COLORBEARER OF ATHENS, GEORGIA LOCALLY OWNED SINCE 1987
April 11, 2018

I'm Ready to Lose My Virginity

Hey, Bonita…

You get lots of questions about how to find a date in this town, but how many do you get from virgins? I’m a female undergrad who recently became legal drinking age, and I’m ready to lose my virginity. Anything you assume about me is probably right. I was raised in a religious home, but I don’t go to church regularly anymore, I’ve been super focused on academics these past few years, and my social activities are pretty much limited to campus and school-related events. I’ve done a little bit of dating, but nothing to write home about. But now I’m ready—or at least I think I am.

I’ve always been told that losing virginity is a big step into adulthood, and that I should save it for the man I’ll marry. I worry about it hurting or being awkward, but my biggest concern is that I’m gonna choose the wrong person. I’m not super hung up on marrying whomever I sleep with, but I really don’t want them to try weird things or be super bad in bed. I’m not a prude, just new to this! I’ve got my eye on someone, too, but we’re pretty different, and I have no idea if he even thinks I’m sex material. Oh, Lord, Bonita, I might be overthinking the logistics, but I know this is something I want. Any advice as I embark on this journey? Thanks!

How exciting! Yes, you are indeed taking a big step into adulthood, but not just because you’re gonna lose your virginity. Really, not at all because of that, because the concept of virginity is bullshit. The veneration of the “unspoiled” woman is rooted in the misogyny of ancient marriage practices. Marriage as a cultural custom originated as a way to acquire land and goods from others by using a daughter or sister as a bargaining chip. It’s the origin of dowry customs, too, and men wanted their property untouched by others much for the same reason we find a new car more appealing than a used one. It’s the male biological imperative to mate coupled with the emergence of misogyny when men realized they were physically stronger than women and could take the lead as they would in a pack of dogs. These are the attitudes that have matured into the modern institution that makes misogyny as systemic as racism. It’s a bias we learned so long ago that unlearning it is taking the effort of our entire culture.

You’re taking a big step by shucking off the expectation that you must save yourself for a husband and just doing what you want. Adults think for themselves, so good job. As far as finding your partner, I’ll tell you what I’d tell anyone: Be honest about your intentions and your needs, and always present your truth. Most guys think of most women as sex material, so I think you’re good there, but you should definitely get clear on the whole “is this casual or are we dating” thing before you go too far. Don’t assume that just because you run with a different crowd than your crush that he won’t be interested in you as a sex partner or as a person. Odd couples are cute, and you already know him in some capacity, I assume. Also, partnered sex has lots of potential to be less than good, and it’s just because we’re humans and we don’t always communicate great with each other. It’s very rare that a couple’s first time together is outstanding—that usually comes after some honest conversations—so be prepared to have fun, as opposed to an orgasm.

You’re thinking a lot, but I wouldn’t call it overthinking. Virginity really isn’t a big deal, but we’ve made it one in our culture, and it’s your body. Still, you wanna be mindful and present when throwing yourself into something. Do what you like, but keep in mind that if you’re gonna start having sex, you need to find a contraceptive that works for you, and you can get access to those (as well as STI testing) easily as a student through the UGA Health Center’s Women’s Clinic. Your body is a temple that you’re about to open to the public, so your sexual health should be a priority. Good luck!

I’m gonna take a week off, y’all, so leave me something awesome in my inbox.

Need advice? Email advice@flagpole.com, use our anonymous form, or find Bonita on Twitter: @flagpolebonita.

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