An intellectual is a person who’s found one thing that’s more interesting than sex.
~ Aldous Huxley
I’m sitting across the table from a very attractive guy. He’s young, in his early 30’s to be precise, ruggedly handsome with designer stubble and an Irish accent that accentuates his easy laughter. He’s a DJ and a life coach, with the most positive mindset of anyone I’ve met. We are drinking coffee on a Melbourne winter afternoon and sharing coconut cake.
Let me make this perfectly clear…this is not a date!
In fact, my coffee partner is the lovely Pete Lynagh, the man behind Pete’s Chastity for Charity. On January 1st 2013 Pete gave up sex – vowing to stay chaste for 12 months, in order to raise money for the charity Free to Shine, a non profit humanitarian organization based in Australia, which prevents and responds to sex trafficking against children in Cambodia.
It’s easy to see why Pete is so passionate about Free to Shine. An estimated 945,000 children globally are currently being sold for sex. Free To Shine provides scholarships to girls identified as high risk of being trafficked into the commercial sex industry. The International Labour Organization states that getting girls into school and keeping them there is vital in reducing their vulnerability to trafficking.
Free to Shine provide valuable scholarships to girls that allows them to go to school.
Pete’s “Chastity for Charity” Facebook page now has over 4000 followers (see the link above), and Pete has managed to raise $30,000 at the half way mark of his sex-free journey. His goal is to raise $100,000 for the Charity. He is now gaining traction through interviews and has been on National radio shows both here and overseas.
What started out as a joke between Pete and his housemate has now taken on a life of its own. Not only has Pete raised funds for an incredible cause, but he has also gone on a personal journey that by his own admission, he wasn’t quite expecting.
“I’ve just discovered so much about myself in the last six months,” Pete explained, “I realized that I was using sex as a vice to fill a void inside of me. I’ve since had to face myself and face my demons. I’ve had to look to fill that void from the inside out, instead of the other way around.”
Prior to his vow of chastity, Pete described himself as a bit of a player. He, like a lot of guys, thought of sex as a game, and the more women he slept with the more affirmed he felt. He concedes that the possibility of meeting a life partner was limited in that frame of mind.
“I believe I was drawing people to me that were just like me. We mirrored each other. So anyone I met who was more than that, I was probably cold and keeping them at a distance so I wouldn’t develop feelings.”
Sharing coffee with Pete, it is hard for me to imagine that he was ever like that. Intelligent and articulate, the thing that most impresses me is his need to help his fellow man. When asked if he was concerned about temptation, he shrugged his shoulders and smiled.
“There have been times, absolutely. But the cause is bigger than me. I really believe in this. I’ve changed because of this. My perception of myself has changed. I really believe in what I’m doing and I’m grateful now for the journey that I’m on.”
The ground rules for Pete’s chastity are fairly simple. He is not allowed to engage in anything of a sexual nature with another person. Whilst kissing is allowed, Pete learnt early on that any contact was dangerous in that it led to temptation. Masturbation is allowed (I know you were probably dying to ask!), but at the six month mark, Pete has just shared with me that he has decided to try to go cold turkey with that also.
“I’ve read that if you stop masturbating, you can channel that energy into your creativity and I’m thinking it’s something I want to try. I’m not sure if it’s going to work out, but so far, so good. I’m certainly going harder at the gym at the moment. I just have more energy!”
Pete’s perceptions of women have also changed. He happily admits that with sex removed from the equation, he is now able to relate to women on a much more human level and really get to know someone on a deeper level. He’s making lots of new female friends and gaining a valuable insight into how the other half thinks.
“I doubt that would have happened if I’d stayed on the path I was.”
So when the clock strikes midnight on the 1st January 2014, where is Pete likely to be?
“I’m hoping I’ll be away somewhere. I think there will be too much pressure and too many questions if I am here!” Indeed!
What’s really lovely for Pete is that he now absolutely knows what he will be looking for in a relationship when he’s ready to move into that new phase of his life. Staying out of the bedroom has allowed him enough head space to evaluate what’s most important to him and what type of woman he’d like to settle down with.
I can honestly say she will be a very lucky girl who ever she is. On her arm will be an incredibly enlightened man who realises now that while sex is a beautiful thing, it is not the only thing women have to offer!
As I always say, we are the sum of many things, but we are more than circus tricks!
If you would like to learn more about Pete’s Chastity for Charity, or donate to this very worthy cause, please follow Pete on his Facebook page:
or Click the link to the Charity donation page:
For more information about Free to Shine: