Editor’s Note: This article appeared as part of our April’s Fools issue.

It has come to my attention that a significant number of my peers are fornicating premaritally. Upon discovering this, I was shocked and alarmed, and I wondered what foul design is influencing this behavior. I would like to say a few words to my dear readers about alternatives to sexual intercourse while courting before marriage.

To the ladies, I would suggest always wearing conservative attire. After all, we don’t want to provoke any gentlemen to imagine us naked or, worse, to think about what it would be like to delve into our shameful area. If you are asked on a date by a polite and pious man, accept. If you are asked on a date by a scoundrel such as someone who wears leather or spits in public, politely decline and walk away as quickly as you can without appearing abrupt.

Men, remember not to be too forward when approaching a woman. Refrain from using her Christian name and instead address her as “miss” or “ma’am” when requesting that she join you in healthy, proper activities, such as conversation, prayer or perhaps even a daytime walk on the beach – no hand-holding.

A respectable first date would be something along the lines of dinner and a movie. Ladies, at dinner, make sure you chew slowly and use the powder room frequently to check your teeth for food. Never allow food-smelling gas to escape your mouth in front of the gentleman. In the tragic and highly embarrassing event that some does exit your lips, say, “Gracious, excuse me,” and be sure to dab properly the corners of your mouth with a serviette.

Feel free, dear readers, to be bold and order a milkshake with two straws, but never drink cocktails together. Like dancing or shorts, alcohol degrades social etiquette and creates a false sense of sexual desire. Ladies, you do not want the man you are with to think you are a spread-legged Jezebel.

Many women claiming they are “modern” would say offering to pay for the dinner is perfectly fair and logical. These “modern” women are too liberal. At the end of the meal, envision the fellow you are with as a giant, open wallet full of money. This way, you will not feel as bad when you simply thank him with a chaste hug. Those lost souls who pay for their share will be immediately spurned by their gentleman escorts, doomed to a life of spinsterhood and ladies’ golf.

Let not lust tempt your unmarried genitals into premature conjugation! Abstain, dear readers, for only those who wait can truly appreciate the joy of monogamous, once-a-year intercourse. A penny saved is a penny earned, and a hymen preserved is a marriage saved.