Your First Time: How To Not ‘Lose’ Your Virginity
Sex can be daunting. Scary, even. With everything from misconceptions swarming the internet and society made rules about having sex too young or not having sex soon enough to the religious implications about having pre-marital sex, your first time can be regrettable. Thankfully, there are answers to those apparent regulations about sex, especially regarding the much-dreaded first time.
Keep in mind, at one point in time, it seemed like a great idea to have sex with that first person. This mindset is exponentially important in not feeling bad, guilty, or regretful about having sex for the first time.
Rebecca Reid, columnist for the Telegraph, notes that people view “being a virgin as a status,” while there is no term to replace that status one the labeled virgin has had sex. This places an inordinate amount of emphasis on going from being a virgin, to not.
“To be honest, I just don’t think losing your virginity is all it’s cracked up to be,” columnist for Thought Catalogue Tatiana Perez argues.
Perez has a point. Especially when taking into consideration that 95% of U.S. citizens have pre-marital sex, according to a study done by Lawrence Finer, PhD for the Federal National Survey of Family Growth. Kind of puts things into perspective, huh?
The real reason people regret their first time comes down to societal stigmatization of ‘lost virginity.’
Well-known medical site Web MD interviewed Laura M. Carpenter, PhD about her findings on virginity and “virginity loss.” Carpenter found that people’s concepts of virginity vary from viewing it “as a gift, as a stigma, or as a rite of passage.” Most women viewed having sex for the first time in relation to stigmatism of virginity, while men typically viewed it as a gift.
These viewpoints all seem to boil down to whether or not the person having sex has a hymen. For women, the concept of loss is more real because they often feel that with their first time having sex, they really are losing part of themselves.
Carpenter notes that people should “think of [having sex] as a chapter in a bigger story. It shapes some future experiences, but it doesn’t destine you to anything. Treat it as part of a longer education rather than this one single moment that was going to change everything for you.”
After her studies, Carpenter found that a majority of adults can reflect on their first time with happiness and nostalgia because they do not make ‘virgin’ a title. People most likely to feel positive emotions associated with their first time view virginity as a state of being; virgins are people who have not had sex. That’s it.
Being a virgin is okay, waiting until marriage is okay, and having sex for the first time is okay. As long as consent is consensual and you feel ready, then there is no reason to regret your first time having sex.
So, you had sex. Why place an especial amount of focus on that first time, but not the second? Or the third? Or the first time with a new partner? It all goes back to the label and emphasis placed on carrying the v-card. Take away the importance of being a virgin, take away the thought that having sex for the first time means losing something, and you have instead, gained. Having sex for the first time means gaining new life experience, memories and the chance to smile at the memory, perfect or not.