30 Non-Sexual Ways to Express Teen Love

“What else, besides having sex, can we do to show our love?” During one of my favorite pastimes—hanging out with beautiful, smart, teen girls—one girl asked the question.

"What else is there to do?"

Teens in love.  Photo by Emilie Hendryx
Teens in love. Photo by Emilie Hendryx | Source

Teen love is a universal, normal developmental occurrence. Adults who try to dismiss it often destroy their chances for further involvement in the social life of the teenager.* Questions like the one posed above suggest that some teens desire guidance toward a satisfying, wholesome relationship. It is worth the effort for parents and other responsible adults to provide them with reasonable answers.

Some teens do not even bother to look for options; they suppose—based on what they have seen and heard—that sex is the appetizer, the main course and the dessert in the love relationship. When teen relationships become physical, there is very little conversation, and the lovers miss the opportunity to evaluate character virtues or flaws in their mates. They also come up short on emotional fulfillment.

The following list aims to inspire inquiring minds with creative, alternative ideas for expressing love. There is a total of 30 suggestions listed under 5 sub-headings, all expressing a clear message that the other person is valuable and the relationship is special. This is the message that makes a person feel really loved--a message that sex is not likely to deliver.


I. Celebrate the Relationship

  1. Create a scrap-book of dated photographs, love notes and special events to commemorate highlights in the relationship.
  2. Establish an exclusive spot—a restaurant, a park, a beach, a resort area, a historic site—for special celebrations. Dress up for the occasion.
  3. Find time to say that more than the food, the music, the view or whatever other enjoyable aspect of the celebration there is, the most important feature of the celebration is the other person.


II. Maximize Your Time Together

Teens sharing earphones, listening to music outdoors in the summer time.  Photo by  SCA Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget
Teens sharing earphones, listening to music outdoors in the summer time. Photo by SCA Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget | Source
  1. Share childhood stories and photos; laugh about the silly things you did before your common sense kicked in.
  2. Share a skill. For example, if one plays a musical instrument, teach the other to play a song which would become “our song.” If one has a favorite recipe, teach the other to prepare it and refer to it as “our special dish.”
  3. Do personality tests and discuss the results to boost knowledge of yourselves and of each other.
  4. Read biographies of people you admire.
  5. Attend a financial seminar together, to help you develop a similar understanding of money principles.
  6. Sit together in church while you participate in the worship.
  7. Volunteer together in a service organization.
  8. Sketch or paint each other’s portrait; it’s the effort that counts.
  9. Invent pet names and keep the secret concerning how you came up with them.
  10. Feed each other from the same ice cream cup, or slice of cake, or any other favorite dessert.
  11. Make it a habit to compliment each other on appearance, and for achievements.
  12. Use other words for love for reassurance.


From Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

  • Among US high school students surveyed in 2013, 46.8% had had sexual intercourse; 40.9% did not use condoms the last time they had sex.
  • An estimated 8,300 young people aged 13–24 years in the 40 states reporting to CDC had HIV infection in 2009.
  • Nearly half of the 19 million new STDs each year are among young people aged 15–24 years.
  • More than 400,000 teen girls aged 15–19 years gave birth in 2009.

Warning: Abstinence from vaginal, anal, and oral intercourse is the only 100% effective way to prevent HIV, other STDs, and pregnancy. . .No protective method is 100% effective.

For more information, visit Adolescent and School Health.

III. Maintain Interest When You’re Apart

  1. Keep a photo of your loved one on your electronic device.
  2. Compose love poems to be added to your scrapbook.
  3. Handwrite love letters on fancy, decorated stationery; they may become lifetime treasures.
  4. Send decent jokes and motivational quotes by e-mail or other media device.
  5. Honor the other person by what you say in his or her absence.


IV. Spend Time with Your Favorite People

  1. When it is appropriate, ask permission from your parents to include the teen friend in some family activities.
  2. Visit other relatives. Dinner with families saves you the expense of restaurant dining, and at the same time, allows you to see how your lover interacts with different people in different situations.
  3. Enjoy double dates with friends you trust. Watch movies, organize picnics in the park, visit museums, take long bus rides occasionally.
  4. Confide in a mature person or a couple both of you trust. Solicit counsel when you need mentoring.
  5. Associate with youth groups in which the members uphold values similar to yours.


How do you rate the teen love experience you had (are having)?

See results without voting

V. Cultivate Patient, Persevering Love

  1. Establish wholesome boundaries within the relationship, to prevent hasty actions which could sabotage your happiness and cause regret.
  2. Practice self-control because it encourages trust during your teen relationship and increases the chance of loyalty in your adult marriage.
  3. Realize that teen love may not lead to marriage, because most teens are still building and altering their social preferences. Be careful not to assume spousal duties while you are only friends.
  4. Treat each other with such respect that even if your relationship ends, respect and civility remain.
  5. Enjoy the relationship. Make pleasant memories which will give you an emotional boost to keep on loving in the future.


© July 2014 by Dora Isaac Weithers. Click MORE for other articles by MsDora.

