I’m Still A Virgin


If you are an adult ‘virgin’ you are either a very young adult or you are saving yourself for someone special. In either case there should be nothing to be ashamed of.

I said ‘should be’ because nowadays adult virginity tends to be a ‘secret virtue’ a person would probably hide from the judgment of others. Adult virginity is usually equated with childish inexperience or fear of sex or both, and might be the target of ridicule.

For those who think of virginity as a ‘gift’ given to someone they love, saving yourself for a lifelong partner is a less common practice these days. Yet I suspect that some young people emerging from a traditional or conservative family of origin into their first efforts at independence, may still be urged to ‘save themselves’ for someone special.

Whether or not that ‘someone special’ is a husband or a wife will surely determine the level of traditionalism involved. In times past, saving oneself for marriage was a common practice. There was no need to keep this intention secret.

In fact, the success at which this promise was being kept elevated the ‘virgin’ to greater ‘value’ in the eligibility market. Of course, if you waited too long, the problem of ‘expiration’ became something to avoid.

It seems in all of this effort to preserve virginity that the major focus was on the act of physical sex and not relationship. Falling in love, or at least going in and out of ‘crushes’ or ‘infatuations,’ was expected and even encouraged. But the experience of sex as part of a relationship that had little chance of becoming a marriage commitment was avoided.

In the 21st century, most people are free to choose to experience sexual intimacy as part of a love relationship that is not a commitment in marriage. Having a number of different love relationships prior to a marriage that most likely involved sex is now considered by many to be maturing, at least in most cases.

The most optimistic view of these changes would be that more lifestyle options are now available to everybody. Choosing to remain a virgin for religious, familial, or simply personal reasons should be considered a viable option. A lifestyle choice for anyone who chooses it.

Beyond conformity to one set of values or another, whether they preach withholding sex until marriage or sexual freedom, the most important part of having this more comprehensive set of choices available is the elevation of personal freedom of choice for all of us.

Comments? Welcome. Dr. Tom Jordan


Dr. Jordan

Dr. Thomas Jordan is a clinical psychologist, certified interpersonal psychoanalyst, author, professor, and love life researcher.

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