7/2/2012 11:58 AM
Everything in our history and background is a factor when we are dating. And, in some cases, it's what we haven't done that can be tricky to bring up when we start dating online. For instance, one of the trickier bits of history to navigate when you start dating is being a virgin.
There are a number of reasons that people wait, and all of them are perfectly within the realm of normal. Some people are very serious about a commitment not to have sex until marriage. Others simply have not met the right person yet. Still others are working to overcome crippling shyness or social anxiety, while more are just late bloomers. While it can feel like you are the only one out there in your situation, that is far from true. According to the CDC, around 7% of people between the ages of 25 and 29 have never had sex; the same is true for abotu 4% of 35 to 39-year-olds. While virgins are hardly the majority, they're not vanishingly rare, either.
When you meet someone online and go on a couple of dates, deal with the question of your virginity carefully. A first date is not the time to tell someone that you are a virgin. Sex is generally not a good first date topic no matter what your sexual history. Instead, save the topic until you have a couple dates with your new friend under your belt so it doesn't seem like such a bolt from the blue.
Your virginity is not a liability, and you should not present it that way. Although you almost definitely will have less sexual experience that the person you date, there are perks to being a virgin. Virginity reduces your risk of bringing an STI to the relationship to something close to zero. And, there are plenty of romantic types out there would be pleased to know that they are the only one you've ever been with.
If you decide that it's finally time to take the plunge, remember a few tips. Slow is better. Don't just wait until you are ready to have sex; make sure that first sexual encounter is slow-going, too. If you are female, make sure you have lots of lube and that your lover goes gently to avoid pain. Do not have sex on anyone's time table but your own. Don't feel that you need to rush into sex with an impatient partner. By contrast, if you feel that you are just ready to get the first time over with, don't let anyone pressure you into a hesistance that you just don't feel. You get to decide (willing partner available, of course) when you have sex for the first time, and why you make your personal choices.