I never went to Bible Camp, nor confirmation nor CCD. The closest thing I have ever owned to a purity ring is a ring a bought in Nepal with the eye of Buddha and another ring that is shaped like a Nepalese coin.
Having been raised by her Evangelical aunt and uncle, Christian dogma is just nails on a chalkboard for my mother. The only thing I can ever remember my parents (well, let’s be honest, mostly my mom) ever saying to me regarding abstinence was “be safe.” Last week, when I slept over at the apartment of the guy I’m seeing and I came home the next morning, my dear mother simply commented that I looked like I had been “rode hard and put away wet.” (Jokes on her, I just happen to have super long hair that gets tangled easily!)
But despite all of this, ironically I am the only one of my friend group that is still a virgin at the ripe old age of nineteen. I am not even remotely religious, and am uncertain if I ever want to get married because as a feminist I can’t get past the idea that women were (and in some parts of the world still are) historically considered their husband’s property when they became legally bound to a man. While I totally respect people who want to wait until marriage, I also question how realistic that mindset is in this day and age.
For me, virginity symbolizes very little except another item to check off my proverbial bucket list (spoiler alert: I’ve already checked off “Go to Australia,” “Hike the Himalayas” and “Lick whipped cream off a guy’s stomach”…that was an interesting night), but somehow I can’t bring myself to go all the way.
Being a perfectionist, I always imagined losing my virginity to resemble a combination of The Notebook and every early Taylor Swift music video. I wanted the guy to be my best friend, greatest confidante, and also…you know…arrestingly handsome if you catch my drift. Do I seem shallow? That’s because frankly I was. While I am realizing that if I wait forever I will likely never find the perfect person, regret has never been a feeling that sat well with me, and I hate the idea of looking back on that milestone and feeling regretful or worse-neutral about it.
Here are 6 more reasons why I am still a virgin, despite having zero religious motives:
1. Women are constantly boxed in as either sluts or prudes, promiscuous or pure, good or bad, as if our character can painted in black and white based on our sex lives. While I realize the absurdity of this, I still worry about certain people judging me for not “waiting until marriage” or “holding out for Mr. Right and having some self restraint.”
2. Along with my long hair, being a virgin is something that makes me feel special and unique. I worry that losing it would cause me to have a total identity crisis.
3. If my period is even a day late, I freak out, even though I know logically that it’s impossible for me to be pregnant. If I were sexually active, this would drive me insane with worry. As someone who finds babies odd at best and downright icky at worst, the idea of being pregnant is a complete nightmare.
4. I have heard so many horror stories about birth control. Also,the pill makes most women gain weight, so…
5. I worry that a guy will leave me or just see me as a nice piece of ass if I have sex with him. As horrible as it sounds, I have the kind of curves and hair that would make me a great porn star (not how I plan to make money, though I do want to go into the entertainment industry)
6. Because I want to have something to look forward to after college. Since I have a bit longer before becoming a full-fledged adult, I like the idea of having another post-college milestone to look forward to. Though I may not necessarily wait all the way until marriage, I want to have something that symbolizes the end of an era.
For me, sex is one of the biggest adulthood milestones, and right now, I couldn’t feel further from a true adult. I don’t have my own apartment, I’m still in school, I don’t have a career yet. And I want to enjoy my remaining years of youth untethered from the emotional complications of sex.