Should this about-to-be-30 female virgin give up on exploring relationships with men? (NSFW)
November 1, 2010 1:19 AM   Subscribe

So I'm a late-twenties bi woman, and I'm still a virgin who's never had a boyfriend or girlfriend (I prefer guys). I'm glad I waited this long, though - even when I was 18, my Asperger's had me feeling somewhat younger socially and emotionally, and I was nowhere near ready to date or do anything. But now I've reached the point where I'm ready to start meeting some nice prospects, looking for a relationship and, yes, having sex. (NSFW)

Thing is, I live in a part of the country where dating is very fast-paced. People "hook up" like it's nothing, and they're very jaded about sex. It's just another activity to them. Which is fine for some people, but I don't think I'm wired that way. While I'm not waiting for marriage (and I do watch quite a bit of porn, and have some idea of what I might like in bed), it would be nice to know that my first time won't be just another notch in some dude's bedpost.

Anyway, no one around here seems to want a virgin at any age, not even just to "hook up" with. I was browsing a local forum topic on the subject, heavily peppered with comments like: "they cling to you," "sex with them is awful," and even "if a girl I was dating told me she was a virgin, that would be our last date." Needless to say, I felt inadequate. Not to mention my slightly chubby body (although I keep reasonably fit by eating well).

So what are my options, if any? Should I just give up trying to find an average-to-cute nerdy guy I get along with, and stick to self-pleasure for the rest of my life?
posted by tamagogirl to Human Relations (15 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
What happened to this dude?
posted by hal_c_on at 1:25 AM on November 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


No community anywhere in the entire world is all the same way about anything, let alone sex. There are lots of things that single people can do; join a club, okcupid etc etc there are lots of questions here about that, just give it some time.

In the context of your previous question, you could start by asking some cute guys out. The more rejection you have, the easier it gets. Also, everybody loves being asked out; if they say no, it's still super-dooper flattering and nice for them, so it's generally a surprisingly smooth experience all around - especially if you act fast, before it becomes "a thing".

Should I just give up trying to find an average-to-cute nerdy guy I get along with, and stick to self-pleasure for the rest of my life?

No one can answer this question any way except by saying don't give up. If you're looking for reassurance here, you will get it in spades, but if you're looking for constructive answers, you need to change the question.
posted by smoke at 2:04 AM on November 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Since you mentioned "love" in your tags, here are some lines from a song by Regina Spektor that I have found incredibly helpful for staying grounded in the fast-paced dating world:
This is how it works
You peer inside yourself
You take the things you like
And try to love the things you took
And then you take that love you made
And stick it into some...
Someone else's heart
Pumping someone else's blood
And walking arm in arm
You hope it don't get harmed
But even if it does
You'll just do it all again
Sex is idealized, fetishized, etc. in today's western society. It's important to pick your partners carefully insofar as it's important to make sure you're having sex with someone who is physically (ie., proper use of a condom) and emotionally (ie., doesn't "fuck and run" unless consensual) responsible.

Beyond that, know that you'll probably eventually have sex. Sex for the first time will probably just going to be your first experience of many. It's the sort of thing you get better at with practice; not the sort of thing where the first time is likely to be magically awesome. It gets better. This can be a point of reassurance for you, rather than concern.


Work hard to be secure in the knowledge that the odds are high that you'll find someone. Life is long. You are attractive. It sounds like it probably won't be that sweet, nerdy volunteer supervisor, but there will be others.
posted by lover at 2:04 AM on November 1, 2010 [13 favorites]


Why do you have to mention you're a virgin? If you want sex to be something important and special, you're going to have to find another guy that feels the same way. If you want sex to be more than "another notch in some dude's bedpost", why don't you go on a few dates first and see where it goes? If a guy pressures you to have sex in the first 3-4 dates, he's probably going to lean towards player. If he takes it more slowly, then it's a decent bet that he doesn't just like to watch his number go up and it'll be more than routine for him.
posted by Night_owl at 2:04 AM on November 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


Once you have had sex you will find all this stuff demystifies itself to some extent. You will look back and smile.

There is no reason why you can't meet a nice guy, get to know him "slowly," over a few dates, and get to the point where you can sleep together without ever mentioning you are a virgin, or dwelling on each others sexual history at all. Even if he asks, you needn't tell the truth if it is going to make you uncomfortable.

Forget your body. People are attracted to attractive people, not necessarily good looking people.
posted by fire&wings at 2:57 AM on November 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


Have you thought of going out with other virgins? I'm not sure where you live/how you're looking, but I know at least three men who remained virgins until their mid-twenties.

To avoid being another notch in someone's bedpost, it's best to wait to have sex until you're somewhat into the relationship with the person and things are going well. Someone who just wants sex isn't going to wait too long when they can go after someone else.

