The Everyday Girl’s Guide to Getting Down – Cashing in the V-Card

Once upon a time, I wanted to start up a blog about sex that never really made it to fruition for a variety of reasons. Then I tried to get it started on Champion Up North, but it never really took off for whatever reason. So since this blog has kind of evolved from a silly little collection of my thoughts on antiques to my views on relationships and sex, I thought hell, let’s just do it here as another series. And I figured that since this is the first proper article in that series, it should be about that pesky little source of anxiety known as virginity, and more specifically, losing it. See what I did there? I seduced you in my introduction, now we’re losing the V-card after a few drinks. HA! I slay me.

Anyways.

Once upon a time, a girl’s virginity was considered sacred, something intrinsically linked to her value as property…er, I mean as a wife. The man who managed to lay claim to that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow considered himself a veritable conquistador of chastity and virtue, as if he managed to do something legendary and worthy of praise. Not really, no.

Thankfully, the focus on a girl’s virginity has largely (although not entirely) been reduced, and with it, the notion that a woman’s value somehow depreciates after you drive her off of the virginity lot. Really, these days, a woman cares more about her own virginity then men do about taking it, whether it’s because they believe in waiting until marriage, or because they want their first time to be special, or, you know, because they don’t get out enough. Either way, the focus on virginity has shifted – a woman is more likely to safeguard the V-card, and a man cares a lot less if she still carries it and more about whether or not he’s getting laid at all. This is not a universal truth, mind you, but it’s pretty common nonetheless.

But we’re not here to point out who’s the prude and who’s not (Hint: It’s no one). We’re here to lay to rest some of the fears some of you may have about what it means to lose your virginity, which is easier for some than it is for many others. This is not an exhaustive list, so if there are any further questions to add, feel free to email me.

Will it hurt?
This is probably the most common fear a woman has about losing her virginity, and frankly, there’s no way to be kind about or sugarcoat it. Yes. It’s most likely going to hurt. The level of pain you may experience falls entirely on your physiology; some girls experience more pain than others, and vice versa, and it is not a fun place to feel pain AT ALL. There are some people who don’t experience pain at all – fact is, there’s no way to tell until you do it, and every body is different. But mercifully, if there is pain, it usually doesn’t last, barring some physical problem. You can tell him to stop so that you can adjust, and if it’s really overwhelming, you can tell him to pull out. Listen to your body and what it’s telling you. But there really isn’t any way to avoid the fact that the first time offers up some pain, and it’s not even necessarily because you have a hymen (the protective membrane stretched over the vagina that is the primary source of bleeding and common source of pain when torn). Many women these days actually don’t have hymens by the time they’re sexually active for a multitude of reasons that actually have very little to do with sex, so a hymen isn’t an indicator of virginity anymore like it used to be.  However, the secondary source of pain or discomfort, or primary in the case of non-hymenness, is the fact that you will be superduper tight. Vaginas are not wide – they’re tiny and narrow, and you’re basically shoving meat sticks into them that force them to open up. True, if the man did his job properly, there will be a certain degree of dilation and lubrication that comes with sufficient arousal, but it won’t be enough to quell the unfortunate feeling of pressure that you will undoubtedly experience, unless he’s hung like a Q-tip. Your muscles, remember, have no experience with that sort of stretching, and it will take time for them to adjust. The muscles in the v-jay are just like any others in your body – they need to be exercised and practiced before they get good at this sort of physical activity. Giggity.

