The conversations regarding sex and sexual experiences at university can be really exciting. Liberating. Informative. But how do you engage with these conversations when you’re a virgin?

I’m in my second year at UEA and am a virgin. I would say that I’m not ashamed of this, but I think the anonymity of this article suggests differently. Whilst the increasingly open conversations about sex are incredibly important, I think the reminder that everyone isn’t necessarily ready for sex by university age is one that becomes lost. I think the assumption is that, if the opportunity for sex arises, most students would take it. However, some may not be ready to take that step until after they’ve graduated from their degree.

I’ve been in both long-term relationships and one night stand situations, but haven’t yet felt the desire or need to go all the way. The other people involved in these encounters have always been completely understanding of this and I have never been made to feel guilty or ashamed. I’m perfectly content with this too, knowing that I’m in control of my decisions and that the time to have sex will come at the right time in the way that my experiences of other sexual acts did.

The cause of my discomfort when talking about virginity is the judgment it can create in social situations. I’m sure we’ve all been at those pres when someone has related a humorous or bad sexual experience, and then expected the rest of the people present to follow suit. I’ve been lucky so far, and the question has never been directly addressed to me, but I dread the day when it is. I find it impossible to come up with a convincing lie, and if I share what feels like the secret of my virginity with another, I’m often greeted with exclamations of pity. I don’t think people quite understand that my lack of sexual activity has been my decision, and that it is possible to reach the average university age and not feel ready for sex.

I’ve never felt like there’s much pressure to have sex at university, but in contrast, people can be very shocked if they discover that you haven’t had sex at all. Consider this the next time you think of teasing someone for not having made that final step!


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