Lying about it is also an option, but if you're going to go that route and you haven't already, you should "experiment" with things so that it won't hurt the first time you do have sex because that'll make it obvious.
posted by biochemist at 3:45 AM on November 1, 2010


People who care enough about not dating virgins to actually post in an online forum about how they won't date virgins are not the norm. And they're kind of helping you narrow down the dating field which is great because people with that attitude sound like idiots.

Even though it seems like it (and may be the case in your social circle, I don't know), hooking up isn't always the norm. But the people who do hook up a lot really like to talk about it, so it's easy to think that everyone in the world is just hooking up all over the place all the time while you're off on the sidelines thinking, "Um, hello?"

I'm not advocating lying, but if you DO want to lie, I agree with biochemist's last line. I was a 25-year old virgin and um...experimenting anyway. When I told the guy I ended up losing my virginity with that I was a virgin (before we had sex), he was fine with it. After we had sex, he thought I had been lying since it didn't hurt me or anything. (It didn't last, hah. And no, it doesn't necessarily have to hurt.)

I'm a couple years older than you, and single/dating. It's a numbers game. Join OKCupid, ask friends is they have any cool single friends from work or wherever to set you up with, flirt with that dude at your job. On OkCupid, don't let the email phase go on too long though, two weeks tops. Go out on some dates! Some people won't be in to you, and you won't be into some people. It's cool. Every now and then though, you'll meet someone that you want to go on more than one date with, and the feeling might be mutual.
posted by AlisonM at 4:36 AM on November 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


You avoid the casual hookups by not having them. Seriously. If you don't put out on the first (or second, or etc) date, you'll filter out at least the people who only want immediate sex. There's still no guarantee that it'll last longer than a night once you do have sex, but at least you'll have gotten to know each other first.

So yeah, you need to be going on dates. Online is great for that; it gives you a lot of control over the process and lets you filter by all kinds of criteria. However you do it, you need to be meeting people and looking for chemistry.

All that stuff on the forum about virgins seems pretty bogus to me, the kind of thing young and insecure guys say online to sound like they aren't still living in Mom's basement. I've slept with virgins and non-virgins and it's all good.
posted by Forktine at 6:26 AM on November 1, 2010


Intimate Connections.

Read it. Follow the program. See what it does for you.

For me, it works wonders, I always pick it up and follow its advice when I'm feeling like I want more dates. It has never failed me. I am amazed at how it has helped my love life, each and every time I go back to it. It doesn't tell you just what to do, it tells you how to do it. The only catch is, you have to follow the advice, do the exercises, and yes go out and meet people and flirt with them.

As for your concerns, they are, frankly, defense mechanisms. You are generalizing about the opposite sex and that is causing you pain. Stop, take a few deep breaths. Ask yourself, do you know friends and/or family who have loving relationships? If the answer is yes, you can too.

As for the stuff on that forum (its evidence! real people saying real things!), the answer is it was written by a few scared little boys. I'm a man. We simply aren't walking around discussing how crappy female virgins are. Nobody is. Its like this scene, just boys making shit up to seem tough and cool, mainly to themselves.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:29 AM on November 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


Response by poster: hal_c_on: I decided the stakes were way too high, and he most likely doesn't and never did like me in "that way," so I'm letting that one go.

biochemist: Sex with another virgin sounds good. Now I just need to find one over the age of 21 who I'd actually want to spend time with.

I definitely agree with waiting until I'm at least somewhat in a relationship before having sex. That weeds out the guys who are just looking for a hookup. I don't like lying about something so personal (and never lie well), so I won't be doing it.

One of the things I like about myself is my fresh-faced approach to life. I sure hope I don't lose that by being rejected/dumped a zillion times in the dating world. (By the way, the forum I browsed was Yelp, and I don't think yelpers are the type of people who sit at home in Mom's basement.)
posted by tamagogirl at 7:36 AM on November 1, 2010


Oh, man, I feel you. Here's what worked for me at a later age: I decided I wanted to be rid of the virginity, as I felt like it was hindering my being able to date. I was ashamed of it, believed those jerks on the internet (who are Not all of the people, or even a majority). So through my friends network I found someone experienced who would be a kind and respectful friend-with-benefits. It demystified sex and got rid of that hurdle for me.

YMMV, but I then found that that wasn't the only hurdle in my being able to date, and therapy (and more good sex) helped with a lot of the rest. But no matter where you live, you will always be able to find cool people like yourself, some of whom will date more at your (and my) speed. It might take awhile and some "putting yourself out there" effort, though. So in the meantime continue to enjoy getting to know and enjoy yourself - sexually and otherwise!
posted by ldthomps at 8:19 AM on November 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


Best answer: Find someone caring and compassionate, who turns you on. Ask them out. If things go well, and get warm physically, gently stop action (while maintaining LOTS of contact - just break lips and make 12" or so of space between your eyes), and say,

"I think I should let you know before we go any further, you'll be my first. I have decided to take the step and become a more sexual person than I have been in the past, but it's still a little scary, so I guess what I'm saying is - if you're interested, would you like to be my first?" Emphasize that you aren't asking for commitment; that this is a step you're taking in your life, and you'd like them to "take you there". (BTW, mean it, too: your first won't be your last, so keep a hold on any crush.)