The Bible says I should wait until marriage, but what if I marry him and he’s terrible in bed?
The Bible also says you should be stoned to death for working on Sunday, but that’s neither here nor there and I’m not here to make religious debate. The fact is, if you want to wait until marriage, that’s your decision. If you are dating a guy who wants to do the deed now and keeps pressuring you despite your deeply-cherished beliefs, then he’s a guy you don’t want to marry and you should probably break it off now. But if he respects you or holds the same beliefs as you, and you marry him, and the whole act takes about 4 minutes, don’t despair. I know a lot of women who balk at the idea of waiting until marriage to do the horizontal mamba for the very reason that they don’t want to be trapped in a relationship with a guy who is a terrible lay. I’m not remotely religious, so of course, I don’t have that particular concern, but I am a realist. Marriage isn’t supposed to be about doing things right from day 1, nor does it mean that you know your partner so well that there’s nothing from them that you won’t expect. Just like marriage itself, sex is supposed to be about exploration on an intimate level; learning what you like, what he likes, what you excel at, and maybe what you both need to improve on. Just because the sex is sort of meh the first couple of weeks doesn’t mean you’re shackled to a sub-par sex-life. It just means that you’re going to have to be that much more open and honest with each other (It’s marriage. You probably should be those things anyway) about your wants and needs in the sack. No one got good at sex from the first day they had it – it involved practice. It’ll be the same with your partner, except you don’t get to try it with different people. Unless that’s the kind of marriage you have.

What if the guy I lose my virginity to turns out to be a total douche?
HEY BEEN THERE!
Seriously though, this is a common fear that a lot of girls have, especially because there’s a big, romantic aura surrounding the notion of losing your virginity. It’s still considered sacred and you want to give it to someone who appreciates it. You’ll likely always remember the guy who took your v-card away, so naturally, you want to remember him fondly.
That’s a very pretty idea, except it rarely happens. As I mentioned, guys care more about getting laid than taking your virginity, and many of them will do whatever it takes to land you. A guy who seems like a prince one minute may very well turn into a frog the next (or, in the case of my ex, a warty, poisonous toad). So how do you avoid it? Well…you really can’t. This sort of situation involves a mixture of good judgment and a generous helping of luck. If he treats you well, and with respect, and he’s someone you can be yourself around, then he’s probably a good guy, but it’s easy to have the wool pulled over your eyes. I’m not saying be distrustful of every guy you cross paths with, but don’t be too quick to give them your trust. Very few people have married the guy who took their virginity, so odds are kind of not in your favor that he’s going to be your Prince Charming. The best way to circumvent a bad situation, if you feel comfortable and trusting enough of this guy to let him take your virginity, is to treat the act itself like a single, isolated event. Don’t add it to the pantheon of nice things he did for you, because if he breaks your heart, it’s only going to contort itself into something negative – “OH I THOUGHT HE WAS SUCH A GREAT GUY, HE ALWAYS BROUGHT ME FLOWERS AND SAID I WAS BEAUTIFUL AND THE FIRST TIME WE DID IT, IT WAS SO PERFECT!” etc. You’ll be using the event as a reason to hold on to the notion that he was a good guy along with all the other reasons, and by grouping them together, you’ll be turning the whole situation into a bad experience when you finally accept that he was a capital D. It’s better to treat the first time you ever do it as a single isolated event, so if you’re lucky and it’s everything you hoped it would be and more (like it was for me), you don’t ruin it with any bad feelings when/if he turns out to be a monstrous ass (again, like it was for me).

What if it’s awkward?
Well…do it anyway.
Seriously. Awkwardness is normal, and there’s no way to get around it. There is absolutely no way to circumvent any feeling of awkwardness you might have except to bite the bullet and do it anyway. You can decide to try another time, but odds are pretty good that you’re just delaying something that can’t be changed. It’ll be just as awkward later on. But on the flip side, if you think you’re going to need a liter of alcohol in order to calm your nerves enough, then odds are, you really aren’t ready for it. Do not quaff that kind nepenthe in order to get yourself through something that makes you that uncomfortable. Trust your body and your instincts, but have reasonable expectations. Odds are, you’ll experience nerves, but it’s better to muscle through it unless you’re too uncomfortable to do so, and don’t let anyone talk you into something you’re genuinely not ready for. This is something you have to do for yourself, not for anyone else – do NOT take his opinion on the matter into account because it is your body and your choice. I’m not condoning being pressured into sex AT ALL. I’m saying be realistic about fear – it happens, but if you want it enough, you can overcome it.

There are plenty of other questions about losing virginity and life beyond that haven’t been touched on or asked here, and I want to hear what questions you have! So send them my way, and I’ll be sure to cover them in future.