out. Whatever you and your spouse decide, I don't think anyone ever found a "tin sheet" mentality to be that fulfilling.