You've heard of remaining celibat until married -- an admittedly rare concept on college campuses, but a new generation of students is abiding by an even stricter rule: No kissing before marriage.
It may seem extreme, but for students like Kelly Bradburn, a junior at Ball State University, it's a simple religious conviction. She told Ball Bearings magazine that she was worried about telling her soon-to-be boyfriend about her vow to refrain from kissing, but he told her he respected her decision. Two and a half years of dating later, still no kiss between them.
While Bradburn isn't kissing her college boyfriend, she has exchanged lip locks with boyfriends in the past. That's where, she says, the trouble starts. Bradburn has decided to refrain from kissing because it has led to other things, like touching, that she isn't comfortable with as she remains celibat until marriage.
“He got tired of that, and I felt convicted that I wasn’t supposed to kiss until I got married from that point,” Bradburn said about her high school boyfriend.
A kiss isn't just a kiss, according to one Ball State professor who weighed in for the article.
“There are some people that suggest that kissing serves a whole lot of different purposes in a relationship,” said George Gaither, an associate professor of psychological science. "One is that it increases intimacy because you’re very close to the other person; obviously, you’re face to face with them… For some people, kissing is something they use to determine how interested they are in this particular partner.”
There has been no official research on people who wait for marriage to kiss, but 17 percent of college age females and 16 percent of college age males have never had any sexual contact, excluding kissing, according to the National Survey of Family Growth.