S&M: First time fears

I’m a fourth year girl and am still a virgin. I know it’s not a huge deal as I’ve never had a long-term relationship, but I’m tired of being embarrassed by it and am just ready to get it over with. However, I’m scared if I tell a one night stand they’ll be totally freaked out and leave — but I’ve heard it hurts so I have to let them know! Help!

— First Timer 

Hi First Timer,

We’re going to start off by stressing that virginity isn’t as big of a deal as people make it out to be. Sex is a lot of different things for a lot of different people, and there’s no one way to define what does or doesn’t make someone a virgin.  

That being said, we know that in this context, you’re talking about vaginal intercourse, so allow us to narrow our focus on that specifically for you. 

You mentioned embarrassment regarding your virginity, which we need to stop right this second. There is nothing shameful about waiting to have sex, the number of people you’ve had sex with or the way in which you choose to have sex.

As M likes to say, it’s a lot like getting your driver’s license. Some people get their driver’s license right away, some wait years before they do and some never get it because they use alternatives like walking or the subway. It’s all about personal choice and what you’re comfortable with. 

Whether or not you know how to drive a car has nothing to do with your self worth, just as having sex or not has nothing to do with your character.  

But since you’ve asked us for advice on how to actually dive in, let’s dive in. 

Sex is a personal thing and it requires a certain degree of trust and maturity. It’s always important that you’re comfortable in a sexual situation no matter what the circumstance. You need to be able to be open with your partner and trust that they’ll be open with you. Talking about when you were last screened for STIs and HIV or who’s in charge of the birth control — it should probably be a joint task — is of the utmost importance. 

It’s also totally okay to “lose it” with a so-called stranger. There’s no rule saying that you need to be in love or in a relationship before you have sex. It just can be a whole lot trickier with a stranger because it can be harder to communicate with them and trust that they’re being honest regarding their sexual health.  

All this being said, you are the only one who can decide what’s right for you and your body. If you have considered all of this and still think that a one-night stand is best for you, then we totally support your decision. 

In this case we would suggest that you come prepared with your own birth control — for both of you. 

Communication is key if you’re worried about it being awkward or hurting. Sex isn’t necessarily painful the first time but it can be uncomfortable. A partner who isn’t concerned with your comfort can exacerbate this, so it’s probably in your best interests to talk it about it with them.  

Don’t get so caught up expecting it to hurt that you forget to enjoy it. 

In regards to “freaking out” a one-night stand with your virginity, we can safely say that we don’t think that will be an issue. As we like to loosely quote from Julia Roberts in the movie adaption of ‘Eat Pray Love’, if you’re naked in front of partner, it’s highly unlikely they’re going to change their mind about having sex with you, virgin or not. They’ve basically won the lottery. 

A partner’s past experience is less important than making sure that he or she really is a consenting partner. 

This is a lot to think about so reflect on what we’ve said before making any decisions, and remember: the vagina doesn’t make the woman, the content of her character does. 

We’ll be cheering for you from over here, baby!

— S&M ;)

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