Anyone caring and compassionate, in the midst of a heavy petting/makeout session, will react to this sort of statement with caring, compassion, and tons of pride (SHE PICKED ME!!!). They will make it special.

(Thank you so much to the dear, sweet ladies who each chose me for their first. I'll always treasure that honor.)
posted by IAmBroom at 11:04 AM on November 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


To echo Ironmouth a bit, you're projecting your own prejudices onto society on a topic you don't have any experience with. Sexual attitudes and expectations vary wildly. For me enjoying intimacy with someone has always been tied to mutual attraction and enthusiasm first, and I've definitely had great experiences with women who have little to no sexual experience.
posted by MillMan at 12:21 PM on November 1, 2010


There's absolutely no reason you can't start having sex, if that's what you want to do.

Forget about the dorks on the message board—for they are, in fact, dorks. The kind of guy you're looking to date does not spend his time insulting women he doesn't know on the Internet. That's definitely the kind of thing you hear from young, insecure guys (or old, insecure guys—I know guys who are men at 17, and guys who are still boys at 55).

Okay, you found a thread full of guys saying derogatory things about virgins. Here's a thread full of guys saying that it's not a problem for them. Both kinds of guys exist. There really are no universals when it comes to sex—and a few noisy braggarts do not represent men in general.

In many sexual relationships, one partner is more or less experienced than the other. I've been in both places, and neither my partners nor myself have ever complained. If you care about someone—heck, even if you just like them—it's fun to show them new pleasures.

Forget about your "slightly chubby" body. That's so not a problem. Most women underestimate their ideal body weight, so you're probably not as chubby as you think. And many guys—more than you think—prefer slightly chubby women.

Even if you're just straight-up fat (which doesn't sound to be the case), that's hardly a sexual death sentence. Most people don't look like models or porn stars, and people of all shapes and sizes manage to find mutually fulfilling sexual relationships. All that's important is that you and your partner are attractive to each other—and that has very little to do with the stereotyped images that fill the media.

Forget about being a twentysomething virgin. There are more virgins your age than you think. More of them than you'd guess go on to have happy and healthy sex lives. And there are more guys than you'd imagine who would be honored, not freaked out, to share your first time with you.

Once you have had sex you will find all this stuff demystifies itself to some extent.

This. (I was a bit of a late bloomer myself, and I can relate to your situation.)

If you've never had sex—and especially if you've gone a while as an adult virgin (I technically wasn't, but trust me, I can relate)—it's easy to build it into this huge, mythic, anxiety-ridden thing in your head. But when you do experience it for the first time, I think you'll be surprised to find that the worst of those apprehensions are just plain unfounded.

I solved my own situation pretty much by deciding that I was fed up with it, and that I was going to force myself through whatever awkwardness, humiliation, and anxiety was necessary to get it over with. I made a very conscious decision that the payoff was worth the risk, and that I was willing to stammer, blush, tremble, sweat, say stupid things, and fuck up epically, if that's what it took.

As it happened, there was plenty of trembling and anxiety, but not a trace of humiliation or fuckuppery. In fact, it was a resounding success, and an immeasurable relief. It remains one of the best things I've ever done for myself.

The object of my affections became my girlfriend. That relationship didn't last forever—but that comes with the territory, we had a lot of fun times together, and the things I learned from that experience have made subsequent ventures a thousand times easier. It would have been a bargain at twice the price.

IAmBroom's answer (which you've favorited) is spot-on. If you've spent some time getting to know the person, and have decided that you're interested in having sex with them, then they must be decent enough—and any decent guy will respond as IAmBroom has described. I would personally be overwhelmed with gratitude, and do everything I could to make sure it was a positive experience.

Ironmouth is also (frankly) right: these worries are defense mechanisms. The concerns you've raised are (at least in part) rationalizations that excuse you from taking the frightening (but necessary) steps you're gonna have to take to get what you want. You probably can't make the worries go away (at least not overnight), but you can decide that you're going to stop letting them dictate your actions.
posted by ixohoxi at 4:23 PM on November 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Tamagogirl, there is no reason to give up. Saying 30 is a deadline is silly. You have many more happy years ahead of you.

I was in your shoes last year, a 29-year-old virgin. I hooked up for the sole purpose of becoming not-a-virgin. Don't do it, it isn't worth it. It was painful and it sucked and I regret it. Wait until you're in love.
posted by IndigoRain at 8:42 PM on November 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


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