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  • Writer's pictureJenny Ingles, CFCP

A Different Kind of Gift

Last year during the holiday season, I wrote about how to handle nosy relatives that butt into your sex life. And last week, Jessica talked about how holiday stress can affect your chart. So what else is there left to discuss about the charting and the holiday season? Alcohol! I'm kidding. Gifts, actually. Specifically, spousal self-gift.

In the past, Karoline, has discussed the meaning of sexual intercourse on a natural level. I'd like to dive a bit deeper into her discussion on teleology and talk a little bit about how to respect the unitive and procreative ends of marriage fully. At this point you might be like, "but, Jenny, I thought you hate using NFP?" True story. But that doesn't mean that I am not 100% positive that it's the best possible way to live out that part of marriage. But back to the ends of marriage. As Karoline rightly discussed, the purpose (teleology) of sex is to both unite the spouses and procreate new tiny humans. It's easy to see how sex fulfills both of these functions. If it didn't fulfill these two functions, then people wouldn't be so obsessed with trying to circumvent the part that results in tiny humans so that they can participate in the other part.

What isn't quite as easy to see is that human reproductive system is the only incomplete (teleologically speaking) part of the human body. For example, the human eye is made to see. That is its purpose. It sees all on its own unless it's damaged or defective. The male eye does not need the female eye in order to see. Likewise, the female heart does not need the male heart in order to beat. But the reproductive system cannot fulfill its function without another. The male reproductive system must have the female reproductive system in order to unite and procreate. And visa versa. It is only when those two systems come together that the purpose (or teleology) of the reproductive system can be fulfilled. They need each other. In this way, the spouses give themselves to the other in a way that is unique to all of human kind.

To give yourself fully to your spouse - a self-gift if you will - is to entrust your body to your spouse in every aspect, but especially in martial intercourse. If you withhold your fertility from your spouse by using a condom or contraception, then you aren't truly giving yourself fully. It can be difficult to give yourself completely to another. Being used and rejected is a real concern. Even in marriage. But self-gift can be done. We have a whole host of SPICE blogs dedicated to growing in intimacy and strengthening your marriage. So as you prepare for Christmas, you can consider how to give yourself more fully (not always in sexual intercourse) to your beloved.

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