Reference

*HealthyChildren.org: Ages and Stages, Teen Love Connection (8/29/2013)

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42 comments

word55 profile image

word55 2 years ago from Chicago

Hi MsDora from beautiful, sunny Florida, This relationship preserving teen love guideline may extend to senior mature relationships as well. The appropriate love relationship is a youthful one. It is all the value of maintaining spirit, youth, joy, success, happiness and much more. Thank you so much my friend, for such a superb hub that should help teens around the world and mature folk as well :-)


billybuc profile image

billybuc 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

Very interesting topic, and wonderful suggestions. I'd like to find a way to force every teen to read this. :)


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

Teen love 101, a very good hub and a must read for those teenagers who are approaching love.. a soft enduring message Msdora.. as only you can write :) bless you


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

Sound advice Dora. There will be no changing what has become accepted but it may do wonders indeed to add to and promote lasting relationships. It makes them better human beings if nothing else to have more than one desire on the menu. lol Great advice, indeed! ^


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Word, hope the article really helps those who need it. Thanks for your sunny Florida greeting.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Bill, wish I could too, but I'll keep trying. Thanks for your affirmation.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Frank, what a precious comment! Thank you.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Jackie, yes, your remark about the menu made me smile. Thanks for your support.


sheilamyers 2 years ago

As always, you've provided some great advice and tips - not only for teens, but for anyone in a dating relationship. Great job!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Sheila. Now to bring the teens to the drinking well! I pray that they come.


gingerka profile image

gingerka 2 years ago from Colorado

What a great subject to write about! You have some very good points.


DDE profile image

DDE 2 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

Brilliantly thought of and you have chosen an interesting topic.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Gingerka, I appreciate your feedback. Thank you.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

DDE, thanks for your kind, sweet comment.


Ericdierker profile image

Ericdierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

Well done here. I was just lucky with my girls.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

More than that Eric, you nurtured good relationships with them. Well done, Dad!


manatita44 profile image

manatita44 2 years ago from london

Continuous and loving advice and ideas for children, and indeed parents in their search for positive applications to their children's lives. Let us all inspire others to wholesome boundaries. Higher blessings.


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

This is an excellent hub in the alternatives it provides. I believe it is very possible to form important lifelong connections with dating partners while in your young teens, even when you marry other people. Two of my deepest lifelong friendships were once my boyfriends when we were teens, and my husband is still friends with a girl he dated as a teen, too.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

Such great insight here, MsDora. Teenage years are so critical with hormones flying ...

I hope many teens read your article and take it to heart!

I was married at the age of 19 and still married to the same man, who was 18 when we married : )

We came up with plenty of alternatives to having sex before marriage and it worked out oh so much better for a lifetime.

Voted up ++++ and away

God bless you


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Manatita, blessed are those who know the value of wholesome boundaries. Thanks for your input.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Flourish, thanks for your examples of self-respect and respect for the other person in teen relationships. The friendships you and your husband enjoy with your exes could not happen otherwise. And how precious those friendships are now!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Faith, thank you for another example that patient love has lasting rewards. Thanks for sharing from your own experience.


RachaelOhalloran profile image

RachaelOhalloran 2 years ago from United States

I wish today's teens took a page out of our book when we were dating in the 1940'sand 1950s, because we did some of your very suggestions as part of our dating life. This was a very interesting hub. Voted up.


CyberShelley profile image

CyberShelley 2 years ago

Lovely advice for the young to follow - your ideas give them a grip on real relationships and help to add depth.


lifegate profile image

lifegate 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

Hi MsDora,

Another hub full of practical wisdom - something most teens don't have. I hope that parents and teens alike take note and follow some very wise, creative, and relationship building advice.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Rachel, if they would only listen; but whether or not they do, we have to communicate with them in whatever way we can. Thanks for your comment.


Lady Guinevere profile image

Lady Guinevere 2 years ago from West Virginia

These are excellent ideas and I only wish that I had those when I was a teen or even better my children when they were teens. Definitely sharing this one!

This should have been HOTD


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks Shelley, I appreciate your supportive input.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Lifegate, if the teens only know that they do not know . . . Thanks for your kind comment.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks LadyGuinevere. I appreciate your kind comment.


thelesleyshow profile image

thelesleyshow 2 years ago from US

I'm sure glad that my teen years are over, my daughter is 13 years old, I know that she will be much more mature in her relationships than I was just because her character is so much more mature and loving than mine was at her age.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Glad to meet thelesleyshow. I love the trust you have in your daughter. All the best to both of you.


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 2 years ago

This is a post that every teen should read. I find most teens desire attention badly and they will cave into the urges to gain what they believe to be love.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Teaches, a recommendation from you means much to me. Thank you, kindly.


imtii profile image

imtii 2 years ago from Dhaka, Bangladesh

It was totally awesome. I never knew that MsDora could come out with these great tips!! Thank you very much friend! I voted it Awesome!!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Why not Imtii? I work with teens and youth occasionally, and the question at the top of the page gets asked very often. I just making the answer available here. Glad you like it.


The Dirt Farmer profile image

The Dirt Farmer 2 years ago from United States

These are great ideas, MsDora, and so many of them are good things for adults in relationships to do, too. Beautiful!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Jill. I agree that adults can benefit too. That way, they can also help teach the youth. Thanks for your input.


DREAM ON profile image

DREAM ON 2 years ago

I loved your ideas and how you presented your hub. When I was young we had know suggestions and we just played with fire and got burned. Others had best friends that they hung out with and kept us busy in sports or hobbies and luckily the girls came later. Unfortunately we never learned the proper social skills to do things non sexual and now are urges were greater than ever. If we were lucky you learned slowly and didn't rush in over your head. Thank you for a very important hub that could change the future of many young adults lives.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Dream On, your comment is very encouraging. I hope with you that some one with stronger urges than willpower will take heed. Thank you.


erinshelby profile image

erinshelby 22 months ago from United States

Ms Dora, I love this one on your list: "Honor the other person by what you say in his or her absence." Adults can use this one too to build each other up and show how much they care!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 22 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks for your contribution, Erin. I agree that loyalty is good at any age.

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    Dora Isaac Weithers (MsDora)946 Followers
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    MsDora, Certified Christian Counselor initiated the Purity Circle to guide and empower individuals desiring to pursue the purity lifestyle.



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