I’m A 30-Year-Old Female Virgin – Should I Tell The Guys I Date? (Advice Column)
My answer to the question posed in this post’s heading (I haven’t read the advice columnist’s response yet): No, you should not, depending on the timing.
You don’t tell someone very personal information up front, not in the first few months of dating, no.
Not unless they start asking you, pressuring you, for sex, within days or weeks of dating, and you don’t want to go there – but even then, you don’t have to disclose you are a virgin, you can just tell them, “No I don’t want to have sex.”
You do not owe them an explanation as to why not.
If a guy starts trying to kiss you, and you don’t want him to, tell him “I don’t want to kiss,” or “I don’t want to French kiss.” You still do not, at that stage, tell him your sexual history.
I’m afraid the lady who wrote this question thinks that when a guy is French Kissing her – which she says makes her uncomfortable, and she’d rather a dude NOT kiss her on their second date – she thinks this means she has to tell him then and there that she doesn’t want to be french kissed by date number two because she’s sexually inexperienced.
No. The two are not the same.
Not wanting some dude to not stick his tongue down your throat is not tantamount to telling him you’ve never had sex before (or whatever your sexual history is).
You can tell him you don’t like that type of kissing and/or you want him to take things slow, that you don’t like to get ‘Handsy’ or into “making out” early in a relationship.
You do not owe him the entire story. You don’t have to give him every detail of your life.
Not only do you not share personal information early on regarding sex when dating someone, but you do not, and should not, share your financial information, and things like that.
There is nothing wrong with telling a guy to slow the hell down – you can tell him upfront on a date at the outset you don’t want to make out, no kissing, no sex, or whatever your parameters are.
If the guy balks at your standards, makes fun of you, tries to cajole you out of your standards, mocks you, or acts like a jerk about it, he’s a loser – don’t waste your time on him.
I am an almost 30-year-old straight woman who’s never had sex.
No P-in-V, no oral, not even heavy petting.
I have kissed two guys, neither of which were great experiences (my first kiss was five years ago, and he went from zero to tongue-down-throat).
Because of some life messiness, I also haven’t dated much.
All of this is to say, I am super inexperienced in all aspects of relationships.
Now that I’m in a more stable life place, I’m trying to get into dating, but my inexperience keeps tripping me up. I’m not even comfortable making out with a guy on the second date, but on the past few dates I’ve been on, these guys have gone for it and I’ve just frozen up.
I get way too in my own head wondering if I’m awful at kissing, and does everyone hook up on the second date, and oh God now I have to tell him about how I’m a virgin and he’ll judge me?
On the second date, I don’t even know if I want to have sex with the guy yet. It generally takes me a while to build up attraction to someone. So he thinks I don’t like him or I’m frigid, and I figure it’s not fair to string him along and break it off.
A lot of advice I see is to just be upfront about who you are and what you’re looking for, but whenever I go out with someone from a dating app, no one wants to move more slowly. So I’m not sure if I need to suck it up and do things that make me uncomfortable, or if I need to disclose my lack of history upfront and hope they don’t think I’m crazy or laugh at me. What should I do?
Here are the responses from the several people who give advice on their site, and I’m not impressed by some of it – some of it is, quite frankly, pretty awful advice.
Goodness, maybe the letter writer is just waiting for a committed partner who she knows is in love with her, who’s not out for a one night stand, before she feels comfortable with full blown sex or with heavy petting or french kissing.
Just because she’s not into quick sex (or sex by the second – or even third, fourth, whatever date), or that she doesn’t want to have “casual sex” does not mean she is repressed, frigid, or asexual, as the advice givers are actually surmising.
I’m afraid our culture has become so sleazy that one night stands, or first / second date sex, is now considered the “norm,” and anyone (like myself or the letter writer) who wants to take it very slow (or wait until marriage, or wait until six or more months of dating, or whatever limit) are now perceived as being repressed, weird, or asexual. Give me a break.
These advice guys on this site are over-analyzing her, and I think misdiagnosing her:
(Answers from site’s advice columnists):
Rich: This one is really hard.
Stoya: I don’t even know where to start.
Rich: Obviously, we can’t and won’t diagnose sexuality, but I wonder how much time she has spent thinking about whether or not she is asexual. It really seems like the very prospect of any sort of physical intimacy is daunting to her.
Stoya: I’m not so sure because of the part about potential partners thinking she’s frigid, which implies she does have desires. But I might be reading the sentence wrong now that I’m looking at it a second time. She also mentions “life messiness” as a barrier.
At least they’re good about telling her to stick to her boundaries – I totally agree with that:
Rich: Yeah, it’s hard for me to tease out how much she genuinely wants to experience sex from how much she thinks she should want to experience it, which leads to a lot of anxiety as she measures herself against what she thinks she should be. I think it’s telling that she hasn’t had sex yet because maybe, in fact, she doesn’t want it at all. Cool! There’s no right way of doing life, and sex isn’t mandatory.
Stoya: I did some reading up on asexuality for a different question recently, and there are people who identify as asexual who also date, snuggle, and possibly kiss.
Rich: It’s amazing how sexuality never stops spectrum-ing.
Stoya: It really is.
Rich: Between each shade is an infinite number of shades.
Stoya: I want to directly address the part about sucking it up and doing things that make her uncomfortable. Don’t do that. Stick to your boundaries.
Rich: Totally. Doing something that will make you uncomfortable will likely only make you feel worse. And for what? A sustained situation (i.e., a relationship) of discomfort. I understand that she feels like she might have to bend to join the status quo, but she’s better off taking this at her own pace.
Stoya: I think she might want to be upfront about her sexual history to save herself the time of dinner with someone who might reject her because of it.
Rich: And time, after all, is the most precious resource we have. It’s the one thing we’re all running out of. As painful as it might be, it’s worth preserving.
Stoya: The more I think about it, the more your asexual guess seems like it might fit.
Rich: Just a hunch! I don’t want to say that and thwart her exploration. But I do want to underline that it’s OK if that’s what she is. Regarding the fear of being judged: Sharing time with someone, even briefly, means you’re running the risk of them judging or laughing at you. This is true of all social situations, but especially intimate ones. I don’t think there’s any way around vulnerability, other than closing yourself off and denying yourself your desires. Ultimately, neither guarantees comfort, but you miss every shot you don’t take.
[snip more conversation]
…Rich: I sure did! I think there is some fear on her part that, by revealing her particularities upfront, she’s limiting her dating pool. But she is a special case whose pool needn’t be infinite for her own sake. So that limitation is a good thing. Yeah, it might take some time to find the right guy, but if she’s going out with these dudes who want to stick their tongues down her throat on sight, she’s wasting her time on the wrong guys anyway.
You can read all of their advice (Link): here.
(Link): I’m a Virgin, So Why Am I Being Slut-Shamed? by Ashley Iaconetti
(Link): Secular Liberal Feminist Marcotte on Anyone Choosing To Be a Virgin Until Marriage: “It’s a Silly Idea” – What Progressive Christians, Conservative Christians, Non Christians, and Salon’s Amanda Marcotte Gets Wrong About Christian Views on Virginity