Hello iWaited Family!! Welcome to this month’s feature!
I want to introduce you to Luis and Vanessa Scott! Luis and Vanessa have been married for NINE years! The amazing thing about them being married nine years is that they’ve just entered their 30’s. I so admire them. I met Luis while at the Pinky Promise Conference in Atlanta this past summer. You all know that I stalk “Waiters” and when I heard part of he and his wife’s story, I approached him after one of the sessions to exchange information. Please help me welcome Luis and Vanessa!!
- Please state your names and tell me a little bit about yourselves?
Vanessa: My name is Vanessa and I am formerly a teacher, before I had kids. We had kids in 2010 and I decided to leave that profession and be at home with my children. We’ve been married for almost nine years.
Luis: My name is Luis and I’m an attorney at a law firm here in the Atlanta are…that’s pretty much it. *laughs*
- How did you meet your mate?
Vanessa: We met at a wedding; my friend was getting married and his (Luis) dad is a pastor and was performing the ceremony. Luis decided to tag along because it happened to fall on his dad’s anniversary. We started talking at the reception and stayed in touch after that.
Luis: Yes, we met at the reception and I asked her for her number and she gave me her email address :). I wasn’t exactly hopeful at that point.
Vanessa: I was just trying to make sure that his intentions were pure.
- How long did you date and how long was your engagement?
Vanessa: We dated for four years and we were engaged for eight months before we got married. That was all through college and the start of my teaching career.
- How early in the relationship did the subject of sex come up?
Luis: I don’t think we ever had that conversation. I’m not sure why but we never really talked about that.
Vanessa: I think that we both grew up in the church and we were both raised in similar ways. It was kind of a given that we were going to wait until we were married.
Luis: I can tell you that–for full disclosure–we’re telling you more about sex than we ever had in a conversation with ourselves back then :D. We did not talk about that kind of stuff at all. For me it was just really awkward to talk about it. Maybe that’s why it never happened, because we never talked about it. *laughs*
Vanessa: Actually I told him tonight when I was in college I was having a conversation with my roommate and they knew I was a virgin and waiting until marriage. The question came up as to whether Luis was a virgin and I said “Honestly I don’t really know, it never came up. It’s not really important to me, if he does have a past, it’s not affecting my current relationship with him.”
Luis: Plus we were 19, I know nowadays kids are 13-14 years old but 10-15 years ago I don’t think it was as acceptable to be involved as teenagers.
Me: I’m only a year younger than the both of you and in high school I was virgin. But even in high school I felt like an anomaly. It’s refreshing to see that you all were in a situation where you didn’t even have to talk about it.
Luis: I was the guy that thought that if I got involved I was going to get the girl pregnant. I was also ashamed to go buy protection so I just kept myself free and clear from that situation. I knew there was a lighting cloud waiting for me :).
Me: So you were both virgins when you got married?
I was super geeked about this small fact because they are my first couple where both parties were virgins on their wedding night. Whoop Whoop! 😀
Luis: Vanessa told me some things before our wedding night that almost scarred me completely!
Vanessa: *laughs* My matron of honor sat me down and talked to me about what to expect, what I should I be prepared for and what to have ready. And so a couple of weeks before our wedding I shared this information with Luis and we were completely grossed out. She didn’t want me to go in completely naïve. I do appreciate that she took that time to sit me down and have that talk with me. I didn’t really have that talk with my mom. I think it’s important for you to have a mentor couple so that you have someone that offers you godly advice.
- There are young adults who think they have to have sexual experience going into marriage in order to fulfill their partner. What would you say to them?
Luis: I was a college athlete and it was very very tough because everyone around me was involved. It was so bad that my nickname was Sweet Lou because everyone thought I was gay. I didn’t go around partying and doing all of that stuff. As far as experience, it took a long time for us to feel like we knew what was going on. My only advice is if you’re going to be married to someone for the rest of your life—because that’s the goal—learn with them, have your experiences with them. Don’t learn with someone else. It’s like working for an employer and then going to another employer that does similar work, you’re going to bring all of that baggage from your previous employer to that second employer. The second employer may not do it the same way, they do things differently. I use this example in the legal practice. You may hire a paralegal that has 10-12 years of experience at another law firm but they did things differently. Now you have a situation where you may have experience but now you’re having to re-trained on what to do with your new partner. Try to learn with your spouse.
