Her loss is his gain

Understanding the dimensions of virginity

Story by Audrey Haskins, feature editor

In today’s world, humans are evolving around various forms of media and entertainment. Hollywood portrays virgins as the kid with taped glasses and a socially inept personality, and the kid with an array of friends and a party mindset as the one who makes fun of the former’s lack of experience. However, virginity is not what makes or breaks someone’s popularity status, it is solely about a person’s values.

The difference between the way virginity is displayed decades ago is eerily similar to the way it is currently seen in today’s media. For instance, back in the ‘80s, the film “Sixteen Candles” has the nerdy, geeky boy shown off as the one desperate to have sex. Then there’s “That 70s Show.” In nearly every episode one of the characters, Laurie, appears as a very sexual being and the main six characters attack her for this when she has done nothing wrong.

The choice to give up one’s virginity should not be determined by these social influences. It should not be based on impulse or societal pressures, but rather on one’s views. Don’t feel forced or encouraged, or like you have to because the opportunity is there or you’ve been asked. Do it for the right reasons. Not because you think it’s cool, you’ll seem more mature or you just want it to be over and done with. Consider your beliefs and what you really want, whether the choice is based off religion, personal comfort or health.

Sex is not a crime, it is just important to understand the consequences that could potentially come with it. Be sure to understand different forms of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and how a person gets them, but also prevents them. Understand how to prevent pregnancy, and not just girls, but boys need to understand this as well.

Don’t feel embarrassed to talk to your parents, because they would rather you be safe and communicate with them than potentially be in harm’s way.

— Audrey Haskins

We’re told not to talk about sex or virginity because it’s either “inappropriate” or it isn’t “ladylike.” However, not talking about it only allows the stigmas surrounding it and the lack of education on the topic to continue. Regarding it being “ladylike,” the concept of virginity or being a virgin is made out to be a tremendous part of a girl or woman’s life, but for a man, it’s something that you are assumed to have done, otherwise your popularity is nonexistent.

We raise girls to believe that they cannot be sexual beings otherwise no man will want them, they will become pregnant, or they are labelled with derogatory insults. They are taught that their bodies are temples, and should be guarded and closed off. Then with boys, they are encouraged to have sex without being given proper knowledge on how to do it safely or what virginity really is or means.

Virginity itself is a concept built up in people’s minds. To some it simply is a way to label not having had sex, and for others it is something sacred, or a definition of purity. With this in mind, the decision to have sex for the first time is based solely on mentality. It’s not a quick fix into suddenly having outstanding taste in music or fashion, or an easy ride into maturity. It is what you make of it, and cannot be considered as a whole either underrated or overrated.