After her fiancé was killed in an automobile accident, Susan vowed to remain a celibate for the rest of her life.2. Anyone who is totally lacking in romantic attachments to any members of the opposite gender or even those of the same gender: The hermit lived as a celibate, isolated from contact with other people and living totally alone on a small island.
There are some adults, for one reason or another, who figure that the disadvantages of marriage outweigh the advantages and so they are celibates, in that they never marry; however, those who live with someone of the opposite or the same gender without marrying, do not necessarily live as celibates.
Although the primary meaning of celibate is "unmarried", no one should with any logical basis refer to a single man or woman as being a celibate simply because he or she has made no legal marital commitments.
Only that adult who persistently avoids, or is denied, all romantic encounters with the opposite, or the same, gender may be called a celibate.4. Etymology: from Latin caelibatus, from caelebs, caelib-, "unmarried".