- In what ways do you think keeping sex out of your relationship benefitted the relationship?
Vanessa: It left a lot time for us to learn how to communicate with one another; having positive conversations and even not-so-positive conversations. It gave us time to have innocent fun with each other without all of the baggage that sex brings.
Luis: In our relationship it wasn’t all about having sex. Everyone that I know that’s in a sexual relationship before they get married, it always ends up being all about the sex. You can’t get to know someone if all you’re thinking about and doing is sex. You can’t know anybody like that and then you start confusing love for lust. When you can’t make a distinction between love and lust, you start making horrible decisions as it relates to relationship.
- Were you ever tempted to give into the temptation to have sex?
Luis: On a couple of occasions the temptation was very high and thankfully my mom and dad were around to say, “Hey, you guys need to separate and get off each other’s laps”. The biggest temptation for us was when we actually lived across the hall from each other. We lived in the same apartment building. Once she got out of college she found a job in the city where I was going to law school . That was a huge temptation, we were both 22, we were both adults and had been dating 3 ½ years at this point. She was paying bills, I was paying bills and everyone was telling us to move in together. They were telling us, “Don’t pay double bills, you’re wasting money”. That was really hard, that was a lot of temptation. I think the big thing for us was that we were both scared of disappointing our parents. She didn’t want to disappoint her parents and I didn’t want to disappoint my parents. We didn’t want to do anything that would bring shame or disappointment on them.
- Did you set any boundaries while you were dating?
Luis: The boundary was we didn’t spend the night at each other’s house because we lived right across the hall from each other. Other than that, like I said, we didn’t really talk about it.
Vanessa: Also, three of our four year dating period was long distance. That removed a lot of temptation right there being long distance.
Luis: When we did see each other, we didn’t talk about it because we were focused on enjoying each other.
- Why do you believe God asks us to remain pure before marriage?
Luis: The bible says that when you engage in a sexual relationship you not only mend your bodies physically but you mend your souls spiritually. When God sets boundaries or parameters, He doesn’t do it to restrict our fun; He does it so that we avoid danger and pain. We have a fence in our back yard, the fence isn’t there so that my son CAN’T play, the fence is there so my son doesn’t get hurt outside of the fence. It’s not so that you don’t have any fun. God still wants you to play; he just wants to play in the confines of marriage. He doesn’t want you to get physically and spiritually hurt.
10. What are some final thoughts/words of encouragement for the readers?
Vanessa: When you decide to wait I think I went into marriage thinking that because I waited God is going to bless me with this awesome sex life, it was just a given. The reality of the situation is it took time to develop that. What God does give us is security in our relationship with our spouse. He lets us experience true love and sexual fulfillment in the confines of marriage without all of the extra baggage. I think it’s definitely worth the wait. It’s worth wait for sure. I’m glad I went into marriage knowing that Luis wasn’t comparing me to someone else or I wasn’t doing something as good as X or Y person. I’m glad I was able to provide that for him as well.
Luis: One of the things I tell people all of the time; it’s kind of like dieting. Anytime you go on a diet and restrict some kind of activity, all you think about is that activity. So if someone tells you, “don’t eat cupcakes”, you’re going to be thinking about not eating cupcakes the whole time. What I tell people don’t think about not having sex, think about living a godly life. If you think about living a godly life and pleasing God, there isn’t going to be any room for you to eat the cupcake—the thing you’re restricted from—you’re going to be focused on living a godly life. We try to be balanced in the way we communicate the word of God. You don’t always have to preach the hell side; you can preach the heaven side. The heaven side is the godliness. People are going to make mistakes in all areas of their life and you can always find reconciliation. But if you work on getting a godly life, you’re going to find it a lot easier to abstain from those temptations in the long run.