- forbearance from any indulgence of appetite, especially from the use of alcoholic beverages: total abstinence.
- any self-restraint, self-denial, or forbearance.
- Economics. the conserving of current income in order to build up capital or savings.
- the state of being without a drug, as alcohol or heroin, on which one is dependent.
Origin of abstinence
Synonyms for abstinenceSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Related Words for abstinencefrugality, moderation, chastity, self-restraint, fasting, temperance, sobriety, continence, soberness, renunciation, forbearance, abnegation, self-denial, self-control, teetotalism, avoidance, abstemiousness, asceticism, abstaining, refraining
Examples from the Web for abstinence
Contemporary Examples of abstinence
Dr. Melson says abstinence only training shows no delay in sexual activity.The Next Frontier of Sex Ed: How Porn Twists Teens’ Brains
November 29, 2014
I had tried various forms of home detox but I was unable to maintain any form of abstinence.I Detoxed from Heroin in Jail
June 28, 2014
One exception is the occasional overdose that occurs following a period of abstinence like rehab or jail.Heroin: America’s Silent Assassin
Dr. Anand Veeravagu, MD, Robert M. Lober, MD, PhD
February 3, 2014
Instead I felt envious of this earlier version of myself, unencumbered by the burden of abstinence.There's a Reason That Addicts Say Yes to Drugs
March 7, 2013
No one asked the deeper question: why is abstinence the only theologically credible approach to young-adult sexuality?Evangelicals Struggle to Address Premarital Sex and Abortion
July 13, 2012
Historical Examples of abstinence
Now that we have dined well, I would like to say aword on abstinence.Sir Brook Fossbrooke, Volume I.
Charles James Lever
When abstinence is the only choice, an ascetic frame of mind comes easy.My Reminiscences
You will meet my abstinence by the only amends you can make to me.
It is abstinence from evil quite as much as eager realization of good.Strong Souls
The Ihrm must be put on, and the obligations of abstinence which it entails must be observed.The Faith of Islam
- the act or practice of refraining from some action or from the use of something, esp alcohol
- mainly RC Church the practice of refraining from specific kinds of food or drink, esp from meat, as an act of penance
Word Origin for abstinence
mid-14c., "forbearance in indulgence of the appetites," from Old French abstinence (earlier astenance), from Latin abstinentia, noun of quality from abstinentem (nominative abstinens), present participle of abstinere (see abstain). Specifically of sexual appetites from mid-14c., but also in Middle English of food, fighting, luxury.
- The act or practice of refraining from indulgence in an appetite, as for certain foods, drink, alcoholic beverages, drugs, or sex.